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  1. #1
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    Spinergy Wheels and Average Speed?

    Hi,

    I'm considering purchasing a set of Spinergy's and am curious if anyone has seen their average speed go up after switching to them. We're currently riding 48 spoke heavy wheels, I love them because they have been very durable and never gone out of true, but I can't deny those Spinergy's sound nice, especially if they'd make us faster!!

    Thanks for any info you may have,

    Jack

  2. #2
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Hi Jack,

    Whenever we buy something new we tend to want to justify the purchase so we ride faster. Plus our wallet is lighter, so that helps too

    Other than the in-depth scientific analysis provided above (not), we have 6 mo. of solid riding on them without any performance or durability issues. These wheels may not make the top of the aero wheel list, but otherwise they do ok with the 24 round PBO spokes and 24mm rim height. Plus the pricepoint for a lightweight, disc capable wheel with a decent history (AFAIK) might speak to your senses.

    Considering that you will like drop a couple pounds of rotating weight, a set of lighter weight wheels such as these should liven up your ride with a pair of 25-28mm tires that match up well with the rim width. I have no experience with wider tires, so can't help your there.

    While you can get consumer feedback here, for the best product information go to the sources by calling Ric @ House of Tandems, or Mel @ Tandems East.
    Last edited by twocicle; 03-31-13 at 12:59 PM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member waynesulak's Avatar
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    What is the diameter of the spokes on the Spinergy wheels?

  4. #4
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Something like 2.8mm... at least the ones we test rode on the Santana back in May '11. Those were 20/20 front/rear-spoke "very light" one-offs made for Santana to test and not the higher spoke count "production models" with 24/24 spoking.

  5. #5
    Tandem Vincitur Ritterview's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TandemGeek View Post
    [Diameter =] Something like 2.8mm...
    If so, not exactly aero, they. Compare to the bladed DT Aerolite with 2.0/0.9/2.3mm flat cross-section. So, an aero diameter of only 0.9 mm.



    Likewise the bladed Sapin XR



    Even the round DT Comp is only 1.8 mm.



    Quote Originally Posted by Bornco View Post
    I'm considering purchasing a set of Spinergy's and am curious if anyone has seen their average speed go up after switching to them... but I can't deny those Spinergy's sound nice, especially if they'd make us faster!!
    If your concern is average speed and going faster, aero is definitely a consideration. Neither the relatively shallow rim nor 2.8 mm spokes can boast of being aero (except in comparison to 48 spoke, box rim wheels).



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    In the near future there will be a new Spynergy Tandem wheel that will utilize a 43 mm deep rim.

    Scroll down this page and you can see what they look like. http://houseoftandems.com/

    Wayne

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    Any reason to get Spynergy compared to building a set similar to "Uspspro" mentioned in the Chris king thread?

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    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dean V View Post
    Any reason to get Spynergy compared to building a set similar to "Uspspro" mentioned in the Chris king thread?
    Added comfort, lighter weight, and no killer-bee buzz when coasting and all without giving up much in the way of handling and stability?

    As for aero drag, they're probably an improvement over what BF Brother Bornco (Jack) is riding, but neither the Spinergy nor the Topolino wheels are marketed as low-drag, time trial wheels and for good reason: that's not what they're designed for.

    As for how the Spinergy's might compare to our friend USPSPRO's CK's with HED rims & bladed spokes on drag, it would probably be a good bet that unless you were running something like a tall, narrow 23mm tire on the Spinergy's, the HEDs running 23mm tires are going to best them in the aero drag dept AT THE COMPONENT LEVEL!

    As to how much drag would be reduced from the entire tandem and team, well that would depend on the size and riding position of the team. I'm pretty confident that USPSPRO knows something about how to ride in an aero-optimized position and from what I can surmise from photos he's a pretty trim guy.

    Our friend Bornco paints a picture of he and his lovely bride as more recreational riders who put a premium on comfort and reliability and are probably not hitting the road to set new PBs or banging elbows with the racer boys three nights a week on training rides. So, I'm guessing as a team they aren't aerodynamically efficient to begin with or predisposed to be riding at 20-30 mph for long stretches where any real difference in aero drag between either wheelset might be a factor. Frankly, the biggest question Jack needs to ask himself is... "Am I willing to limit myself to using 25mm or perhaps 28mm tires (max) on the Spinergy's given their narrow bead seat width?" And, I'm pretty sure that once you make the jump to a 25mm tire, never mind a 28mm tire aero drag will go up dramatically for the very reason that USPSPRO is so fond of the HED Belgium C2's which are designed to be used with a 23mm wide tire.

    So, again.... Spinergy's seem to do a great job of replicating the stability and perhaps even improving on the reliability of a conventionally spoked 36 or 40 wheel while weighing 200 grams less than a set of very lightweight conventional wheels like the CK/HEDs or our White/Fusions (both on par with Rolf's, but with gobs more lateral stiffness) while improving rider comfort, especially for folks riding steel or alloy frames.

    Again, the big question for our friend Bornco is what size tire do you plan on using with your wheels and are they a good match-up to the Spinergy TX2s? Or if a larger volume tire is preferred, would a wider tire like a 700x28mm or 700x32mm be compatible with the 29'er version of the Spinergy TX2's assuming it has a wider bead seat?

    As you can see, I have more questions than answers at this point and I'm not even in the market for another set of wheels!
    Last edited by TandemGeek; 03-31-13 at 08:01 PM.

  9. #9
    Senior Member waynesulak's Avatar
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    I agree while Tandemgeeks observations that wheels are in the noise aero wise and I would also guess they are also in the noise weight wise as well. Bottom line is if you like the colored spokes, or save a little weight lifting your tandem up on the rack, or you just want new wheels then buy them and enjoy them. Don't expect the aero savings or weight savings to increase your average mph unless you climb mountains.

  10. #10
    Tandem Vincitur Ritterview's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DubT View Post
    In the near future there will be a new Spynergy Tandem wheel that will utilize a 43 mm deep rim.

    Scroll down this page and you can see what they look like. http://houseoftandems.com/
    These them?

    Attached Images Attached Images

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ritterview View Post
    These them?

    Yep!

    I plan to get one for the rear of our tandem, I am running a HED 3 on the front. If I had 130mm rear spacing I would have a HED 3 on the rear. Our next tandem will probably be 130mm.

  12. #12
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    Our used Macchiato came with Topolinos, but I bought a pair of Spinergys on impulse and have been using them for the past 3-4 months. I can't say we feel a major difference between the two : they are both VERY comfortable and very lively, especially up hill. You won't be disappointed with either.

  13. #13
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dean V View Post
    Any reason to get Spynergy compared to building a set similar to "Uspspro" mentioned in the Chris king thread?
    First, note that Uspspro's build had a mix of spokes and rims front/rear. I was doing some build estimates using all Sapim CX-Ray spokes, brass nipples and the Belguim rim front & rear, which came to 1729gm... so approx 85gm lighter than Uspspro's build, and $1090+shipping. Could build for less using Sapim Race spokes, saving at least $2/spoke.

    Reasons for Spinergy: the pair sells for $900 so cheaper by a couple hundred $$ (based on my build est. above), Spinergy TX2 pair weighs in the mid 1600gm range so lighter than Uspsro's build by ~150gms. Boutique wheels (off the shelf), more tried & tested and fully backed by a single mfr warranty.

    Then, there are always opposite reasons just like opinions in this forum: You may be able to build a more laterally rigid, more aero wheel, the Chris King hubs are the(?) best available. Or you may just like the idea of having custom wheels.

    Bottom line: Trying to hit the mid-1600gm range for a set, rear disc ready, for $900 is a tough ask.
    Last edited by twocicle; 04-01-13 at 09:46 AM.

  14. #14
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ritterview View Post
    These them?


    The TX2 wheels from last year are based on the XAero PBO: http://www.spinergy.com/catalog/prod...products_id=83, using the 24 spoke rim for front & rear.

    The new version (photo above) appears to be based on the Stealth PBO: http://www.spinergy.com/catalog/prod...products_id=81, I would guess using the 20 spoke rim for front & rear. Maybe DubT (Wayne) can chime in and confirm that.

    No specs posted about rim width. Stealth, 19mm taller.

    Based on the weights posted in the 2 links above, the relative weight comparison indicates the Stealth pair are 160gm heavier than the XAero, even though the former has a lower spoke count. I would assume this difference would carry over to the tandem versions too.
    Last edited by twocicle; 04-01-13 at 11:06 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by twocicle View Post
    The TX2 wheels from last year are based on the XAero PBO: http://www.spinergy.com/catalog/prod...products_id=83, using the 24 spoke rim for front & rear.

    The new version (photo above) is based on the Stealth PBO: http://www.spinergy.com/catalog/prod...products_id=81, I would guess using the 20 spoke rim for front & rear.
    Ric from House of Tandems is having Spinergy produce some of the PBO rims with 24 holes for use on tandems. He told me that once he has some spare rims available he would rebuild my existing rear wheel with the 43mm rim.

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    Thanks for all the input, definitely a few things came up that I had never thought of. Here is a little more info. We are currently riding wheels that weigh 3628 grams (that's with skewers but not tubes and tires). We ride in a fairly hilly region and very seldom have a flat road for more than a 1/2 mile. In the only flat 100k that we rode we averaged about a 1mph faster than we do in our local hills and this was on a very windy day. We're slow, with an average speed of low 15's to low 16's for 100k's on our local hilly routes.

    Do you think that the Spinergy's might increase our avg speed 1mph or more on a hilly course?

    Thanks a lot for the help,

    Jack

  17. #17
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bornco View Post
    Thanks for all the input, definitely a few things came up that I had never thought of. Here is a little more info. We are currently riding wheels that weigh 3628 grams (that's with skewers but not tubes and tires). We ride in a fairly hilly region and very seldom have a flat road for more than a 1/2 mile. In the only flat 100k that we rode we averaged about a 1mph faster than we do in our local hills and this was on a very windy day. We're slow, with an average speed of low 15's to low 16's for 100k's on our local hilly routes.

    Do you think that the Spinergy's might increase our avg speed 1mph or more on a hilly course?

    Thanks a lot for the help,

    Jack
    You may be starting an effort that cuts down the overall weight of your tandem by a large percentage just as the forum member in this thread.

    However you weighed your current wheels (likely with a cassette mounted), it seems those are near 2000gms (4.4lbs) heavier than the Spinergy TX2 wheels. That is a huge weight savings many people strive to accomplish over their entire tandem overhaul, not just wheels, so you would be eliminating a major excess weight point. How much time the weight savings alone may create depends on a lot of factors that slide-ruler equipped sorts will need to figure out... power-vs-weight ratio and rate of accent, plus improved acceleration as you crest the top of your many hills.

    Given the speed range you are most concerned with, higher tech (and cost) aero wheels would be of little advantage.
    Last edited by twocicle; 04-02-13 at 10:49 AM.

  18. #18
    Senior Member waynesulak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bornco View Post
    Thanks for all the input, definitely a few things came up that I had never thought of. Here is a little more info. We are currently riding wheels that weigh 3628 grams (that's with skewers but not tubes and tires). We ride in a fairly hilly region and very seldom have a flat road for more than a 1/2 mile. In the only flat 100k that we rode we averaged about a 1mph faster than we do in our local hills and this was on a very windy day. We're slow, with an average speed of low 15's to low 16's for 100k's on our local hilly routes.

    Do you think that the Spinergy's might increase our avg speed 1mph or more on a hilly course?

    Thanks a lot for the help,

    Jack
    One mph increase is speed from 15 to 16 mph is a really big increase. Also 5 lbs of weight decrease from 300 to 295 for example would be more than 0.1 mph for our team. It is so small that it is more important how well I slept the night before or how my wife feels that day.

    For an example I calculated the effect of a strong team getting a tandem that weight 7 lbs less on a 3.3 mile climb toward the bottom of this page:

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...-Santana/page4

    A 7 lb decrease going up a steep hill increased their speed from 7.5 to 7.7 mph. No flats, no downhills all up a 7.5% climb.

    In any case the best way to see thee real world effect on your team and courses is to carry 5 lbs additional weight for a multiple trips on your normal loops and compare to trips without the weight. Switch back and forth so increasing or decreasing fitness over time is not a factor.

    The Spinergy wheels will most likely feel better and look better so there are good reasons to buy them. Average mph is just not the best reason.

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    I thought that light wheels were more important in climbing because the bike accelerates and decelerates slightly on each pedal stroke, more so than on the flats. So, rotating mass matters more in climbing, because you are repeatedly accelerating it. On the flat, aero would be a bigger factor than weight, because you reach a steady speed and aren't accelerating the rotating mass. Am I wrong?

  20. #20
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bornco View Post
    We are currently riding wheels that weigh 3628 grams. We're slow, with an average speed of low 15's to low 16's for 100k's on our local hilly routes. Do you think that the Spinergy's might increase our avg speed 1mph or more on a hilly course?
    Did y'all have a cassette + an Arai drum brake installed on those 48h wheels when you weighted them??!! Holy cow, that's a lot of wheel weight if not. And, as far the wide world of tandem teams go, your average speeds are certainly not "slow" for a metric century on hilly terrain: especially if you're riding on what must be at least a 45lb tandem, ready to roll.

    As for increasing your average speed; perhaps.... but I've got more questions for you than you have for us.

    - What's your total team weight? 300, 350, 400???
    - What size tires have you found to work best and at what pressure?
    - What size tire to you envision using on something like a set of lightweight, go-fast wheels?
    - What's more important to you: comfort, stability, low-drag, lightweight, reliability or value for money?
    - Really, do you have a drum brake on your tandem's wheels and are you looking to put a drum on any replacement wheels?

    Here's the deal, and assuming you could get away with using 28mm tires, the Spinergy wheels would truly transform your riding experience.

    I say 28mm because IMHO that's about the upper limit for rims like the Spinergy, Rolf, Velocity Deep-V/Fusion rims, etc. that have a fairly narrow bead seat diameter. This is especially true if you are looking to extract higher performance, i.e., good handling and lowish drag as part of the wheel change. Mind you, 23mm - 25mm is a better choice for narrow rims like these for performance because as those sidewalls begin to bulge beyond the width of the rim cornering and aero take a hit.

    But, getting back to what you would experience... the loss of all that wheel weight coupled with the very supple ride characteristics of the PBO spoke technology would make you feel like your tandem was fitted with gossamer wings instead of truck tires. That will translate into a more agile-feeling bike that accelerates and climbs with less effort and -- assuming you get your tire size/pressure sorted out with something reasonable -- a far more comfortable ride. I say this having ridden both the Spinergy and Topolino wheels (the latter we own and on which we have logged 1000's of miles) on composite frames where both wheels had a very similar feel, except on the most aggressive out-of-the-saddle bike-throwning where the Topolino's are laterally less compliant. But more importantly, we have also also fitted the Topolinos to our steel-framed Erickson where they truly shined in terms of providing an almost carbon-frame like ride quality.

    Anyway, like I said... I believe there are a number of questions that you have to ask yourself and then your authorized Spinergy dealer before plunking down 9-large for a set of wonder wheels. My gut tells me, you'll like the Spinergy's if you can get the right tire size sorted out.

    Now, one other thing to consider is whether or not you're committed to 160mm rear spacing for the long haul as I'm assuming we've been talking about your early 90's Santana Arriva here, not the Burley Rivazza that you had been looking at??? I say that because if you'd purchased the Rivazza none of this would matter, as you'd have been in hog heaven and years away from looking for the next way to make that bike go faster.

  21. #21
    Clipless in Coeur d'Alene twocicle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by waynesulak View Post
    One mph increase is speed from 15 to 16 mph is a really big increase. Also 5 lbs of weight decrease from 300 to 295 for example would be more than 0.1 mph for our team. It is so small that it is more important how well I slept the night before or how my wife feels that day.

    For an example I calculated the effect of a strong team getting a tandem that weight 7 lbs less on a 3.3 mile climb toward the bottom of this page:

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...-Santana/page4

    A 7 lb decrease going up a steep hill increased their speed from 7.5 to 7.7 mph. No flats, no downhills all up a 7.5% climb.

    In any case the best way to see thee real world effect on your team and courses is to carry 5 lbs additional weight for a multiple trips on your normal loops and compare to trips without the weight. Switch back and forth so increasing or decreasing fitness over time is not a factor.

    The Spinergy wheels will most likely feel better and look better so there are good reasons to buy them. Average mph is just not the best reason.
    Thing is, this is not dead weight we are talking about. Rotating weight has a much larger effect and 4lbs worth of extra rotating weight is a ton (I pun). Toss in the mix that they will be riding roller hills which introduces many variations in pace (not a steady effort), the advantage of a lighter wheelset should be quite noticable.
    Last edited by twocicle; 04-02-13 at 11:00 AM.

  22. #22
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    I am also considering a wheel upgrade for my Cannondale Tandem. We will definitely not race or have a real need for speed beyond our own fun seeking. I have not weighed the wheels on my tandem but they are a chunk. It also has what I consider a low quality shock absorbing stoker seatpost. An upgrade to Spinergy wheels would help us lose some rotating weight and improve ride quality so we can replace the shocker seatpost with titanium or carbon to further reduce weight and improve comfort for my stoker. Lower weight probably translates to higher speed and will make our bike better climber, significant given our Rocky Mountain environment.

  23. #23
    Rod & Judy gracehowler's Avatar
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    Our thumbs up to Wayne's comment, he has this right on, "One mph increase is speed from 15 to 16 mph is a really big increase. Also 5 lbs of weight decrease from 300 to 295 for example would be more than 0.1 mph for our team. It is so small that it is more important how well I slept the night before or how my wife feels that day."
    R&J

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    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Wheel Inertial vs Aero.... A worthwhile read.

    http://www.biketechreview.com/review...el-performance

  25. #25
    Senior Member waynesulak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TandemGeek View Post
    Wheel Inertial vs Aero.... A worthwhile read.

    http://www.biketechreview.com/review...el-performance
    This is pretty much what i have read in other sources well. A quote from above link:

    "In summary, wheels account for almost 10% of the total power required to race your bike and the dominant factor in wheel performance is aerodynamics. Wheel mass is a second order effect (nearly 10 times less significant) and wheel inertia is a third order effect (nearly 100 times less significant)."

    There is no doubt that lighter wheels and tires with less inertia do make a bike feel better. If that is true then the above quote indicates that how fast a bike feels is not the same as how fast it goes.

    I believe that we all ride for fun how so how a bike feels is at least as important as how fast it goes. So if the wheels are more fun and not much faster they may still be worth every penny. They are not however mph in a box. Maybe they are fun in a box, I don't know.

    For those that want to test rather than discuss the effect of wheel weight there is a way. Take a frame pump and fill your tires with mostly water before topping off with air. I have done it and the resulting really really heavy wheel sure makes for a lot of inertia and a very smooth winter trainer session. It really feels like riding on the road and if you spend a lot of time on a trainer it is worth having an extra wheel just for that purpose. Riding such a wheel on the road would be a way to test the effect of wheel weight and inertia.
    Last edited by waynesulak; 04-02-13 at 11:57 AM.

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