Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Bike Tech: Cool Wheels

I have a bit of a wheel obsession, especially Zipp wheels. So, when I came across an article on a new pair of Zipp's debuting at the Tour, I started drooling.

These take the deep dish wheel to a whole new level. A quick look at Zipp's lineup will show a clear progression:

Not much sidewall (Zipp 202):

A bit more (Zipp 303):

Now we're getting somewhere (Zipp 404):

Holy sidewall batman! (Zipp 808):

These things are just shy of being full disc wheels. The 404 is pretty popular these days and are quite deep, surprisingly so when you see them in person. Not to mention, they just look fast. The technology being them is very interesting as well. Definitely check out the article I mentioned above and the info on Zipp's site.

Ok, I'll calm down now... they are just wheels.


At 9:17 AM, Blogger Jim Carson said...

Do the fewer spokes result in significant drag or weight reduction?

They do look pretty cool. The hybrid design would have some benefits in areas where there were cross-winds.

At 10:52 AM, Blogger Doug W said...

From what I've read, fewer spokes do reduce drag, but the arrangement of the spokes also matters. A quote from a good article:

"Interestingly, moving the spokes closer together actually worsens the aerodynamic behavior of the wheel, because of boundary layers, things prefer to be moved apart so as to minimize disturbance. Odd spoke configurations can allow the use of fewer spokes, but the grouping of spokes can negate any benefits."


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