whatever happened to TT bikes with the small front wheels?



finnrambo

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Jun 6, 2010
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maybe this was a better topic for the bike cafe... idk, I was watching old TDF TT's yesterday and i saw these weird bikes with small front wheels, why arent the modern bikes like that anymore?
 

daveryanwyoming

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Oct 3, 2006
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Because the UCI changed the rules and race bikes, even TT bikes must have the same size wheels front and back. It's the same reason you no longer see Trek Y bikes or Softride frames in UCI events, they're no longer legal.

-Dave
 

finnrambo

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Jun 6, 2010
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was there any advantage with small front wheels or the softride bikes or are they banned due to safety?
 

daveryanwyoming

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Oct 3, 2006
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There's arguably an advantage to bikes with smaller front wheels like the classic Hooker TT bikes as they let you get reallllly low in the front end if you had the flexibility to ride that position. Check out the position Kent Bostick rode on his Hooker:

And bikes like the Softride or the Y bikes had entire sections of the traditional diamond frame missing so as far as the bikes themselves they were pretty low drag, if you can also get a good position on them then it could be a killer combo.

The UCI passes a lot of regulations that basically make sure riders ride machines that are still recognized as bicycles and every now and then decides something is too big a technological leap from traditional bikes. So UCI legal bikes must have traditional double diamond style frames though the top tubes can slope into compact designs and the seat stays don't need to terminate at the seat cluster. The bike's tubing and all accessories must have no more than a 3:1 aspect ratio which eliminates dramatic wing shaped tubes and recently forced a lot of UCI racers (including masters and juniors attending US national events) to swap out aero handlebars to newer UCI legal designs.

Other UCI limits on bike design include the tip of the seat being at least 5cm behind the bottom bracket unless you qualify for the morphological exception in which case you can have the seat tip in line with, but not in front of the bottom bracket center. And the aero extension bar tips (well really the shifter axles near the tips) should be no more than 75cm in front of the bottom bracket center but you can get an exception for that (but can't simultaneously take both morph exceptions as of the 2010 season) and have 80cm of bar reach. Oh yeah, the bar extensions can't rise upward either although the bars can have angled grips which rise up as long as the extensions themselves are basically installed flat. In a nutshell many things about the bike and position shown above wouldn't be UCI legal under the current and ever changing rules.

No doubt there is some rule making based on safety like no forward protruding bar extensions in mass start events and no sharp metal studded cyclocross ice tires, but a lot of rules are introduced to limit the 'arms race' and to keep the machines looking like traditional bikes instead of high tech human powered vehicles with recumbent or prone riding positions or fairings that aren't structural parts of the bike.

Some of the rules make sense, some don't and some change year to year. It's all part of the way the sport is defined by the governing bodies and can be a PITA to keep up with not to mention a pain in the wallet like when the UCI ruled that 34mm cyclocross tires would no longer be legal last season or when they changed to wheel size rule which obsoleted a number of very fast TT bikes.

-Dave
 
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finnrambo

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Jun 6, 2010
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well, I'm definetly out of questions now, you must be quite involved in this sport to know so much
 

JoelTGM

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Oct 21, 2010
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champion118 why are there random links in your post about hair weaves and stuff? lol I must be seeing things
 

64Paramount

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Jul 25, 2009
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Originally Posted by JoelTGM .

champion118 why are there random links in your post about hair weaves and stuff? lol I must be seeing things

Joel, you'll often see that in posts by spambots....
 

finnrambo

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lol I wish I never clicked on the links out of curiosity.... apparently people do sell human hair, one more reason to hate spambots
 

frenchyge

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Apr 3, 2005
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Originally Posted by finnrambo .

was there any advantage with small front wheels or the softride bikes or are they banned due to safety?
Too much of an advantage since it allowed the riders to be riding downhill all the time. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/biggrin.gif
 

finnrambo

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Jun 6, 2010
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Originally Posted by frenchyge .



Quote: Originally Posted by finnrambo .

was there any advantage with small front wheels or the softride bikes or are they banned due to safety?
Too much of an advantage since it allowed the riders to be riding downhill all the time. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/biggrin.gif




LOL like a bike trainer without a riser block, it would be awesome to do a TT all downhill though...
 

Reid2

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Jan 6, 2011
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You young guys honor the world's first immortal champ with your TT bikes,

http://www.dvrbs.com/people/camdenpeople-AAZimmerman.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Augustus_Zimmerman

This is why, horses for courses, that the governing bodies want bikes to remain
bike-looking: Zimmy could not compete for time measures against you.

All the freak designs we can imagine or make today were at basis
tried-out and discarded by the middle 1890s. By 1898, frames looked identical
to today's [COLOR= rgb(0, 0, 128)]diamond steel tubing[/COLOR] jobs[SIZE= 9px] ([COLOR= rgb(0, 0, 128)]TRADEMARK, copyright[/COLOR] by r.w.)[/SIZE], and nearly as light weight, at basis.


Zimmy's bike and Zimmy would show up well today:


[COLOR= rgb(255, 0, 0)]"Say, Zimmy, is it you or the clock that is behind time?"[/COLOR]
[COLOR= rgb(105, 105, 105)]http://tinyurl.com/6cgj79r[/COLOR]
[SIZE= 9px][COLOR= rgb(105, 105, 105)] [/COLOR][/SIZE]
[SIZE= 9px][COLOR= rgb(105, 105, 105)]http://tinyurl.com/5uysx4s[/COLOR][/SIZE]
[SIZE= 9px][COLOR= rgb(105, 105, 105)]rw notes from the safe sideline of 2011 [/COLOR] [/SIZE]
[SIZE= 12px][COLOR= rgb(255, 0, 0)]even his hair is streamline...[/COLOR][/SIZE][SIZE= 11px][COLOR= rgb(255, 0, 0)] [/COLOR][/SIZE]