Two years ago in a bid to expand their low-friction, watt-saving gains beyond bearings, CeramicSpeed debuted their first UFO chains after acquiring the Ultra Fast Optimization waxing process developed by independent testing lab Friction Facts. Since then, they’ve taken their incremental gains a step further, wholly took over the work of Friction Facts, created a lube development lab, and now are back launching a revamped formula that improves their UFO Racing Chains in every way.

The new CeramicSpeed UFO Racing Chains claim a 15% reduction in friction over the already industry-leading ‘world’s fastest‘ last generation, and they are now said to last almost twice as long at that improved performance. Not only does that make their gains even more substantial, but effectively cuts the cost to maintain that top level of performance…

We’ve mentioned before that it was a bit of a shame that the industry lost the independence of Jason Smith of Friction Facts with the CeramicSpeed buyout, but it looks like increasing the R&D funding has made for even more improvements to the clean-wax-treat method he developed to outperform all other stock chains and lubrication methods.  CeramicSpeed brought the UFO tech from the US to their Danish HQ and has been tweaking how they start with chains from the big manufacturers, then optimize each one by hand through a multi-step process with a unique wax and special additives to eke out lower friction and improved performance.

1.CeramicSpeed Squirt Lube UFO

The new formula for the optimized chains bumps up the durability to ensure smooth rolling without retreatment for 600 km (370mi) of optimal performance. Previous UFO versions had guaranteed optimal gains for around 320 km, after which power savings slowly dropped off as the lubricant of the chain degraded. (Just to be clear… actual chain life of these UFO chains remains the same as the original untreated KMC or Shimano chains, so depending on conditions somewhere north of a couple thousand kms. This 600km stated life is exclusively for the race-only low friction treatment, after which they will need regular lubrication for the remainder of their lifespan.)

After several months of road & lab testing though, the new wax-based formula is said to last twice as long, before any significant efficiency losses were detected, and in some cases potentially even longer. That new durability starts to bring the UFO chains more into the reach of serious amateur athletes. While not many people could justify a chain that might only last for two races, this newest version could be swapped in by a cyclist looking to improve their performance in 4, 5, or more key events that they target each year. It still is a fair weather treatment, CeramicSpeed says the UFO chains last longest when riding and racing in dry and clean weather conditions.

The new CeramicSpeed UFO Racing Chains will be offered in two different options, based on the what had been show to provided the smoothest running base to start with, and the added benefit that costs remain the same. First optimized KMC SL chains will be made in both 125€ 10 speed and 129€ 11 speed variants to work with the vast majority of modern racing drivetrains from SRAM, Campagnolo, and Shimano. Then a new 135€ optimized Dura-Ace HG901 11 speed chain will be made available, specifically for new Shimano bikes. The chains will still ship with a bottle of the Squirt lube, that can be used to maximize performance after the 600km threshold, and reusable quick links and Shimano connecting pins are also available.

CeramicSpeed.com

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TheKaiser
5 years ago

I wonder what they did to the mix to nearly double the lifespan.

i
i
5 years ago
Reply to  TheKaiser

That’s easy: they bought the only independent voice that could have called them out. Now they can claim whatever they want; it’s not like you’re going to notice the 1/10th watt difference between their chains and the ones that cost 1/4 as much.

Marin
Marin
5 years ago

More like 2x as long as the chain with shortest lifespan on the market and not really any longer life than any other decent quality chain such as SRAM X1 that costs around 20€.

Belisarius SPQR
Belisarius SPQR
4 years ago
Reply to  Cory Benson

Campy breaks in between 700 and 1,000 kms. each time I put one I rush those few rides to get into Campy nirvana. of course the stuff above makes no sense, as an unbroken chain is slower, by far, than a broken in one. So if they can take 1,000 km Campy and coat them, let us revisit that subject.

ol shel
ol shel
5 years ago

Coming soon: single-use frames.

ginsu
ginsu
5 years ago
Reply to  ol shel

Spendin’s better than mendin’.

JBikes
JBikes
5 years ago
Reply to  ol shel

I believe the chain itself last much longer than the initial special lube. Once the initial treatment wears off, I’m pretty sure you can lube and use as normal.

Ol Shel
Ol Shel
5 years ago
Reply to  JBikes

You mean like the plebes do?!

I’d rather walk.

Joe Pirelli
5 years ago

This is clearly not targeted at all riders, I’m glad to see this happening, it will help the entire industry improve and eventually trickle down to lower price points.

jasonmiles31
5 years ago

It is funny how the top end chain offering from one mfg looks like it was corroded in battery acid and another is blinged out with the Trump treatment.

Allan
Allan
5 years ago
Reply to  jasonmiles31

Haha!

Alex
Alex
5 years ago

Haha, I wonder if the drag caused by all the gunk on the train will cancel out the gains from reduced friction!

Mike Jones
Mike Jones
5 years ago

The people that are buying this are the same ones getting dropped at your Tuesday Night World Championships. just trying to buy speed

JBikes
JBikes
5 years ago
Reply to  Mike Jones

Hey, as long as they aren’t using my money I could care less what someone buys that gives them some enjoyment.

Wendigo
Wendigo
5 years ago
Reply to  JBikes

Dang right! People hate too much. Let people spend money on things that make them happy. You mind your business I mind mine.

Mat Shears
Mat Shears
5 years ago

Chains are about 99% efficient right? So 15% of that remaining 1% is an improvement of 0.15%?

Allan
Allan
5 years ago

“The chains will still ship with a bottle of Squirt Lube”.

Or, I can buy a regular chain, save over $100, and use Squirt on that. Squirt is good stuff, I can’t see any reason to spend this kind of money for a chain whose main benefit is that the pre-applied lube lasts longer…

Rustilicus
Rustilicus
5 years ago

P.T. Barnum was right.

Altimis
5 years ago

(deleted)

What to improve here? all chain nowadays rolling almost the same efficient Top end and Low end with proper lubed will be within like 1% margin

Sure, you are Pros, this is for Pros stuffs that millisecond matter, I would not deny that but I says its marketing hype BS because using words “Improved 15% friction efficient”

Nice try! I rather off with cheap chain with decent wet lube and be on the way

ElPablo
ElPablo
5 years ago
Reply to  Altimis

Just for fun, it looks like much more than a 1% delta across different lubes available. And you would be better off using a dry lube if you are someone who is interested in efficiency; https://www.scribd.com/document/262044061/Velo-Friction-Facts-Chain-Lube-Efficiency-Tests

ChrisC
ChrisC
5 years ago
Reply to  ElPablo

Yep, I invested about $15 in a small crockpot, $2 in a spool of wire for dipping, and a whopping $1 for about 2lbs of regular old paraffin wax, giving me the lowest friction, longest lasting lube tested by VeloLab. I also bought an extra chain for the rotation, and I’ve STILL spent less than the cost of one of these!

Given that I’m only re-waxing at about 400 miles (~645km) I have to wonder if CeramicSpeed’s “breakthrough” is to send out paraffin waxed chains to willing suckers.

blah blah blah
blah blah blah
5 years ago

these guys should get into high end audio power leads!

lop
lop
5 years ago
Reply to  blah blah blah

Oxygen-free chains.

MB
MB
5 years ago

#roadbikedubai

tako
tako
5 years ago

environmentally that’s disaster

Timothy Dickinson
Timothy Dickinson
3 years ago

With the soil type where i live using wet chain lube i need to clean my drivetrain every 40-60 miles sometimes up to 100 miles. It would be nice to be able to apply a lube to my chain that lasts longer. i wouldn’t buy their chains but i’d consider the ufo drip ceramic wax lube