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Bracciano C50T Carbon Tubular Tested and Ready to Go!

Probably the most exciting new wheelset we revealed at the latest Taipei Cycle Show was the stunningly light Bracciano C50T. Our factory team worked into the wee hours to get the first pre-production sample ready just in the nick of time and everyone was surprised when it actually came in at 40g LESS than our anticipated weight - a scant 1180 grams.

Among the surprised viewers were a couple of hardcore riders from the Benelux area, who actually packed 3 digital scales between them. Initially skeptical about the weight of the wheel, they checked first the front, then the rear and were stunned when their scales actually measured the wheelset at around 1150 grams - 30 grams lighter than what we found on our calibrated digital scale at the office.

Happy that our weight was accurate, they immediately voiced the next logical doubt - performance. How stiff is it? Can it handle a real racing situation? With a real rider... not a race jockey...?

So our first loan of the wheelset was to a local rider and University professor, Nathan Miller. As can be seen in the pictures of our clothing, over 6 feet tall and at 85kg, and a sprint-heavy type rider, he's very well equipped to put the wheel through its paces to check out real world performance.

His comments:

The rides:
The first ride was only 40km hilly afternoon ride. I climbed around 1000
meters and did a bit of TT at 40km/hr for a couple kilometers on rough road
conditions. The wheels were extremely responsive. I only used 140psi.

The second ride – a Saturday morning with a couple guys I often ride with –
86km, more hills, 1500 meters of climbing. Awesome descent down Yangjin Rd
in Taipei – I hit 72km/hr – I am not the best downhill rider, however I felt really confident with these wheels and was impressed with the brake pads. In dry conditions they grab and stop the bike quickly. However in wet conditions they took a bit longer to stop the bike – this is the case with any carbon wheel/brake pad combo, from my experience. Used around 160psi and felt like I was riding on rails. I am around 85kg. I don’t have a power meter. If anything I am more of a sprinter than a climber.

The third, fourth and fifth rides – I covered around 150km and climbed over
2500 meters.  The bike had sat in my apartment for 4 days. The back tire had
lost 70% of its pressure – I know this is common with tubular tires, however the front was still holding around 130psi. The rides were great – I did get caught in the rain – so if you wanted someone to test the brake pads in wet conditions – you got it! They worked fine – took a bit of getting used to however felt confident even a fast speeds.

The Verdict:
One awesome set of wheels. I would be interested in purchasing them. I don’t
have any negative feedback.
 -Nathan Miller (06-28-2011)
  Our second loan of the wheels was to Sheng-Jie, Fu, a local bodybuilder who speaks no English. He received the wheels just in time to set them up for a race and took first place!

And this was no short distance sprint. It was a 24 hour race around the island of Taiwan. Sheng-Jie covered 578.2km, setting a record for the race in Taiwan as well as for 24 hour races as a standard.

See some highlights from the race here.