Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Flo Wheel - Initial Thoughts

I first stumbled upon Flo Wheels while visiting a particular triathlon forum and it seemed like a whole lot of chatter about this particular new start up company. Actually I stumbled on the name of Flo just as they were about to process their first order of wheels. At that very time I just purchased my first TT bike and was looking at various wheel options. Sure, I was coveting those Zipp Firecrest 404's, but the price was just too far out for me to justify for not competing. Even the HED Jet 6 carbon/aluminum clincher set was just too far out of my price range.

There were a number of other worthy deep carbon rims available that were in the lower price range, but most of these were all carbon and I wasn't quite sure that I wanted to go that route just yet. The Flo wheels are an aluminum clincher rim that has a wide toroidal carbon fairing. That would allow me to switch the wheels to other bikes faster without having to swap out brake pads and also not fret much about heavier braking on mountain descents or braking in the rain or with wet roads. Those are not huge issues, but having the aluminum brake track was just something I preferred at the moment. Another attribute that caught my attention is the 23mm rim cross section and the wheels are built up Sapim CX-Ray spokes. They also have a wide variety of decal color combinations including the currently popular ghosted or stealthy look, which I liked. The Flo Vortex hubs also seem to be very solid and can be ordered with either steel or ceramic bearings. I chose steel. They also provided skewers and rim strips.

I ended up joining in at the tail end of the second of their group orders and what impressed me was how responsive both Jon and Chris were to answer my questions via email at a point when I know was a very busy time as the shipment of wheels had just arrived. There were a lot of very anxious buyers waiting for their new sets of Flo wheels and I could tell by their posts on Facebook with the shipment that arrived they had a lot of work ahead.

I received my wheels yesterday and I am anxious to give them a try, but unfortunately I will have to wait until later before I can give my impression of how the wheels respond out on the road. I  have already seen a lot of favorable comments and hopefully I will be able to add some more in the weeks to come, but for now I do like what came out of the box yesterday. My pick was the Flo 60's with the stealth decals. 

Once the new Michelin Pro4 23mm tires come in from Probike Kit I will get these puppies mounted to the Felt B10 and get some more pictures up on this post.

Flo - Flo Wheels

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Brewery to Redbud

Bozeman Road - Probably the most colorful spots that I passed today.

Distance:  47 miles
Avg. Moving Speed:  15.3
Moving Time: 3:05:38
Total Time:  3:14:55
Ride Total TSS: 154.4(0.69 IF)
Give my legs a break and spin a lighter intensity
Ride Description:
Bit of a tough day and it wasn't due to the winds coming from Hurricane Sandy. I suppose it was due to a few good days of training indoors. I thought that this may happen as I was laying bed last night and could feel the soreness in my hips and hamstrings. Good thing I did not take Mike up on the offer for a big Fall Colors ride in Summerville, Georgia. I wanted to go, but after the first few minutes on the road today I am really glad I did not make that hour drive just to get dropped in the first minutes. Each time the watts approached 200 my hamstrings would tighten up. They were already feeling knotted up as it was.

I ended up cutting my miles short today and backed off the pressure even more and enjoyed spinning. The wind was tough, but not nearly as discomforting as my legs felt.

Very few cyclists parked at the brewery and maybe just a few more parked as the Sosebee Bike Park. I did get to see Neal at the end of the ride.
Nutrition Intake During and after the Course:
24 oz from Bottle #1 water, Glutamine, maltodextrin
15 oz from Bottle #2 water, Glutamine, maltodextrin
Post Ride | 30 gram protein drink
Home | baked chicken breast & sweet potato fries
LOOK 585, Garmin 800, Powertap SL+
Cool temperature at 57 F, Very cloudy and winds from the north at 10mph
Overall Powertap Data: 
Entire workout (122 watts):    Duration:      3:14:58
    Work:          1424 kJ
    TSS:           154.5 (intensity factor 0.69)
    Norm Power:    145
    VI:            1.19
    Distance:      47.201 mi
        Min    Max    Avg
    Power:           0    466    122     watts
    Cadence:         8    225    77     rpm
    Speed:           0    33.6    14.5     mph
    Pace             1:47    0:00    4:08     min/mi
    Crank Torque:    0    1752    144     lb-in

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Comet - Obstacles

Distance: 31 miles
Avg. Moving Speed:  17.7
Moving Time: 1:42:59
Total Time:  1:49:27
Ride Total TSS: 101 (0.75 IF)
2 x 60 at Tempo
Ride Description:
I did not meet the goal of the day, but it was a good day for other reasons. I ran into a number of obstacles starting with getting stuck in traffic on the way down to the Comet with every southbound lane of I-75 at a dead stop. There were a lot of people out on the path today despite dark clouds above and about 4 miles into the ride I came up on a crash scene. It was an older gentleman that probably clipped the edge of the pavement and lost control. When I was approaching he was laying on the ground then he stood up and staggered out on the path and fell over again. I stopped to talk to him and his wife and he was holding his shoulder, which it looked like he has either broken his collar bone or separated. There wasn't much I could do except try to calm them both down and give him a Germ-X wipe that I had in my bag to wipe down the bloody road rash spots. Because of these things I had to cut my training time short today, but stopping to help someone like this is far more important than training.

From that point forward I just could not seem to get into a groove where I could sustain the power output because of traffic stops and people. I quickly came to the conclusion to do what I can do with the situation and be happy to be out spinning cranks and do it in a safe manner if possible. There were a few moments when I had clear pavement ahead and the legs were more than ready. It was a breeze to glide right up into Level 4 and being that I was outside holding that number was not really a struggle today, but there were only a few times where I had enough open path in front of me to open up the engine.
Nutrition Intake During and after the Course:
24 oz from Bottle #1 water, Glutamine, maltodextrin
Post Ride | 30 gram protein drink
Felt B10, Garmin 800, Powertap SL+
Very cloudy, breezy, 69 F
Overall Powertap Data: 
Entire workout (147 watts):    Duration:      1:46:05 (1:49:29)
    Work:          936 kJ
    TSS:           101.4 (intensity factor 0.759)
    Norm Power:    159
    VI:            1.08
    Distance:      31.12 mi
        Min    Max    Avg
    Power:           0    562    147     watts
    Cadence:         9    246    73     rpm
    Speed:           0    26.2    17.7     mph
    Pace             2:17    0:00    3:24     min/mi
    Altitude:        882    1163    1040     ft
    Crank Torque:    0    1765    178     lb-in
    Temperature:     66.2    69.8    69.1     Fahrenheit

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Sosebee to Cagle with Bonus Miles

Post ride lunch with some of the gang at Wes Man's

Distance:  80 miles
Avg. Moving Speed:  17
Moving Time: 4:42:24
Total Time:  4:49:13
Ride Total TSS: 258 (0.73 IF)
Endurance miles at a lower intensity
Ride Description:
Not much to say about today other than the temperature was perfect, the tailwind going north was nice and the headwind coming back provided the challenge. I was grateful to get out and get miles on the road and take a break from my weekday indoor training venue.

The headwind coming back was pretty much sustained and really impacted my overall speed average, but pushing the watts is what I was after anyway.

The highlight of the day was seeing the gang at the Sosebee Bike Park at the finish and then going to eat lunch with a few at Wes Man's. Always great to see my cycling friends and hear about their ride for the day and upcoming goals. Nancy and Diane are already sounding excited about a 200 mile ride for next year. Love that spirit.
Nutrition Intake During and after the Course:
24 oz from Bottle #1 water, Glutamine, maltodextrin, Liquimins Electrolyte Concentrate
24 oz from Bottle #2 water, Glutamine, maltodextrin, Liquimins Electrolyte Concentrate

Hammer gel @ mile 27
Cliff Bar @ mile 32
Hammer gel @ mile 54

Post Ride | 30 gram protein drink
Wes Man's | hamburger, onion rings (splurged)
Felt B10, Garmin 800, Powertap SL+
Partly cloudy 53 degrees F at the start, 75 degrees F at the finish, wind SSE 10 mph
Overall Powertap Data: 
Entire workout (131 watts):    Duration:      4:50:47 (4:55:02)
    Work:          2294 kJ
    TSS:           258.2 (intensity factor 0.73)
    Norm Power:    153
    VI:            1.17
    Distance:      80.628 mi
        Min    Max    Avg
    Power:           0    552    131     watts
    Cadence:         7    239    78     rpm
    Speed:           0    33.1    16.7     mph
    Pace             1:49    0:00    3:36     min/mi
    Crank Torque:    0    1115    150     lb-in
    Temperature:     53.6    77    64.3     Fahrenheit

Sunday, October 7, 2012


Distance:  36.3 miles
Avg. Moving Speed:  18.1
Moving Time: 2:00:37
Total Time:  2:03:00
Ride Total TSS: 135 (0.81IF)
Push the intensity on the first 60 minutes, cruise back easy on the return
Ride Description:
The weather really has changed for us in the Atlanta area. Today the wind was sustained and gusting with a temperature around 64 degrees F. There were still a good number of people out on the path and that impacted momentum at times.

I felt good on the first 60 minutes and took it easy on the return. On the way out the headwinds provided good resistance to slow down the speed and that was nice.
Nutrition Intake During and after the Course:
24 oz from Bottle #1 water, Glutamine, maltodextrin
Hammer gel @ mile 18
Post Ride | 30 gram protein drink
Home | bean and beef casserole
LOOK 585, Garmin 800, Powertap SL+
Overall Powertap Data: 
Torque Offset Value: 525
Lap 1:
    Duration:      1:00:02
    Work:          647 kJ
    TSS:           80.2 (intensity factor 0.899)
    Norm Power:    189
    VI:            1.05
    Distance:      18.114 mi
        Min    Max    Avg
    Power:           0    507    180     watts
    Cadence:         15    212    75     rpm
    Speed:           0    24.2    18.1     mph
    Pace             2:29    0:00    3:19     min/mi
    Altitude:        928    1178    1076     ft

Entire workout (158 watts):
    Duration:      2:02:30 (2:03:06)
    Work:          1159 kJ
    TSS:           135.6 (intensity factor 0.817)
    Norm Power:    171
    VI:            1.09
    Distance:      36.329 mi
        Min    Max    Avg
    Power:           0    507    158     watts
    Cadence:         9    225    73     rpm
    Speed:           0    24.7    17.8     mph
    Pace             2:26    0:00    3:22     min/mi
    Crank Torque:    0    1639    191     lb-in

Saturday, October 6, 2012

2012-10-6 Powertap SL+ Static Torque Test

As noted in my last post that I thought my Powertap hub might be off a little based on the torque offset value of 526 posted on the Garmin 800 just before riding this morning and also each indoor training session was at 529. I thought maybe I would also do a rough static weight test to check as well. Some would call this a "stomp test."

Here are the two links showing how I have done the test in the past.


The weight (52.8 lbs.) is not actually a certified weight so that has to be considered for reduced accuracy and the bike and crank arm (170) was held in a constant near level position so that has to be considered for reduced accuracy.

 The cassette is a SRAM 11-28 and the front ring used is a SRAM Red Compact 34.
 The head unit is a Garmin 800 that give a torque value in newton meters and has to be converted to pound force inch to be used in the equation shown on the link above.

11 cog - 5.63% error
13 cog - 3.18% error
15 cog - 3.83% error
22 cog - 3.00% error

Brewery to Cagle Road

Distance:  82 miles
Avg. Moving Speed:  17.3
Moving Time: 4:36:52
Total Time:  4:47:18
Ride Total TSS: 214 ( 0.67 IF)*
Endurance miles
Ride Description:
Very nice day. I got a later than usual start at about 8:15 heading out on the usual out and back route. The power meter has been giving me some frustrations this week and it calibrated at the start of the ride at 529, which is out of the valid range and the values during the ride did look lower than normal. Since I do this ride often I have a good idea about what the values should be near at least. Either way it is like my friend Dave says, "all the data is recorded in the legs" and when I think about it that is good enough.

82 miles done at a fairly easy pace just to reserve the legs for more training tomorrow.
Nutrition Intake During and after the Course:
24 oz from Bottle #1 water, Glutamine, maltodextrin
15 oz from Bottle #2 water, Glutamine, maltodextrin
Hammer gel @ mile 20
Cliff Bar @ mile 40
Post Ride | 30 gram protein drink, Honey Stinger waffle
Home | fried egg sandwich, skim milk
Felt B10, Garmin 800, Powertap SL+
Partly cloudy, wind at times on the return, low humidity, 60 degree F at the start, 80 degree F at the finish, very nice day.
Overall Powertap Data: 
* - The Powertap hub torque values were above the appropriate range of correct calibration. The data below is likely under valued.
Entire workout (117 watts):
    Duration:      4:45:07 (4:47:25)
    Work:          2001 kJ
    TSS:           214.5 (intensity factor 0.673)
    Norm Power:    141
    VI:            1.21
    Distance:      82.154 mi
        Min    Max    Avg
    Power:           0    470    117     watts
    Cadence:         7    212    75     rpm
    Speed:           0    36.4    17.3     mph
    Pace             1:39    0:00    3:28     min/mi
    Altitude:        609    1035    831     ft
    Crank Torque:    0    1726    136     lb-in