With ruggedly handsome looks and remarkable rigidity, it comes as little surprise Stronglight’s track 2000 is aimed primarily at track connoseurs. However, slipping straight aboard 107mm axles it’s spot on for bespoke or pretty production fixers and single-speeds but as it costs £89.95 (plus £49.95 for the ring) it’s far too tasty for hacks.
Available in sensible 165 and 170mm lengths, the hot forged aluminium arms have a very substantial profile with high lustre anodising on the outside and subtly blast cleaned inners. Self-extracting crank bolts are a nice touch but require the leverage of a workshop Allen keys or Herculean strength using the 8mm stubby type found on most multi tools.
Firmly in place, there’s been no evidence of slackening over the past two hundred miles. Beautifully finished 144 bcd deep section, CNC machined rings, bearing remarkable similarity to Miche, are sold seperately and available in 1/8th pitch ranging from 44 to 52 teeth in one tooth increments.
Flat southern roads saw me plump for a 48tooth ring and 170mm arms equating to a very practical 79inch gear-plenty of cruising oomph with just a little in reserve for the climbs. However, riders of pretty conversions with lower bottom brackets would be well advised to opt in favour of the shorter cranks.
Snatching away from the lights, climbing out of the saddle or hammering along smooth B roads, there’s no evidence of the dreaded power sapping flex-even paired to relatively modest sealed cartridge bottom bracket and this rigidity is an absolute boon for track-standing. Cornering hard on roundabouts or flicking into tight junctions remind of their track heritage and might offer some advantage on TT mounts.
Stick with the cheap n’ cheerful’s or cut down road chainsets for hack duties as good looking cranks only get a spanking but the Track gives nice bikes with square tapers plenty to shout about.
Super stiff upgrade for track iron and road fixers
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Make and model: Stronglight Track 2000 chainset
Size tested: 170mm
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
As the name suggests, it's primarily a track chainset but makes the transition to road fixer and singlespeed duties very well thanks to impressive rigidity and sharp styling.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Hot forged anodized aluminium arms come in a choice of either 165 or 170mm lengths, 144BCD CNC machined ring, Single key release system slots straight aboard 107mm square taper bottom brackets typically found on production fixers.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Rigidity of the design delivers a marked improvement in power whether sprinting away at the lights, hammering along the flat or transmission braking around town. Climbing out of the saddle it felt on a par with external cup designs and there's sufficient ground clearance for tightly banked velodrome and urban sprawl alike.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Sharp styling compliments contemporary and classic bikes remarkably well. Impressive rigidity and superb finish.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Nothing but look elsewhere for working bikes.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Age: 35 Height: 1m 81 Weight: 70 kilos
I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)