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Zipp Wheels: Question(7 posts)

Zipp Wheels: Questionfractured00
Jun 12, 2001 6:30 PM
I'm going to be getting a pair of Zipp tubular wheels for road racing. I want the 303 front, but would it be better to go with the 303 or 404 rear? i have a titanium seven, not exacly aero, and some kyserium clinchers on right now. I also do a fair number of hills- its vancouver, what can i say.

so, which would be better, the weight savings of the 303, or the aero of the 404
re: Zipp Wheels: QuestionDuane Gran
Jun 13, 2001 6:03 AM
I was in the same dillema a couple months ago and I chose the 400 series and went the aero route. My reason is because I plan to build up a time trial bike and by getting the 400 series I would already have the right kind of front wheel. I normally ride Rolf Vector Comps in training, which I think are pretty similar in weight to the Kyseriums, and believe me the 400 series is very light.
re: Zipp Wheels: Questionfreespirit
Jun 13, 2001 7:30 AM
I'd go 303's both front and back. The 404 is more aero, but around 200-300 grams heavier. Plus, even the 303 can be quite a handful with cross winds, especially if gusting. Plus, the rear rim is not nearly so important aerodynamically as the front, as the rear is shielded by the downtube.
re: Zipp Wheels: Questionslbenz
Jun 13, 2001 8:44 AM
Like Duane, I have the 404s. Very stiff and very light compared to my Rolf Vector Comps. Even the 404 tubulars are at least 300 grams lighter than your Mavics and more aero as well. I copied the information about which wheel to use off the website. Either way, you can't go wrong. By the way, the actual weight difference between the Zipp 303 and 404 tubular wheelset is 110 grams. So the weight difference you are looking at is 55 grams if you are set for the 303 in the front.
From the Zipp website:

So what type of wheel is right for me?

If you are time trialing, there is still no faster option than a disc in rear and a deep section front wheel. Our 909 wheelset was designed specifically for this purpose, and has proven both in the wind tunnel, and on the road to be THE setup for TT and triathlon use. For situations in which a disc is either undesirable (very stiff 30+mph wind conditions) or not legal (road racing), we recommend the 404 wheelset. The 404 wheelset combines the advantages of highly tuned aerodynamics, with very light weight, and incredible strength. For roadies, take a look at the 303 wheelset. The 303 set is the ultimate road AND criterium option. Incredibly lightweight, with the lowest rotational moment of inertia of any wheel ever made, makes for wheels that accelerate so fast, you'd think you had been weight training (if you already are weight training, it'll make you think that you've been really good at it). The 303 set combines the ultimate climbing setup (280 gm rim, 1209g wheelset 700c) with excellent cornering stiffness, and handling characteristics of a solid criterium wheelset.

If you plan on being off the front all day long, the 404 wheelset offers improved aerodynamics and ride comfort, with only 80 additional grams per rim. In fact, the increased rim depth allows for fewer spokes, and the whole wheelset weighs in at 1319 grams., 700c (only 110 grams more than a 303 set). We have worked very hard at building ride comfort into our deep section rims. The properties of carbon fiber allow us to design a rim which is vertically compliant to absorb shock, but laterally and torsionally stiff so as not to flex when cornering, or climbing out of the saddle. The end result is a wheel, which actually reduces fatigue over long distances, especially helpful for shoulder and back pain resulting from riding in the aero-bars for long periods or over questionable surfaces.
Jun 13, 2001 8:47 AM
oops, I was comparing 303 to clincher 404
re: Zipp Wheels: Questionmmaggi
Jun 13, 2001 10:13 AM
If your racing will be all-around (mountains and flats), get the 303 for the front and back.

I would get the 404s if it were mostly (80%) flat terrain.

You can't go wrong with the 303s.
Jun 14, 2001 9:11 AM
I have the 303s Fr and Rr. They are plenty aero. The rear wheel is less significant for aerodynamics. So far everyone has mentioned the weight vs. aero topic. One more thing to consider. The 404 has a stonger rim. My 303s flex enough that I have to run the brakes slightly wider to keep them from rubbing. This may not be necessary with the 404 rim.

The 404 is still crazy light. They won't slow you down going uphill.

Either way ... you're golden.