As a result of having worked closely with the riders and mechanics at the Specialized Racing mountain bike team, a new product has seen the light at the Danish high-end bearing manufacturer – CeramicSpeed. New pulley wheels specifically made to fit the SRAM Eagle 12-speed MTB groupset, now go under the name CeramicSpeed Eagle 14.
The number 14 refers to a 14/14-tooth design in the pulleys. Part of the developing process has been to have Specialized Racing test two different versions of the Eagle Pulley Wheels – a standard 12/14-tooth and an experimenting 14/14-tooth. After thorough testing, the feedback from every rider and mechanic having worked with the pulleys was reported to unequivocally positive. According to CeramicSpeed, ‘the 14/14-tooth design was categorized as state-of-the-art in shifting performance and low chain friction’.
“As already proven by the OSPW system on the road, larger diameter pulley wheels reduce friction by limiting the amount of rotation experienced by each chain link as it passes.” explained Brad Copeland, mechanic at Specialized Racing.
He continued, “Combined with the precision machining and incredibly high quality bearings inside, the new 14/14-tooth Eagle pulleys are the final piece of drivetrain perfection to get the absolute most out of our mountain bike drivetrains. In addition, the machined alloy pulleys are stiffer and therefore enhance shifting feel and give a more precise and instant engagement than we have experienced with stock pulleys before.”
Even before the Eagle pulleys had ‘left the nest’ and hit the market, they had won their first World Cup. As part of the testing procedure, Danish MTB prodigy Simon Andreassen of Specialized Racing rode them at the 2017 UCI MTB World Cup in Andorra, where he took his first ever win in the U23 category of this series.
“I really love the new 14-tooth pulleys, the smooth rotation and fast gear change is a game changer,” Andreassen said. “I’ve tried them for the first time in the World Cup in Andorra, and that worked out pretty good!”
CeramicSpeed’s R&D department came up with the same conclusions as Specialized Racing’s mechanics and riders after conducting several in-house tests. R&D Manager, Carsten Ebbesen, explained the difference between 12/14-tooth and 14/14-tooth in terms of higher watt savings. “Our measurements show, that the watt saving when using 14/14-tooth compared to 12/14-tooth is 20% higher.
“Furthermore, the improved shifting performance is a combination of a narrow-wide upper pulley wheel and a stiff aluminium design combined with the unique ceramic bearing with very little play.”
The CeramicSpeed Eagle 14 Pulley Wheels will be available in both titanium and aluminium. The aluminium pulleys will come in two colours; black and gold. The black version is available from today, while the gold coloured version will be available from October.