SiSL Vs. SiSL 2 (In-Depth Comparison)

SiSL Vs. SiSL 2

Most bikers, even Cannondale bike owners, know that lighter bikes equal smoother performance.

A lightweight bicycle responds faster to acceleration and feels swifter, even enhancing gear shifting during climbing or cycling on flat roads. 

Due to this, many wish to upgrade their bike and their components. But the answer truly lies in a crankset upgrade.

The SiSL and SiSL 2 crankset play a significant role here, but how?

SiSL and SiSL 2 are Cannondale Hollowgram cranksets, with the former being an older version and the latter the newest version. Also, the SiSL Hollowgram crank has fewer advantages in enhancing bike performance and riding. However, it also has minimal chainrings, making the SiSL 2 crank arm a better choice due to its special features.

What Is SiSL?

SiSL Vs. SiSL 2

Cannondale’s Hollowgram SISL cranksets trended previously as the lightest cranks and were very stiff, offering better performance than other Hollowgram cranksets like SI.

But not until another crank invention. These cranksets are a crucial element of every bicycle and a fundamental component that assist in chain movement during pedaling. 

They contain gears or chainrings attached to crank arms to distribute force to each tire wheel, moving them forward as you pedal. 

Cannondale understood that these crank components were essential to excellent cycling, so they were always looking for ways to improve to ensure their bike’s components.

They did this to ensure their bikes were reliable and proficient enough to provide riders with the best cycling experience hence their frequent crankset upgrade.

What Is SiSL 2?

The Hollowgram SiSL2 crank arm is the newest Cannondale crankset version released after the SiSL.

It is incredibly light and the best choice for riders obsessed with lightweight bikes. It experienced modifications and new additions. 

Some improvements included the removal of the shoulder in the spindle from the non-drive area and replacing it with a wave washer.

This addition ensures the room between the chainrings and bike frame is uniform, an improvement lacking in other crank designs.

It is also the stiffest crank in the market, incredibly light but does its job perfectly.

The crank engineers used the example of high-performance vehicle wheels and their several spokes to form the idea of a SiSL2 crank with a 10- crank arm SiSL 2 design that distributed forces uniformly throughout the bike.

It has various advantages over the other designs and is now available in mountain bikes. 

Its transferable structure makes it adaptable and can be with different shafts, spiders, and other Cannondale bike components.

The Cannondale engineers used CNC machines to make this crankset version, creating the crank arms as two separate parts and merging them to form a hollow crank arm. 

The space is so visible that you can see the parting between both halves on the two sides and the integrated steps at each rear.

Again, Cannondale didn’t use the regular spider that joins the chainrings to the crank arms; instead, they employed another strategy. 

They created a spider and chainring system from the same metal and named it an OPI (One piece integration).

Cannondale mentioned that this clever strategy also helped reduce the crankset’s weight and improve the stiffness of the SiSL 2 crank arms.

Can I Perform a DIY Crank Removal Process Using Similar Tools on the SiSL and SiSL 2 Hollowgram Cranks?

The SiSL and SiSL 2 may be different crankset versions, but you can follow a similar process to remove their cranks using similar tools.

All you need are

  • 8 mm hex key
  • 10 mm hex key
  • 26 mm spanner/socket.

#1. A Step-by-step Guide to Removing Cannondale Cranks

  1. Take out the Hollowgram SiSL crank bolt using the 10 mm hex key.
  2. Use the 8 mm hex wrench to insert a small inner part into the crank base bracket spindle.
  3. Insert the more significant outer part into the crank arm’s thread and ensure it is tight. If you’re not confident you can do that manually, use your hand to put the Hollowgram SiSL crank bolt into place. Afterward, use the 26 mm spanner to tighten it further.
  4. Use the 8 mm hex key through the huge component installed into the minor part and move it in the anti-clockwise direction. This method will push the hex key against the crank arm and pull it off. Afterward, remove the threading tool from the crank arm. Follow this process to remove the arm from the other side of the axle.

Remember that you can only use these tools to remove the crank arms from your Cannondale, and you can’t use them to mount crank arms to the spindles.

If you wish to do that, you will need a SiSL crank bolt kit. It is affordable and contains screws and spacers, so you can buy this SiSL crank bolt kit and add it to your toolbox.

Is It Worth Swapping a SiSL for a SiSL 2, Considering Weight and Stiffness?

The SiSL 2 is the best crank you’ll ever get in your Cannondale bike. It is the cherry on top of a bicycle because it has numerous advantages.

They thrive in challenging terrains, open routes, and down hills and are durable and efficient.

And when paired with a SpideRing, the SiSL 2 crank arm and chainrings become the ideal upgrade you’ll love but never knew you needed.

A crank upgrade is necessary for every bicycle, and here are the reasons:

  • SiSL 2 Hollowgram cranks reduce the weight of a bike which maximizes acceleration.
  • A crankset upgrade adds a pleasing aesthetic to your bike, giving it a new look aside from a different feel.
  • A Cannondale crank upgrade means you have upgraded SiSL 2 crank arms, chainrings, etc., resulting in an improved cycling experience.
  • A SiSL 2 is undoubtedly the stiffest crank from other Hollowgram crankset versions; they offer enhanced safety and efficient bike pedaling, making acceleration easier.
  • An upgrade makes it easier to access all terrains easily and accelerate or shift gears when need be. The modifications of a SiSL 2 crank make this possible and compatible with many other shafts required for smooth cycling on paved or rough terrains.

Below is a table showing the difference between a SiSL Cannondale Hollowgram and the SiSL 2 version.

You’ll also understand why a version upgrade from the former to the latter is worth it.


It weighed 445g and was previously considered a lighter option than other Hollowgram cranksets before another upgrade.

It weighs 439g which is the lowest for a Cannondale Hollowgram crank, making it the lightest.

It possesses minimal stiffness compared to the SiSL 2
The stiffest crankset of all Hollowgram cranks versions, making it perfect for bearings and pedal alignment to convert force into power. 
It has a four/five crank arm. Due to the SiSL crank arms number, power distribution is limited among the five-arm designs.It has an improved 10-arm SiSL crank design that offers a maximized stiffness level and enhances shifting performance. This arm design facilitates the even distribution of stiffness and power throughout the bike for faster performance and better riding.


Cannondale ranks as one of the best bike manufacturers because they’re steadily improving their bike’s components to make it better.

For example, they constantly improve their Hollowgram SiSL crank to enhance its weight and stiffness, and their SiSL 2, the latest version, proves their excellent work.

It is the lightest and best performing Cannondale crankset and one you should consider.

Josh Matthews

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