The Review Smiths
CeramicSpeed OSPW Alloy SRAM Red/Force AXS Alternative Black CeramicSpeed OSPW Alloy SRAM Red/Force AXS Alternative Black
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CeramicSpeed OSPW Alloy SRAM Red/Force AXS Alternative Black 5

The cycling industry is full of all sorts of products that claim to make you faster. Some focus on reducing your aero drag, others reducing the weight of the bike and some attempt to efficiently transfer the watts from your legs to the road. Many can indeed make you faster, while others are there to capitalise on the market, today we are looking at Ceramicspeed’s OSPW Alloy SRAM which comes with a four year warranty.

All CeramicSpeed products are handmade in Denmark where quality is their priority using the finest materials and superior components. Whether you are a professional athlete or an ambitious amateur, all CeramicSpeed products are made to be exactly the same.

Drivetrain efficiency is an interesting and often overlooked opportunity for going faster. Getting technical a new Shimano Ultegra groupset is said to cost approximately 20W when pedalled at 250W (90rpm)* — in other words, your rear tyre receives 92% of what you put into the pedals. And scarily, that number only gets worse as your power output increases.

Fast chain lube and a clean chain can make a measurable difference here, while other upgrades, such as different bearing seals and lubricant can have a more marginal impact, too. 100% efficiency is impossible, but narrowing the gap is not.

The carbon fibre derailleur cage and ceramic bearing-equipped aluminium pulley wheels, CeramicSpeed’s OSPW (OverSized Pulley Wheel) system is immediately one of the most polarising speed pursuit upgrades. Many assume it’s the well-marketed ceramic pulley wheel bearings (fitted with light contact seals and fast lubricant) that provide the claimed 2-4W savings, and while they play a role, the real benefits are in the oversized pulley wheels.

CeramicSpeed claims the OSPW can save you between 2-4W over a stock Shimano Dura-Ace derailleur cage system (at 250W, 90rpm), and that figure progressively improves the worse your chain maintenance and selection of chain lubricant is (or as it wears off and gets contaminated toward the end of a race). In reality, with an optimised or even well-maintained chain in use, that figure is likely closer to just 1-2W – but still, watts are watts.
Just as we know using larger cogs and chainrings are more efficient as a result of reduced chain link articulation, the same applies to derailleur pulley wheels. With regular 11-tooth pulley wheels, each link of a chain must articulate about 33 degrees as it enters and exits each pulley wheel. But with a 19-tooth pulley wheel (the largest available in any OSPW), each chain link only needs to articulate 19 degrees.

The Oversized Pulley Wheel System for SRAM Red and Force AXS features a 15-tooth upper and 19-tooth lower pulley wheel setting, for maximum efficiency. The hand built OSPW System has two spring tension settings, that allows customised setup based on riding conditions compatible with the 2020 11 speed SRAM Red eTap derailleur featuring a clutch. RRP €499

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