Miche have adopted the fashionable four-arm layout for their new top-of-the-line Supertype HSL Guarnitura cranks. Their typically classy Italian craftsmanship and looks certainly make them a contender to adorn your Sunday best bike.
Supertype is Miche's top range of kit sitting at the Campag Record, Dura Ace sort of pricing level with weight and performance to match.
Replacing the Shimano 105 5800 crank on my test bike with the Supertype cranks showed an instant improvement in stiffness; it's minimal but it's there especially when you're really pushing hard on the pedals.
The cranks are carbon fibre using a hollow construction therefore providing the stiffness while keeping the weight down to 673g, just slightly higher than the FSA K Force Light we've recently tested but at £499.99 the Miche is £100 cheaper.
You may only be able to see four chainring bolts but there are in fact six with one hidden behind the crank and the other sitting directly opposite. This gives the rings extra stiffness under the load of gear changes.
The bolt circle diameter allows for the use of either compact or standard size chainrings. The options are 34, 36, 38 or 39 teeth for the inner and 50, 52 and 53 teeth for the outer so you can do a bit of mix and matching.
The rings themselves are machined from 7075 alloy heat treated to T6 for hardness and anodised too. It's good to see they should be wear resistant as considering they are very exclusive to this one crankset and I can't imagine they are going to be cheap to replace.
Shifting is very precise thanks to the usual collection of ramps and shifting pins and even putting as much load through the cranks while shifting up or down between rings couldn't unsettle it. Although they're designed for 11-speed chains I had no issues running them on a 10-speed group too: the shifting was just a tiny bit less precise.
The matching Supertype Evo Max bottom bracket is also a nice bit of kit with smooth running bearings and easy fitting. The cups have seen a lot of rain and grit over the test period and there are no signs of grumbling or complaints from the bearings.
There are plenty of bottom bracket options to match the ever growing range of frame standards from the usual outboard screw in bearing type to various press fits for BB30 and BB86.
Overall I really like the Miche Supertype crankset for both its performance and definitely its looks. Add in the stiffness and really positive shifting and it's a winner, albeit an expensive one.
When it comes to the price though it's not excessive compared to other brands' top level cranksets and the weight is on par too, It may come down to whether you can get the same sort of discounts for the Miche that are available for the likes of the Shimano and Campagnolo cranks.
Welcome alternative to the top three brands with performance to back up the price.
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Miche Supertype Guarnitura Crankset
Size tested: n/a
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?
The Supertype HSL is the Italian company's top end cransket which uses the new style of four arm cranks. It's very stiff and offers brilliant, crisp shifting.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
*Carbon fibre hollow crankarms
*170mm, 172.5mm and 175mm crank lengths
*34-36-38-39 / 50-52-53 ring options
*Al 7075-T6 anodised rings
*6 bolt fixing pattern
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
A really nice crankset that delivers when it comes to shifting and stiffness
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The styling and crisp gear shift
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The price is high but its comparable to the rrps of its competitors.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
The Miche Supertype HSL is a lovely piece of kit which is easy to fit, offers great levels of performance and looks great too. £499.99 is expensive for just one piece of equipment but its comparable to others in the market and overall I think it's worth it.
About the tester
Age: 36 Height: 180cm Weight: 76kg
I usually ride: Kinesis T2 My best bike is: Kinesis Aithien
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,
Stu knocked out his first road.cc review back in 2009 and since then he's chucked the best part of seventy test bikes around the West Country, a couple of them quite literally! With three alloy and two steel bikes in his fleet he's definitely a metal man (that'll be the engineering background) but is slowly warming to that modern carbon fibre stuff along with fat tyres & disc brakes.
It's not all nostalgia though, after spending the last few years in product design Stu keeps banging on about how 3D printing is going to be the next big thing and he's a sucker for a beautiful paint job too.