Cycling Weekly Aero Bike Test 2. XR4 looking legit.

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
AJS914
Posts: 2123
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 pm

by AJS914

Yes, when every bike on the market is aero or at least aeroish. People are still buying bikes like the C60 though because of its road manners. It's going to be harder to choose when the choice is aeroish or full aero.

I will fully stipulate that aero benefits are real but the solo recreational cyclist just has to ask themselves if saving a few minutes on their 2 or 3 hour weekend ride is worth any additional expenditure or replacing current equipment. When you are going to buy a new bike anyway, then it makes a lot of sense to look at the aero options.

by Weenie


Alexandrumarian
Posts: 184
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2016 6:34 pm
Location: Romania

by Alexandrumarian

I really wish they would at least try to make some of these tests at low speed, maybe they can get precise with sufficient runs and put this debate to rest. It comes up again and again...

But lets see, roughly, the Merida Scultura needs 20W more to keep the same ~40kmh speed as the aero bunch. Which means 5% more. Or roughly, you need 5% less power on the aero bikes. And now lets assume we get the same 5% power benefit at a low 17mph speed. (how does this sound, optimistic or pessimistic?)
If we do a 100miles ride, we will save about 6 minutes out of 350 minutes. 6 minutes is something, but next to the main 6 hours, not enough to make me excited and rush to order an aero frame.

TobinHatesYou
Posts: 1529
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:02 pm

by TobinHatesYou

DutchMountains wrote:
DutchMountains wrote:[...] Good for you if you can sustain 380W for a meaningful time [...]
TobinHatesYou wrote:What’s a meaningful time to you?

The rides I care about are about 7-60 hours in the saddle (ie. London-Edinburgh-London) and I average about 120W on these rides (measured with Quarq DZero). FTP according to TrainerRoad (on a Tacx Genius) is ~ 290W but my max on the road is more like 210W for an hour.


Are you using the DZero for power measurement in TrainerRoad? If one has a 290W FT, they should be able to hold 380W for 3-4min. To me that’s a “meaningful time.”

ichobi
Posts: 638
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2012 11:30 pm

by ichobi

Ultimately you got to ask yourselves what kind of riding you value the most. Aerodynamic works yeah but I don’t plant to turn every group ride or a friendly audax to a time trial. Cycling would be utterly boring if it comes to that.

I have aero gears though and they have their use for sure.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Vermu
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:39 am

by Vermu

Originally Tour tested aerobikes with quite normal speed. If I recall right it was more or less 30ish km/h and there the difference was 4 minutes with normal tubing.
Scultura is basicly round tubed bike. Without any aero benefits except for the wheels which were the same on all bikes in the test.

Aero matters sure, but if you go with new kind of aeroish bike ie new Tarmac or Canyon ult cf slx with aero bars. The difference isn't so big anymore.
Canyon claims that aero cockpit saves 5 watts @ 45 km/h.
Now going that 30km/h narrows the benefits of aero and other aspects pop up. For racer it's a no-brainer and aero significantly makes difference between winning and losing.
Some GT riders stick to round tubed versions even as some races are lost due that.

Would love to see those semi aero bikes on the same test.

Marin
Posts: 2888
Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Location: Vienna Austria

by Marin

Vermu wrote:For racer it's a no-brainer and aero significantly makes difference between winning and losing.


That's not how bike racing works. It might be true for a TT, but bunch racing with climbs and sprints is one of the few situations where aero doesn't matter that much.

Shrike
Posts: 1259
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 5:08 pm

by Shrike

Vermu wrote: For racer it's a no-brainer and aero significantly makes difference between winning and losing.


Quite the opposite.

Races are not time-trials. Aerodynamics and how different races are won are clearly very poorly understood.

A commuter gains more from aerodynamics than a professional stage racer in the vast majority of cases. You'd have to dig deep and do some serious number work to find a race that proved otherwise. And you'd better be hot shit and not miss a single part of the equation, such as time spent in x position and the CdA of such position, energy conserved by it, and how all of it lost them that split second at the end of the race.

I would love to see someone foolish enough to attempt it 8)

Vermu
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 6:39 am

by Vermu

Shrike wrote:
Vermu wrote: For racer it's a no-brainer and aero significantly makes difference between winning and losing.


Quite the opposite.

Races are not time-trials. Aerodynamics and how different races are won are clearly very poorly understood.

A commuter gains more from aerodynamics than a professional stage racer in the vast majority of cases. You'd have to dig deep and do some serious number work to find a race that proved otherwise. And you'd better be hot shit and not miss a single part of the equation, such as time spent in x position and the CdA of such position, energy conserved by it, and how all of it lost them that split second at the end of the race.

I would love to see someone foolish enough to attempt it 8)

2017 Paris-Nice the gap was so small that if the last stage attack was done with madone instead of emonda, well you do the math when the gap was only 2s.
Contador was attacking last 50km. So I kinda think that aero would've made the difference there.

dim
Posts: 223
Joined: Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:25 am
Location: Cambridge UK

by dim

I'm looking for a new (used) bike in Spring next year, which I will use as my 'fast' bike for quality rides.

I currently own a Giant TRC Composite 2 (which I will keep) and I will get some Apidura bags and use this bike for Audax Rides (I'm well pleased with it, and have upgraded the wheelset to HED Belgium Plus with Chris King R45 hubs (ceramic bearing upgrade), Sapim Cx Ray spokes and I'm using the 2017 Formula Pro RBCC tubeless road tyres.

After much deliberation, I've decided to get a climbing bike. I did have a close look at the Scott Foil aero bike, but all my rides are in a loop, and it gets very windy here. Most guys can ride 30-34 Km/hr on a flat without much headwind, but races are won on the hills and in the headwind. From what I've researched, an aero bike is 0,4km/hr faster than a lightweight climbing bike on the flats, but throw in some strong headwind and 1200 meters of elevation/hills and I feel that I will be faster using a climbing bike.

I will be getting a Scott Addict with Di2 and I will upgrade the wheelset and see where I can upgrade a few components to make it even lighter
Giant TCR
Canyon Endurace AL
Specialized Allez Sport

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TonyM
Posts: 2578
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2015 4:11 pm

by TonyM

The fastest bike is the one that is used by the fastest guy... JOKE :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

If you have several bikes, get a light bike, a comfortable bike and an aero bike and you will see that it depends on the profile AND on your physical capacities and expectations...

I see also so many bikers with an aero or a bike with aero characteristics and lot of spacers because they don't have the flexibility to ride it really....

The best aerodynamic improvement that you can make is your biking position. :smartass:

The best weight improvement that you can make is loose fat. :mrgreen:

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wheelsONfire
Posts: 1905
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2014 8:15 am
Location: NorthEU

by wheelsONfire

If one go for the aero bike, shouldn't that be followed by aero helmet, shoes etc etc?
I honestly didn't notice much difference in speed between my Foil (gen 1) and Ax Vial EVO D.
Foil felt faster, it was harsher and perhaps quicker on steering (using CCU).
But when i looked at all out speed/ distance, i did not really see much gains.

I try to view the bikes less technical and more about what i notice.
Overhere, i think it's cross and headwind god damn everywhere.

Only thing i really hate and really feel slowing me down, is fatigue (bad comfort).
If i could feel more fresh, that would be most gain for me.
I really can't hold speed if i am bent like a cheeze doodle
Perhaps i'm a lost case.
My UP weight more and i have fatter tires using UP.
This is difference i really feel talking speed/resistance.

Let's say i bought a new bike, what would "really hammer" the Foil and Vial EVO, still using same position and same wardrobe?
What bike would that be?
Bikes:

Ax Lightness Vial EVO D
Paduano Racing Fidia
Open *UP*
https://opencycle.com/showcase/the-xplo ... eelsonfire

GothicCastle
Posts: 128
Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2016 1:52 am

by GothicCastle

DutchMountains wrote:Good for you if you can sustain 380W for a meaningful time, but I can't (not by a long shot).
Then why do you care about an aero bike (or an aero test, for that matter)? Just buy something you enjoy riding.

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DOUG
Posts: 195
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2016 9:54 pm

by DOUG

Shrike wrote:
Vermu wrote: For racer it's a no-brainer and aero significantly makes difference between winning and losing.
Quite the opposite.

Races are not time-trials. Aerodynamics and how different races are won are clearly very poorly understood.

A commuter gains more from aerodynamics than a professional stage racer in the vast majority of cases. You'd have to dig deep and do some serious number work to find a race that proved otherwise. And you'd better be hot shit and not miss a single part of the equation, such as time spent in x position and the CdA of such position, energy conserved by it, and how all of it lost them that split second at the end of the race.

I would love to see someone foolish enough to attempt it 8)
Not to get caught up in a zero sum argument but I mean really any race that is won by a solo attacker (or even a small group where there is less opportunity to draft) from anything more than 500m out is going to be affected by the aerodynamics of the rider AND machine. I reckon you'd have to be pretty hot shit to prove otherwise.

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F45
Posts: 884
Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 6:08 am

by F45

The differences between bikes in this test is really huge. Consider that the frame is only a small percentage of the overall drag and they're getting overall drag swings of 10% just by changing the frame? Hmmmm

Honestly it doesn't look like they controlled the rider position variable very well.

by Weenie


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