Friday, August 28, 2009

It's hot...

It's been really hot here in San Diego this week- like melt you tires into the asphalt hot. It's after 8:00PM now and it's still 80 degrees here in my apartment. Oy...

So today was the second ride on the new Ultegra tubeless wheels and Hutchinson tires... and they still rock. No loss of air overnight and they felt great today. I can honestly say I can not remember the last time I was able to ride on tires only inflated to 100psi. The 127tpi casings feel a little "stiff" on the tires, until you dive into a corner. The tires are sticky in turns but feel plenty fast in a straight line- even when running lower tire pressures. So far, I am really stoked with the wheels/ tires. The Ultegra wheels themselves are pretty danged nice. The rim is a nice boxy cross section, so it is sturdy but light- compared to a taller aero rim profile. The very narrow bladed spokes keep the wheels turning fast. The wheels have a higher spoke count- meaning there are more than 2 spokes per wheel- which keeps the wheels sturdy and stiff for somebody my size (which happens to be 195lbs these days). Lots of wheels remove spokes to keep them light and then have to run high spoke tension to keep them stiff enough... but then you run into problems with keeping them true or blowing out with busted nipples. So far, these wheels are really something. Easily my favorite Shimano wheelset to date.

I'm spoiled to death, I know, because the Ultegra wheels are were swapped out with what is probably one of the very best wheelsets I have ever ridden- period; the new Ritchey WCS Zeta wheels. Though they are not road tubeless, they are amazingly good wheels. The rims are vanadium and the spokes are Sapim bladed. The hubs utilize an unique lacing pattern that is cool to look at but produces a super stiff wheelset. The wheels are a little over 1500gm with the skewers, but they accelerate like they weigh 1200gm.

Deep section aero wheels are great, but they tend to not ride very well- either they get blown all over the road in a crosswind or they have a very harsh ride top to bottom. Some are simply super heavy- even if aero. Regular "box section" rims produce a nice ride quality that is often lighter and more comfortable and with good aero spokes they are nearly as aero as deep section wheels. Plus, if you actually have to ride through a crosswind, you can still maintain control of your bike without a fight!

I'll have some pictures of the complete bike and the two wheels soon... promise.



wrw said...

"Bladed Spokes' are fine until a 'crosswind' finds you, then Hold Fast!"
My Easton 'Vista and EA50' Wheelsets exhibit neutral operation versus their Mavic 'Aksium' sibling.
Like both brands BUT 'crosswinds' make you pay for those 'aero' bladed spokes (Mavic) in DRAG!
Recall, 'bladed' spokes ARE directional causing DRAG in quartering or side (cross) winds.

ervgopwr said...

Rode my fulcrum tubeless (with Hutchinson of course) in both the crit (so fast cornering) and road race (with improvised off-roading/unpaved-ness) in the road race this weekend in MX.

But I like to keep the pressure up high/normal for me 110 up front/120 rear.

Anonymous said...

I don't have the credibility of your name; as a I a soCal native.
My ridingnorm is a minimun of 120psi.
As I have done 135psim on the city streets, without a flat tire.
Not on a Masi; but I could ~also~ do it on my Masi.