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  1. #1
    Senior Member thehammerdog's Avatar
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    Innovantion vs. Fads?

    I am not sure how much aero plays a roll in a basic bike frame but some of those that know more than I are pushing the envelope on developing the aero/roadie all arounder. Seems that it would be a waste of $ if they did not think it worked...
    Here is an article that talks about Innovation......interesting to see who they compare the new bike to....and who is missing.

    http://velonews.competitor.com/2011/...promise_187939

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    I have been wondering about the lack of real innovation in bikes, but came to realize that the reason for the lack there of is due to UCI rules. Since you can't make a race bike not look like a bike from 1911, you can't make a bike look like 2011. With the material science we have today, the shape of bikes should be much different. These Aero bikes push these rules to the limit, but for some reason, the engineers have made the bikes stiffer than riding in the back of a pickup. Which I find strange as the sales pitch is that the Aero bikes will take less energy to get there, but if they beat you into fatigue, then what is the point?

    The other thing that makes me laugh, is the quoted savings of time and such. Why then is it that the riders on these bikes are not 3 minutes ahead on each stage of the TDF? Ummm, over rated maybe.

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    Senior Member Homebrew01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikeisdusty View Post
    The other thing that makes me laugh, is the quoted savings of time and such. Why then is it that the riders on these bikes are not 3 minutes ahead on each stage of the TDF? Ummm, over rated maybe.
    In time trials, maybe they are.
    Last edited by Homebrew01; 08-15-11 at 07:33 AM.
    Bikes: Old steel race bikes, old Cannondale race bikes, less old Cannondale race bike, crappy old mtn bike

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    Senior Member alexvpaq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikeisdusty View Post
    The other thing that makes me laugh, is the quoted savings of time and such. Why then is it that the riders on these bikes are not 3 minutes ahead on each stage of the TDF? Ummm, over rated maybe.
    Or they all have the same fkn equipment or pretty similar.

    Ummm, under reasoning maybe?

  5. #5
    rugged individualist wphamilton's Avatar
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    Why do they restrict themselves to UCI standards? Is the market for these frames exclusively for cyclists entering UCI events? Chopping the back off an airfoil is valid aerodynamically but very much a compromise. As is the 3:1 length/width ratio to begin with. For real gains it should be 5:1 or 6:1 at least.

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    Senior Member hao's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
    Seems that it would be a waste of $ if they did not think they could market and sell it...
    fixed.

  7. #7
    Dropped again guadzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
    Here is an article that talks about Innovation......interesting to see who they compare the new bike to....and who is missing.
    And you will note that the Brand That is Missing had implemented the same concept as the Foil earlier in the Speed Concept bikes.
    Peace is knowing someone else is suffering more than you are.

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    Annoyed. Andy Somnifac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
    Why do they restrict themselves to UCI standards?
    Because a lot of riders see a bike under a pro and want to ride the same thing. There have been manufacturers that have made and sold bikes that were not approved by the UCI, but those models didn't last long. The Y-Foil from Trek comes to mind. I know 3 people that own and ride them regularly and swear they are the most comfortable bike they've ever ridden. It was given awards I believe. But it didn't last long.

    Meh.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
    Here is an article that talks about Innovation......interesting to see who they compare the new bike to....and who is missing.
    Are you still going on about Trek? You realize that a CEO's job is not to make innovative bikes. Their job is to make money.

  10. #10
    Cookies! Runner 1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikeisdusty View Post
    I have been wondering about the lack of real innovation in bikes, but came to realize that the reason for the lack there of is due to UCI rules. Since you can't make a race bike not look like a bike from 1911, you can't make a bike look like 2011. With the material science we have today, the shape of bikes should be much different. These Aero bikes push these rules to the limit, but for some reason, the engineers have made the bikes stiffer than riding in the back of a pickup. Which I find strange as the sales pitch is that the Aero bikes will take less energy to get there, but if they beat you into fatigue, then what is the point?

    The other thing that makes me laugh, is the quoted savings of time and such. Why then is it that the riders on these bikes are not 3 minutes ahead on each stage of the TDF? Ummm, over rated maybe.
    Yeah, I suppose you have to have rules at some point. Otherwise everyone in the TdF would be racing HPV's at 50-80 mph and ... wait a second ... that might make it more interesting actually.
    The act of trying is the purest expression of willpower, that which, despite all natural limitations, can still yield the greatest in a person.

  11. #11
    Two-Wheeled Aficionado ColinL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wphamilton View Post
    Why do they restrict themselves to UCI standards? Is the market for these frames exclusively for cyclists entering UCI events?
    Because the development costs of building non-UCI frames are too high to make a viable product that can by definition only be sold to cyclists who are not entering UCI events.

    The top-tier teams are on newer stuff than you can get in the dealership at least half the time. But the development costs of that tech is paid by people buying from the dealerships, even if there's an additional 1-2 years of lag.

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  13. #13
    Senior Member thehammerdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
    Are you still going on about Trek? You realize that a CEO's job is not to make innovative bikes. Their job is to make money.
    Not at all but man you either work for Trek or own stock or something........do tell?

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    Quote Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
    Not at all but man you either work for Trek or own stock or something........do tell?
    Actually, he is absolutely right.

    A company that large is operated for one reason, to make their investors happy and continue to see company profits and growth. There is no "lets make a cool bike and see if it works or makes any money" at that level. At least, not anymore.

  15. #15
    rugged individualist wphamilton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ColinL View Post
    Because the development costs of building non-UCI frames are too high to make a viable product that can by definition only be sold to cyclists who are not entering UCI events.
    That sounds reasonable, provided the development cost of a new design is high, and the proportion of cyclists not entering UCI events is fairly low. Do you have a ballpark estimate for those two figures?

  16. #16
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ColinL View Post
    Because the development costs of building non-UCI frames are too high to make a viable product that can by definition only be sold to cyclists who are not entering UCI events.
    Yeah, I'm not sure I buy that.

    There are lots of bikes offered by the big manufacturers that have nothing to do with UCI regs, and huge swaths of cyclists barely even know that bike races exist.

    In terms of costs, I don't see it as a huge issue. Tri bikes have far fewer regulations, and it's relatively easy to migrate relevant knowledge road bikes; e.g. it wouldn't require a ton of research to set up tubes with a 4:1 ratio if they're already doing it for their tri bikes. Big swaths of road lineups aren't intended for racing (plush bikes, flat-bar hybrids), yet still get development and testing resources.

    We are also seeing quite a bit of innovation within UCI regs, including aero bikes that borrow from tris (e.g. Cervelo S5), Di2, SRAM road groupsets, tubeless tires, carbon everything....

    Some folks, by the way, aren't interested in changes, regardless of the UCI regs. Quite a few roadies are repulsed by the idea of disc brakes on road bikes; Di2 still invokes lots of "why the heck do I need that."

    So really, I don't see the UCI holding back much, even for the relatively small number of riders who do race.

  17. #17
    Two-Wheeled Aficionado ColinL's Avatar
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    The UCI is definitely holding back race bikes from major aero features like nose/tail cones, and from eliminating or significantly redesigning frame structural members. Everyone would bail on seatstays if they could. Seatpost tube, probably most would keep, but the Trek linked earlier in the thread shows what is possible.

    Development of comfort bikes is regarding style and utility and I daresay these features are easier and faster to design around than a race bike.


    I do like the UCI in that maintaining these restrictions lowers costs and makes it unlikely that any one bike will pull out a significant advantage. The major races are won by the best riders, not the best bikes because they're all pretty damn good. More importantly, they're good enough for a powerful rider to win.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
    Not at all but man you either work for Trek or own stock or something........do tell?
    I don't think Trek is public, however, principle stands for all public companies.

  19. #19
    Cookies! Runner 1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ColinL View Post
    Everyone would bail on seatstays if they could.
    I think seatstays are almost aesthetic at this point. Have you seen them on the EVO?
    The act of trying is the purest expression of willpower, that which, despite all natural limitations, can still yield the greatest in a person.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Fox Farm's Avatar
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    How about the Kestrel seat tube-less frame from 20 years ago!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    Quite a few roadies are repulsed by the idea of disc brakes on road bikes; Di2 still invokes lots of "why the heck do I need that."

    Here is one. I see Di2 the same way I saw Gibson's Robot Guitar that came out. It was a guitar with small motors in it that tuned the strings automatically. Sure it is kinda cool, but it is entirely unnecessary, with a cost that is not worth the benefit. For the uniformed, tuning your strings on a guitar is something you do nearly every time you pick it up, it is as regular s switching gears on a bike. Disclaimer, I am not a racer, and I still use a friction shifter.


    Also, if you want to look for innovation, Runner1 pointed us in the right direction. Look at any HPV team. I was in the robotics team in college, and we shared a work area with the HPV team. They hand make recumbents with a little material as possible and make a custom carbon fairing. They have a speed trial one that is longer and has maxed out somewhere around 63-64MPH, and the regular one they race in ASME challenges.

    http://humanpowered.mst.edu/photos/2010/west/12.jpg

    That was from 2010, when they won every ASME category for both east and west coast competitions. (Design, Male Sprint, Female Sprint, Endurance, and Overall)

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    Senior Member kabex's Avatar
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    ^ show me that thing climbing the alp d'huez and descending Mt. Ventoux.

  23. #23
    Peloton Dog patentcad's Avatar
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    Innovantion. You've invented a new term that combines invention and innovation.

    Brilliant.

  24. #24
    Peloton Dog patentcad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikeisdusty View Post
    I have been wondering about the lack of real innovation in bikes,
    It is because NOBODY CARES.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrhii View Post
    Here is one. I see Di2 the same way I saw Gibson's Robot Guitar that came out. It was a guitar with small motors in it that tuned the strings automatically. Sure it is kinda cool, but it is entirely unnecessary, with a cost that is not worth the benefit. For the uniformed, tuning your strings on a guitar is something you do nearly every time you pick it up, it is as regular s switching gears on a bike. Disclaimer, I am not a racer, and I still use a friction shifter.


    Also, if you want to look for innovation, Runner1 pointed us in the right direction. Look at any HPV team. I was in the robotics team in college, and we shared a work area with the HPV team. They hand make recumbents with a little material as possible and make a custom carbon fairing. They have a speed trial one that is longer and has maxed out somewhere around 63-64MPH, and the regular one they race in ASME challenges.

    http://humanpowered.mst.edu/photos/2010/west/12.jpg

    That was from 2010, when they won every ASME category for both east and west coast competitions. (Design, Male Sprint, Female Sprint, Endurance, and Overall)

    I like to see someone riding that in a crosswind.

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