The Cycle Sshow 2009, London: 8.10.09 - 11.10.09
Words by Tim Lee/Photos by Mark Sharon
The Daily Peloton continues its look at some of the new and interesting products on show
Zipp- Bulging technology, what the??
Zipp 303 Clincher : with patented toroidal bulge. Photo © 2009 Zipp
The US based company rolled (pun intended) out their all-new 303 wheelset at Cycle Show. First used by the Cervélo Test Team in this years Spring classics, Zipp claim it to be their most versatile wheel ever made. The 303 utilizes Zipp's patented 'toroidal bulge' that was initially available only on the deeper 1080, 808, and more recently the 404 rims but has now found its way down to the shallower rims in the range. The basic premise is that the rim itself is wider at its middle than at the braking surface, hence having a profile more like a bulge than the traditional V-shaped rims. The theory goes that the rim/tyre contact point is more evenly matched thus reducing turbulence around the rim and in its wake.
Zipp claims that these new rims result in less flats, easier handling and are far more comfortable to ride. Part of the reason for this is that the new 303 is designed to be more aerodynamic with a cushy 24mm tyre than with a narrower 21mm tyre. The new, wider 303 shaves 12 seconds off the old 303's time over 40km but is purported to be 60 seconds faster than a rival's comparable standard V-shaped rim over the same distance. Oh, and don't forget the tried and tested 'golf ball' dimpled surface for added credibility straight from the wind tunnel. All this to beat the wind, but at 1171g (tubular version) for a pair, gravity will be feeling a little cheated as well...
For a company that whose foundations were built around rims and wheelsets, and whose technical focus and expertise was primarily in aerodynamics, it is perhaps not totally surprising that this has been taken to a whole new level with the introduction of tyres to the Zipp lineup for the first time in 2010. The white coats from Indiana rightly point out that no other part of a bike has a higher velocity than the tyres and the front tyre itself is in fact the leading edge of the whole assembly. So, into the wind tunnel they went and out they came with the Tangente. The biggest difference is the dimples, similar to the patented version on Zipp rims. Claimed savings of 9 seconds over 40km may seem trivial but sometimes it is those small things that make all the difference.
Torq- A new way of thinking about nutrition
Your local coffee is nowadays 'triple certified' meaning that it is organic, fair-trade and rainforest alliance. Torq take this concept quite seriously and state that they only use ingredients that are natural or naturally occurring in the human body. They boldly claim that because they do this so well, there is no artificial additive that could make their product any more effective than it currently is.
Torq products include bars and gels. Photo © 2009 Torq
Lets clear up a myth here too. There is 'research' and there is research. Many companies use 'clinical trials' or 'university studies' to back up their claims. But to be honest, these are generic terms that can be applied to an amazing array of products and realistically carry no scientific weight at all. Quality studies are are peer reviewed and published in recognised medical journals, meaning that they have been assessed as using valid and reliable research methods. The are also independently funded, randomised and blinded. Oh how I could go on.... But the point is that Torq are so willing to prove that the research behind their products is genuine that they reference the details of relevant scientific articles on the packaging of their products! Full marks there!
Torq produce a full range of bars, gels, and powders for everything from pre-ride fueling to post-ride recovery. The gels and bars in particular are quite interesting.
The Torq gel breaks new ground with its 2:1 maltodextrin:fructose concept. Whilst the science of this is really interesting for us nerds, basically what you needs to know is that maltodextrin (a glucose polymer) is hi GI, and Fructose is low GI. For years the general guidelines have recommended that 1gm of carbohydrate per Kg of bodyweight per hour of exercise is all the human body can absorb. However with Torq's new gels, this has been increased to 1.3-1.4 gm per Kg of bodyweight per hour of exercise, meaning up to 40% more carbohydrates being delivered to working muscle. Oh, they contain almost twice as much caffeine (natural guarana of course) as any other gel on he market.
Torq's bars and some of their recovery products also contain ribose, a naturally occurring sugar that can reportedly improve recovery by up to 400%! The reason ribose is so important is that after a ride, simple and complex carbohydrates will replenish depleted glycogen stores, but cannot actually alter the energy charge to the muscle. The body's main source of energy is from ATP (Adinosine Triphosphate) breaking down. Ribose is an essential pat of re-building the ATP. Cellular levels of ATP can take up to 93 hours to return to normal after exercise, because the body's manufacturing of ribose is a very slow process. By taking ribose supplements though, this can be reduced to as little as 22 hours.
Sabbath- Titanium like you've never seen
Sabbath Silk Emperor . Photo © Mark Sharon
Towards the back of the building was one of the smaller exhibitors but easily one of the most interesting. Sabbath Cycles is only three years old (the name is even less, the business began as Sunday Cycles but had to change due to possible legal action from another company using the word 'Sunday' in its brand and trademark) but has already built up a strong dealer network in the UK and has started a framework to grow further afield in the future. Their specialty is titanium and are at pains to point out that this expensive material is far more versatile than most realise. Company head Greg Roche explained that it all comes down to the manufacturing process where it is possible to manipulate tube profiles, geometry, weld alignments etc to create very distinctive (and different) ride characteristics.
Sabbath Silk Emperor frame detail . Photo © Mark Sharon
Sabbath's flagship model, the Silk Emperor, was released at the show and was so new that it is not yet in their catalogues or on their website! The down tube and single wishbone chainstay in particular have a wave-inspired design from a side profile that gives an increased surface area for their junctions with the head and seat tubes. These junctions are the real key however. The head and seat tubes actually pierce through the one-piece top tube/seatstay combination creating a super stiff ride. These high stress areas are made from stiffer 6al 4v titanium (along with the rear drop outs and the BB30 bottom bracket shell) while the remainder of the frame is a slightly 'softer', more ductile 3al 2.5v titanium. The overall package is a very unique looking road bike that Sabbath suggest is ultimate race ready combo of lateral stiffness with vertical compliance.
Of course, being titanium, custom geometry is an option for a small fee and there are three levels of finish from super polished, to matte, and raw.
see Part 1 for more Cycle Show kit...
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