Strong Headwind Tests

Strong Headwind Upper-Wheel Fairing Tests

Strong Rider in Strong Headwinds - November 10, 2015

1. Test Summary

Accurate data taken on November 10, 2015, confirms that the use of our Upper Wheel Fairings on a typical road bike with a professional rider under strong headwind conditions yields remarkable gains in average speed exceeding 20 percent (20.7 percent was recorded). (The full report is available for download.)

Power measuring tests in severe headwinds were conducted on identical multi-speed road bikes configured with and without wheel fairings. A veteran record-holding racer was the rider. Data was recorded using an i-bike Newton power meter.

2. Implications

The results confirm that the use of our Upper Wheel Fairings can significantly increase headwind penetration speeds of a strong rider under strong headwind conditions. Gains exceeding 20 percent were recorded against a 20 mph external headwind.

"Unlike deep rim aero wheels, which generally are quite difficult to steer safely in strong winds, the faired bike was quite predictable when steered against headwinds. And the faired bike was shockingly easier to pedal against the very strong headwind. While I still felt the winds pressing hard against my body with the same intensity as with the stock un-faired bike, I was somehow able to penetrate the headwinds with surprising speed using the upper wheel fairings. The faired bike simply slices into the wind, eliminating much of the 'pushing against the wall' feeling that has been described before as being caused the drag on the upper wheel. Throughout my career, I have not experienced anything else that remotely achieves similar gains in speed against stronger headwinds. The fairings simply make the bike feel completely unique when facing a strong headwind."

—Manuel Quiros, Veteran Velodrome Three-Time Record-Holder
November 10, 2015

Rider Test

Extreme Headwind Upper-Wheel Fairing Tests

November 3, 2013

"...It is my conclusion that when riding into a headwind with the addition of the Null Winds Technology Upper Wheel Fairings, any bicycle will be noticeably faster at any speed!"

—Jason Shutz
November 15, 2013

1. Test Summary
The following plot of the best available data taken on November 3, 2013, indicates that the use of our Upper Wheel Fairings on a typical road bike with a strong rider under severe headwind conditions yields gains in average speed of at least seven percent. At times, gains in excess of 10 percent were recorded. (The full report is available for download.)

Power measuring tests in severe headwinds were conducted on identical multi-speed road bikes configured with and without wheel fairings. A road racer with testing experience was the rider. Data was recorded using an i-bike Newton power meter.

2. Rider Statement
"I am an experienced bicycle racer from southern California, specializing in 40k time-trial. Recently, I was asked by a friend to head out to the desert to help the folks at Null Winds test out their aero wheel fairings in a controlled environment. We selected an isolated level road just west of Lancaster, California on November 3, 2013.

My first reaction upon arriving on location was my uneasiness of riding with the wheel fairings in such a strong wind. I often find that even semi-shallow race wheels can be difficult to handle at times in adverse conditions. At first glance, the fairings on the bikes looked to have a much larger surface area that potentially could make them difficult to handle in the winds. Nevertheless, we first had me ride the un-faired bike for a few passes to get a gauge of the 2-mile distance I would be testing over. Once that was done, it was time to get on the faired bicycle. I was apprehensive at first, until it was time to go...

As the first run with the faired bike began, I focused on producing steady power. I wanted to make sure that my perceived effort was the same on both bikes. The wind felt the same, my power numbers were nearly identical as with the unfaired bike, and I stayed in the same upright position for the duration, but.... I could see on the screen of the i-bike Newton that I was moving at several miles an hour faster than on the stock bike. At around 350-400 watts, I was seeing gains of nearly three miles an hour. This may not sound like much, but most time trials are won by marginally or even fractionally small differences in time.

This definitely excited me on my first ride. I returned on the turn around from the first effort with a look of shock and surprise on my face shouting, "they work, they really work! Give me the other bike. I want to make sure." Sure enough, I hopped right onto the un-faired bike, kept my average power the same as the previous run on the faired bike, and my average speed was miles an hour slower. To make sure this was accurate, I continued to go back and forth between the two bikes in order to verify in-fact that when using the Null Winds fairing's at the same average power, in the same winds, and in the same riding position, I was FASTER!

It is my conclusion that when riding into a headwind with the addition of the Null Winds Technology Upper Wheel Fairings, any bicycle will be noticeably faster at any speed!"

Jason Shutz
November 15, 2013

3. Implications
The results confirm that the use of our Upper Wheel Fairings can significantly increase headwind penetration speeds of a strong rider under severe headwinds. Gains exceeding seven percent are likely, with the potential gains in excess of 10 percent.

Further testing should indicate whether weaker riders can expect similar percentage gains, under similar headwind conditions. It remains to be determined whether weaker riders can expect similar percentage gains, or similar gains in overall magnitude, since weaker riders will only achieve significantly slower overall bicycle speeds.

Rider Test Case Study - Extreme Wind Plot Rider Test

Novice Rider

February 9, 2014

1. Test Summary
The best available data taken on February 9, 2014, indicates that the use of our Upper Wheel Fairings on a typical road bike with a novice rider under strong headwind conditions yields gains in average speed exceeding 20 percent (22.2 percent was recorded). (The full report is available for download.)

Power measuring tests in severe headwinds were conducted on identical multi-speed road bikes configured with and without wheel fairings. A novice cyclist was the rider. Data was recorded using an i-bike Newton power meter.

2. Implications
The results confirm that the use of our Upper Wheel Fairings can dramatically increase headwind penetration speeds of a novice rider under strong headwind conditions. Gains exceeding 20 percent are possible.

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