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Is this upgrade worth doing...Easton EA70 wheelset to Easton EA 90 SLX?

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Is this upgrade worth doing...Easton EA70 wheelset to Easton EA 90 SLX?

Old 01-11-10, 02:45 AM
  #1  
silkywoods
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Is this upgrade worth doing...Easton EA70 wheelset to Easton EA 90 SLX?

I love the look and perfomance of eastons. I currently use EA70, they have been great, but not much bling, little on the heavy side. I have a chance to upgrade a great deal at LBS) to the Easton EA 90 slx wheels. Is this worth it? Will I see much of a difference? I'm not a racer, I do a handfull of charity rides, fast group rides and two double centuries in the summer. I tip the scales at 185. Thoughts on this wheel only. Thanks
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Old 01-11-10, 06:04 AM
  #2  
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I am no racer either. I just race myself most of the time. I can mozy on my MTB but only know max speed on my road bike. I come in at around 170+ish. I went from Easton Circuits to the 90 SLX's. Weight reduction? Sure, a bit. Performance improvement? I don't know, maybe. Enjoyment with the look and knowing they are super light? Oh yeah! Life is to short. If you can afford them and they make you feel good about the bike so you ride more than go for it.

Enjoy the ride,
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Old 01-11-10, 06:48 AM
  #3  
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Yes it is worth it. Yes you will feel a difference.
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Old 01-11-10, 07:58 AM
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No, you won't be able to feel it, and you won't ever be able to measure a performance difference. None. Anyone who can feel the difference is fooling themselves.

You weigh 185 and you're thinking about moving to the same aerodynamics, and only losing 7 ounces? That's 2/10ths of a % of your total system weight. Is that worth $600?

If you could move to a wheel that was more aero (40mm+), it would make a much bigger difference in speed, even if they weighed a lot more than the EA70s (like 2000-2200g).

Originally Posted by bigtea View Post
Yes it is worth it. Yes you will feel a difference.
I'll bet you a race bike you can't feel the difference through your pedals, saddle, and bars in a double-blind test.
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Old 01-11-10, 08:13 AM
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^^ as usual, WR is right.
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Old 01-11-10, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
I'll bet you a race bike you can't feel the difference through your pedals, saddle, and bars in a double-blind test.
I replaced my Circuits with EA90SLs and could feel the difference. I'm not sure what you mean by "feel the difference through your pedals, saddle, and bars". I felt the difference in weight as I climbed. I don't race, so save yourself the bet.
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Old 01-11-10, 02:26 PM
  #7  
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Originally Posted by bigtea View Post
I replaced my Circuits with EA90SLs and could feel the difference. I'm not sure what you mean by "feel the difference through your pedals, saddle, and bars".
Think about the only parts of bicycle that you touch. If the bicycle feels different at all when you're riding, this manifests through these three areas. Creaks, pops, bumps, flats, etc. are all felt through the bars, pedals, and saddle. Some of these can be heard as well, but in a pack, you know which noises are yours because of how they feel.

Originally Posted by bigtea View Post
I felt the difference in weight as I climbed. I don't race, so save yourself the bet.
If someone does a double blind test with you, same tires/pressure, you wouldn't feel a thing. Nothing.

You're talking about 4 oz. between those wheelsets. That's only like 1.5% of the weight of a semi-light bike and 1/10th of a % of the weight of the OP.

What are you, a postal scale?
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Old 01-11-10, 02:38 PM
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I definitely felt a difference on the climbs when I moved from my previous wheelset to EA90SLX, but I also shaved almost 1 lbs of unsprung weight. (442 grams)

Last edited by asv; 01-11-10 at 02:43 PM.
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Old 01-11-10, 02:51 PM
  #9  
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Look up Weber's law. Test subjects need a 1/30 difference in weight to perceive a difference in hand weights. If your three (well, four w/two hands) points of contact could possibly be as sensitive as a blindfolded man trying to discern weight in his hand, 185 lb rider with a 15 lb bike would need to eliminate about 3000g from the bike to notice the difference.

Once read of a shop owner who would convince people that they couldn't feel the difference of weight with a single-blind test. He'd let a rider go around the block with either a full 16 oz water bottle or an empty one. Nobody could ever tell the difference.

The reason people feel a difference when they get new wheels is because they just dropped $XXX.XX on a set of wheels. If the wheels are aero, things can be a bit different. Tough to feel the difference, but pretty easy to measure the difference.

Is there a performance difference on climbs, between a 1550g wheelset and a 1750g wheelset? Yes, there is. But you can't feel it.

You just can't.
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Old 01-11-10, 03:12 PM
  #10  
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I think to make the final nail in the coffin there would have to be a study to determine how sensitive people are to change in pedaling effort. If there is a performance increase no matter how small and a rider is sensitive to a change in that tiny amount of effort then you could say that you feel a difference.

Even that said I know that uses bling makes me faster so I'd say go for if it makes you happy
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Old 01-11-10, 03:19 PM
  #11  
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I think it's about half a pound of weight difference between the two wheelsets.
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Old 01-11-10, 03:48 PM
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There won't be a huge performance difference. Hell, there may well be no performance difference. But they are nice wheels, that ride great, and are quite tough considering their low weight. If the OP has the money, why not?
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Old 01-11-10, 04:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Namenda View Post
There won't be a huge performance difference. Hell, there may well be no performance difference. But they are nice wheels, that ride great, and are quite tough considering their low weight. If the OP has the money, why not?
Hey, even if the OP doesn't have the money, why not? You only live once.
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Old 01-11-10, 04:58 PM
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Like ASV above, I felt a clear difference when I upgraded to a new wheelset (I also saved over 400 grams). I swapped out these wheel sets back to back on the same ride. I was able to accelerate quicker and the difference was definately noticable on the hills. I don't think my top speed increased though. If you do a lot of hills then I say it's worth it if the weight savings is similar.
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Old 01-11-10, 05:30 PM
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Losing weight in a wheelset (without dropping stiffness, making less aero, etc) is one of the best upgrades you can do for a bike, IMHO. That said, I don't think it would be worth the $600 someone mentioned above, but if it only costs you a couple hundred $, then sure.

Really, tho, I'd save your dough for a bigger upgrade, and look more toward the semi-aero carbon wheels out there. They can be about the same weight, and if you're speedy on the descents, they can make a huge diff. They do cost more, tho.
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Old 01-11-10, 07:02 PM
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Man, there's just no beating the placebo, huh? The economy will be fine. If everyone starts thinking like me, we're screwed.
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Old 01-11-10, 07:37 PM
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Ok, not meaning to hijack, but since w'ere talking about perceived performance differences, I'm going from my stock 1900 gram Shimano R500s to Soul 2.0xperts which weigh 1480grams. They're totally bling with white rims, blue hubs and blue nipples. "How much faster will I perceive myself to be? Will I be even faster with the bling?
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Old 01-11-10, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
Look up Weber's law. Test subjects need a 1/30 difference in weight to perceive a difference in hand weights. If your three (well, four w/two hands) points of contact could possibly be as sensitive as a blindfolded man trying to discern weight in his hand, 185 lb rider with a 15 lb bike would need to eliminate about 3000g from the bike to notice the difference.

Once read of a shop owner who would convince people that they couldn't feel the difference of weight with a single-blind test. He'd let a rider go around the block with either a full 16 oz water bottle or an empty one. Nobody could ever tell the difference.

The reason people feel a difference when they get new wheels is because they just dropped $XXX.XX on a set of wheels. If the wheels are aero, things can be a bit different. Tough to feel the difference, but pretty easy to measure the difference.

Is there a performance difference on climbs, between a 1550g wheelset and a 1750g wheelset? Yes, there is. But you can't feel it.

You just can't.

If the weight loss is part of a whole process of dropping the weight of the bike, then it can be a worthy upgrade. But to throw your leg over and say this is so much lighter, then forget it. I have a set of SLX's that I put an older bike and I feel a difference. But this is because I also changed groupo and dropped a full pound off the bike. So in concert with other upgrades, the overall weight loss can be noticeable. WR is right about aerodynamics too. My deeper carbon rim wheels are heavier, but once up to speed, they are "faster".
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Old 01-11-10, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Nachoman View Post
Hey, even if the OP doesn't have the money, why not? You only live once.
Here, ladies and gentlemen, we have a true American.
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Old 01-12-10, 08:09 AM
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Hey...if it's good enough for George, it's good enough for me. Check out his new training bike and the wheels on it.

https://velonews.competitor.com/2010/...02325?pid=1103

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Old 01-12-10, 01:49 PM
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NO, it is not worth it.

As WR pointed out, you will never be able to feel the difference double blindfolded, especially if you weight 185lbs.

Even if you weigh 57kg like myself (thats 127lbs), a 200g (7oz) difference in weight that I would see would be only 3/10 of 1% of my total system weight. (Thats 3/1000!!)

If you want to upgrade because you are a weight weenie, or because you think they make your bike look better, knock yourself out. But the performance benefit of losing 200g without any difference in aero? Pretty much non-existent (and yes, I will concede the placebo effect is just as real as any actual performance benefit).

Save your money for aero wheels, that will make an actual measurable difference.

Last edited by loreley; 01-12-10 at 01:57 PM.
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Old 01-12-10, 02:30 PM
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I've got both sets of Eastons, weigh 175, and the EA-70 rims are taller than the EA-90s , and ride stiff/hard over bumps. The EA-90 have a smooth feel on rough roads, and bit more sideways deflection when out of the saddle. Both sets are great....but keep your money
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Old 01-12-10, 02:37 PM
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I tried riding double blindfolded and had another damn wreck.
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Old 01-12-10, 02:45 PM
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OP, you're 185 lbs and do charity rides. You've got the right wheels for the job.
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Old 01-12-10, 02:50 PM
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Reasoning: the SLX's are a climbing clincher. Meaning they gave up a lot of strength in rim depth and spoke count to get a lighter wheel. That makes them less dependable, especially for someone at your weight. I have teammates who have broken spokes on their SLX's and they weight 145 soaking wet. And they use ceramic bearings (if you're looking at the 2009 model and later) which are failure prone.

You want durability and dependability. You get that, and some very nice performance, from your EA70's already. Be happy. You picked a terrific wheel for your needs.
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