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2002 ZIPP 303 Clinchers (700c)(6 posts)

2002 ZIPP 303 Clinchers (700c)litespeedcat
May 12, 2002 7:12 AM
I am thinking of getting a pair and want to hear from people who have ridden them for any significant amount of time. Do you think they are the best of the $1,000 clincher aero wheels....why? What are the other close contenders in the same price range? Thanks for your input and suggestions.

Mainly how is the performance of the 303's in crosswinds? I weigh 175 to 185 (skinny to fat range), will they rub the brakes when climbing out of the saddle?

Thanks in advance.
2002 ZIPP 303 Clinchers (700c); me, too.Roubaix
May 12, 2002 7:25 AM
Yep, I need to know, too. Vs. Ksyrium or Eurus? I haven't heard about the Zipps, but apparently, the Campy hubs are significantly smoother than the Mavics. You should also consider the HED Alps, though I have absolutely no experience with these. My bias right now is for Zipps, though I'll be the Eurus is a better all around wheel. One of each?
Zipp 404'sunchained
May 12, 2002 8:22 AM
The 404's weigh slightly more, but this should be more than offset by superior aero. properties.

In the hilliest spring classic, Liege-Bastogne-Liege, the top two finishers rode away from the field on deep dish aero wheels, Mavic Cosmics. Of course they were among the strongest anyway, but their selection of wheels gives an indication of the importance of aero.

If you want to save money, and possibly have a better set of wheels, buy the Zipp 505 rims and have them built up with Campy Record Hubs.
Rims are avail. for $271 each, hubs are $152/pair. Cost would be $695 plus spokes and labor. Much less than the best price I have seen on 2002 404's ($1100).

Zipp 404'sMGS
May 12, 2002 9:43 AM
I went through the same evaluation this year concerning new wheels. There are many threads on this topic. Essentially, the 303's are really not aerodynamic wheels.
I went with the 404's, because the weight penalty is minimal, and they are truly aerodynamic. The studies seem to show that to be aerodynamic, a wheel has to be at least 50mm in diameter. The HED wheels are 50mm and the 404's are 60mm.

The 303's are at best, semi-aero, and do not have a studied or proven advantage over other wheels. They are however, very light.

I have ridden the 404's daily for the past two months. I weigh 175lbs, and they have proven to be absolutely perfect to date.

I have not noticed any crosswind problem. They also have passed the crash test, which I believe the 303 still has yet to be certified.

I have never doubted my decision on the 404's over the 303's. I felt the aerodynamic advantage was the way to go.

Good luck on your decision.
Zipp 404'sda cyclist
May 12, 2002 6:33 PM
John Cobb at bicycle sports seems to think that the 303's are pretty aero and perform like a deeper wheel. Frankly, I take what John Cobb says about aerodynamics as the final word on the subject. Obviously, the 404's are going to be more aero than the 303's, the question becomes exactly how big is the difference? This is off the top of my head, but I think that the 404's are good for a little over a 1:20 in a 40k TT, while the 303's are good for 25 or 30 seconds. I'll try and find the exact numbers and post them here.

As far as the crash test goes, I don't think that anybody who is getting their wheel advice here really needs wheels that are UCI certified (note that it was the clinchers that failed basically because the rim was too strong). Zipp is supposed to be fixing the problem so they come apart in the manner that the UCI has deemed safest (don't even get me started).
re: 2002 ZIPP 303 Clinchers (700c)DougSloan
May 12, 2002 6:13 PM
I rode the Central Coast Double on them yesterday; they worked great. I flew past everyone on the descents, for whatever that's worth. I've had them for about 3 months; no problems; fast wheels.