Powermeters on spare bikes

May 3, 2011
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Comentators were making a big thing today about Wiggins not having a powermeter on his spare bike. Question I was was asking straight away was why not. Is there a reason spare bikes wouldn't be identical in set up to the first choice bike? Cant be a money thing with the budget that Sky have.
 
Mar 17, 2012
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In Pro road cycling, a rider, in January, gets three bikes:
one race bike, one spare bike and one TT bike. At CT level, not all riders get three bikes; then, it´s one road race bike and one TT bike, or two road race bikes and no special TT bike. (speaking about non-European CT teams mainly).

Let´s just look at road race bikes for this.

Normally, a rider like Wiggins will have his Number one bike, and rides this bike in training and competition. The reason for this is that after the many hours he spends on this bike, just "gets one" with the bike, and tries to have its setup-up whenever he gets out to ride, no matter if training or competition. He just feels well on this bike, and tries to avoid the spare bike, because even minimal differences of the spare bike compared to the main bike make it difficult for him to feel 100% well on the spare bike.
In a race, he might be forced to switch onto the spare bike, if having a mechanical which can´t be repaired by the mechanic out of the window of the team car. Even then, later in the race, he will want to switch to his Nr 1 bike again, if it has been made working again in the meantime.

So the time you spend on your spare bike are really limited, and it seems not necessary to have SRM on it. It´s for emergency purposes, and even a high budget team like Sky won´t see the need to put SRM on this bike, because at being at about 4000 EUR per SRM, the ratio cost/neccessity is rather bad.
 
Mar 26, 2009
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Where did you get the 3 bikes from?
I remember hearing of 5 bikes for the top guys at WT level.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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Michele said:
Where did you get the 3 bikes from?
I remember hearing of 5 bikes for the top guys at WT level.
Are are partially right, riders get up to 5 but not in their personal possession. Maybe two at home, team has the race bikes, then it can be as many as they end up needing. There is the obvious exception but that is all covered in the clinic.
 
Mar 17, 2012
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Michele said:
Where did you get the 3 bikes from?
I remember hearing of 5 bikes for the top guys at WT level.
Three was the standard number I remember from the Ullrich times, maybe it has been raised to 5 for top guys, looks well possible.
 
Oct 8, 2012
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Nowadays riders in the big teams get a training bike, two racebikes and a TT bike. On top of that some get an aero bike as well, so 4-5 bikes per rider are common nowadays. Maybe some captains or tt specialists also get a training tt bike but I'm not sure about that. Also, some bikes don't survive the season because of crashes, so a team of 25 riders will use over 130-140 bikes a year.

EDIT: Most of the pros train on cross bikes or MTB in the winter, do they get these bikes from the team as well? Because that will mean up to 7 bikes per rider.
 
Oct 8, 2012
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About the power meter thing: You sometimes see riders taking off their bike computer just before a bikeswap and put the computer on the spare bike so that they still have their bike computer. So maybe it was installed but Wiggins forgot to take off his SRM monitor and replace it on the spare bike
 
Mar 17, 2012
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hidache said:
About the power meter thing: You sometimes see riders taking off their bike computer just before a bikeswap and put the computer on the spare bike so that they still have their bike computer. So maybe it was installed but Wiggins forgot to take off his SRM monitor and replace it on the spare bike
The question is if this spare bike was equipped with an SRM crank... Don´t know.
 
Jul 13, 2009
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His replacement bike apparently did not have gearing as perfectly suited to the steeper parts as the previous one.
 
Nov 14, 2011
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Gregory said:
His replacement bike apparently did not have gearing as perfectly suited to the steeper parts as the previous one.
I found it a bit odd that his spare bike wouldn't have the right gears. Meaning it would essentially be useless.

How do riders have spare TT bikes during races? Are they essentially just their teammates (who did the TT earlier in the day) TT bikes/frames set up differently?
 
Oct 8, 2012
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williamp78 said:
I found it a bit odd that his spare bike wouldn't have the right gears. Meaning it would essentially be useless.

How do riders have spare TT bikes during races? Are they essentially just their teammates (who did the TT earlier in the day) TT bikes/frames set up differently?
The leaders and/or TT specialists get a spare TT bike on the car that's following them during the TT (normally set up the same as the bike the rider starts on), the rest will swap to his normal racebike when something is wrong with their TT bike
 
Jul 19, 2010
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Gregory said:
His replacement bike apparently did not have gearing as perfectly suited to the steeper parts as the previous one.
that is to me is the big questions. How come a spare bike wasn't even prepared with right gearing? they should have known what that day parcour looks like. I can understand if there's no sram on the spare bike, but wrong gearing? sounds like some one got some explaining to do to brailsford. (lucky if he won't get fired).
 
Apr 7, 2010
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Jelantik said:
that is to me is the big questions. How come a spare bike wasn't even prepared with right gearing? they should have known what that day parcour looks like. I can understand if there's no sram on the spare bike, but wrong gearing? sounds like some one got some explaining to do to brailsford. (lucky if he won't get fired).
in a minor/training tour like this one the team would have maybe 3 or 4 bikes on the roof which need to be set up so that every rider is able to use one if needed

for an example, you have two guys who run 58cm frames, you set the spare 58cm bike up so that both of them are able to use it. one might be using a 23t cassette, the other might be using a 25t cassette. someone has to decide what the spare bike will have.

in the grand tours obviously the leader will have a spare bike on the roof set up exactly the same but in these minor tours thats not always the case.
 
Sep 16, 2012
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Jelantik said:
that is to me is the big questions. How come a spare bike wasn't even prepared with right gearing? they should have known what that day parcour looks like. I can understand if there's no sram on the spare bike, but wrong gearing? sounds like some one got some explaining to do to brailsford. (lucky if he won't get fired).
Didn't Froome also have a bike with wrong gears at Tirreno-Adriatico - the stage with the > 25% hills?

Sky's next "marginal gain" will be triple chainsets for all riders and all races. :)
 
Nov 14, 2011
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barn yard said:
in a minor/training tour like this one the team would have maybe 3 or 4 bikes on the roof which need to be set up so that every rider is able to use one if needed

for an example, you have two guys who run 58cm frames, you set the spare 58cm bike up so that both of them are able to use it. one might be using a 23t cassette, the other might be using a 25t cassette. someone has to decide what the spare bike will have.

in the grand tours obviously the leader will have a spare bike on the roof set up exactly the same but in these minor tours thats not always the case.
You'd assume that at least one of the spare bikes would be set up (and reserved) for the team leader with the other riders having to compromise on set up if they need the spare. I'd assume that there was either a mistake made or, being a small tour, they just didn't have enough of the specific component to set up the spare bike properly (which is also a mistake made before leaving for the race i suppose)
 
Mar 17, 2009
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I suspect cost is not an issue on a PT team. What is an issue is that an SRM has to be calibrated, and that is a PIA for the mechanics on just a spare bike.
 
Apr 7, 2010
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williamp78 said:
You'd assume that at least one of the spare bikes would be set up (and reserved) for the team leader with the other riders having to compromise on set up if they need the spare. I'd assume that there was either a mistake made or, being a small tour, they just didn't have enough of the specific component to set up the spare bike properly (which is also a mistake made before leaving for the race i suppose)
it is not out of the question to have a perfect spare bike for one leader in one of these minor tours but the reality is that it just means more work for the team, less spares for the other riders... and so on. it appears they didnt have an identical setup for wiggins and i am sure they have their reasons as sky is the most professionally equipped team in the WT but it wouldnt have changed the overall result anyway so i doubt anyone is getting fired.
 
Oct 20, 2012
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Would it change anything if he had a powermeter in his spare bike? The spare bike didn't even have the proper gear setup for the stage he was racing, don't mention that his problem didn't came from the powermeter of his racing bike but from the gear set which failed.I'm afraid that the team was caught uprepared for this mechanical problem..they didn't actually had a spare bike but just any bike. :)
 
ultimobici said:
The bike may be a spare but still needs to be maintained. On top of that the SRM is not something one just fits and forgets.
A slope check every 6-12 months maybe, or when major changes are made to the power meter like a battery change or a change of chain ring types but even with the latter SRMs are typically less sensitive to slope changes from such things compared to other power meters.

I can remove and replace an SRM crankset from one bike to another with no effect on the power meter's slope calibration.
 
Mar 17, 2009
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Sitting on the roof rack of a team car puts a lot more stress on a bike than you might think. So it's unlikely to be as easy as you suggest. If it was to just be in the team truck, that might be the case.
 

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