Ever since Hermes posted several times on the effective cost of weight when climbing in terms of watts needed to maintain an equivalent speed, it has put things in a different perspective.
How can we make this whole machine more efficient. I have been cycling with some regularity since I was a little one. Some times I'd take a year of two off but I would always come back. I never cared about racing, my thing was always solo distance. When I became an adult I used cycling as a fitness tool so I never cared about efficiency, if the bike was heavy just meant I had to work harder. It was not until I started riding in a group in the mid 90's when I started to change. The real switch for me was when I sprung for my Tarmac 3 years ago. Now I am looking for ways not only to improve me but also the machine I ride.
I posted a tire thread, relating rolling resistance to watts. On my race experience this weekend while I was climbing to think about friction. What came to mind was that there are probably two big sources of friction on a major hill climb, the chain and the bottom bracket. I have not seen any major improvements in the chain, but with ceramic bearings - the BB has improved. With 4% of your output being lost to friction in the BB according to this article http://autobus.cyclingnews.com/tech/...ws/FSA_MegaExo one cna make a simple albeit expensive upgrade fairly easily.
When I was climbing the bike was creaking and I heard a noise with each pedal stroke, I was wondering if my BB was about to go, turns out on further after race inspection that my seat had loosened a little - not the BB going, but it got me thinking.
A 4% power gain form a new BB - worth considering.