What is the most aero aero bar?
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  1. #1

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    What is the most aero aero bar?

    I'm looking for the most "free" time money I can afford, under $300. I'm trying to build the best TT machine I can for States and MAsters Nationals. I saw an article a while ago that tested how aero the 3 top bars are and I think vision tech came out on top. Thoughts? Experience?

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by triple shot espresso
    I'm looking for the most "free" time money I can afford, under $300. I'm trying to build the best TT machine I can for States and MAsters Nationals. I saw an article a while ago that tested how aero the 3 top bars are and I think vision tech came out on top. Thoughts? Experience?
    Kraig Willett at http://www.biketechreview.com tested aerobars in a wind tunnel. He did this at his own expense so there is a small subscription fee to view the results (along with his other wind tunnel test results). I think the money is well spent if you are considering paying a few hundred dollars for an integrated aerobar.

  3. #3

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    body position

    Since your body is something like 80% of total drage, the most aero aerobar will be the one that gets your body in the best position (aero, comfort, efficiency, and power), not necessarily the one that has the least drag all by itself.

    I've tried many aerobars, at least 8-10. There can be a big difference in comfort, and if you are not comfortable with the position and arm pads, etc., you won't stay in the aero position or keep your focus on making power. So, I would not bother even looking at the drag numbers of the bars themselves.

    On my Cervelo I had installed a set of integrated Profile carbon bars/aerobars, which had very good drag numbers. However, when I switched to a set of Profile cowhorns, VisionTech clip-ons (with the thick pads), and a Look Ergo stem, I was faster and more comfortable, especially for longer distances. I could get the position perfect for the event I was doing.

    Doug

    Quote Originally Posted by triple shot espresso
    I'm looking for the most "free" time money I can afford, under $300. I'm trying to build the best TT machine I can for States and MAsters Nationals. I saw an article a while ago that tested how aero the 3 top bars are and I think vision tech came out on top. Thoughts? Experience?

  4. #4

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    Hmmm

    Quote Originally Posted by DougSloan
    Since your body is something like 80% of total drage, the most aero aerobar will be the one that gets your body in the best position (aero, comfort, efficiency, and power), not necessarily the one that has the least drag all by itself.

    I've tried many aerobars, at least 8-10. There can be a big difference in comfort, and if you are not comfortable with the position and arm pads, etc., you won't stay in the aero position or keep your focus on making power. So, I would not bother even looking at the drag numbers of the bars themselves.

    On my Cervelo I had installed a set of integrated Profile carbon bars/aerobars, which had very good drag numbers. However, when I switched to a set of Profile cowhorns, VisionTech clip-ons (with the thick pads), and a Look Ergo stem, I was faster and more comfortable, especially for longer distances. I could get the position perfect for the event I was doing.

    Doug
    You're right, that's a really good point.

  5. #5
    chica cyclista
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    yes, and a philosophy that LA has used for years

    Quote Originally Posted by triple shot espresso
    You're right, that's a really good point.
    Doug's right, if you're not comfortable, you won't produce optimal power. I read several articles about this recently.

    Look at the differences in position in TTTs between, say USPS and ONCE. ONCE always focussed on maximising aero efficiency. USPS always took the angle of optimising the balance between aero position and rider comfort. Ever noted how high LA's stem is (relatively, that is) in an ITT? It's partly because he's got that strange hump in his lower back, which is why they designed his old custom Giro TT helmet the way they did.

    You have a power meter, do you not Mr M? Before you spend much bank on bars, fiddle around with the position on your rig and fine tune it. I'd do this at Cherry Creek, as it's got a good mix of flats and rollers to figure out your position.

    State TT is wicked hilly (to me, at least), so IMO you'll have to be using something you can hork out of the saddle comfortably, too. Get too radical with some of those "airplane" bars, and this could be uncomfortable, yes?
    Grandpa LFR: "Kid, don't wrestle with pigs; you'll just get covered in crap, and the pig enjoys it."

    /Grandpa LFR

  6. #6

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    States

    Quote Originally Posted by lonefrontranger
    Doug's right, if you're not comfortable, you won't produce optimal power. I read several articles about this recently.

    Look at the differences in position in TTTs between, say USPS and ONCE. ONCE always focussed on maximising aero efficiency. USPS always took the angle of optimising the balance between aero position and rider comfort. Ever noted how high LA's stem is (relatively, that is) in an ITT? It's partly because he's got that strange hump in his lower back, which is why they designed his old custom Giro TT helmet the way they did.

    You have a power meter, do you not Mr M? Before you spend much bank on bars, fiddle around with the position on your rig and fine tune it. I'd do this at Cherry Creek, as it's got a good mix of flats and rollers to figure out your position.

    State TT is wicked hilly (to me, at least), so IMO you'll have to be using something you can hork out of the saddle comfortably, too. Get too radical with some of those "airplane" bars, and this could be uncomfortable, yes?
    I do 99% of the State course in the saddle believe it or not. I got a new TT bike with a 1/125 steerer tube so I can't use the same set up that I have now. So I'm in the market. Last year at states I was up a bit high, I'm about an inch lower on the bars now.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by DougSloan
    Since your body is something like 80% of total drage, the most aero aerobar will be the one that gets your body in the best position (aero, comfort, efficiency, and power), not necessarily the one that has the least drag all by itself.

    I've tried many aerobars, at least 8-10. There can be a big difference in comfort, and if you are not comfortable with the position and arm pads, etc., you won't stay in the aero position or keep your focus on making power. So, I would not bother even looking at the drag numbers of the bars themselves.

    On my Cervelo I had installed a set of integrated Profile carbon bars/aerobars, which had very good drag numbers. However, when I switched to a set of Profile cowhorns, VisionTech clip-ons (with the thick pads), and a Look Ergo stem, I was faster and more comfortable, especially for longer distances. I could get the position perfect for the event I was doing.

    Doug
    Isn't this what killed the "hands in front of face" aero position? IIRC, this was the most aerodynamic, which is why DH skiers use it. Boone Lennon used downhillers as his model when he invented the aerobar. But it compromised breathing for most riders, so it fell out of favor.

    Lemond was one of the few who could produce full power with his head tucked behind his hands. He was also the most aerodynamic cyclist ever tested, until Boardman's "Superman" hour record. Greg had not only tremendous power, he was very flexible, something often overlooked when it comes to positioning.

    --Shannon

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