SRAM’s data collection division Quarq is back with another tiny bit of electronic technology to improve your ride. Much like their ShockWiz does for suspension, the new TyreWiz provides live tire pressure measurement, aiming to “reduce tire wear, improve compliance, and boost speed”.

Quarq TyreWiz realtime tire pressure monitor

At first glance these little things might seem absurd, but without a doubt optimizing tire pressure is one of the simplest and most effective ways to improve your bike’s performance – no matter if we’re talking about a road, gravel, cyclocross, or mountain bike. And the vast majority of riders still rely on the imprecision of hard to read gauges on pumps that often show vastly more pressure range than necessary. Quarq mentions a reduction of tire wear, and that and safety are certainly why cars have adopted real-time tire pressure monitoring, but we’re more looking for performance…

A few psi either way can mean the difference in dialing in grip for CX, XC or DH. Five psi too much in gravel tires can mean finishing a long day with a sore back & arms, and the same pressure drop on the road could measurably lower rolling resistance. There’s so much potential to be mined here, once you can accurately (and more importantly consistently) evaluate the best individual tire pressures for YOUR tires and YOUR riding.

So what most interests us (me!) here is measurement precision.

Tech details

I’ve been excited to see more digital pressure gauge options from companies like KappiusPrestaCycle, Lezyne and Silca. But all of those are pump side solutions that mean you have to overcome the valve (and either add or release air) to check pressure. The TyreWiz actually fits inline between the tire/tube and the valve, attached to the pressure chamber of the tire. Hutchinson debuted a similar system concept, INSIDE the rim cavity, last fall at Eurobike, but we haven’t heard any more about it since.

The device work by threading directly into the Presta valve stem of any removable core tube or tubeless valve. Quarq says it has been designed specifically to be compatible with tubeless sealant. (We’re curious to see how that works, since we’ve had plenty of tubeless  valves themselves that have been clogged overtime by drying sealant.)

TyreWizzes claim +/- 2% accuracy across a wide pressure range suitable for all types of cycling, and report pressure at 0.1psi resolution for consistent data tracking. They are both waterproof (IPX7-rated) & claimed durable, and weigh just 10g per wheel.

Paired with smartphone App & cycling computers

EB17: Hutchinson Conec'Tires concept offers remote tire pressure monitoring for MTB
That’s Hutchinson’s Conec’Tires concept app, delivering the same idea last fall.

TyreWiz communicates via BLE & ANT+ to display pressure on compatible cycling computers and smartphones. It uses NFC to make pairing fast & virtually automatic with compatible iOS & Android devices.

Once you thread the TyreWizzes into your valves they send tire pressure readings every 1 second to the paired devices. Presumably a simple motion activated switch turns them on, and the standard CR1632 coin cell battery delivers 300 hours of riding life.

Key to this whole setup really benefitting riders is the devices’ smartphone app, which Quarq says will provide both personalized pressure recommendations based on your riding style and collected data, as well as sending low pressure alerts. We’ve seen resistance in the industry (mostly from tire makers) to recommending the lower tire pressures that will actually provide the best comfort & grip conditions, often out of fear of frustrated customers getting flats. But for example, I weigh 80kg/ and every bike I ride from road to enduro ends up running less tire pressure than the recommended range printed on the sidewall.

Pricing & Availability

The TyreWiz will sell in a two sensor pair (of course so you can monitor both wheels) for $200/260€. They are available for pre-order now direct from Quarq, and are slated for June 1, 2018 availability in the US and worldwide by the end of June.

Now we just need to wait and see if Zipp (or maybe Silca?) will develop an aero cowl for it (or even design a wheelset to integrate airflow off the TyreWiz into their aerodynamics.) Because it hurts my brain to see it attached to that Zipp 454 NSW wheel at the top of the page!

Quarq.com

13 COMMENTS

  1. This is pretty neat, actually. Similar to what some places are doing with a shockwiz you could rent one of these for a while to dial in setup, then keep notes of what the pressure it said was best was on your pump or gauge. Rent again when something in the setup changes, new wheels, tire etc.

    Seriously cool.

    • Is it that hard to trial pressures on the trail? I get the validity of Shock Wiz but even as a roadie who doesn’t ride much off road (and more a TT rider to boot) even I can figure out within a very short period of time what pressure to run.

  2. I invented this idea for my fat bike but lacked the $ to get it started . But seriously how important is fat bike pressure in relation to trail and snow conditions. Make an app for my Garmin/Wahoo so that I can see real time what I’m at!!!

    • Read the article “TyreWiz communicates via BLE & ANT+ to display pressure on compatible cycling computers and smartphones.”

    • Given that a snow/fat tire is run at a pressure in the single digits, and the temperature is a big influence on it, I can’t think of a bicycle tire that’s more sensitive to pressure setting.

  3. Interesting. I agree with the comment about how it might affect any aero advantage of mainly road wheels, but I’d be more concerned about how it will affect the balance of the wheel. There is no mention of the pair being sold with a counter weight for this purpose.

  4. I think there are unintentional side benefits for this type of measurement. Not clear if/how this actual device would deliver, but let’s say you have a slow leak in a race. Would you prefer to know that your tire pressure is trending down or when your tire rolls off the bead? That could make the difference between a short stop for a CO2 hit vs. unseating your tubeless entirely.

    Also, for an Ironman distance event, where do you set your tire pressure? Do you start it a bit low knowing that the tires will warm up over the 4+ hours of racing? Do you even know how your tire pressure varies with riding in those conditions?

    Also, there are different objectives for road and MTB (and CX.) For road, the performance benefit is in optimizing tire pressure to minimizing rolling resistance where MTB is all about balancing traction and rolling resistance. I think road tire rolling resistance can vary by 10s of watts from the optimum based on rider feel. For an elite TT racer on a long course, this can add up to serious time. Heck, people are paying this much for a speed chain for single digit power gains. I think something like this actually makes more sense as a permanent tool rather than a once-and-done setup tool.

    • Are increases in tire pressure due to temp that significant? Surely the permeability of latex/Butyl would offset the minute increase in pressure due to rolling even more so in the four hour scenario presented. This seems like a solution looking for a problem.

      • Pressure might not increase that much due to rolling resistance, but solar thermal loading is a real thing. Go to a triathlon where they stage the bikes the night before and see how many blown tires there are when the temperature hits 100°. The black tires are much hotter than that as they bake in the sun.

  5. can’t do the same thing with my handheld electronic gauge that cost me $30? Ride, stop, measure, add/subtract, ride (repeat). Add a way to add or lower psi on the fly and I’d be excited.

  6. Imagine the type of person that discusses his tire pressure optimization plans with you.

    And +/- 2%, but 0.1 psi resolution…
    @ 90 psi target: +/- 1.8 psi (total 3.6 psi).
    @ 25 psi target: +/- 0.5 (total 1 psi)

What do you think?

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