They might still have their detractors, but it’s safe to say disc brakes are here to stay in the road cycling market. And with cycling's obsession with weight and carbon fibre, it was only a matter of time before a company developed an aftermarket carbon rotor.
- Everything you need to know about disc brakes
Spanish company Alpha has done just that, putting its motorcycle expertise into a cycling product for the first time. The result is a one-piece 6-bolt 140mm rotor that weighs a claimed 32g.
Not only are they exceptionally light, but the company also makes claims for improved braking performance in the dry and wet. It also reckons they are more resistant to high temperatures - that’s certainly why they’re used in high-performance motorcars and in motor racing, but does a road disc rotor ever get hot enough to warrant a carbon rotor? They’re claims we’d be very interested in putting to the test.
Such lightness doesn’t come cheap. The rotors are manufactured at the company's own facility in Spain using a ceramic polymer technology. A single rotor costs from €100. It’s offering a full range of sizes from 140 to 203mm, so suitable for mountain bikes as well. You’re also going to have to factor in new brakes pads, they can only be used with ceramic brake pads. The company doesn’t appear to offer any yet, but a few companies do offer them.
To put that claimed 32g weight into perspective, a 140mm Shimano Centerlock rotor weighs 96g, while an Alligator steel 140mm rotor comes in at 72g. Both pretty light, but the lightest rotor I could find during a quick internet search comes from the USA and a company called Carver Bikes. It makes a titanium disc rotor that weighs a claimed 50g and costs $110. None of those alternatives is made from carbon, though, so we’re going to try and get a set in for testing and to see just what they’re like.
Here are the details of the new Alpha Ceramic Rotor RS:
- More powerful and progressive braking
- No vibrations
- Ultra lightweight
- Better resistance to high temperatures and exhaustion compared to conventional discs
- Superior performance
- Efficiency dry and wet
- 1.9mm thickness
- Manufactured in Spain
You can read more at www.alphamotocicletas.com
Wipe down, wash with a weak solution of detergent in warm water, reapply sewing machine oil, wipe off again. I get about 2,500km out of a chain on...
One does sometimes see a rider dropping back to the medical car with what looks like a very minor abrasion, spending a couple of kilometres holding...
The message from the UN is clear: Murdered-out SUV = one of us Bakfiets fitted with child seats = suspicious
Or a fat bike.
At least we now know what to do if an example of bad driving coincides with a royal visit to your local area. Just tell the police that you thought...
Ah, the beautiful poetry of Britney Spears, sounding like an advert for domestic violence.
Guessing because they're thick as mince and thought the brake rotor has to come off before you can get the motor out. Hope Anna gets back on the...
Shimano is Japanese not Taiwanese.
Gave the finger first - so his ensuing action was more likely pre-meditated than merely "careless". And I wonder what effort will go into...
The most runtime I ever had from a GoPro was around 1h 40m (gave up on GoPro years ago as a safety cam, swapping batteries & cards mid ride was...