Aero gains are the ultimate in getting more speed without cranking out more power. If you’ve already bought into the ‘Aero is everything’ mindset, perhaps it is time to look to Null Winds’ Aerodefender upper wheel fairings. Claiming to offer more speed in a headwind vs. aero carbon wheels (and more stability), the pointy carbon fiber wheel fairings have proven themselves in downhill coasting tests. And now you can pre-order a set over at Indiegogo…
Null Winds Aerodefender carbon aero partial wheel fairings
OK, hold your judgement for just a minute, and let’s take a look at Null Winds’ claims and what they say is the science behind their Aerodefender.
The basic concept is that the faster, forward spinning upper portion of a bike’s wheel & tire generates the most drag slowing the bike down. By encasing that section of the spinning wheel inside the Aerodefender partial upper wheel fairing, drag is reduced in primarily headwind conditions. And you go faster.
To test out (and prove) their system, Null Winds paired two identical aero tri bikes in a roll down test into a moderate headwind, then repeated it switching riders. The result was that the Aerodefender-equipped bike was always faster, on average 7 seconds faster per kilometer!
And now you can pre-order a set for your road or triathlon bike for a limited time through their Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign.
Aerodefender partial upper wheel fairings Tech Details
The Aerodefender partial upper wheel fairing claim to reduce the effective wind speed that the spinning wheel is exposed to, thus reducing drag and making you faster. To do that the hand crafted carbon fairings use custom hidden internal mounting brackets that attach to you bike’s fork legs and chainstays with a mix of velcro, zip ties, and alloy hardware.
The Aerodefender is available in versions for either rim brake or disc brake equipped bikes. The rim brake versions include cutouts for your brake calipers and are designed to use 23-28mm tires. The disc brake versions include more internal clearance up to 38mm tires, and can also be custom trimmed for rim brake bikes sporting larger tires.
A two-piece, front & rear pair of carbon upper wheel fairings weighs approximately 700g and is available to Indiegogo supporters starting at $500 (or ~$310 for one wheel). A cheaper fiberglass version is also available starting at $360 and weighs approximately 1000g for the set.
For now the Aerodefenders are made in the US. Null Wind has also partnered with popular West Coast triathlon shop Triathlon Lab who will stock the carbon Aerodefenders starting in early October, and will offer install services.
The Indiegogo is a flexible crowdfunding campaign and runs for one month for pre-orders. Early backers will already get their wheel fairings as early as Oct 2018, with all backers of the campaign expected to have orders fulfilled by the end of Nov 2018.