Middleburn RS-8 ISIS Duo 29/42 Chainset review£185.00

Versatile, classic CNC-machined chainset

BikeRadar score4/5

Lighter spinners will love the low weight of Middleburn's RS-8 ISIS Duo chainset. Stronger riders will feel a lot of flex in the spindly outer ring, and shifting isn’t quite as slick as a triple set-up.

You can also swap the spider for a triple or a single ring if you want, making this a uniquely versatile, high-value set-up.

The fluidly sculpted RS8 arms are impressively stiff, and come in square taper or ISIS splined versions. We used a £100 titanium-axled Stronglight ISIS Twister SL bottom bracket to keep weight low and durability high, but SKF make good ISIS units now, too.

The outer rings come in silver, black, red, blue or hardwearing ‘Hardcote’ options, and a 40/28 tooth option is due soon.

Some of you might not be familiar with British brand Middleburn, but these Hampshire-based engineers have been making superb-quality CNC machined cranks and other components for nearly 20 years.

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: 45
  • 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 than 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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