Middleburn RS8 X-Type crankset review

Two decades of evolution, still going strong

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Twenty years on, Middleburn’s cranks are still among the toughest, most versatile all-rounders available.

The RS8s are a stronger, stiffer evolution of Middleburn’s 1991 RS7 crankset – which explains the retro looks of the forged, machined and polished arms. Stiffness is adequate, not amazing, but they’ll take a hammering without flinching.

Our original RS8s are still going strong well past a decade since we fitted them. The spider comes in interchangeable three-arm, four-arm or integrated-ring (Uno) versions. The armour plate derived Hardcoat chainrings offer outstanding wear life and a narrow-wide version has recently been introduced. The driveside axle connection makes working round chain devices easy. There’s no 30mm axle option though, and BBs cost extra.

This article was originally published in Mountain Biking UK magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 44
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster tfhan the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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