VeloNews technical writer Lennard Zinn is a frame builder, a formerU.S. national team rider and author of several books on bikes and bikemaintenance. This is Zinn's VeloNews.com column devoted to addressing readers'technical questions about bikes, their care and feeding and how we as riderscan use them as comfortably and efficiently as possible. Readers can sendbrief technical questions directly toZinn. We'll try to print a representative sample of questions regularly.Question: One of my riding partners had a ticking (not a creak)sound in his ride. It would only happen when pedaling
It's no secret that Lance Armstrong never used Shimano's SPD-R system. He rode what he liked and those were his old Look-compatible Shimanos. After three successive Tour de France wins, the Japanese manufacturer finally decided it had enough of watching its decade old equipment bring Armstrong to the podium and set out to build a pedal Lance would approve of. It looks like the new design got the nod of approval: Armstrong has kept them on his bike since spring. The svelte 276-gram/pair (plus 60 grams for the cleats, screws and washers) pedals are the fruit of their radical redesign labor.
While we thought 2003 couldn't get any brighter for Shimano and its highly redefined XTR group, the Japanese manufacturer surprised us again this morning with the announcement that it would be producing its first XTR-level wheelset. Sources report the wheelset should go for around $850 and be available about the same time as the component group (around January, 2003.) Vital stats include: total wheelset weight of 1650 grams, both 24 spoke count in a paired lateral crossover pattern and, most significantly, are both tubeless and traditional-tire compatible. Although the wheels were not
Marin Bikes just announced the launch of its patented Quad technology which will be featured on the company's XC full suspension bikes. The Quad was developed with chief designer John Whyte, an ex-Formula One engineer and cycling enthusiast. The Quad, named for its four-bar linkage system, four inches of rear wheel travel and quadratic wheel path equation will be available in four models including the East Peak, Rift Zone, Mount Vision and Mount Vision Pro. According to Marin, the Quad suspension design is a four-bar linkage system with a patented Intelligent Pivot (i.e. similar to VPP
So why did ONCE go so fast on Wednesday? Was it because the team pedaled harder and stayed in better formation and had good equipment? Well, that is one explanation. Another is that all of the other teams only had nine riders, while they had ONCE (Spanish for “eleven”)! Sorry... I had to throw that in. Beyond the numbers, it is worth noting that the teams that go fastest have 100 percent of the riders wearing aero helmets, rather than a mixture of headgear and even of clothing and equipment. You also tend to see other riders on fast teams using their aero’ bars further back in the line,
VeloNews technical writer Lennard Zinn is a frame builder, a formerU.S. national team rider and author of several books on bikes and bikemaintenance. This is Zinn's weekly VeloNews.com column devoted to addressingreaders' technical questions about bikes, their care and feeding and howwe as riders can use them as comfortably and efficiently as possible. Readerscan send brief technical questions directlyto Zinn. We'll try to print a representative sample of questions ineach column.Follow-up from previous discussions:There was plenty of input from readers on the subject of mixing
Oscar Freire sprinted past Robbie McEwen and Erik Zabel to win stage two aboard the mount that has brought so many victories to Mapei and Rabobank. He was riding a Shimano Dura-Ace equipped Colnago C40, the 2.5-pound frame that won Paris-Roubaix five times between 1995 and 2000. But it is not just another bonded carbon frame, since Colnago’s construction methods C40 are unique and analogous to its method of constructing steel frames. Integral to the C40 are one-piece molded, hand-finished carbon lugs that eliminate the bonding problems and weight of aluminum lugs and are stronger,
Armstrong won on a special superlight prototype aero’ bar that Dedahad whipped out for him for the Tour. It is completely flat; there is nodrop to it like the Vision Tech bars the team has used in the pastand still has on some of its time trial bikes. It is made out of aluminum, but according to Deda’s Fulvio Acquati, “We are still working out the exact design with Armstrong, and when we get it exactly the way he wants it, we will make it out of carbon.” Dedaalso has a carbon aero’ bar that Acquati was showing to the teams the daybefore the prologue. The carbon base bar is just a prototype,
Russel Bollig’s path to Lance Armstrong’s feet began with Tyler Hamilton,for whom he first built some custom orthotics in 1992. About four yearsago, Christian Vande Velde got some as well. They passed the word on toArmstrong, who was looking for an improved fit in his cycling shoes, andafter the 2001 season Bollig went to Austin, Texas, to fit the three-timeTour champion. While at Armstrong’s home, Bollig used resin-filled casting socks tomake casts of Armstrong’s feet and ankles. Then, back at his Podium Footwearshop in Boulder, Colorado, he made plaster duplicates of Armstrong’s feetfrom
This year will not be the first time anyone has ridden a titanium Litespeed at the Tour. That’s happened many times since the small Tennessee-based industrial metals firm began turning out titanium bicycles in 1986.
The image of Tyler Hamilton crashing at the bottom of a key descentas the Giro d’Italia’s other main contenders is firmly emblazoned inthe minds of anyone watching OLN’s coverage and saw that loop of tape played over and over. Coming through a turn, Hamilton stood up onhis pedals and suddenly lurches forward and hits the ground. Hamilton stated in his diaryon velonews.com that the freehub had not engaged when he stood on thepedals, causing the crash. The pain he had to deal with with over the remainderof the Giro is well documented, as is the amount of time he lost on mountaintopfinishes
More solutions to mystery noises.
When Lance asks, you have to be ready to deliver. Take, for example thisstory of Armstrong’s new time trial handlebar. The day after the finish of the Midi Libre, U.S. Postal team managerJohan Bruyneel calls Deda Elementi, the team’s handlebar sponsor, to reportthat Lance is unhappy with his current equipment and wants something lighterfor the upcoming Dauphiné Libéré and the Tour. The next day, May 28, representatives from Deda drive from their factoryin Campagnola Cremasca, Italy, to Les Deux Alpes to meet with Armstrong,Bruyneel and Lance’s mechanic, Jean-Marc Vandenberge. At the
Features: The Koski Stronghold Deluxe is a forged hollow stemof 6061-T6 aluminum with a four-bolt polished silver front plate. The shaftis matte black.The Stronghold Deluxe stem is available in two finishes, called “shotpeened black” and “polished silver,” two angles, namely 7 and 15 degrees,and five lengths: 60, 75, 95, 110 and 130mm.All of the bolts take a 5mm hex key.Likes: This is a handsome and lightweight stem available in lotsof finishes, angles and lengths. It is plenty stiff, and it has a largeclamping area with the bar (these two features are probably interrelated).Dislikes:
Features: The matte-black Deda Newton is machined from 2024 T6aluminum. The silver front cap is held on with four titanium bolts, which,like the fork-steerer clamp, accept a 4mm hex key.The Newton comes in 90- and 95-degree angles in lengths of 105, 115and 125mm. The Deda N’Bar matches it in graphics and quality.Likes: Like the Newton road stem, this is a strong, superlightstem, and I find it to be adequately stiff.Dislikes: Not a one.Other: You have to very careful not to over-torque the smallbolts.The Deda single-bend bars, namely the N’Bar and BarOne, come only inthe relatively short 560mm
When a carbon fiber handlebar breaks, it makes a sound like a snapped twig.There’s a sharp “crack!” followed by a hollow splintering sound, just asif you’d broken a dry stick over your knee. Then, silence.The similarity in sound is due to the similarity in structure. Carbonfiber, like wood, is made of long strands of high-strength material surroundedby a resin matrix. Trees do it with cellulose and sap. Engineers do itwith synthetic polymers and glue.The difference, of course, is that carbon fiber is considerably strongerthan wood; in fact, carbon’s raw tensile strength figures typically
Features: The Mag00 is a superlight magnesium stem for an oversized31.7mm handlebar diameter. It is machined from AZ 80 A, T5 temper magnesium,under a controlled inert-gas atmosphere and immediately coated afterwardsto prevent the oxidation and consequent weakening of the magnesium.The four-bolt front cap is made of carbon fiber with, according to Deda,the fibers oriented along the lines of force. All bolts are 6/4 titaniumfor a 4mm hex key.The Mag 00 comes in an 80-degree angle with lengths of 90, 100, 110,120, 130 and 140mm.Likes: The stem is extremely light while being adequately stiff.I
Why can't I get my drivetrain to shift well?
Would a newer Dura-Ace bottom bracket stop creaking noises?
VeloNews technical writer Lennard Zinn is a frame builder, a formerU.S. national team rider and author of several books on bikes and bikemantenance. This is the third of Zinn's weekly VeloNews.com column devotedto addressing readers' technical questions about bikes, their care andfeeding and how we as riders can use them as comfortably and efficientlyas possible. Readers can send brief technical questions directlyto Zinn. We'll try to print a representative sample of questions eachThursday.First, some follow-up from our last columnA few more reader comments on the creaking bottom bracket
Features: The Italian-made Sci-Con 52 Aerotech bike travelcase is a nylon bag with padded sides and a solid base with four rubbercasters to roll on. It has a two-way zipper around the unpadded ends andtop and two large carry straps around the girth. The rear dropouts clamponto a fixed-position mount with a skewer and a steel guard to protectthe rear derailleur. The front fork mount (two versions are shipped withthe case) slides back and forth to adjust for the wheelbase of the bike.The wheels are strapped to the frame, and three hollow slotted cylindricalfoam pads (pieces of hot-water-pipe
VeloNews technical writer Lennard Zinn is a frame builder,a former U.S. national team rider and author of several books on bikesand bike maintenance. This is the second of Zinn's weekly VeloNews.comcolumns devoted to addressing readers' technical questions about bikes,their care and feeding and how we as riders can use them as comfortablyand efficiently as possible. Readers can send brief technical questionsdirectly to Zinn. We'll try to printa representative sample of questions each Thursday. First, some follow-up from last week Lastweek there were a couple of questions that encouraged an
VeloNews technical writer Lennard Zinn is a frame builder, a formerU.S. national team rider and author of several books on bikes and bikemantenance. This marks the beginning of Zinn's weekly VeloNews.com columndevoted to addressing readers' technical questions about bikes, their careand feeding and how we as riders can use them as comfortably and efficientlyas possible. Readers can send brief technical questions directlyto Zinn. We'll try to print a representative sample of questions eachThursday.Question: Do you have any advice for correcting leg lengthdiscrepancies? I have undergone an
Las Vegas, the beacon in the desert, is a particularly bright one for the bicycle industry in this challenging year. Coming into the fall, the bike business was already reeling from high-profile bankruptcies like Schwinn and GT and from having many other companies on life support. Then came September 11, and it seemed unlikely that many would even be willing to fly to Las Vegas for the major selling event of the entire year and the only time that small and mid-sized companies get to put their products in front of bike dealers. The heaving of a collective sigh of relief was almost audible
As the workmen traveling with the Tour de France for the past three weeks were happily breaking down the press room for the final time, we pulled a few good shots off the 64meg chip on Lennard Zinn’s digital camera. As Lennard flies home after a year in Europe, we thought we’d share a few of those shots from the last days of the 2001 Tour de France.
Jan Ullrich has done everything he can to lose weight off of his body. He and his mechanics have also gone to extraordinary lengths to take a full kilogram off of the bike he uses in the mountains. The big German also has some particular preferences about his components, and his mechanics and suppliers clearly bend over backward to accommodate them. Ullrich’s climbing frame is a lighter version of his Pinarello Prince. It appears to have standard Prince carbon fork and seatstay wishbone, but the aluminum main tubes have thinner walls, and the down tube is smaller diameter. As his climbing
After Lance Armstrong found on L’Alpe d’Huez that he wanted a 22 and did not have it, he did something about it for the beyond-category climbs of the Tourmalet and Luz Ardiden today. He once again used a 12-23, but it was not a standard cog distribution. He had an extra two-tooth gap lower down and used one-tooth gaps at the top. The smallest two cogs were titanium on his cassette, while the last seven of his nine cogs were blue aluminum Specialities T.A. on his Mavic Ksyrium SSC SL wheel. The top three cogs were 21-22-23 (so the entire set went 12-13-14-15-17-19-21-22-23). The front inner
There are four different colors of Treks you will see U.S. Postal racing on in the Tour. These are two different road bikes and two different time trial bikes. The two road frames you can buy, and there is no difference between them and models sold in bike shops. The two time trial frames are strictly team issue. This use of stock frames is unique at that level of racing. Almost all top riders have frames custom built especially for them, often by a manufacturer other than the one whose name is on the frame. In fact, Trek claims that Lance Armstrong's two Tour victories were the only ones
In addition to the teams mentioned yesterday, Kelme is also using wheels with carbon braking surfaces – namely Shimanos with carbon rims. Like Shimano’s aluminum wheels, they have paired spokes with their heads in the side of the rim and nipples at the star-shaped hub. Kelme uses Shimano’s red cork brake pads with them. ADA also makes a rubberized cork pad for carbon rims that are claimed to provide consistent braking on carbon rims, even when wet. Its pad fits in both Shimano and Campagnolo brake-pad holders, but not in Corima pad holders. Telekom has been using ADA pads in the past but
The wheels are arguably the most important part on a bicycle and are thus the source of constant efforts for improvement, and, for a team, to find an edge over, or at least parity with, the other teams. There are a number of physical properties of a wheel that teams have to consider. A gram of rotating weight out at the rim is worth about two grams on the frame, so weight reduction is obviously critical. Wheels are big egg beaters of the air, and any reduction in their aerodynamic friction can pay off, especially when the rider is not sheltered in the peloton. In order that the rider can
Look time trial bikes, which took a black eye a few years ago with some weak forks, pulled off the ultimate Tour victory – an entire team winning a stage on them. This, the day after Laurent Jalabert notched a win with a Look road bike, and two days after Stuart O’Grady took over the yellow jersey riding yet another. There are more Look bikes in this Tour than any other make, as four teams (Credit Agricole, Kelme, Big MAT and CSC) are riding them. That puts Look ahead of Pinarello, which has three teams (Telekom, iBanesto and Fassa Bortolo), and Colnago, which has two (Rabobank and Mapei).
I had not realized how much I had wanted to believe in Dario Frigo until the news came of his departure from the race. For weeks, I had been attending daily press conferences with him – every day that he was in the pink jersey and after his time trial stage win. I had started mulling over in my mind what I would be writing about him on Sunday night or Monday to wrap up the Giro in VeloNews. I would have been writing, whether he had managed to take back the jersey on the (cancelled) stage 18 or stage 20 or not, about what a breath of fresh air he had been. This young man’s appeal was
Riva del Garda, a small town at the northern tip of Lake Garda, has become one of Europe’s major mountain-bike Meccas over the past decade, largely due to the spectacular trails coming down the mountains overlooking the dark waters of the deep, narrow Alpine lake nestled in Italy’s northern border. For the last eight years, Riva has hosted a springtime mountain-bike festival and manufacturer show that this year attracted around 10,000 visitors, mostly from Germany. Mountain bikers filled the town for five days and tried their legs en masse on the second day of the festival in an off-road
Salient features: The Deda Magic bar has a 31.8mm clamping area (rather than the standard 26.0mm) and comes in a medium-depth ergo bend or a deep-drop round bend. The bar has a "K.E.T." (Kinetic Energy Treatment) that hardens the metal by "bomb-peening" it with heavy shot. The Magic stem is cold-forged in three dimensions, a process that allows Deda to create unique shapes without compromising the strength-to-weight ratio. Likes: The stiffness of this stem and bar combination is immediately noticeable, especially in long sizes. When sprinting or climbing out the saddle there is no noticeable
You may have thought that Il Diablo, a.k.a. Didi Senft, is the craziest guy that follows the major European bike races. But that’s only because you see him waving his pitchfork on TV and you haven’t seen some of the unique race groupies who don’t get on TV. My current choice for most way-out is Skippy, an Australian who rides every single stage on his bike ahead of the peloton. He starts on the course a couple of hours before the race starts and finishes each stage just before the peloton. The publicity caravan that precedes the racers has around a hundred cars in it, each with a giant
Oscar Camenzind outsprinted Davide Rebellin, David Etxebarria, Francesco Casagrande and Michael Boogerd in an exciting finish to the Ardennes classic, Liége-Bastogne-Liége. The Swiss Lampre-Daikin star followed the moves of the powerhouse Fassa Bortolo team of Casagrande and Raimondas Rumsas, who led in the bunch seconds after the first five. Another Fassa Bortolo rider, Dario Frigo, had been off the front for well over the hour in a group that shrunk from 13 down to six by the time it was caught with a mere 10km to go. Fassa Bortolo then lined the field out on the approach to the
It looks to be a fine day tomorrow for Liége-Bastogne-Liége. The weather reports call for mostly sunny skies with scattered rain and temperatures in the high 40s. Expect a strong ride from Fassa Bortolo, especially Raimondas Rumsas. His teammates Francesco Casagrande, Dario Frigo, Wladimir Belli and Ivan Basso, second Wednesday in the Fléche Wallonne after a day-long breakaway, will all be dangerous on this course too. Mapei’s Michele Bartoli and Paolo Bettini, last year’s winner, Rabobank’s Michaël Boogerd, and Liquigas-PATA’s Davide Rebellin are all be riders to watch as well. The
Okay, okay we admit it; we've lusted after Campagnolo Record components about as long as we've been riding (which in our case means five-speed freewheels and friction shifting). Normally we wouldn't make a big deal about someone's promotional contest, but… hey, you can win a Campy 10-speed Record group and, oh yeah, wheels and clothes, too. Log on to win.campagnolo.com and give its "Win Your Record" contest a shot. If you win because you went through this site, you owe us a set of pedals, okay?
In its third year of existence, the GAS women’s road team promises to be a force to be reckoned with in everything from major Tours to World Cup individual races and overall. Sponsored by an Italian jeans and sportswear company, the team has added more power this season to an already star-studded roster. At the team introduction on February 26, GAS spokesman Piergiorgio Dal Santo said, "We want to be the Mapei team of women’s cycling, both in terms of setting the standard for professionalism as well as by being the best team in the world." Joining 1997 world road champion and 2000 Giro
Cannondale expanded its motorized product range this weekend with the release of its FX400 All-Terrain Vehicle. The ATV joins Cannondale’s MX400 motocrosser released last year and the XC400 cross-country motorbike, due for release in April. The first of the ATVs was delivered last week to Pennsylvania motorsports dealer Gatto Cycles to what the company says was a very enthusiastic reception. The $8000 FX400 sports a four-stroke engine with electronic fuel injection, and the industry’s first twin-spar perimeter aluminum ATV frame. Cannondale founder & president Joe Montgomery praised the
Former world road champion Alessandra Cappellotto is an energetic woman. She claims to be old for cycling (33), yet a normal February day for her consists of a five-hour training ride followed by an afternoon spent driving all around the area near Bassano del Grappa visiting suppliers for her bike shop. As she dashes from place to place in her silver Mercedes wagon, she handles calls on her cell phone regarding her bike shop, her teams, and the wellness center she will be opening in the fall. Her final meeting at saddle manufacturer Selle San Marco behind her, she rushes north to Bassano to
Written by Josh at Zipp:Here is an excerpt from a PM I sent to somebody a few weeks ago on this identical topic. I hope this helps clarify things somewhat... The outer aluminum hoop in our clincher rims weighs only 200 grams, and therefore will get much hotter than a standard aluminum rim. Since the temperature of something is relative to the energy input/mass, a 200 gram rim will get twice as hot as a 400 gram rim for the same energy input. What happens is that if your descending a mountain at 70 degrees and you brake for 2 minutes and your standard aluminum rims heat to 220 degrees (an