Options for light and aero?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
RocketRacing
Posts: 779
Joined: Thu May 10, 2018 2:43 am

by RocketRacing

So, i always said, when i go aero, it will be full aero with no consideration for weight (i already have a weight weenie bike). I.e. full tri bike.

However, my logical brain says that a 59kg rider may not like the side forces on anything but calm days and closed circuits. It also tells me that much of what i ride is not truly flat, and that with my low weight, consideration of power to weight will still be valuable to me.

So then it comes down to the holy grail... light and aero. Tri/tt bikes will never be the lightest bikes, but i have seen 16-17lbs with deep wheels. I have also seen a felt da tt bike near match a modern tri superbike for aero (with a few choice upgrades).

So, what is a good weight weenie aerodynamic bike? What comes to mind is a felt da1 tt bike, or felt ar with tt bars. Felt ia would be a weight is no worry choice.
Last edited by RocketRacing on Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:03 am, edited 1 time in total.

alcatraz
Posts: 2103
Joined: Mon Aug 29, 2016 11:19 am

by alcatraz

Tt/tri or aero road?

Scott foil/cervelo s5 vwd

Cannondale super slice

Still the differences make up less than a new helmet so the lesson is to probably forget about the frame if you're looking for weightweenie aero gains. Do the kit first and the extreme fit.

I didn't realize how uncomfortable a fast fit was. It's no 5mm lower than a comfortable endurance fit, no-sir-ee. You need hundreds maybe thousands of kilometers in a fast fit with good gear and by the time you're even a quarter of the way you'll want to change the frame anyway because of something you didn't plan like road stability. Something preventing you from putting down the power at high speeds. Such a thing is immensely more annoying than obsessing over weight.

Looking for aero gains eased my weight obsession. I made peace with it. It started with me using an old frame and experimenting with fast fits. Just do that maybe.

As long as I have a climbing bike my ww heart is satisfied.
Last edited by alcatraz on Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:13 am, edited 3 times in total.

by Weenie


RocketRacing
Posts: 779
Joined: Thu May 10, 2018 2:43 am

by RocketRacing

alcatraz wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 1:00 am
Tt/tri or aero road?
And that is the question. The tt/tri bikes win every time due to rider position, but an ar with the post flipped to tt position, and tt/tri bars would be fast no doubt. But for aero gains, noone is comparing the apples to oranges.

AJS914
Posts: 3347
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 pm

by AJS914

The Tarmac with an integrated handlebar tests nearly as fast as the Venge assuming the same wheels. I have a feeling that this applies to most 'aeroish' bikes. The integrated bars saves that extra 5-7 watts. If you use etap you can delete a couple cables and save a 2-3 more watts.

sychen
Posts: 570
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2014 1:06 pm

by sychen

I think my tarmac disc is aero enough with aerofly 2 bars and clx50s.

Sits around 6.8kg without much lightening.


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Lewn777
Posts: 748
Joined: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:35 am

by Lewn777

I don't want an aero bike bike I hate the feeling of side winds, and hate the feeling of no side wind when a car or truck gets between me and the wind and the get that wind hit. Makes me feel uncomortable, I could be wrong but aero bikes look quicker in normal circumstances but that makes them seem sail-like side on.

Climbing bikes with lightweight 20-30mm shallow wheels seem most aero, side-on.

So I think just build up a lightweight climbing bike but an aerobar on it also integrate as many cables as I can and buy deeper wheels for the right weather/riding conditions.

robeambro
Posts: 574
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:21 pm

by robeambro

RocketRacing wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 12:47 am

So, what is a good weight weenie aerodynamic bike?
The issue is very simple: are you wanting to race TT's?
YES: you should really get a TT bike. Getting an aero road bike for TT's would be pretty half-assed.
NO (or yes, but very occasionally): you should really get an aero road bike. Buying and speccing a TT bike for the odd race seems like a huge waste to me.

That being said. If you do decide for an aero road bike, Tour Magazine clearly shows that the wattage penalty for a semi-aero frame isn't huge, ie. there is indeed a sweet spot of aero and weight.

If you want to get most of the aero without sacrificing weight (almost) at all, then SL6, R5, Ultimate, are all good picks. Also bikes like the new Izalco, in theory, should do, though I don't know the weight of the Focus, and if you want rim brakes, that would be a no-go. The most important thing with these bikes is to spec aero handlebars, deep wheels, aero-ish helmet and tight-fitting clothing. All of these are more important than the frame itself in terms of aero benefit.

Otherwise, if you are ready to sacrifice some weight, the lightest full-on aero bike is, by far, the new Venge. Or, any other aero bike with rim brakes (eg. XR4, Aeroad, you name it). These should all come stock at less than or around 7.3kg, and should be brought sub 7 with not too much effort - if budget allows. These bikes would allow you a ~5-10w advantage @ 45km/h (28mph) over the semi-aero frames mentioned above, all else equal. The weight penalty is, in most cases, negligible (~300g), but these tend to be stiffer frames, so on longer rides, fatigue may accumulate. All of this to say that it's not always straightforward to say that an aero bike will be faster.

To conclude this, unless you plan on racing TT's (get the TT bike) or crits (get a full-blown aero bike) regularly, then you should be achieving most of the aero performance without sacrificing a lot of weight by choosing either a semi-aero bike, or just speccing your current bike with aero handlebars, deep wheels, aero-ish helmet and tight-fitting clothing.

TimF
Posts: 108
Joined: Wed May 09, 2012 11:18 pm

by TimF

Which "budget" to midrange helmets are decent on the aero front? I need a new one at some point and would be useful to consider this. Would I be wrong to expect that they have less ventilation to make them more aero and therefore you get hotter?

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Lewn777
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Joined: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:35 am

by Lewn777

TimF wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 10:46 am
Which "budget" to midrange helmets are decent on the aero front? I need a new one at some point and would be useful to consider this. Would I be wrong to expect that they have less ventilation to make them more aero and therefore you get hotter?
+1 Anyone recommend a good aero helmet.
Also can anyone recommend a good aerobar or combo bar/stem that comes in 11cm/42cm and is there any way of getting rid of or tidying up the cables.

ichobi
Posts: 923
Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2012 11:30 pm

by ichobi

Giro Aerohead, Specialized Evade 2 also has many colors to choose from. The former is a bit heavy, the latter is lightt. Both are cool, and with proper windtunnel test. The new POC Vetnral Air should also be pretty aero nice and light.

pkaro
Posts: 22
Joined: Mon Oct 01, 2018 2:40 pm

by pkaro

The Bontrager Aero helmet has a good balance of aero, ventilation, and safety. I'm eyeing up the new Bontrager XXX with Wavecel. 50g increased weight for lower risk of concussions? It's a trade-off I'm willing to make.

AJS914
Posts: 3347
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 pm

by AJS914

TimF - google "aero road helmet review". There are lots of articles out there. There aren't a lot of wind tunnel tests but Specialized claims a 10 watts savings for the Evade. I would assume that top aero helmets from Trek, Giro, and other majors are within +/- a couple of watts.

I don't know of any cheaper helmets that are advertised as aero or aeroish. You might find a deal on last years model of aero helmet. I just got a Ballista and I like it. It fits me well, is comfortable, and not too mushroom looking. Still, you are looking at $200.

RocketRacing
Posts: 779
Joined: Thu May 10, 2018 2:43 am

by RocketRacing

I have a bontragger ballista mips. Raited tops on the verginia tech safety testing (now second place), and near tops, or tops for aero road helmets, depending on where you get your data.

Currently my road bike is 13.5lbs with a 56mm deep aero wheelset (1500g... uugh), aero bottles, and an agressive rider position. I also have etap for less cables (not a huge difference), an outfront and low garmin mount, and ee brakes which hide the front cable in the frame profile... but are aero bricks (another concious decision). No aero bars as i consciously went light there (darimo). As far as the rider, i have the aero helmet, clothing, shoes, etc.

So it is mostly a climbing bike with some aero chops... so a good all rounder.

My next road bike is less about Competition, and more about making a very aero bike that is comfortable to stay aero in long term.

bas
Posts: 63
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2016 3:58 am

by bas

Re helmets- I've had Ballista, then Evade (1st Gen) now Giant Pursuit. The Giant helmet is by far the best vented, feels like a normal helmet to be honest except on steeper climbs of course.

robeambro
Posts: 574
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:21 pm

by robeambro

RocketRacing wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 1:33 am
I have a bontragger ballista mips. Raited tops on the verginia tech safety testing (now second place), and near tops, or tops for aero road helmets, depending on where you get your data.

Currently my road bike is 13.5lbs with a 56mm deep aero wheelset (1500g... uugh), aero bottles, and an agressive rider position. I also have etap for less cables (not a huge difference), an outfront and low garmin mount, and ee brakes which hide the front cable in the frame profile... but are aero bricks (another concious decision). No aero bars as i consciously went light there (darimo). As far as the rider, i have the aero helmet, clothing, shoes, etc.

So it is mostly a climbing bike with some aero chops... so a good all rounder.

My next road bike is less about Competition, and more about making a very aero bike that is comfortable to stay aero in long term.
I'm sure on Slowtwitch you'd be able to find much more info on the lightest TT frame*, and here you can easily find info on the Tour Magazine 2018 (not 2019) for the lightest and most aero bikes (hint: rim brakes help with both. I think the Aeroad was one of the fastest and lightest)

To be honest I struggle to understand your thought process, you are a WW by heart, you are already very aero on your current steed, and yet you say the next one "is less about competition". Then why bother at all? But I understand you opened this discussion to receive suggestions rather than being critiqued, so I will leave this :mrgreen:

*if you can avoid being answered that aero trumps weight, that is.

by Weenie


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