Tech News: Zipp Service Course Cockpit
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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Tech News: Zipp Service Course Cockpit

by Patrick Brady at 11:54 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tech News
A vote for durability over weight

Zipp Service Course bars and stemIn response to requests from teams it sponsors, Zipp has introduced Service Course, a collection of bar, stem and seatpost. Rather than take the typical Zipp approach, which results in amazingly light products produced from carbon fiber, Service Course is meant to meet the needs of the pros at the top of the sport.

The components are made from aluminum, rather than carbon fiber.

If that surprises you, consider the nature of the request. Teams requested parts that could withstand the impact of a crash and allow the rider to remount and chase back with confidence that the bar or stem wasn’t about to fail. They need to be easy to assemble and adjust, which means parts that can be maintained without a torque wrench.

Frames and wheels have become so light that team mechanics are having to find ways to add weight back to the bike to meet the UCI’s (insert pejorative adjective here) weight limit. The bar weighs in at 285g, the stem at 133g and the seatpost at a 269g.

Zipp Service Course seatpostPricing on these is good, thanks to the fact that they are made from aluminum. Online the bar goes for as little as $75, the stem $58 and the seatpost as little as $78. Together they are less than some carbon fiber bars.

The seatpost was easy to set up. It featured a two-bolt design with 20mm of setback at the head; it’s available in two diameters (27.2mm and 31.6mm) and has a length of 350mm. With a weight limit of 300 lbs., it’s unlikely breakage will be an issue for anyone.

The bar is available in two bends, a classic and a short-and-shallow. I chose to try the short and shallow and found it to be a bit different from most of its cousins. In fact, it had 10mm more reach than comparable bars I’ve tried and the bend flattened out in the middle, making the bar seem much closer to a traditional ergo bend. If you like those bars, you’ll dig this one. It’s available in four widths: 40, 42, 44 and 46cm (outside-to-outside) and has a 31.8mm clamp diameter. And unlike most carbon bars, you can use a clip-on aero bar with this one.

If you want a cockpit of unimpeachable durability, the Zipp Service Course components are worth checking out.

Check out the full-sized images below


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