A 6-pound road bike

Road, Tradeshows & Events 7 25

I have posted some pretty light bikes in the past. In 2006, this 7-pound Crumpton fixie seemed unbelievably light to me. A couple years later, German cyclist Gunter Mai built a geared road bike that was roughly the same weight (3195 grams). Gunter didn’t just built that bike for show either… he claimed to ride it up to 1,000 kilometers a week. According to a post on TriRig.com though, Gunter is no longer riding that bike. He parted it out online earlier this year. Some of those parts, including the custom Spin frame and THM fork, were sold to a Colorado rider who sent them to Jason Woznick of Fairwheel Bikes in Tucson to build into an even lighter road bike (that is now spreading around the Internet like wildfire).

VeloNews has a gallery of shots of Woznick’s one-off 6-pound (2700 gram) bike that were taken at Interbike last week. The TriRig post that I mentioned previously also has some great detail shots of the bike, and they discuss how it came to be and where some of the parts came from. Many of the parts are custom, but TriRig points out that the prototype carbon Dash hubs on the bike are going into production in 2011 (30 grams for the front and around 99 for the rear).

So… if the pattern continues and people keep pushing the limits, I’ll be posting a custom 5-pound bike in a couple years. What do you think? Where is the bottom limit for road bike weight? As much as my pals at the UCI won’t like it, I don’t think we have seen it yet.

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7 Comments

  1. Andy September 28, 2010 at 8:39 pm -  Reply

    The amazing part is that this is still a more or less conventional, rideable, geared bike with brakes. It it was a fixed gear bike, you could eliminate brifters, brakes, all cables and housing, and the gears except one ring and sprocket.

    I’d love to see someone apply these materials and ideas to a recumbent to and beat the speed record. The video of the 82mph bike on human power only, on <2/3% slope, made it look like it was still a rather heavy bike, but that the guy's power and the crazy aerodynamics of a faired recumbent was what made the difference. Drop the weight in half and possibly there would be potential for a 100mph bike.

    • Richard Masoner September 29, 2010 at 2:57 pm -  Reply

      Wind resistance goes up with the square of the speed, while weight effects the rolling resistance, which goes up just a little bit faster than linearly, when there’s no slope.

      Let’s pretend the 82 MPH cyclist pushed out 1000 watts for his effort. At that speed, dropping the bike’s speed to zero gets him about another 1 MPH. See http://www.analyticcycling.com/ForcesPower_Page.html

      • James T September 30, 2010 at 8:23 am -  Reply

        Thanks Richard. I think you meant to say “dropping the bike’s weight to zero” in that last sentence, right?

  2. Brandonias September 29, 2010 at 2:31 pm -  Reply

    Gosh darn!!

  3. Mando September 30, 2010 at 3:32 pm -  Reply

    I just came from the event where the 82.8mph speed record was set, There is something to be said about dropping the weight of that bike because it would have a big effect on how quickly it could get up to speed, I was on a team that was racing an 85 pound streamlined recumbent and it was the 4th fastest bike at the event. It’s top legal speed was 71.9mph. It was beating bikes that weighed half that. some riders in lighter bikes would complain about slight wind gusts, our rider would say “what wind?” that machine was like a freight train slipping through the wind. On one of the first days he was sailing the bike in heavy crosswinds and held 69mph for over half the 5 mile course.
    Andy…you should build one and race it at the Human Powered Speed Challenge in Battle Mountain Nevada. It’s addictive…I was hooked 5 years ago and been back every year since then.

  4. Logan October 4, 2010 at 10:31 am -  Reply

    At first glance, I thought it was locked to the structure with that massive chain. That would have been funny if it was: 6-lb. bike, 40-lb. lock…

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