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Commute Loop – 2022.10.25

You commute on carbon wheels? Yeah I do and I’d daily an exotic too.

First flight on my new set of Bontrager Aeolus Pro 51s. Very impressed with the increased handling and stability versus the Bontrager Paradigm Comp 25s they replaced. But can you really directly compare the two?

Having never ridden carbon wheels I wasn’t sure what to expect. I did feel the minor weight difference between these and the Paradigms. At lower speeds I didn’t notice much of a difference, but once over 17 MPH they were insanely stable. In a straight line on fresh asphalt they’re like riding on a rail. Taking a fast corner I could feel them carving through the air.

Only downside I’ve noticed so far, is Bontrager’s/Trek’s decision to build these with the 18T ratchet in the DT Swiss 350 hub. During my short ride in, I felt at least two engagement misses/slips. Thankfully you can upgrade the ratchet and I’m considering swapping to at least the 36T and maybe even the 54T. I will say I enjoyed the nearly silent freewheeling and felt like I was on a Tron bike.

With these new wheels I’m considering downsizing my tires from 32C to 28C. Maybe even *gasp* 25s?! With a 31mm outer and 23mm inner width my 32s ballooned to nearly 40C! Looking at the front I could see how much larger the contact stripe is. I may also move from Gatorskins to GP 5000s with either transparent or cream sidewalls.

This was an unplanned upgrade. Sunday I was loading the bike onto my Thule and noticed a crack spreading from a nipple near where I’d strapped down the rear wheel. I don’t know when the crack started, or what may have caused it, but I rode a 125 mile loop to the beach and back the day before without issue. I consider myself very fortunate that this didn’t fail catastrophically at a more inopportune time. The original Paradigms logged 13,264 miles.

The rides today were awesome and I’m really enjoying the new wheels. I snapped an interesting selfie along the way just for Joe Ruggles to get a laugh at. Didn’t quite turn out as clear as I’d hoped but no matter.

14.29 new miles — From
Sunny-Mostly clear, 47°F-64°F, Feels like 47°F-64°F, Humidity 32%-15%, Wind WNW 2mph-ENE 2mph – by
myWindsock Report —
Weather Impact: -1.2%
Headwind: 76% @ 2.5-5.1mph
Longest Headwind: 41m 14s
Air Speed: 16.7mph
Temp: 43.9-65.5°F
Precip: 0% @ 0 Inch/hr
— END —

Total distance: 48.13 mi
Max elevation: 2988 ft
Min elevation: 1981 ft
Total climbing: 2148 ft
Total descent: -2126 ft
Total time: 12:35:46
Published inCommuteCycling

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