Questions tagged [aerodynamics]

Questions relating to a bicycle's ability to efficient move through the air.

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28 votes
6 answers

Does drafting cause resistance to the lead rider?

I know that when riding close to another cyclist, I expend less energy to go the same speed. But does the Conservation of Energy "law" mean that the lead cyclist is going to expend more energy to ...
  • 383
2 votes
2 answers

How much resistance comes from each part of a bicycle? [closed]

How does one decide which part of a bicycle is the best candidate to upgrade or tune if the goal is higher speed for the same energy? For example, should one upgrade wheels, or tyres, or change to ...
  • 344
13 votes
5 answers

Are aerodynamic rims worth additional weight?

I was under the impression that reducing the weight of your wheels is important. However, I'm noticing that many of the extremely high-end aerodynamic rims are actually heavier than cheaper rims by ...
  • 3,536
12 votes
2 answers

Aero Bars vs The Drops

On my road bike I am debating installing aero bars. Will I notice a significant measurable improvement in speed using aero bars vs being in the drops? I am looking for specific numbers here with ...
  • 856
6 votes
1 answer

What's more aerodynamic on flat bars: backpack or pannier?

I'm surprised this hasn't been asked before, but as a general rule, is a single rear pannier or a backpack (of similar sizes) more aerodynamic on a hybrid or MTB? Even on flat bars drag is much more ...
  • 48k
19 votes
3 answers

What are the most significant factors affecting downhill cruising speed?

When I'm riding with my friend, I notice that he rolls down hills significantly faster than me. We can be riding next to each other, both in a similar aerodynamic position, but if we both coast he ...
  • 8,946
7 votes
3 answers

At what speed does Aerodynamics of a bike come into play?

Is a more aero bike more efficient than less aero bike at 10mph? At what speed does Aerodynamics affect your speed significantly. update: "The question is dealing with the minimum speed that a ...
  • 1,270
13 votes
4 answers

What would cause variable air resistance on a day with no wind?

I commute to work regularly. I find that on some days when there's no perceivable wind, I feel like there's almost no air resistance at all and it's so easy to ride at speed. It's also relatively ...
  • 8,946
6 votes
3 answers

What is the drag / power lost to a safety flag?

I have a recumbent bike that has a safety flag on the top of a thin pole, so it flutters around higher than and after my head. How much power am I losing to this flag that could be used to power my ...
  • 103k
6 votes
5 answers

Riding into a headwind faster than my top speed - how is it possible?

Recently we've had some pretty strong winds here -- today the weather forecast said 20mph gusting to 30mph, but a few weeks ago the gusts were supposedly over 40mph. The forecast direction was within ...
  • 48k
5 votes
2 answers

CdA of a bike without rider

This question at got me calculating the acceleration of a bike strapped to the outside of a plane if the straps broke. As you do. I couldn't find a figure for CdA of a bike without rider ...
  • 48k