Rotor Gets Even More Ovalized with New QXL Chainrings

Rotor QXL ovalized chainrings

Rotor’s new QXL chainrings (left and center, standard on the right) have 16% ovalization compared to their normal rings’ 10% change.

In tooth counts, that means the 53T feels like a 49 to a 58, versus 51 to 56 for their normal rings. It’s available in standard and compact, only for road and only in a 53/41 combo with 130BCD and 53/38 for compact. The reason the compact still has a 53T big ring is because they needed the extra size to accommodate the smaller cross section where it’s effectively a 49…and because their sponsored pros wanted a proper big ring for the flats but something smaller for the climbs.

They’ll have a 52/36 compact option coming soon. Retail is $320 for the pair. Following that, they’ll add a 53/38 for Shimano’s new DA9000 cranks, which lets them keep their rings on Shimano-sponsored athletes.


8 thoughts on “Rotor Gets Even More Ovalized with New QXL Chainrings

  1. Of course the rings are drilled up enough that you CAN mount them BioPace style, if that’s your thing.

    FWIW I used BioPace in a single ring setup one winter just for giggles. Never could tell the difference.

  2. …and 38T isn’t much for a low gear. Froome and Wiggins lost the Vuelta because the lowest they could get on the Angliru was 38×32, while everyone else had 34s. Elliptical rings might feel better at times, but there’s no such thing as a free lunch.

  3. Champs, you might want to consider Wiggo and Froomie were riding Osymetric which is drastically different from Rotor. I can say this from experience as I rode Rotor for six years before spending last season on Osymetric. Personally, Rotors feel good but the Osymetrics from a pur performance standpoint are superior. Sure, you might have a slightly bigger gear where you need it but the smaller gear on the return stroke is what you really feel.

    I don’t think you can say that Froomie and Wiggo lost the Vuelta because they were riding non-round rings. That’s not fair. I’d look at the truth of the matter: they are white Anglo-saxons. The Spanish and Italians always have a better go at the Vueltas grueling parcours.


  4. Uum… have we all forgotten that Cobo was riding Q-Rings when he beat Froome and Wiggins?

    So clearly non circular chainrings dont work “there’s no such thing as a free lunch”, thats why non circular chainring riding athletes took so much of the podium. Cause nobody else was competing.

  5. I have been on these (130 bcd) QXL rings since Dec. They are BEASTLY! I liked the original Q rings as well, but these are even better.

  6. I’m pondering non-round chainrings to help with a foot drop condition that has me weak pulling up with my RT foot. I’ve read about Osymetric rings but reviews (by non-pro riders) seem to have them a bit more finicky to setup than Rotor rings. However, QXL seems suspiciously similar to Osymetric in terms of a more aggressive oval. While it’s nice to read about what the pros ride & prefer, I need something that’s effective and can be setup & maintained by the folks at my LBS too.

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