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Wide tires; A new trend in road cycling

Wide tires; A new trend in road cycling

Some wheel brands in recent years are promoting a change in the width of wheel tires for road cycling. The tendency to increase the inner and outer width of the tires has an end, which is to improve aerodynamics in the wheel-neumatic assembly. It is always difficult to determine when this change occurred, although we know that the American brand Hed was the one that first commercialized this type of width in 2006. Steve Hed, a specialist in terms of aerodynamics and the head of the firm Hed helped the change with its C2 tires, all after having checked the effect of improvement on aerodynamics in the tests it did in the tunnel of wind next to Lance Armstrong. In 2016, in addition to Hed, we have more brands that offer tires with greater width: Bontrager, Zipp and recently Mavic with the Cosmic Pro Carbon SL. The new standard is of interior widths of 20/21 mm and exteriors of up to 26 mm.

Aerodynamic issue

We can currently verify that professional cycling equipment use covers and tubular from 23 to 26 mm. The large cycling builders adapt to new upper measurements or wheel steps to mount covers from 25 mm. The reason for this increase is the efficiency at the aerodynamic and comfort level when rolling with the bicycle. Without wanting to deepen a lot in the scientific base, the principle of improvement of the rolling coefficient is related to an obvious greater efficiency in contact with asphalt. When the covers are wider, let's put for example 25 mm, the footprint that leaves on the floor is more rounded, if we see the one that leaves a 23 mm tire is thinner but more elongated. The result is that this footprint has better benefits in such important aspects as the cyclist's speed or rolling resistance, which, being smaller, saves energy. To all these benefits we add greater comfort and ease of maneuver. Bora wheels

Greater resistance to punctures

The wider covers in wide hoops allow them to be used to lower pressures without reducing their benefits and with an obvious improvement of the rolling quality. We can especially notice it in the grip on wet terrain and also provides greater resistance to punctures. We do not forget an aspect like weight, and that is that the wider covers such as logical weigh more, a few grams, but that extra weight is located on the outside of the wheel and does not have a decisive dynamic influence on the bicycle . In the words of Hed head in Europe, Pepe Navarro: "We recommend that at least 23 mm be covered and in case the bicycle wheel pass allows it better if they are 25 mm." To this adds that "the combination that we could say ideal is to use wheels that have adequate wide hoops to these measures, which will have a better performance." Do you dare to try them?
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