Ciamillo Carbon-Alloy Gravitas Crankset Photos, Pricing Surface

Ciamillo Zero Gravity Gravitas carbon fiber alloy crankset

Seems as though the race to put out the most boutique crankset is on!

Ted Ciamillo’s Gravitas Crankset has just popped up in the forums again, this time looking pretty complete and with some pricing. We spoke with him recently to get some details, covered here. These specs were listed over at Weight Weenies, and we’ve got a call in to Ciamillo to confirm. Updates as we get them.

  • Mass : 390 grams (as shown, does not include rings or bottom bracket)
  • Interchangeable spider from compact to standard
  • BB30, BSA, BSA adapted to 30, BBRight
  • Q-factor: customizable
  • Fully customizable arm lengths
  • Custom anodize and powder coating
  • High modulus carbon fiber tubes with PTS locking technology (patent pending)

The image above is pulled from a larger one that shows combo pricing with a set of his carbon fiber brakes…

Ciamillo Zero Gravity Gravitas carbon fiber alloy crankset

At this price, we’re guessing the $700 pre-order special still applies. Stated full retail on the cranks is $1,100.

Ciamillo Zero Gravity Gravitas carbon fiber alloy crankset

This one showed up on Veloptimal, which proves they’re more than just vaporware.

Thanks to Gregory (again!) for the tip!

Comments

Mike - 12/20/12 - 10:01am

Wow, those are awesome.

michael - 12/20/12 - 10:17am

Any numbers on the stiffness compared to the competition?
That is the only number that matters, since these are not any lighter then Sram Red cranks and cost 3x more.

Carl - 12/20/12 - 10:22am

I’m asking the same question as micheal. I want numbers!

Segg - 12/20/12 - 10:51am

Am I the only one who thinks that these arms have bad torsional stiffness?

Podi-ummmmz - 12/20/12 - 11:04am

can’t wait to fly past a pair of these on fredrick’s bike with my sram force bb30 crank. my crank can beat up that crank.

Mindless - 12/20/12 - 11:06am

Yet another showroom bling for weight weenies.

Just get Dura Ace or XTR.

Matt - 12/20/12 - 11:42am

Exciting news for big-guys. Talked to Ted, and he can make these in any length, including >185mm!

This is a nice alternative to the heavy and boring Zinn cranks, which are the main option out there now.

Matt - 12/20/12 - 11:54am

Looks awesome but I am a believer that simplicity is best. 12 connecting/bonding points is not simple.

dwiz - 12/20/12 - 12:11pm

very cool and futuristic looking……my guess is that the pictures you see above are about as close as anyone will get to them……I dont understand what is wrong the stuff that is from two big S’s…..that stuff clearly hits the mark, seems readily available just about anywhere, cost/weight/performance etc….seem to be very much dialed in…. i know this comment will probably open up a can of spewing dislike for the big corporate players—this should be interesting…..

Gillis - 12/20/12 - 12:23pm

As if crank stiffness had any correlation to performance beyond the top 1% (i.e. professional riders).

Matt: a coupld CNC bits and some tubes glued in seems pretty simple to me. The forging and machining of a Shimano crank or the lay-up and molding of any carbon crank is vastly more complicated imo.

dwiz: by that line of thinking we should all just ride Trek or Specialized bikes.

Gillis - 12/20/12 - 12:25pm

While I’m not personally interested in the crank as a future purchase, I do think its a interesting concept, and it looks cool.

Michael-Vittoria Shoes - 12/20/12 - 1:13pm

Actually Matt, it’s 14 points. Forgot the bb spindle on either side.

ascar larkinyar - 12/20/12 - 1:15pm

from an engineering point of view=fail. can’t see this crank design being stiff enough for anybody over 80lbs.

B - 12/20/12 - 1:31pm

I’m definitely not the target market for these. That said, would all the people offering opinions on the engineering quality (note I’m not talking about aesthetics or bang for buck or anything else non-technical) either provide actual engineering analysis or leave off generating noise?

Slow Joe Crow - 12/20/12 - 1:45pm

Very pretty looking for one of Fairwheel bikes’ show specials but way too many potential points of failure for my taste compared to a forged crank or even a conventional molded carbon crank.

BT - 12/20/12 - 1:53pm

Just think of all the parking lot cred you would get with those things! As an added bonus, you can probably get them annodized to match your BMW/Audi/latest bowel movement.

Kark - 12/20/12 - 1:54pm

@B. Well said. unless you had far more info than is available in a picture you can’t offer much more than thumb nail analysis and nothing at all on strength, stiffness.

That said , there’ve been some valid points made r/e number of bonded parts departure from simplicity of forged or carbon.
and departure of money, relative worth.

Boner - 12/20/12 - 1:55pm

Can I get it in flesh tone? Would be cool to have my crankset look like my crank.

G.. - 12/20/12 - 2:07pm

@B @Kark, some of the claimed engineers around here scare me….

dwiz - 12/20/12 - 2:11pm

at the end of the day i or anyone else does not care what you ride. if it makes you smile then that’s all that matters. but there is something to be said for specialized, treks, and the known brands…their stuff is R&D’d to the max, made with the intent to actually get into the customers hands/bikes and to provide an experience. things like this nichey/boutique-y stuff rarely sees the light of day and if it does it is, it is rarely without issues or failures, and even worse it can cause a small company to become extinct. im all for the entreprenurial spirit of these small companies (treks/specialized probably started out the same)…..these are a just a few of the realities these kinds of things come with. just being mindful of one’s excitement of something that may never be available

Matt - 12/20/12 - 3:25pm

@dwiz
“…their stuff is R&D’d to the max”

Not necessarily. Some top-products, sure, but those large companies also have a lot of inertia, large advertisement budgets, and frequently are spending a good chunk of R&D trying to figure out how to make things cheaply.

There will always be a place for small independent fabricators, as they can pour new-ideas and love of the sport into a product.

Steve M - 12/20/12 - 3:37pm

I am going to hammered for this but…..

Isnt this site a forum for opinion?

Design reviews at NASA consist of nothing more than a bunch of power point screen shots of solid models and some margins on stress. Plenty of smart engineers have no problem getting after design flaws just looking at picture.

Cranks have well understood loads and this particular design is not efficient.

Bog - 12/20/12 - 3:43pm

@Segg, yes, they will have terrible torsional stiffness.

For those people that complain about the armchair engineers and are asking for an analysis to prove points made in comments – you do not need an analysis to to see if a general concept is good or bad. In this case, the laws of physics dictate that that structure is not a good structure to resist torsional loads applied by the pedas or lateral bending loads applied by the pedals. Not much else to say here.

McClain M - 12/20/12 - 3:54pm

Hollowtech FTW

topmounter - 12/20/12 - 3:59pm

They look like they are SUPPOSED to flex.

ant1 - 12/20/12 - 4:02pm

i would have gone with a 3K weave pattern myself, much better in terms of cosmetic stiffness.

Crushing Power! - 12/20/12 - 4:11pm

THEY WILL FLEX UNDER THE MASSIVE WATTAGE PRODUCED BY MY CAT 4 LEGS!!!!!!!

DerHoggz - 12/20/12 - 4:16pm

Ah, not only do we have armchair engineers, but now armchair physicists.

Dan - 12/20/12 - 4:51pm

GREAT LOOKING. YOU KNOW WHAT ELSE WOULD BE GREAT? IF CIAMILLO HAD DECENT, JUST DECENT CUSTOMER SERVICE . UNFORTUNATELY THE CUSTOMER SERVICE IS POOR AND THEREFORE A RISKY INVESTMENT TO MAKE FROM A COMPANY THAT SIMPLY DOES NOT STAND BEHIND THEIR PRODUCTS.

Mike - 12/20/12 - 4:55pm

do you think that foot rub over time would wear down the laminate and compromise the strength?

Carl - 12/20/12 - 5:09pm

@B & co: For an engineer it is quite easy to judge this crank as structural nonsense, that’s what engineering is all about … for example: torsional stiffness is best achieved by using large closed sections (http://www.ecs.umass.edu/mie/labs/mda/dlib/ref/section_t.html)
It may be possible to get it to work anyway, but it’s not a “good design” (meaning the stiffness to weight ratio will be poor).

Rob - 12/20/12 - 5:49pm

Just a couple of points.

1) The outer layer of woven carbon (not too sure if woven is best for a crank, but I have not done the analysis to know if a UD layup would have been better) has been cured with less resin than optimal. Companies that make fancy pants carbon parts do this. What you do is essentially make the outer layer look nice at the sacrifice of strength. So a company that does this should make you think about what their drive is, looks or function. Granted, both can probably be done.

2) The torsional stiffness of a circular bar is proportional to the fourth power of the radius.
ie,
Bar A – circular cross section, radius of 1mm.
Bar B – circular cross section, radius of 1.1mm.

The torsional stiffness of bar B is 1.46 times higher than bar A.

(http://www.roymech.co.uk/Useful_Tables/Torsion/Torsion.html)

Therefore having a number of smaller rods is a very very stupid idea.

3) Not an armchair in sight…

4) These would of course have to be tested, but I would not hold out too much hope.

Overdesigned and not really thought through in my opinion.

Nick - 12/20/12 - 6:25pm

Nobody is putting down equations because nobody wants to teach you idiots mechanics. Anybody with any knowledge of structures would see that those cranks are structurally inefficient.

See:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torsion_constant

Torsional rigidity increases with the 4th power of the diameter. The only way for this to be superior is if those carbon tubes somehow have physical properties astronomically greater than those of a molded crank arm.

This is a lazy way of slapping on carbon carbon’s sake.

Jason K - 12/20/12 - 7:27pm

The “armchair” engineers are right on this one, IMNSHO. Those three small-diameter round tubes are either flexier or heavier (or both!) than a single, hollow-section tube. I won’t sit here in my armchair and say “it sucks!,” but it’s fairly suboptimal. There’s no substitute for sectional modulus.

Honestly, it looks like a guy who knows aluminum (well, I might add) slapped on some carbon in a fairly non-thoughtful way.

These cranks may work fine, but they won’t work as well as they could.

P.S. I make my living doing finite element analysis of composite structures, if it matters to you (and it may well not).

Tom - 12/20/12 - 8:45pm

The weight weenies are going crazy for this crank, but they are going to be sorely disappointed. This thing will be a flexible flier, and I bet it will not stand up to long term use, or crashes.

Brandon - 12/20/12 - 8:57pm

Well, I sort of am the target market here, I like to spend money on cool bike bits. They sure do look awesome but I also sure won’t be buying them. I have a set of brakes sitting here that I’ve been trying to get a small part for from Ted for about 6 weeks now. Brakes are totally useless to me without it.

royalewithcheese - 12/20/12 - 9:17pm

At my count there are ten instances of the word ‘torsion’ in these comments. Is torsional stiffness that big of a deal? The torsional moment on the crank arm isn’t all that great (around 40 Nm for a 100Kg guy standing on one pedal with the crank arm fixed parallel to the ground). As for lateral stiffness, the same moment applies to bending stiffness (assuming you pedal straight down), so the only place we need a huge amount of stiffness is about the axis of the spindle where we have at least 50 mm wide crank arms to deal with the bending (i’d calculate the centroidal moment of inertia but my solids book is 600 miles away, I don’t know the dimensions of the carbon tubes, and i’m lazy).

Jack - 12/20/12 - 10:40pm

Pointless. Some people need to learn that just because you CAN do something it does not mean you should. I can see some dollars wasted here. Forget about grams. Lay of the cake and just ride your bike. (Any bike, even a bike with these cranks)

JimmyZ - 12/20/12 - 10:43pm

Now they can make suspension cranks, all they have to do is put three little shocks in the tubes on each side. Remember to pedal circles, not squares, and you should be golden.

Riley - 12/20/12 - 11:22pm

This product looks so freakin’ cool! SHIP IT!

(deleted)

s - 12/20/12 - 11:53pm

Hmm, lots of mixed comments. It’s certainly an interesting product and those that have followed this brand have certainly witnessed a fair share of developments along the way. I have had positive experiences with the Zero Gravity brakes and can see where a product like this would compliment the set. From what I know of the product there are sets being tested in the real world now and any refinements should be about finalized before orders ship out for 2013. I think it is irresponsible to make assessments from an engineering standpoint without having even handled the product in person. I do realize that experiences with the brakes are hit and miss for some. Consider that the company consists of a small team and most communication is done directly with the owner/engineer. I look forward to giving one a go as soon as I read more about them beyond the photo shoot. I for one appreciate the efforts of a smaller US based company and I think they’ve been in business long enough to have gained my trust in the long run, but to each his/her own.

CJ - 12/21/12 - 12:26am

Please send me one . I will break that shit in 3 rides tops. Guaranteed.

Bog - 12/21/12 - 12:37am

@royalewihtcheese, torsional stiffness is a big deal with cranks if you’ve ever ridden cranks with poor torsional stiffness. The pedals feel like they are sagging away under your feet and cause a very funny feeling pedal stroke when power hard especially when standing.

Generally, a structure with poor torsional stiffness will have poor bending stiffness in at least one direction as well. These cranks will have poor bending stiffness in the lateral directly which also feels awful when hammering on the pedals and rocking the bike.

Hell Yeah! - 12/21/12 - 12:44am

Well, l think they are really cool looking

ok - 12/21/12 - 1:05am

Bog, how do you know what these cranks torsional stiffness is?

CJ, do you really think people want to commit to years of education, refinement, dedication to their trade and R&D so you can break their hard earned work in 3 rides? Really? You think Ciamillo wants to be known for making products that fail after three of your CAT 4 group rides? OK… let me know when you break.. I mean buy… a set.

Ventruck - 12/21/12 - 2:24am

Gonna have to join the armchair engineers. Doesn’t matter if it’s tested to work, it’s such a pointless design relying on material properties more than the actual design. I won’t necessarily say “it will” fail, but if it does, I’m not going to be all starstruck about it. Take into account you’re dumping over a grand on this and well…borderline Darwin award-worthy purchase.

Mech T.L. - 12/21/12 - 7:16am

well boutique item it is , that’s all, the eecranks at the very least try to address the big chainring issue by having 170 BCD. But for most of us, we really are not out doing any of the mainstream market product. Even the humble Shimano Sora is more than a match for most what we can throw against it. And if I ned the absolute stiffness, I wouldn’t be doing the crank this way, that’s speaking from a personal background in engineering

ChrisC - 12/21/12 - 7:44am

Maybe everyone is looking at this wrong. What if Ciamillo is trying to go after the market segment that wants or needs completely customized cranks? A custom Q factor and the option of unusual or even mismatched length crankarms might be exactly what some people are looking for. If this is the case, then the suboptimal design could be a feature and not a flaw.

me - 12/21/12 - 9:58am

pay attention this time you silly wanna be engineering children, carbon/epoxy composites are anisotropic. you cannot judge the properties of the part just by the shape.

Bog - 12/21/12 - 10:56am

@me, that statement shows how much you know. Carbon epoxy composite CAN be anisotropic but are not necessarily so. Even if these rods are designed to be anisotropic it is still a poor structural design.

Just curious, in what way would having an anisotropic structure be of value here I steadying of making a proper structure?

me - 12/21/12 - 11:28am

Bog, i’m not sure you understand what anisotropic materials means.

challenge rejected.

Jordan - 12/21/12 - 12:46pm

Chris C: in that case they could have used one large carbon cover that would encapsulate all three of those current tubes. It would be stiffer in literally every direction, plus you could probably use less carbon making it lighter. Would be more difficult to make those carbon shapes, but it IS an $1100 dollar crank.

Nick - 12/21/12 - 3:31pm

Looks like Ciamillo sourced some carbon fiber rod from the hobby store, cut them to length, and glued them into some CNC’d ends. This is the manufacturing tech of a high schooler.

G... - 12/21/12 - 4:51pm

I enjoy coming to here and watching everybody b!tch slap one another over pictures. It’s funny.

Johnny C. - 12/22/12 - 2:05am

Johnny C. – 12/22/12 – 1:58am
People please, you know stiffer is better and as of weight, well you also know this. It’s also better. Welcome to the the 21?st century

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