Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Cool Bike Stuff Review # 2 - The "Cobras"

Thanks to some awesome people and a great organization I have the pleasure to be rolling around on some "Cobras" on Texas roads. Like many other wheelsets made out of the "black gold" these bad boys come from (far east) overseas and are done by Cobra Composites LTD.

The "Fifties" - or 50mm - version features a 2" deep tubular carbon rim, bladed Sapim spokes (24R/20F), Japanese industry bearings and nice stealth carbon look. Obviously, they roll very smooth and fast, are stiff and don't bounce in your frame's rear triangle, and weigh in at 1420grams (w/ out skewers, tires or cassette). Compare those to the Zipp's 404 MSRP and you looking on saving roughly 6 lincolns by going with the Cobras...

If that's not enough speed for you than you should take a look at the "Super Cobras" - the 85mm version of Cobra Composites' Carbon Wheels. They're perfect for TT's, Triathlons but also handle well in a criterium where a bullet-proof wheel can make the difference.The rims are a bit unique in the way the look: The latest "DAD" (Dynamic Air Displacement) design is set to displace air away from the rim and spoke bed in direct head winds or cross winds. Rims are composed of a 3K carbonweave for maximum strength and stealth looks. Lots of vertical and lateral stiffness is the result which helps in any race situation. Bladed Sapim spokes (24R/20F), and Japanese industry bearings come standard on this wheelset - just like the "Fifties". Without tires, cassette, and skewers they weight in at around ~1700grams.
In comparison, Zipp's new 808 are a few grams lighter and roll on ceramic bearings but you can save almost 1K by going with the "Super Cobras".

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