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Feb 172012

Bontrager Aeolus Wheels

Bontrager Aeolus Wheel

Aeolus 9.0 Rear Wheel (Clincher)

Trek Bicycle’s recent development of a new line of Aeolus D3 tubular wheels, each of which is the world’s most aerodynamic wheel in its class. Bontrager wheels are the fastest way across the finish line.  The aerodynamic drag performance of this new wheel line achieves a drag performance comparable to the next depth class from  either Zipp or HED, and the Aeolus 9 D3 is in a class of its own as the fastest non-disc wheel in the world.

Bontrager Aeolus D3 wheels offer dramatic aerodynamic drag savings over the competition. What’s the benefit of lower drag in the real world? Real, appreciable savings of time and power.   The translation of drag to seconds is independent of all other factors, including the rider’s speed.  Similarly, we can translate 10g of drag savings to power savings, but this translation depends on the rider’s speed.  For example, 10g of drag savings translates to 0.75 watts of power savings for a cyclist traveling at 40kph (25mph).  The  230g drag variance determined by wind tunnel tests between Aeolus D3 and the highest-drag wheels translates to 17 watts of power.

Bontrager R4 Aero Tire

Bontrager R4 Tire

Bontrager R4 Tire

The World’s Fastest Tire combines the aerodynamics and low rolling resistance of the R4 tire with a new streamlined profile saving you 9+ seconds over the next fastest tire in a 10k time trial, and more than 37 seconds faster over a 40K time trial than our closest competitor

Bontrager’s development process of the Aeolus Wheel

When developing the Bontrager Aeolus D3 wheels, Bontrager engineers aimed to understand the core fluid dynamic phenomena that contribute to a wheel’s aerodynamic drag. We then leveraged this understanding in a series of parametric tests where every aspect of the wheel’s geometry was tuned for ideal airflow. This true scientific process is expensive and requires a high level of expertise—and it is the most effective method for developing optimal aerodynamic shapes. For this project alone, Bontrager engineers conducted over 2,000 CFD (computational fluid dynamics) simulations and over 900 wind tunnel measurements spanning 107 individual wind tunnel tests.

Bontrager took full advantage of their unique relationship with Trek Bicycle and its wealth of aerodynamic expertise and tools, resulting in a highly efficient and accurate design process. Each wheel’s aerodynamic development took two weeks of CFD testing, followed by a wind tunnel test of three prototypes per wheel depth. This efficiency allowed for rapid delivery of cutting-edge technology today.

Aeolus 3 D3: no-compromises climber

The Bontrager Aeolus 3 D3 is a no-compromises climbing wheel, offering generous drag savings over wheels of similar depth. In fact, it even beats the 10mm deeper Zipp 303 in almost all wind conditions. Furthermore, Aeolus 3 D3 dramatically beats the 21mm deeper Easton EC90 Aero wheel Aeolus 5 D3: ultimate all-around versatility The Bontrager Aeolus 5 D3 is the ultimate all-around wheel for maximum versatility. For all but the steepest hill climbs, the marginal weight increase is well worth the significant drag savings over the shallower depth class. Aeolus 5 D3 beats the HED Stinger 4 and Zipp 303 by a margin much greater than can be attributed to the 5mm depth advantage. Furthermore, it offers consistent drag savings over the 8mm deeper Zipp 404 Firecrest. Finally, Aeolus 5 D3 nearly ties the 10mm deeper 2011 HED Stinger

Aeolus 7 D3: ultra-high performance

The Bontrager Aeolus 7 D3 is the ideal wheel for the flat-lander or the lighter-weight triathlete looking for an extra bit of stability over the very deepest wheels. In fact, it has a slightly lower average drag than the 11mm deeper Zipp 808 Firecrest up until stall (from 0-12.5˚ yaw). Needless to say, it also beats the rest of the wheels in the same depth class and even the very deep Zipp 1080

Aeolus 9 D3: world’s fastest

The Bontrager Aeolus 9 D3 is the fastest non-disc wheel in the world. It achieves both the lowest minimum drag at negative 40 grams and the latest stall point at 14.5˚ yaw. This delayed stall is critical, since these deep wheels lose most of their aerodynamic benefit at the instant of stall. Furthermore, the Aeolus 9 D3 stalls much less severely than any other wheel in its class, offering significant drag savings even after stall occurs. Since stall is so critical to these deep wheels, the stall angle of the fastest wheel from Bontrager, HED, and Zipp was measured to 0.5˚ accuracy

The full Bontrager Aeolus D3 lineup

The Bontrager Aeolus D3 wheel line has a consistent spread of drag performance across all depths and yaw angles, providing an athlete with a simple choice for the wheel that fits his/her needs. Also note the low poststall drag, a consistent characteristic of the Bontrager wheel line

Brand-by-brand summary

The Bontrager Aeolus D3 wheel achieves a drag performance comparable to the next depth class from either Zipp or HED, and the Aeolus 9 D3 is in a class of its own as the fastest non-disc wheel in the world

When plotted the drag force against the side force instead of the rim depth the general trends remain the same. This demonstrates that the Bontrager Aeolus D3 wheel line allows a rider to enjoy the side force stability of a shallower wheel while achieving the same drag savings as a deeper competitor wheel.

Summary of the Aeolus Wheels and R4 Tire

Aeolus D3 Wheel

  • Dual Directional Design.
    • D3 profile reduces drag on both the tire-leading and rim-leading edge. This not only makes you faster, it gives you more control in a crosswind.
  • Shape is more important than depth.
    • D3 rim shape is so aerodynamic that even our shallowest rims compete with other brands’ deeper wheels.
  • Shallower is better.
    • When you run shallower wheels, you reduce weight, decrease the watts required to climb, increase acceleration out of corners, and improve handling on windy days.
  • OCLV Carbon: the world’s best carbon.
    • Hand built in USA from our exclusive aerospace-grade carbon. Stiffer, stronger, lighter, better.
  • Stacked lacing, stiffer wheel.
    • Innovative pattern of straight nailhead spokes widens the bracing angle on rear wheels for more lateral stiffness.
  • Long-term precision.
    • DT’s proven drive mechanism comes standard, with superlight 180 internals on tubular and precision 240 internals on clincher.

R4 Tire – The Worlds Fastest Tire

  • More than 37 seconds faster over a 40K time trial than our closest competitor
  • For higher performance, racing purposes only. Not intended for everyday use or training 220 tpi casing provides ultra low rolling resistance and excellent ride quality
  • CFD-aided tread profile for better aerodynamics on contemporary rim widths
  • Aero wings help slice through the wind
  • Integrated sub-tread puncture protection

In San Diego you can check the Aeolus Wheels at:

El Camino Bike Shop
121 N. El Camino Real, Suite A
Encinitas, CA 92024




Feb 102010
Rainy Days in San Diego can’t stop the Superfly

SmoothSuperflyHere in So Cal we have been staying off our fragile trails due to all the rain. That’s why I was delighted when I came across these cool Bontrager tires called Nebulas. They are nearly smooth 700×45 tires that mount nicely on a 29er rim. Not sure what these tires were intended for as they have no tread for off-road and they are way to fat for any Hybrid. So I figure they must be for 29er street conversions. Sure is fun rockin the Superfly down the pavement with 85psi slicks.

Jul 052009

El Camino Bike Shop will have some of these in Soon…

3 years in the making and with thousands of design hours behind it the 2010 6-Series Madone is raising the bar yet again. Lance Armstrong and Alberto Contador aboard these new machines at the Tour de France

A few 6-Series features to check out:

  • A reshaped seat mast that shaves weight and adds vertical compliance.
  • A new Bontrager Race XXX Lite fork with an asymmetrical steer tube design allows more frontal compliance, and improved lateral stiffness.
  • Redesigned tube shapes that reduce material and save weight – combined you have a frame and fork that sheds 150g off of last year’s already svelte design!
  • An entirely new cabling system that offers superior cable protection, a simpler routing path.
  • A new “duotrap” sensor integrated into the frame eliminating the need for zipties and works with all the major ANT+ wireless computers.

A 56cm ProFit Fuselage (frame, fork with full steerer, mast cap) weighs in at 1380 grams. The frame weighs just 890g.

That means the Madone 6-Series fuselage, made from Trek’s Red level OCLV carbon, is 150 grams lighter than earlier models. The frame makes up two thirds of the weight savings, while another 30 grams is saved from the fork and 20 grams are cut out of the seatmast cap.

Lighter / Stiffer – Who could ask for more- Come in to El Camino Bike Shop in Encinitas, CA to check them out.

Jul 032009

Trek Bikes and El Camino Bike Shop announced an all-new 6 Series Madone, the stiffest, lightest, and fastest Madone yet. Unveiled to the world against the backdrop of the Col de la Madone—the storied climb where seven-time Tour de France Champion Lance Armstrong has tested his pre-Tour fitness since 1998, and the climb for which the Madone is named—the new 6 Series Madone establishes a new benchmark for total performance, pushing the boundaries of road bike design and integration with a host of new technologies, including the latest addition to Trek’s proprietary OCLV Carbon family, OCLV2.

“The 6 Series Madone represents another major technological milestone for Trek,” noted Trek’s Road and Triathlon Brand Manager, Nick Howe. “We’ve been working on this project since before the release of our last Madone [in 2007], and have been through 70 design iterations before we had a product worthy of the Madone designation. To be able to introduce the bike in the place where it received its name is very special for us, and we’re excited about sharing it with the world.”

“There are new ideas integrated into this bike,” noted seven-time Tour de France Champion and Trek athlete, Lance Armstrong. “This is next generation stuff. The Madone has evolved, and we’ve ended up with something that’s the lightest, stiffest, fastest, best bike that I’ve ever ridden. I think there’s no doubt that the equipment we’ll ride in this Tour de France will be far and away the best equipment in the peloton.”

“With this new Madone, we have everything…all the technology at our disposal,” added 2007 Tour de France Champion, Alberto Contador.

Pivotal to the development of the new 6 Series Madone was a Trek-pioneered engineering approach called Load Path Design. Using sophisticated data acquisition hardware mounted to a specially equipped Madone, Trek engineers were able to collect the “data stream” created by an actual rider riding down an actual road. Analyzing this data gave Trek engineers the most accurate picture possible of the real-life forces affecting a road frame, which then allowed them to design a frame with those forces in mind. The benefit of Load Path Design in the new 6 Series Madone is a frame that’s not only 150g lighter, but also 17% stiffer at the head tube (for laser-sharp, predictable handling) and 43% more vertically compliant at the seatmast (for all day riding comfort).

The 6 Series Madone also brings to market the latest OCLV Carbon innovation—OCLV2—which offers unprecedented quality control, exquisite ride quality, and the world’s best strength and stiffness values per frame weight. OCLV2 is built around three Trek-exclusive technologies that, together, make OCLV2 the most advanced carbon in the industry: Stepjoint™ technology; Resin Right™ technology; and Net Molding™ technology. Thanks to Stepjoint™ technology, the 6 Series Madone’s lugs join together perfectly, with no excess carbon, and with consistent tube wall thickness throughout. The joints are stronger, the ride quality consistent, and the fit and finish impeccable. Resin Right™ technology gives Trek ultimate control over the resin distribution in 6 Series Madone frames, for consistent compaction and the elimination of fiber irregularities. Finally, Net Molding™ allows Trek to trim frame weight by building Precision Fit Sockets™ for the bottom bracket and headset bearings directly into the frame itself, as well as create ultra-consistent lug dimensions for superior 6 Series Madone frame alignment.

Up front, the 6 Series Madone uses the industry’s first asymmetric steer tube fork. Built using the same No90 construction technique as the current 5 Series Madone, which utilizes carbon’s inherent straight-line strength to make an extremely strong, incredibly lightweight fork, the 6 Series Madone’s new E2 Asymmetric fork features an oval, rather than a round steer tube, providing an 18% improvement in lateral stiffness and a 15% improvement in vertical compliance. The result is a fork with an unparalleled combination of steering precision and road-smoothing comfort.

Finally, the new 6 Series Madone takes the integration concept started by the current 5 Series Madone to the next level, and beyond. The industry’s best cable management system allows the 6 Series Madone to shift flawlessly and brake better, all while preserving the 6 Series Madone’s smooth lines. New DuoTrap sensor technology places the computer sensor directly in the frame itself, for unbeatable aesthetics and seamless integration with most ANT+ wireless computers, power meters, and other compatible devices. And built-in compatibility with Shimano’s new Di2 electronic groupo means the 6 Series Madone offers the industry’s best Di2 integration without modification.

Available right now El Camino Bike Shop the 6 Series Madone is offered in four models (the 6.9, 6.9 WSD, 6.5, and 6.5 WSD), three fit platforms (Pro, Performance, and WSD), and is fully customizable through Trek’s Project One program. From frame color, to drivetrain, all the way down to cable housing color, Project One puts you in the designer’s seat, letting you build the 6 Series Madone that’s perfect for you.