January 28, 2014

FLO Cycling - The Great Debate - Aero vs. Weight


"What will save you more time?"  Improving the aerodynamics or decreasing the weight of your wheel set?  Jon and I have probably been asked this question hundreds if not thousands of times since starting FLO.  When designing FLO wheels, we focused primarily on aerodynamics.  We did that because in almost every situation possible, aerodynamics have a far greater impact on time saved than weight.  However, I don't just want to claim that.  In true FLO Cycling fashion, I want to do my best to prove that fact.  To do that, I asked a very smart friend to help me out.  

Help from a Friend
Ryan Cooper has a Ph.D. in math.  He does the kind of math that makes even engineering math look easy.  His area of study focuses on optimization mathematics and he has used that skill to develop a very cool web application called "Best Bike Split."  Best Bike Split has the ability to take in a ton of data like the rider's FTP, weight, their bike set up, including wheels, tires, and position, and then predict a bike split for a particular course.  This software is surprisingly accurate.  I've seen Ryan predict IM and HIM bike splits within a minute several times.  He's right almost all of the time.  If you'd like to learn more about Best Bike Split, be sure to check out our Interview with Ryan where he gives details about how the software works.  

The Study
The goal was to determine whether aerodynamics or weight save you more time when selecting cycling wheels.  To do that, Ryan and I created a list of potential race day wheel set ups.  The wheel set ups ranged from lightweight and non-aero to not lightweight and very aero.  

We then ran a virtual rider through some of the most popular Ironman courses and some "extreme" courses using each of the wheel set ups.  When all of the test runs were completed, we compared the times.

Be sure to read the follow up article for more courses!
Part 3 is now live featuring our 2016 model wheels!

The Ironman Courses
The first three courses that we selected where some of the better known Ironman Courses.  We selected a course that was flat, one that had rolling hills, and one that had a long, steady climb.  Weight becomes more important on hilly courses so we wanted to include hilly courses to give weight the biggest advantage possible.  Here are the Ironman Courses we selected.  

The Flat Course - Ironman Florida
Distance: 112 miles
Total Gain: 991 feet

The Rolling Course - Ironman Coeur d'Alene
Distance: 112 miles
Total Gain: 4804 feet

The Long Climb Course - Ironman Lake Placid
Distance: 112 miles
Total Gain: 4612 feet

The Extreme Courses
Because we so firmly believe that aerodynamics are more important, we also selected two courses known for being some of the hilliest courses you will find.  Here they are.  

SavageMan 70
Distance: 55.7 miles
Total Gain: 6717 feet

Alpe d'Huez
Distance: 8.2 miles
Total Gain: 3514 feet
Average Grade: 8.1%

The Wheel Sets

The Aero Wheels
FLO 30/30: 1624 grams
FLO 60/90: 2074 grams
FLO 90/DISC: 2259 grams

The "Un-Aero" Wheels
We created two hypothetical non-aero wheel sets that varied only in weight.  The aerodynamic properties given to this wheel were that of a common training wheel like a Mavic Open Pro.  

Light Training Wheel: 1100 grams
Heavy Training Wheel: 2259 grams

The Rider
We simulated a rider that we felt resembled a good majority of male age group athletes.  This allowed us to keep things realistic and useful for our largest group of readers.  Here is the athlete profile.  

Rider Weight - 170lbs
Rider FTP - 250 watts
Bike 1 - Cervelo P2
Bike 2 - Cervelo S5 (used only on the Alpe d'Huez simulation)

We will assume that this rider will ride all of the courses at 75% of his FTP with the exception of the Alpe d'Huez.  On the Alpe d'Huez the rider will exert a 100% FTP effort.

The Results

The Ironman Courses
A baseline time has been set for each Ironman course below.  The time for the "Heavy" Training wheel to complete the course was used as the baseline time.  We then compared all other wheel sets to the baseline to see whether improving aerodynamics or decreasing weight had a bigger influence on the time saved. 

Ironman Florida
Ironman Florida Bike Course Elevation
Baseline Time
Training Wheel (Heavy Version 2259 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 21 min 44 sec

Time Saved by Improving Only Weight
Training Wheel (Light Version 1100 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 21 min 42 sec
Time Saved = 2 sec

Time Saved by Improving Only Aerodynamics
FLO 90/DISC (2259 grams): Time on Course : 5 hr 12 min 55 sec
Time Saved = 529 sec = 8 min 49 sec


Other FLO Wheels

FLO 30/30 (1624 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 15 min 28 sec
Time Saved = 376 sec = 6 min 16 sec

FLO 60/90 (2074 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 14 min 10 sec
Time Saved = 454 sec = 7 min 34 sec




Ironman Coeur d'Alene
Ironman Coeur d'Alene Bike Course Elevation
Baseline Time
Training Wheel (Heavy Version 2259 grams) : Time on Course : 6 hr 01 min 36 sec

Time Saved by Improving Only Weight
Training Wheel (Light Version 1100 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 59 min 54 sec
Time Saved = 102 sec = 1 min 42 sec

Time Saved by Improving Only Aerodynamics
FLO 90/DISC (2259 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 55 min 46 sec
Time Saved = 350 sec = 5 min 50 sec


Other FLO Wheels

FLO 30/30 (1624 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 56 min 48 sec
Time Saved = 288 sec = 4 min 48 sec

FLO 60/90 (2074 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 56 min 11 sec
Time Saved = 325 sec = 5 min 25 sec



Ironman Lake Placid
Ironman Lake Placid Bike Course Elevation
Baseline Time
Training Wheel (Heavy Version 2259 grams) : Time on Course : 6 hr 00 min 11 sec

Time Saved by Improving Only Weight
Training Wheel (Light Version 1100 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 58 min 39 sec
Time Saved = 92 sec = 1 min 32 sec


Time Saved by Improving Only Aerodynamics

FLO 90/DISC (2259 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 51 min 45 sec
Time Saved = 506 sec = 8 min 26 sec

Other FLO Wheels

FLO 30/30 (1624 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 53 min 35 sec
Time Saved = 396 sec = 6 min 36 sec

FLO 60/90 (2074 grams) : Time on Course : 5 hr 52 min 26 sec

Time Saved = 465sec = 7 min 45 sec



The Extreme Courses
For the extreme courses we ran fewer trial runs.  We ran the 1100 gram Light Training Wheel set and the FLO 90/DISC.  Our goal was to see if weight could beat aerodynamics.

EDIT: I had a few readers asking for additional FLO 30 data.  I have added the FLO 30 data to the Alpe d'Huez climb.  They actually win!


SavageMan

This is one of the hilliest Half Ironman courses in the world.  If you were to turn this course into an full Ironman, you would net 13,434 feet of climbing.  That is nearly three times hillier than Ironman Lake Placid!  What wheels do you think won?

SavageMan 70 Bike Course Elevation

The "Un-Aero" Wheels
Light Training Wheels (1100 grams) : 3 hr 20 min 43 sec

The Aero Wheels
FLO 90/DISC (2259 grams) : 3 hr 19 min 39 sec


That's right.  Aero wins again.  Even with an additional 1159 grams (2.55 lbs) of wheels on one of the hilliest courses in the world, aerodynamics will save you 64 seconds.



Alpe d'Huez

So there has to be a breaking point, right?  Weight has to win somewhere.  It turns out it does, but you need one of the most extreme climbs in the world to make it happen.  The Alpe d'Huez is one of the toughest climbs in pro cycling.  To give you an idea of just how big the climb is, I superimposed the climb over top of the full Ironman Coeur d'Alene course.  Remember, this climb takes place in only 8.2 miles and it absolutely dwarfs the IMCDA climbs.  Can you imagine climbing this!

The Alpe d'Huez Superimposed on top of IMCDA


The "Un-Aero" Wheels
Light Training Wheels (1100 grams) : 1:09:46

The Aero Wheels
FLO 90/DISC (2259 grams) : 1:10:09

EDITED: The FLO 30s were added after a reader asked to see it.  They actually win by two seconds!

FLO 30/30 (1624 grams) : 1:09:44


Even on arguably the toughest climb in the world, aerodynamics only lose 23 seconds to weight.

For the triathletes out there, I think this blog article pretty confidently tells you that when selecting wheels you should focus on aerodynamics first.  Unless, of course, you are racing up the Alpe d'Huez to T2.  Road cyclists, racing TTs, crits, and stage races - apart from mountain stages - are also going to save more time 99.9% of the time by choosing aerodynamics over weight.  I don't mean to say that weight has no importance at all, because it does.  I'm just simply stating that aerodynamics helps you save significantly more time than weight.

I hope this blog article has given you enough knowledge to make better decisions come race day.  Partnering with Ryan to create these course simulations was really a lot of fun.  I'd love to hear your questions and comments below.

Take care,

Chris

44 comments:

  1. I think you meant to say "we picked a rider who we felt represented the majority of MALE age-group athletes".
    I don't know of many 170lb women who are finishing Ironmans, nor whose FTP is 250W.
    The calculated advantages of aerodynamics are overstated for those who don't average in the mid-30km/hr range on a flat course. I'm not saying weight would prevail, but aerodynamic advantages are highly dependent on wind speed, and I believe an accurate article should also point out these limitations.

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  2. Kim Osborne,

    You are correct. The athlete we modeled the calculation off of would definitely be a male. I will change that in the blog article. Thanks for pointing that out.

    You've mentioned that aerodynamic advantages are overstated for those who do not average in the mid 30km/hr range. This is not true. In fact, slower athletes actually save more time. This is a common misconception because all of the tunnel studies are done at 30mph. Also remember that 30mph is a "relative" speed.

    You mentioned that an accurate article should also point out the aerodynamics advantages for athletes based on varying speeds... we've actually already written a couple articles on that topic. You might find them interesting. The first is a general explanation, the second is a more detailed look.

    http://flocycling.blogspot.com/2011/11/flo-cycling-how-velocity-effects-drag.html

    http://flocycling.blogspot.com/2012/11/flo-cycling-cycling-wheel-aerodynamics.html

    Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

    Take care,

    Chris

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  3. I assume that you put the 60 on the front and the 90 on the rear like most people do putting the more aero wheel on the rear? Why? Since the largest amount of air disturbance is on the front why wouldn't you put the 90 on the front and since most of the air disturbance on the rear is being blocked by the frame then the 60 should be on the rear. Am I missing something here? Just wonder what the results would be if the 90 was in the front.

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  4. So very basically, a disc wheel combination will almost always be the quickest wheelset to race?

    What effect do you think reducing the weight of Flo disc's and Flo 90's would have on time?

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  5. Froze,

    Putting a deeper wheel on the front would make the bike harder to control, and I'm guessing with a shallower wheel on the back, this effect would be worsened. I understand your point, but we did not run that configuration. Could be interesting though.

    Take care,

    Chris

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  6. Chris Chaddock,

    Thanks for writing. We actually ran a run of a lighter 90/DISC combo for curiosity sake. The lighter set is a little faster but not compared to the difference in Aero vs. Weight. We may work on a follow up article after Order 10 to post on the blog.

    Take care,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  7. Great post. how about in a pack? How much can we keep aero wheel benefits in a road race pack on flat?

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  8. Disappointing presentation of results. The Aero wheels save 64 seconds on a 3hr 20 minute ride, WOW etc, exclamation marks, then on Alp d'Huez they ONLY lose 23 seconds. On a 1hr 10min ride?

    That's roughly the same margin.

    Not standardising results is really a most fundamental error.

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  9. WilierRMB,

    In all honesty, with the number of variables introduced when riding in a pack, it's really hard to estimate the time savings. All of the wind tunnel data, and the data presented in this article assumes that you are the rider at the front. I personally do not have an accurate answer to your question.

    I'll see if I can get Ryan Cooper on here to comment on this question. Perhaps he has a better answer.

    Take care,

    Chris

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  10. Hallian,

    I'm sorry that you do not like our blog article. We presented the facts as they came to us. We even showed our own wheels losing the battle in one case.

    I'll also add that your we did not add "WOW etc, exclamation marks" to our results. You have created that version yourself. We simply stated that aerodynamics won again. Regarding the Alpe d'Huez climb, I did say "only". I used the word only, because I thought it was rather impressive that even on one of the toughest climbs in the world, an aero advantage was still that close (considering on a flat course the difference was 2 to 529 sec). Additionally, if there were any "normally hilly" course before or after the Alpe d'Huez climb, the rest of the article shows that aerodynamics would quickly catch up.

    I appreciate your comments. If we were only comparing two courses, I think your comments would hold more weight. However, I feel you have ignored the data in the beginning of the article - the IM courses - and taken my message out of context.

    Take care,

    Chris

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  11. I think one must be careful to not generalize these benefits to general road racing.

    Drafting and the huge importance of accelerations suddenly makes wheel weight matter a lot!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Matt Fieldwalker,

    I will agree that drafting will make a change but I disagree with accelerating. In fact, even when accelerating, aerodynamics drag takes 49 times more force to over come than weight. Weight even when accelerating is really very insignificant when compared to aerodynamics. Don't believe me... read this article here...

    http://www.slowtwitch.com/Tech/Why_Wheel_Aerodynamics_Can_Outweigh_Wheel_Weight_and_Inertia_2106.html

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  13. Great article! As someone new to the sport I found it very informative. My question is how wheel stiffness plays in to time and energy usage. I just replaced stock Oval 330s with your Flo 30s. While I could feel the weight difference for sure, I'm guessing the aero difference has to be pretty small. I'm hoping I didn't spend $600 to gain a few seconds over my next 100 miles! Thanks.

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  14. KOB,

    Wheel stiffness does play a part in the equation, but without knowing the build specs of your Oval wheels it's nearly impossible to compare the two. Know that our wheels are considered stiff by many people our our build specs are all on part with manufacturer recommendations. We also use Sapim CX Ray spokes which offer some of the best strength and fatigue life available.

    Additionally, I do not know of any aero testing done on the Oval 330 wheels. From what I can see, they look much closer to a standard box section rim than the FLO 30s, which means you are likely saving more than a few seconds. Without putting the wheels head to head in a wind tunnel it is impossible to know exactly.

    The last thing I will mention is ride quality. I believe the Oval wheels have a 19mm wide brake track. The FLO 30s have a wider brake track which provide a more compliant ride, allows for lower air pressure, and offers better cornering and rolling resistance.

    I hope that helps,

    Chris

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  15. Hey guys.. I appreciate all of the input and testing. I plan on racing my 1st 1/2 IM in Sept 2015. I was told by a friend (IM pro) that I should purchase 60/90 with a disk option. Course is Superfrog but I might be moving to S.Carolina for work and changing to IM Augusta. Pretty flat courses in general.

    I ride a Fuji Grand Fondo 3.0

    Before the new shipment drops, let me know what wheel set you recommend.

    Bike specs:
    http://www.performancebike.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/mProduct4_10551_10052_1147707_-1_catNav

    ReplyDelete
  16. Ryan Cruz,

    Thanks for writing. To help you decide what wheels are best for you, I'd start by reading the first post here: http://www.flocycling.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=85.

    If you have any additional questions. Please feel free to ask.

    Take care,

    Chris

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  17. Hey guys, I've been following you for a year now and have not purchased a wheel set yet, but am seriously thinking of it. I've been reading your testing results and am curious to know if you have previously tested your 90/90 combination together, and if you haven't, is it not beneficial to have that front/back wheel combination? Is the 90/90 combo just not stable? Thanks and keep up the great work!!
    Dave

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  18. great article guys, i found it really interesting, i'll def purchase a disc and 90 when ive the money!!...the reviews are amazing of FLO wheels...thanks
    ian, ireland

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  19. Ian Purcell,

    Thanks for the kind words. I'm glad to hear that you found the article interesting.

    All the best,

    Chris

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  20. I'm in a similar boat as Ryan and read: http://www.flocycling.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=85.

    but what about a 60/disc? I can't find anything consistent on it. I know you could go 60/90-cover, but?

    And throwing handling OUT of the equation how does a 90/disc compare?

    Thanks for any response, and best of luck.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Frank,

    The 60/DISC is a great racing wheel set. You said you can't find anything "consistent" on it. I'm not exactly sure what you mean by that. Can you clarify?

    If we ignore handling and compare the 90/DISC to the 60/DISC, the 90/DISC should be faster.

    I hope that helps,

    Chris

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  22. This is from 1 of your pages
    EVEN THOUGH THE FRONT FLO90 IS FASTER THAN THE 60....
    (14 seconds saved using the wheel).
    But its only addressing the front wheel.
    Is there a compunding effect using a 90/disc over a 60 or are the savings strictly independent (14 seconds from a 90 + blank savings from a disc)

    In the aero vs weight post you used ALOT of wheel sets but there was no looking at a 60/disc, or a 60-90/disc comparison.

    As for consistency-I was looking for repeated testing not forum N=1 commenting that's out there, albeit it great.

    Still leaning for the 90 Front, thanks again.

    ReplyDelete
  23. This is from 1 of your pages
    EVEN THOUGH THE FRONT FLO90 IS FASTER THAN THE 60....
    (14 seconds saved using the wheel).
    But its only addressing the front wheel.
    Is there a compunding effect using a 90/disc over a 60 or are the savings strictly independent (14 seconds from a 90 + blank savings from a disc)

    In the aero vs weight post you used ALOT of wheel sets but there was no looking at a 60/disc, or a 60-90/disc comparison.

    As for consistency-I was looking for repeated testing not forum N=1 commenting that's out there, albeit it great.

    Still leaning for the 90 Front, thanks again.

    Frank,

    It's tough to say exactly what the combined savings of a wheel set will be since there are so many individual variables for each rider. That said, adding an aero rear wheel will be faster than not. Ie.... a 90/DISC will be faster than a 90/Training Wheel. Unfortunately I don't have any specific numbers comparing a 60/DISC to a 90/DISC, but the the 90/DISC will be a little faster on paper.

    You really have to consider how confident of a bike handler you are. If cross winds do not effect you then the 90 will be faster than the 60. However, if you are coming out of the bars to control the deeper 90 then you will be slower than if you were riding the front 60 and staying in the aero bars.

    I tell everyone the following. If you want the fastest race day set up, buy the deepest front wheel you can confidently control and a disc.

    I hope that helps,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  24. This article is good except... except... for stage races, where race tactics may trump everything. Most riders draft most of the time, so advantages/disadvantages for aero vs climbing might be nullified save for the end of the race. In which case, how the course ends might dictate the better bike to be on. Unless you think you can solo breakaway nearly the entire distance. In this day, that is ever so unlikely!

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  25. Ken Newman,

    You are right, stage racing does introduce some new variables. That said, aerodynamics also help in stage races.

    Take care,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  26. Hi Chris and Jon,

    Good article, I've been an owner/user of a Flo 60/90 combo since the 2nd shipment and I have nothing but praise for what you guys have done for those of us out there who don't have US$3-4k to drop on wheels, turn that into New Zealand dollars and for a father of three girls it gets pretty scary! What I find interesting/ridiculous is how these "experts" are picking holes in this article with scenarios that are of little relevance (Kim did make a fair point though) with respect to triathletes which you have clearly geared it towards. As a participant in Triathlon I do get a little sick of hearing "dedicated" road "cyclists" going on about how much "better" they are. Without a wheel to suck onto I'm sure at Kilometer 180 hoping off their bike for their marathon they'd be thankful of any aero advantage they could have had. Perhaps they could give up there jobs, throw all there knowledge and commitment into a start up company for light wheels and see how that works out for them???

    Come on Order 22! Flo Disc being added to the family finally! Hopefully...

    Cam

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  27. Thanks for the kind words Cam!

    Chris

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  28. How do the aero wheels work in cross winds like we get in eastern colorado? Would the 30 be a better choice? I weigh 195 will the 24 spoke rear work?

    ReplyDelete
  29. William McNeely,

    Our wheels are designed to improve crosswind stability when compared to a V-Shape or even early toroidal aero rim. Some riders are more sensitive to cross wind then others, but most riders can comfortable control the FLO 60 and down. If you weight 195lbs, I would recommend the Clydesdale build for you. It will make an overall stronger and more durable wheel for you.

    Take care,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  30. Nice article. I was a little skeptical about the weight difference at first. I know aero trumps weight, except for Alp D'Huez :), but I could not get over that weight difference. I think I might pull the trigger and buy a set soon, but I could not find any info on recommended max tire psi. Im a heavy rider and need 120psi or I will easily get a pinch flat. I might be willing to go down to 105-110 when using the new wider rims, but I think thats as low as Im willing to go.

    Thanks

    ReplyDelete
  31. Paco Express,

    Thanks for writing. I've replied to your comments below...

    I think I might pull the trigger and buy a set soon, but I could not find any info on recommended max tire psi. Im a heavy rider and need 120psi or I will easily get a pinch flat. I might be willing to go down to 105-110 when using the new wider rims, but I think thats as low as Im willing to go.

    We actually have an article and guide written specifically for finding the ideal pressure with our wheels. The best pressure for you will depend on your weight and the tire you choose to use. Here's the link...

    http://flocycling.blogspot.com/2014/09/flo-cycling-tire-pressure.html

    I hope that helps. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

    Take care,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  32. Flo/Chris,

    My question was more like what is the max tire pressure before voiding warranty or causing catastrophic failure of the wheel. Does the quoted text from your link means I can safely inflate my tires between 110-120 without voiding the warranty/catastrophic failure of Flo wheels? the tires I use do have a max of 120 psi. From the link you provided:

    "Riders over 180 lbs or 81kg are advised to inflate their tires to the maximum pressure recommended by their tire manufacturer without exceeding 150psi or 10bar"

    Im way over 180lbs. Lets just say I won't be buy these wheels until I come closer to the 245lbs max weight limit I see on the wheels specs :)

    Thanks,

    ReplyDelete
  33. Paco Express,

    The max pressures we recommend are indeed the 150psi or 10bar. That said, that's a VERY high pressure and I can't see any reason you would need to get even remotely close to that. What is the max pressure allowed by the tires you use?

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  34. Flo/Chris,

    Thanks, thats all I wanted to know. I will definitely not be using anything above 120lbs which is the max allowed by the tires I use. I use around 110. Im open and eager to try the lower psi with wider rims idea as I read on several reviews saying how it provides a more comfy ride without sacrificing rolling resistance or increasing pinch flat risks. I was asking about the max psi because I saw other wheels with a max of 100 and didnt like the idea of not having the option of going up to 110-115.

    Thanks,

    ReplyDelete
  35. Cycled up Alpe DHuez on 20th July with FLO30s on a Cube Peleton 50/33 with 12/30 cassette on Conti GP2s @ 100psi. Am 175cm and 80kgs. Easily as good as previous ascent with Mavic Ksyriums

    ReplyDelete
  36. Vince Donohoe,

    Great feedback! Glad to hear that you had such a great ride up the Alpe d'Huez. That's definitely a bucket list climb.

    Take care,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  37. Climbed thiswith my new 60/90 FLO wheelset (12km avg:8.0% Max:18%):
    http://www.salite.ch/valcava.asp?Mappa=

    Great feeling. I was expecting to be slower on such a climb. I was even 1 minutes faster than the older low profile wheelset. Good job :)


    ReplyDelete
  38. Duncan McCloud,

    That is great news! We love to see data like this. Thanks for sharing the information with us.

    Have a great day,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  39. Dave,

    Thanks for writing. We have not tested the 90/90 in this test but you can assume it would be slightly faster than the 60/90. If you can confidently handle the front FLO 90 in windy conditions then it would be beneficial to ride a 90/90 vs a 60/90.

    Does that make sense?

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  40. I absolutely love this article.

    I would be interested in seeing a comparison of the 2 non-aero training wheels (light and heavy) going up the Alpe d'Huez. Would it be possible to add these?

    Thank you very much and keep up the good work!

    ReplyDelete
  41. fliegender Hollander,

    Unfortunately, we did not run that specific test. But we ran some very similar tests on IM courses where we compared a "heavy" set of aero FLO wheels and a light set of FLO aero wheels. You can see those results here for comparing strictly weight differences.

    http://flocycling.blogspot.com/2014/03/flo-cycling-aero-vs-weight-follow-up.html

    Take care,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  42. What a hard sport to figure out. you ride with a strong friend, you both go about 1 mph or 1.5 kms faster. Tailwind, much faster. You just feel great and are properly rested, you go faster. This is still a great test and it should have most riders considering aero wheels over lightweight wheels. I'm 46, 71 kg with pretty good FTP of 320. I raced for decades. To me, tires make this biggest difference. But who knows how I control the way I think....A light tire that has zero confidence in the wet or around a fast corner can definitly be worse. Again, it's a hard sport to figure out but you guys really offered a lot of value in your study. My wheels are 35mm deep so I would try a Flo 30 and 60, I think. Living in Colorado, the winds get crazy and I'm a little nervous going deeper than 50. But what do i know...Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Common Sense,

    Thanks for writing. You may want to look at our FLO 45. It's shallower than our FLO 60 but lighter and more aero than our FLO 30. I think you may also like our Tire Study blog article and our post on selecting wheels. I'll add the links below.

    Tire Study
    http://flocycling.blogspot.com/2016/04/flo-cycling-a2-wind-tunnel-tire-study.html

    Selecting Wheels
    http://www.flocycling.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=85

    Have a great day,

    Chris

    ReplyDelete