Tour de France winners rode on ultralight carbon fiber wheels

Bike manufacturer PRO developed the PRO TeXtreme wheel for the winning Tour de France 2012 team that weighs just 975g and provides the same mechanical performance as competitive materials.

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Oxeon (Boras, Sweden) reported on Aug. 6 that riders from the team that won Tour de France 2012 used the new PRO TeXtreme disc wheel during the competition. PRO TeXtreme wheels feature TeXtreme Spread Tow carbon fabrics that reduce weight and improve mechanical performance of the wheel.

Professional cycling teams asked the development team of PRO to design a wheel that is lighter and more aerodynamic, but with the same riding experience as PRO’s current wheels. With that challenge the development team started working on a new disc wheel. The result is the PRO TeXtreme wheel.

By using TeXtreme technology and a carefully selected resin system, PRO was able to keep wheel weight below 1kg/2.2 lb. The nominal weight of the PRO TeXtreme disc wheel is 975g. The PRO TeXtreme has an overall wide Aerofoil shape and a wide 24-mm rim. The woven Spread Tow structure provides a superior surface smoothness. Compared to other wheels, PRO is using a unique wheel-building method (pressurized oven) that allows the company to create a monocoque construction instead of two half shells bonded together.

TeXtreme is produced spreading carbon fiber yarns into thin unidirectional tapes that are used to weave a fabric. This renders optimized Spread Tow Tapes and Spread Tow Fabrics that enable production of composite parts that are 20 to 30 percent lighter with improved mechanical properties.