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7 Reviews
5 star:
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4 star:
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3 star:
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2 star:    (0)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If you're a serious bike techie, this will become your bible!
A truly excellent, well researched and fascinating guide to the scientific theory behind the bicycle. It concentrates on fundamental principles rather than discussing particular brands or fads. The bulk of the book is devoted to the engineering and physics of frame materials and construction, steering dynamics and geometry, an examination of bicycle aerodynamics and...
Published on 13 Dec 2011 by J. Voelcker

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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worthwhile attempt but not the whole story
I was interested in a scientific explanation of all aspects of cycling. Both man and machine.
This book sets out to do this and partly achieves it. But some major areas such as the science of frame geometries, the impact hysteresis losses during sprinting, the aerodynamics of different racing positions(e.g. superman position, tri-bars etc) are not covered to any...
Published on 27 Sep 2011 by Eric Dolphy


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If you're a serious bike techie, this will become your bible!, 13 Dec 2011
By 
J. Voelcker "Jake's Bikes" (Bristol, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Bicycling Science (Paperback)
A truly excellent, well researched and fascinating guide to the scientific theory behind the bicycle. It concentrates on fundamental principles rather than discussing particular brands or fads. The bulk of the book is devoted to the engineering and physics of frame materials and construction, steering dynamics and geometry, an examination of bicycle aerodynamics and rolling drag, and the basic principles of wheel design - dispelling some common myths in doing so. However, also discussed in detail is the human physiology of the rider in terms of power transfer, respiration and heat dissipation.

There are sections on alternatives to the standard bike and possible future directions for bicycle design, but today they look a little dated and unfortunately there is a lack of more recent detail, for example on modern suspension systems or composite frame materials.

Not a book about cutting-edge technology then, but 95% of the content is still highly relevant and the underlying engineering principles are to all extents and purposes timeless.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still 'the bible' of bicycle science, 9 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Bicycling Science (Paperback)
Although other books have concentrated on various aspects of science of bicycles they tend to focus on either 'sporting aspects' or DIY (ie for people new to cycling). This book covers all aspects and goes into considerable depth. It demystifies SO many myths handed down in bicycle enthusiast folk law (which in turn is often subjective ! eg ... "this XXXX is better than that YYYY" with the only evidence that the rider thinks so ! The biggest variable in bicycle mechanics is from rider to rider - may 'enthusiasts' prefer to ignore this and focus on unscientific 'gossip' . I recommend this book, over any other book on bicycle design - only wish for an new updated edition.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worthwhile attempt but not the whole story, 27 Sep 2011
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This review is from: Bicycling Science (Paperback)
I was interested in a scientific explanation of all aspects of cycling. Both man and machine.
This book sets out to do this and partly achieves it. But some major areas such as the science of frame geometries, the impact hysteresis losses during sprinting, the aerodynamics of different racing positions(e.g. superman position, tri-bars etc) are not covered to any meaningful extent.

So much of the science of bicycles that has come from the professional sport in the last 20 years (post Greg Lemond) has not been covered. Perhaps the result of this being a re-issue of a much older book.
The focus seems to be more on the fringes of the cycling world (recumbent bicycles, powered flight).

It comes across as the work of a well meaning amateur. Sometimes interesting and revealing perhaps with questionable analysis (to what extent was this peer reviewed?).

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In response to feedback on this comment - I acknowledge the author is a distinguished engineering academic. My observation that work "comes across as the work of a well meaning amateur" should not detract from his many career achievements, one of which was to co-design a successful recumbent bike 33 years ago. The contributions from Jim Padadopoulos do bring the book out of the 1970s in places. It's just a pity the book was not updated to reflect modern developments in cycling from the sports world both on and off road. Perhaps then I could have given more than 3 stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In many ways this book is more like a scientific journal than a standard non-fiction book, 21 Nov 2014
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This review is from: Bicycling Science (Paperback)
In many ways this book is more like a scientific journal than a standard non-fiction book. It has become an essential information source for my masters project - Designing a human powered vehicle. I agree with a lot of the other comments, this book analysis's the physics of human powered designs with frequent references to prior case studies and theoretical speculation, very dry.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The classic, readable, book, 23 Oct 2014
By 
R. WILLIAMSON (Norwich United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Bicycling Science (Paperback)
The book is a 2004 update of an earlier volume, and could, admittedly, do with a further update.
Whether such an update would or should include minute research into the last 0.1% of cycle performance for racing is debateable!
Bicycling Science explains its subject fantastically well - the Amazon reviews that criticise it for being 'too technical' and 'not technical enough' suggest that it is just about right!
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3 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars too technical, 24 Nov 2012
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This review is from: Bicycling Science (Paperback)
this book was not what i expected it to be. being a bicycle rider for many years i thought i would find this book really interesting , but unfortunately i found it unreadable , i thought it would be full of interesting facts presented in a way that is understandable to the ordinary person but in actual fact it is exactly as its title says . this is hardcore science . i found it difficult to understand, and why as a ordinary cyclist i would have any use for the maths and physics behind bicycle design . i did not read it all i gave up after the first few chapters but flipping through the rest of the book it all seemed to be the same . this is a text book for serious bike design students / enthusiasts not for the casual bike rider , to be fair this book really is not intended for thickheads like me, just after some interesting bike facts . looking at the other reviews it scores highly amongst its intended readers
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0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Needed for my sons uni project., 11 April 2013
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This review is from: Bicycling Science (Paperback)
It gave most of the information that my son was looking for in his project on designing a bicycle. His final design was made in minature printed on a 3d printer.
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Bicycling Science
Bicycling Science by David Gordon Wilson (Paperback - 23 April 2004)
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