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Bike Check: How Lennard Zinn Does Vegas

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Yesterday during a press event at Interbike, I had the opportunity to meet a nice guy named Lennard. Turns out, not only was he lucky enough to bring a bike to Vegas, but he built it himself. Head past for more pictures.

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_4

#SlamThatStem

Lennard was fairly busy so I didn’t have the opportunity to ask him any specific details.

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_11

Custom touches abounded on his bike.

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_6

Many of the components where sourced from companies with US based manufacturing.

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_10

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_1

Is there a #WeldPornWednesday hashtag on Instagram?

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_9

Rad “‘Murican made” decals.

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_7

At 6’6″, Zinn is taller than your average cyclist, and he has helped pioneer components built specifically for the NBA sized rider. Probably the most well known example of this is his custom cranks, which are available in ultra short and long sizes. He has a very interesting break down of the science on his website, which you can check out here.

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_8

A few years ago Nick reviewed the Praxis Works Chainrings. He claimed they offered up Dura Ace level performance… and it turns out Lennard is also a fan.

 

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_3

Two couplers on the top tube, an additional two on the downtube, and another on the stem, allow this gigantic bike to pack down in 20 minutes into an airplane regulation sized suitcase.

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_2

Sharp eyed readers will notice the flat tire Lennard picked up on his ride to the press event.

Leonard Zinn 2014 Travel Bike_5

Special thanks to Lennard Zinn for letting me snap a few photos of his bike. You can see more of his custom fabrication and component work on his website here.

ZinnCycles.com

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Tyler
Tyler
8 years ago

Lennard Zinn, you must mean.

ifbikes
ifbikes
8 years ago

, Bikerumor at its best!

Still a big fan, mostly because I can’t spell for shit either.

zahoor ahmed
zahoor ahmed
8 years ago

i need prices and pics of models

craigsj
craigsj
8 years ago

“He has a very interesting break down of the science on his website…”

There’s no science to be found there. It’s nothing but propaganda.

What I especially like is the “link” to a study by “Dr. Martin” (who is an expert) that turns out to be a blog post by a speculator of false information just as Zinn himself is. The real Dr. Martin would say testing shows proportional cranks to be of little value. Nothing like a name drop to lend credibility to a lie.

pfs
pfs
8 years ago

The best part about this bike, and the man himself, is that he is using regular components that work. Not the flashiest new wonder bits. And I bet he could still drop most people on his bike.

JBikes
JBikes
8 years ago

@craigsj,

Testing would show almost all bike related “improvements” to be a little value. If your buying a crank, it makes sense to get one that works for you (feel/power). Given my experience with Zinn’s technical articles, I am sure he would agree that one “needing” a 185mm crank is probably just fine if they are comfortable on their current 175mm crank and the money to change is not worth it.

As for Martin – I think he agrees
“Even though maximum cycling power was significantly affected by crank length, use of the standard 170-mm length cranks should not substantially compromise maximum power in most adults”

notice the word “significant” and “not substantially” – that is because most adult cyclists are not power limited biomechanically. They are power limited due to lack of fitness and probably couldn’t achieve all their bodies are technically capable of due to obligations like jobs, family, etc. Chasing a couple % is not “worth it”, and yet people buy $5k bikes that are likely no faster for them than a bike 1/2 the price.

Mamil1
Mamil1
8 years ago

In terms of crank length, it would make sense to think that varying it with leg/femur length would be ideal.

Why aren’t we all on 135 mm cranks? They are lighter and easier to package…

Sam
Sam
8 years ago

@Jbikes, well said.

If you’re tall like I am, one’s perspective tends to be different. But, if you’re average in height, then just put some short kids cranks on your bike and go ride your favorite 3000′ steep climb. Because you’ll quickly change your tune. And, while Dr Martin’s published researched is not bad, it is very limited in scope, he just looked at maximal performance using a handful of subjects. No one, to the best of my knowledge, has studied the effect of crank length on submaximal extended exercise performance with a decent-sized pool of subjects. And a few percent? That is HUGE if you’re TTing or racing for the podium.

jooo
jooo
8 years ago

“he built it himself.” Doubt it.

The frame is likely to be from Eriksen and the cranks from High Sierra Cycle.

Matt
Matt
8 years ago

@craigsj
Sometimes things on bikes aren’t solely about power, it can also be about comfort. For example you could probably prove that a cyclist can produce the same max power on just about any saddle. But that doesn’t mean it’s comfortable to sit on just any saddle. And some manufacturers (like Specialized) realize that a saddle is a component that should be designed around the size of a person.

A similar story can be found in cranksets. I am Zinn’s height and the switch to longer 200mm cranks has really increased my long-term comfort on rides to the point that I’ll probably never switch to something smaller. Being on smaller cranks is just annoying, it’s like going up stairs one step at a time. Just let me take 2 steps at a time and I’m way happier. The main reason you don’t see larger (or smaller) cranks on stock bikes from major manufacturers is due to the tooling and distribution issues of having to make a different size crankset for every size of frame. But just because it’s not commonly done doesn’t mean it wouldn’t help.

ceebee
ceebee
8 years ago

Don’t like the bike except that it does not look like all others.

Ben Schwartz
Ben Schwartz
8 years ago

Once again, the award for “Humorlessness in a Website Comments Section” goes to Bike Rumor. To the people who run this site, I apologize on behalf of this mirthless crowd. Why and how you guys ever attracted a group of such self-serious people, I will never understand. WE’RE TALKING ABOUT BIKES!!! Give the pompous blowhard routine a rest for once. Sheesh…

Psi Squared
Psi Squared
8 years ago

@jooo: Why don’t you let us know where you got your info?

Gary
Gary
8 years ago

A big “Amen” to Ben Schwartz.

edubfromktown
edubfromktown
8 years ago

Awesome pics!

Hmmmmmm, wonder why two S&S couplers would be enough to stuff it in a travel case…

Lennard should put a kickstand on there to make all the peeps he blows past feel even worse 😉

scentofreason
scentofreason
8 years ago

Crank arm length does make a noticeable difference. My LBS has a computer and power meter hooked up to a size cycle. They set the size cycle up to match my bike exactly. I then tested 3 crank lengths, 175, 177.5, an 180. For the same power output, the 177.5 reduced my heart rate 10% over the 175. That’s a big deal in my book. The 180s were actually not as efficient as the 177.5, but I’ve switched to them because no one makes he 177.5 anymore (for both road and mountain). Anecdotal evidence, last season Raleigh had their demo truck at one of the races I was doing. So I left my 30lb dually in the car and rented a 23lb hardtail. I expected to fly up the 6 mile gravel road climb portion of the course. I didn’t. The 175 cranks on the Raleigh left me spinning like a grizzly bear riding a kids bike. FYI, I have a 38″ inseam.

Rico
Rico
8 years ago

I thought that the ideal crank length was more dependent on the upper/lower leg length ratio, rather than overall leg length. So two guys with 38″ inseams might need different length cranks depending on the ratio of those levers. Either way, I don’t think it’s as simple as “longer is better” or vice versa. Steve Hogg is the man when it comes to this stuff. Paid access to his archive is worth it if you like to tinker with fit and position changes. I do a lot of that in the winter on the trainer, using the ipad to film myself. I have a 37″ inseam and have been able to get the best result with a 170mm crank. It allows me to close off the hip angle more, spin higher rpm, stay aero and powerful in a low position. Of course, a 180mm is great for sprints/crits – sit in a pack for 20 laps and sprint the last 200m. I dunno, imo you sort of need different setups for different events.

BigMike
BigMike
8 years ago

I’m 6’7″ and just wanted to give a shout out to Lennard if he’s reading. To me it’s great that he’s organized some products, written about comfort and technical issues, and designed some off-the-shelf bikes (KHS flight 747) for big riders. This is to say nothing of his custom stuff for NBA wallets. For me at least, building an affordable and comfortable bike, and actually riding, was less fun before LZ.

Rico
Rico
8 years ago

Big Mike I hear ya. That bike he made for Bill Walton is crazy! I ride small man bikes because I am all legs and flexible, but I can see how tall guys, especially long torso tall guys, really need this.

Now if only someone made a 30″ road wheel these larger bikes could be perfect. And possibly scary fast with some NBA legs on it!

Sam
Sam
8 years ago

Are those quick couplers for the shift cables?

scentofreason
scentofreason
8 years ago

Rico, I guess I should have emphasized the fact that I personally tested the 3 different cranks lengths and, for me, the longer cranks worked better. Said another way, there is no theory here, actual quantifiable results for me. I highly recommend testing crank length to everyone. You just need a size cycle (so you can set it up to match your bike), a power meter, and a heart rate monitor. 30 minute warm up. Then do a 10 minute pushe at 80%ish effort for each crank length. Note your heartrate for each effort, the lowest hearrate will be the most efficient length. Or you can flip it and pick a 90% effort heart rate for 3 minutes and see which crank generates the most power (although this is harder to do, thus less accurate). Wasn’t trying to set anything in stone, just trying to debunk the ‘175 works for everyone/crank length has not effect’ crowd.

jeff
jeff
8 years ago

Leonard is one of the nicest, approachable people in the bike industry, like his tech articles in Velo

Thompson
Thompson
8 years ago

Happy customer here. My 6’8″ husband just got his second Zinn. He LOVES it! the longer cranks and accomodating geometry delivered a noticeable improvement in power delivery for him. And agreed L. Z. is spectacularly nice.

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