3T has busy working with THM to develop this stunning carbon fibre crankset specifically for 1x road bikes like its Strada and Exploro.
It’s called the Torno and it has been designed to be as aerodynamic as possible, as well as being extremely light. Super thin crank arms reduce drag and keep the Q-factor (the distance between the pedals) as small as possible, and at 142mm is quite a bit narrower than most road bikes.
The right crank arm, spider and axle are made as one-piece in carbon fibre, for maximum stiffness and to reduce weight. The four bolt spider attaches chainrings made by US brand Wolf Tooth components, they’re 1x-specific naturally, with the DropStop tooth pattern designed to ensure maximum chain retention.
On the scales, the crank arms, axle and spider weigh a claimed 330g, with chainrings adding between 79 and 110g depending on which size you choose, with a choice of 36, 40 and 44t. That definitely makes it one of the lightest cranksets money can buy. But the 100 BCD (bolt circle diameter) means you aren’t going to be able to bolt any other chainring on there, only 3T’s chainrings.
Crank arm lengths include 170, 172.5 and 175mm options.
The crankset is compatible with most modern bottom bracket standards, including BB386EVO, BB30, PressFit30, Shimano Press Fit, BBrightTM, Italian threads and Press Road BSA.
3T says when used with its own 9-32t cassette that a 36t chainring is equivalent to a 34/48t chainset with a 12-30t cassette, while the 44t chainring is equivalent to running a 54/36t chainset with an 11-26t cassette.
The carbon expertise comes from THM, a German carbon specialist with 20 years experience that 3T Cycling bought a couple a years ago. THM developed the new crankset and will manufacture it in-house which provides it with the highest quality control.
3T says that making an aerodynamic crankset is no easy thing to do, and is a complex area to reduce drag. “The leading edge of your shape becomes the trailing edge 180 degrees later, you have the major influence of the forward speed and the minor influence of the rotational speed, your feet spin by, the frame is right there, the chain runs over the chainring and can’t really be changed aerodynamically,” explains the company.
Thus, thin and deep profile crank arms were the solution. “Our best aero shape was a knife-like 12mm wide at the pedal, significantly thinner than anything else in existence (cranks are usually 15-17mm at the pedal end). In the other direction, our desired profile was much deeper than usual,” it adds.
But the spider interface posed a challenge as well. “The transition to the spider is another headache area. For structural and stiffness reasons, we want the spider to be integrated with the crank arm and fibres running through both. Yet we also want the chainring to be separated spatially from the drive-side crank arm (not one blended shape) to avoid aerodynamic blockage. The Torno spider offers exactly that and works in unison with the dedicated Wolf Tooth aero rings.”
Of course, it won’t be cheap, but you probably guessed that already. It’ll cost €1049. Check out for more info www.3t.bike. Want a review of this crankset? Don't hold your breath, but we'll ask if we can test it.
David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.