Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

Are Aero Spokes That Much Faster?

Notices
Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Are Aero Spokes That Much Faster?

Old 09-07-07, 08:49 AM
  #1  
lordconqueror
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 133
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Are Aero Spokes That Much Faster?

I am looking at purchasing another pair of Neuvation wheels. I have had great success with their M28 wheels, and am trying to decide between a pair of R28 Aero 3s, or R28 SL 3s. The only difference appears to be that one has bladed spokes, and the other doesn't. The weight difference is only 60 grams between the two, but the price difference between the two is $100. At this price point ($400) is it worth spending the extra money? Are there any other wheelsets in the $400 range I should consider?
lordconqueror is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:03 AM
  #2  
bbattle
.
 
bbattle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Rocket City, No'ala
Posts: 12,737

Bikes: 2014 Trek Domane 5.2, 1985 Pinarello Trevisio, 1990 Gardin Shred, 2006 Bianchi San Jose

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 51 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
I wouldn't worry about it unless you prefer the looks of the aero spokes. If you like the rims of the wheel without aero spokes but like the aero spokes, then have a wheelbuilder make you set just the way you like them.
bbattle is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:12 AM
  #3  
MIN 
big ring
 
MIN's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: philadelphia
Posts: 5,838
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I notice zero difference between aero and tradition 36 spoke wheels.
MIN is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:24 AM
  #4  
urbanknight
Over the hill
 
urbanknight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 22,696

Bikes: Specialized Allez Elite, Raleigh Pursuit tandem

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 97 Post(s)
Liked 116 Times in 71 Posts
I never noticed a difference.
__________________
It's like riding a bicycle
urbanknight is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:33 AM
  #5  
Gee3
Senior Moment Member
 
Gee3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Daly City, CA
Posts: 1,362

Bikes: Specialized Allez Elite Double & 2008 Look 555

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The difference I noticed is that when I hit big cross winds with bladed spokes I feel the bike push to the side. Made me nervous the first time... but I've gotten used to it and come to expect it so I won't be suprised by it.

The other difference was in the hub and not the spokes. I started with the stock ALX 289 rims that came with my bike and bought some Ksyrium Equipe's and the hubs are just soooo much smoother. That's where I really felt the difference, the better hub.

Also note that I don't race, meaning I probably don't ride fast enough to get a benefit from the bladed spokes. But the wheels I bought were at a good price and had good reviews in terms of workmanship, quality and durability. So I bought it more for that than anything else.
Gee3 is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:40 AM
  #6  
rizz
I'm that guy that I am.
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Maryland
Posts: 1,153
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
If you do any number of higher speed events, the bladed spokes (with extra weight) should trump the regular round spokes. Also keep in mind that between these two wheels, the one with bladed spokes should be slightly stronger.
rizz is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:49 AM
  #7  
666
Son of the Dark One
 
666's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Hell (DC)
Posts: 844
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
They are a pain when truing wheels.
666 is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:51 AM
  #8  
calhoun1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Silverdale, WA
Posts: 565

Bikes: 2004 Cannondale R600

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Last time I checked a cylinder was stronger than a rectangle... so wouldn't round spokes be stronger? Or is that different when dealing with lateral and other stress?
calhoun1 is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:53 AM
  #9  
Flak
Flatland hack
 
Flak's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Nowhere near the mountains :/
Posts: 3,228
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I heard that Kysirium bladed spokes actually create drag. Not a knock on bladed spokes in general, but that variety is apparently just a gimmick.
__________________
My shop - www.spinbikeshop.com
My team - www.teampanther.com
Flak is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:54 AM
  #10  
polara426sh
Displaced Southerner
 
polara426sh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Webster, NY
Posts: 254

Bikes: 1967 Peugeot UO-8, 1984 Torpado Beta, 1985 Trek 300, 1989 Dave Moulton Fuso FRX, '90s Hardrock x2, '90s Norco Pinnacle, Focus MB-350 IRO SSFGGB

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by 666 View Post
They are a pain when truing wheels.
How so?
polara426sh is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 09:57 AM
  #11  
666
Son of the Dark One
 
666's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Hell (DC)
Posts: 844
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by polara426sh View Post
How so?
Gotta hold them with an adjustable wrench to keep them from turning, or turn nipple 1/8th turn, stop, straighten spoke, repeat.
666 is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 10:00 AM
  #12  
waterrockets 
Making a kilometer blurry
 
waterrockets's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Austin (near TX)
Posts: 26,170

Bikes: rkwaki's porn collection

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
Liked 85 Times in 35 Posts
Originally Posted by 666 View Post
Gotta hold them with an adjustable wrench to keep them from turning, or turn nipple 1/8th turn, stop, straighten spoke, repeat.
You have to back off the twist with round spokes too -- but a lot of people don't, then wonder why the wheel is never quite true. That popping sound you hear when you first roll out after truing -- you should never hear. A properly tensioned wheel has no torque on any of the spokes.
waterrockets is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 10:00 AM
  #13  
polara426sh
Displaced Southerner
 
polara426sh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Webster, NY
Posts: 254

Bikes: 1967 Peugeot UO-8, 1984 Torpado Beta, 1985 Trek 300, 1989 Dave Moulton Fuso FRX, '90s Hardrock x2, '90s Norco Pinnacle, Focus MB-350 IRO SSFGGB

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I always just turn a bit past how far I want to adjust it, then turn it back. Round spokes will wind up like that as well. I have always built and trued/tensioned wheels this way, I thought it was common practice.
polara426sh is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 10:02 AM
  #14  
waterrockets 
Making a kilometer blurry
 
waterrockets's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Austin (near TX)
Posts: 26,170

Bikes: rkwaki's porn collection

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
Liked 85 Times in 35 Posts
Originally Posted by calhoun1 View Post
Last time I checked a cylinder was stronger than a rectangle... so wouldn't round spokes be stronger? Or is that different when dealing with lateral and other stress?
Spoke strength is longitudinal, so you have to look at the cross-section. Many bladed spokes are simply 2.0mm or 2.2mm rounds squished into an oval. These would have more material in the cross-section than a butted spoke with 1.8, 1.7, or 1.5 mm in the middle.

So, they're not as easy to stretch.
waterrockets is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 10:13 AM
  #15  
666
Son of the Dark One
 
666's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Hell (DC)
Posts: 844
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
Spoke strength is longitudinal, so you have to look at the cross-section. Many bladed spokes are simply 2.0mm or 2.2mm rounds squished into an oval. These would have more material in the cross-section than a butted spoke with 1.8, 1.7, or 1.5 mm in the middle.

So, they're not as easy to stretch.
Me thinks WaterRockets is a fast version Of Sheldon Browne.
666 is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 10:20 AM
  #16  
waterrockets 
Making a kilometer blurry
 
waterrockets's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Austin (near TX)
Posts: 26,170

Bikes: rkwaki's porn collection

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
Liked 85 Times in 35 Posts
Originally Posted by 666 View Post
Me thinks WaterRockets is a fast version Of Sheldon Browne.
I talk a lot more and know a lot less

I'll give myself the "faster" though, for now.
waterrockets is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 10:54 AM
  #17  
Phantoj
Certifiable Bike "Expert"
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 5,647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I heard the process that creates bladed spokes makes them more fatigue-resistant. Either sets up residual compressive stresses at the surface or aligns the grain or somesuch hoo-hah. It's not too important; spokes seem to fail at the bend anyway.
Phantoj is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 11:10 AM
  #18  
johnny99
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Northern California
Posts: 10,879
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 104 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
The benefits of aero anything drop dramatically at speeds lower than 20mph.
johnny99 is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 11:30 AM
  #19  
squarewheels
Senior Member
 
squarewheels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Central Ohio
Posts: 217
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I have the R 28 SL 3s and they are fantastic. Light, smooth and fast. I doubt bladed spokes are worth $100 (The R 28 SL3s are $299).
squarewheels is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 11:36 AM
  #20  
asgelle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Posts: 4,241
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 804 Post(s)
Liked 279 Times in 176 Posts
Originally Posted by johnny99 View Post
The benefits of aero anything drop dramatically at speeds lower than 20mph.
Not necessarily. It depends on how you measure the benefit.
asgelle is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 12:26 PM
  #21  
waterrockets 
Making a kilometer blurry
 
waterrockets's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Austin (near TX)
Posts: 26,170

Bikes: rkwaki's porn collection

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
Liked 85 Times in 35 Posts
Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Not necessarily. It depends on how you measure the benefit.
Plus, at 20 mph, some of your spoke ends are approaching 40mph across the top.
waterrockets is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 12:33 PM
  #22  
permanentjaun
Senior Member
 
permanentjaun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,713
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I can't fine any article right now, but I remember hearing that on WWI planes that had wires connecting the bi-wings that the wires create some of the largest drag on the planes. Engineers back then dismissed it because they thought, 'how could a little wire create drag?' I'm sure bladed spokes do offer a considerable advantage comparatively over regular spokes. Of course, we may not notice the difference. It might be like going from 1 lb of drag to only .75 lbs. Still 25% more efficient.
permanentjaun is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 12:44 PM
  #23  
DocRay
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quoted: Post(s)
Originally Posted by permanentjaun View Post
I can't fine any article right now, but I remember hearing that on WWI planes that had wires connecting the bi-wings that the wires create some of the largest drag on the planes. Engineers back then dismissed it because they thought, 'how could a little wire create drag?' I'm sure bladed spokes do offer a considerable advantage comparatively over regular spokes. Of course, we may not notice the difference. It might be like going from 1 lb of drag to only .75 lbs. Still 25% more efficient.
Unlike plane guy wires, spokes live behind the airflow of the tire and rim. Drag is from rotating through air, but that air is already very turbulent and coming from many angles.
No way is it 25%, more likely 0.25%, +/- 0.25%.
 
Old 09-07-07, 12:54 PM
  #24  
waterrockets 
Making a kilometer blurry
 
waterrockets's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Austin (near TX)
Posts: 26,170

Bikes: rkwaki's porn collection

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
Liked 85 Times in 35 Posts
Another thing to remember is that you don't have a bunch of spokes just hanging off your bike perpendicular to the wind. Only the couple spokes at the top of the wheel are moving through the wind like that. The other spokes don't appear to be round to the wind -- the appear elliptical, which is what the best aero spokes are anyway. In a 20h front wheel, with round spokes, you only have one or two spokes at the top doing anything at all as cylinders.

The way a wheel rolls actually makes wind tunnel testing very misleading. Instantaneously, a rolling wheel is an inverted pendulum, and that effect can't be simulated with a roller in a wind tunnel. The very bottom of the wheel should demonstrate zero drag, but in a wind tunnel, even with the wheel rolling, there will be drag on the bottom of the wheel. In other words, if you place a wind speed indicator on the ground as you ride by, it will read zero, but in a wind tunnel, it will match the tunnel wind speed.

In a tunnel, even though the bottom spokes themselves won't be dragging as they move backwards with the wind, the bottom of the tire and rim appear to be moving at wind speed, when on the road, they are just "falling over" and generating almost no drag, regardless of shape.
waterrockets is offline  
Old 09-07-07, 01:12 PM
  #25  
Phantoj
Certifiable Bike "Expert"
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 5,647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
The very bottom of the wheel should demonstrate zero drag, but in a wind tunnel, even with the wheel rolling, there will be drag on the bottom of the wheel.
hmm? I don't quite get this. How do they test wheels in a wind tunnel? Do they set em on a roller so that the bottom of the wheel is travelling at the same speed as the wind - cause that would be zero relative wind (zero drag?) on the bottom of the wheel? Or do they just set 'em in the wind?


I like bladed spokes in case of squirrel incidents.
Phantoj is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.