Pacenti Teases New Chainrings & Hubs, But Drops eeCranks “Sweetwings” Project

pacenti-cycle-design-wide-narrow-single-chainring

A short inquiry to Kirk Pacenti about the eeCranks project led us to this teaser shot of his forthcoming chainrings. Other than the obvious wide/narrow tooth pattern, he’s not really giving up details until next week. We also found some hub shell images on his Facebook page, leading us to think he’s been quite busy this summer readying both a new website and a new product line.

About the eeCranks, his response was simply: “I’ve pulled the plug on the crank project” and told BR&IN that while he thinks the design offers the best stiffness to weight ratio of anything on the market, he simply doesn’t have time to give the project the attention it deserves. Unfortunately, we haven’t heard back from eeCycleworks’ founder Craig Edwards about the fate of the cranks, but we get the sense they’ll see the light of day eventually.

Pics of the hubs below…

pacenti-cycle-design-front-hubs

pacenti-cycle-design-rear-hubs

Pacenti says these will finish production and start shipping in October.

Comments

Tim - 09/16/13 - 12:14pm

I wager against those cranks ever being made. The original Sweetwings stuff bordered on vaporware. I remember calling their office multiple times and never getting a response. They also made a stem, which I don’t remember ever seeing, even on vintage-retro-classic discussion boards. Sweet seems to have ideas which are so great and perfect that they don’t up getting made.

WannaBeSTi - 09/16/13 - 2:11pm

I’ve handled these hubs in my grubby mitts and they are nice. I WILL have a set to go in his wide road hoops. Good bearings and good freewheel sound.

What I remember of ‘em is that the freewheel mech is designed well and should be easily serviced. Maybe as easy as White, but not as difficult as i9.

Chris - 09/16/13 - 3:09pm

@Tim

Had a pair of Sweetwings I think i got off of MTBR. Awesome, awesome cranks. For a while, we had 4 or 5 of us in our riding group on them. Mine finally snapped, as I suspect they had rusted from the inside. Little finicky to set up the first time, and they did have some flaws, but man….nice cranks.

One riding buddy had the stem. It was pretty light, but from what I remember, the handle bar clamp was kinda…not compatible with riser bars. It was insanely light.

Psi Squared - 09/16/13 - 3:54pm

I sure hope someone picks up and manufactures the EE cranks. According to the people who’ve used them and tested them in the lab, they’re amazing. Ask Jason at Fair Wheel Bikes, I think he’s used the prototypes as much as anyone. In the lab they’re as stiff or stiffer than the stiffest cranks on the market. The design–including the chain rings–is smart, and I think they look damned fine. Their appearance would make Frank Lloyd Wright happy.

Al Boneta - 09/16/13 - 4:28pm

I had the original Sweetwings cranks and I wasn’t really happy with them. They would just never stay tight. Even if they finally do make it to production, how many will they actually sell at what I assume will be stratosphere of crank prices? They’ll never recoup the R&D costs. There are already more than a few good cranks already on the market.

scentofreason - 09/16/13 - 4:29pm

I still own a pair of sweet wings. Been riding them since the 90s. I’m 6-4 220lbs. The cranks are +/-550 grams with bottom bracket (no rings). I don’t understand why a chromoly steel product that light, that durable, can’t be made/sold by someone for huge profits against the more expensive and heavier carbon options out today…

nsp234 - 09/16/13 - 5:51pm

uhh – too bad he doesn’t produce these cranks! I like the looks and the concept a lot.
But it seems as if the concept still has some issues which aren’t easy to overcome.

Padrote - 09/16/13 - 7:27pm

finicky hard to set up cranks that snapped don’t sound that awesome to me.

Chris - 09/16/13 - 10:16pm

@Padrote You gotta remember, this is pre-Shimano intergrated BB. You had ISIS BBs which sucked. Or old square taper which were okay, but didn’t last that long for me.

fleche - 09/17/13 - 12:09am

Not surprised the cranks got dropped, Im really not expecting them to ever make it to market at all. To be totally blunt, it would be cool to have the stiffest crank in the world, but im pretty sure most all top end cranks are so stiff most riders really cant tell flex, frame flex plays is probably more noticeable.

shafty - 09/17/13 - 2:10am

They’re not getting made because Pacenti doesn’t want to throw money at ‘em. Considering the $$$ being made with rims produced in Taiwan that crank is damn near the other side of profitability. The most technical thing they’re producing is a pawl driven cassette hub. A design that’s truly been done to death with many brands to draw inspiration from. I’m guessing cranks proved to be too much of a liability concern. Wheel components and lugs must be built into the final product by SOMEONE ELSE(not Pacenti).

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