What are the most important components of a mountain bike?

autorRotor Bike Components
fecha24th July 2019

The different MTB disciplines are gaining more and more popularity and followers. There are many today who take up cycling and ride a bike for the first time, while others upgrade different parts of their bikes to enhance and optimise their effort on each ride.

So, those who are planning to acquire a new mountain bike should look at:

  1. Frame and handlebar.
  2. Wheels and fenders.
  3. Fork.
  4. Type of brakes.
  5. Saddle and pedals.
  6. Chain.
  7. Chainrings.
  8. Cranks.
  9. Hubs.
  10. Bottom brackets.
  11. Cassettes.
  12. Power meters.

We’ll base this post on the assumption that you already have the basics of your bike. That is, you have the first five items and have even looked at the type of MTB chain you want.

Remember that the discipline we are going to practice –whether XC-Marathon or Enduro– is important. So without further ado, let’s take a good look at the MTB components that can make a difference to your training.

MTB chainrings

The first big decision when it comes to setting up our bike is choosing between oval and round chainrings. At ROTOR, we recommend using the latest oval chainring technology. In one of our previous entries, we talked about the advantages and disadvantages of oval chainrings or Q rings, which, in short, improve performance, reduce the transmission ratio in the “dead spot” and increase it in the power position, and offer up to 5 OCP (Optimal Chainring Position) settings. The OCP system, exclusive to ROTOR, offers 5 different chainring positions in road bikes or 3 in mountain bikes, allowing you to fully optimise your pedalling. 

We have developed two lines of oval MTB chainrings for maximum efficiency.

Direct Mount

MTB Chainrings

DM Q rings use the latest OCP technology, providing robust but smooth engagement, allowing you to maximise efficiency in the transfer of power in each pedal stroke, as well as shifting quickly and precisely during high-intensity efforts.

Direct Mount is based on a technology unique to ROTOR, the OCP Mount system that allows you to adjust the crank angle to the chainring according to your biomechanics. The shape of the axle allows you to adjust the position of the cranks, spider or Direct Mount independently. With this you can make micro-adjustments to any oval chainring, thus improving performance and traction, as well as protecting your knees.


Also using OCP technology with 3 positions, the oval QX1 chainrings are used for 1×11, QX2 or 2x gearing. Since these chainrings allow you to get the most out of the strongest and weakest part of your pedal stroke, you reduce tension on your knees, thus protecting them from injury.


Cranks transmit power from the pedals to the chainring, so it is very important to choose the right ones. We have talked before about what you should know before buying your MTB cranks, where we explain in detail how to choose the length of the crank and discuss the Q Factor.

We also differentiate between disciplines, so you have cranks for Enduro and All-Mountain, the R-HAWK and R-RAPTOR models, which are specially designed to integrate with the Direct Mount oval chainrings mentioned above, allowing you to fully optimise your pedalling thanks to ROTOR’s OCP system. If you practice a different discipline, in the MTB XC-Marathon category we highlight the new KAPIC CARBON cranks with which you can also adjust the precision of your Q rings. Remember that ROTOR’s cranks work with Boost and Super Boost.


The hubs of a bicycle are the central part of the wheel. That is, axle, bearings and core of the hub. At ROTOR we are at the forefront of this technology with the RVOLVER® hubs. This innovative MTB hub design features a sliding clutch system that disengages the ring from the pawls while coasting to reduce friction. This light and durable system acts in a similar way to a car clutch, so when you resume pedalling, the ratchet ring re-engages to deliver instant power transfer.

They are manufactured in ultralight CNC aluminium, which is the best option if you want to improve your MTB training.

Bottom brackets

Many cyclists run into issues with bottom bracket/crank compatibility. Aware of this problem, at ROTOR we have designed the Universal Bottom Bracket or UBB to make bottom bracket systems compatible with standard cranks.

This way we make sure that our cranks can be mounted to any frame on the market, as long as we have the right bottom bracket


The sprockets of a cassette determine the range of gears available. Here, weight is a crucial element. Our recommendation is to find cassettes that are as lightweight and resistant as possible. 

At ROTOR we have developed an ultralight aluminium and steel alloy for our MTB cassettes. This has allowed us to engineer an ultralight and reliable system where the chain passes over the cogs with speed and precision.

Power meters

Powermeters MTB

And here is one of the mountain bike components for that can really make a difference in training and competition – power meters. Thanks to power meters we will gather the data needed to regulate our pedalling and optimise our training. If you’re not sure yet, take a look at the benefits of power meters for cycling.

If you’ve already decided on getting one, know that ROTOR is at the forefront of MTB power meter development and manufacturing. 

Our INpower® DM MTB power meters  can be used for any MTB discipline. These collect data on the performance of your left leg from inside the axle so they are protected even in the most demanding environments. Thanks to the ROTOR POWER App, you can perform a biomechanical analysis of your pedalling with data on power, cadence, pedalling smoothness or torque effectiveness. With this and your Q rings, you’ll be able to set your OCP in the ideal position.

You can also choose the new 2INpower DM MTB power meters, which record performance data on both legs independently, taking pedalling interruptions into account. You can also feed your data to the ROTOR POWER App and use OCP technology to adjust your Q rings to the optimal chainring position. You can also customise them with protective bumper sets that come in 7 different colours.


Remember, if you have any questions when choosing your MTB build, get in touch – we’ll be happy to lend a hand!

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