I am on the fence on whether I should buy a new Sugino XD600 or Shimano Deore FC-M530 or M590 crank set for my Specialized Crosstrail hybrid. The OEM crank set on my Crosstrail is a heavy (yet stiff) Shimano FC-M36108 setup with 48-38-28 8-speed compatible teeth. With a 68 x 123 BB these OEM cranks have a 50mm chain line and a very wide tread or q-factor of 185+mm.

Anyway I installed a 48-38-26 Sugino XD crank set (a 2007 OEM crank set from my road bike) on my Crosstrail two weeks ago with a new Shimano 68 x 113 UN54 BB and have not been very impressed with their performance. First off the bike seems harder to pedal with the Sugino XD compare to the Shimano M361s. Is this from arm-spider-chain ring flex? The XDs should be stiffer than the M361s because they have forged aluminum arms with a 5-arm spider (110/74 BCD) compared to the Shimanos cast aluminum arms with a 4-arm spider (104/64 BCD). Or am Im simply feeling the flywheel effect of a heavier crank set, which makes the M361 smoother and easier to pedal than the XDs.

The problem I have with the M361s is that the wide tread strains my left hip and knee. I can use a 68 x 118 BB (47.5 C-L) instead of the 68 x 123 BB but a reduction 2.5mm or 1/8 on the left crank arm probably will not make any difference. The Sugino XD and XD600 both a have a 165mm tread with a 113mm BB spindle--20mm shorter than the M361s with a 123 BB spindle. The Shimano Deores have a 180mm Q-factor that can be adjusted by removing and shuffling spacers under the outboard BB cups. Or I can simply buy the Sugino XD600s if they are stiffer than the OEM XDs I have been using