Old 08-17-12, 10:45 AM
Join Date: Apr 2011
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Bikes: CCM Torino 76

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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Not really. Check here for a nice simple explanation. You can test this at home if you like. Put a set of steel rims on your bike and go for a ride. Then put on a set of aluminum rims. The steel rims take much more energy to get moving and keep moving than the aluminum rims.

Edit: I just saw MechbGon's post on winter tires. This is a much easier demonstration to accomplish then a steel vs aluminum wheel comparison. I have a front studded tire and will only use it if I absolutely have to. The damned thing is difficult to get rolling and significantly impacts my commuting times.
You are about 15% correct in that post.

HEavier wheels/tires will impact the effort required for acceleration, but not for cruising at a constant speed. On level ground at constant speed, weight of bike, wheels/tires, and rider, play no role.
The switch from studded tires to street tires may make a big difference, but it is impossible to say if it is from the weight, or from the added rolling resistance of the thicker rubber used to keep the studs in place and not poking the tube, and possibly the extra flex in the rubber caused by the rigid studs hitting the pavement. All of these doubtless play some role in slowing you down, but it is impossible to say how much is caused by the weight.

Last edited by DCB0; 08-17-12 at 11:52 AM. Reason: tie-po's
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