EB13: New Tune Blackfoot Carbon Cranks, Ultralight Aero Disc Brake Road Wheels & More
Tune teased out most of their new stuff in recent months, like the wheels and crankset, but now we’ve got details and more photos. And there’s always a little surprise or two lurking in their booth (and it never hurts when the company founder is showing you around to find them!).
The Blackfoot cranks use a removable spider to run a single or double around an aluminum 30mm spindle. Weight is just 375g with their single ring, and 445g with a double, also with their rings.
The carbon panels are stitched together rather than laid into place manually, which lets them curve the sheets and hold them in place before the whole piece is wrapped around a foam core and placed in the mold. This gives them a lot of control over the layup, resulting in a very good strength to weight ratio. The arms are only about 95g each.
The spindle is alloy. The went with a removable spider design because there are “too many standards floating around”, and an integrated spider would have meant limitations on chainring compatibility. When they work on the road version, it’ll have a partially integrated carbon spider, though. The spider or direct-mount single chainrings slide on and are held in place with a lockring, which is missing from this display set.
The single chainring, called Mitochondria because that’s what produces energy, uses a taller tooth profile but skips the narrow/wide design. Available in 32/34/36 tooth counts. Weight is 32g for the 32t, all sold separately.
The new Airways aero rim was developed with help from a university with a wind tunnel. The goal was to get something that had minimal wind resistance and still be light, which meant keeping it from getting too deep. They ended up at 41mm, arriving at that number because they saw a dramatic drop off in resistance after 40mm.
It has a fatter, rounder shape because wind will have the same effect from any angle on a round object, and most of the wind is coming at the bike at a max 12° yaw angle. To handle braking, they infuse microscopic glass bubbles in the last layer of carbon to improve friction. They say a few may break over time, which actually improves braking, but they won’t wear off.
It’s 24mm wide (19mm inside), pushing the limit of what you can cram in standard road brakes. The spoke bed is drilled such that spokes are angled exactly toward their Mag 45/150 hubs.
What’s remarkable about all this is that it’s just 400g for the rim. And it’s a clincher. Weight is an astoundingly low 1,185g for the rim brake version.
The disc brake version uses basically the same rim save for an additional layer of carbon under the spoke nipples. Those weigh in at 1,260 when laced to the Princess Skyline and Prince hubs.
Magnesium spacers are half the weight of carbon. They put a ceramic-like layer on it, then paint it to avoid corrosion. They’re available in 4mm (1g), 10mm (2.6g) and 15mm (3.9g).
Not shown, there’s a new prototype Kill Hill Brake Force One collaboration machines the living daylights out of the caliper body and lever blade. They also used alloy backed pads. The master cylinder is tiny, something they can get away with because it’s a closed system. Front is just 169g, about 10g lighter than the “regular” Kill Hill edition..