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Speed Skating Forum Most of the discussions in this forum will be about inline speed skating but discussions about ice speed skating and quad roller speed skating are also welcome.

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Old September 17th, 2018, 10:42 PM   #1
SkateMO
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Default 110s vs 125s at Northshore

So, I feel a little guilty discussing a race that I didn't participate in. But, looking at pictures on Facebook, I noticed that the first place finisher at Duluth (on the men's side) didn't use 125 mm wheels; he was on 110s. And, looking closer at the top 10, it appears that maybe half (if not more) of the top 10 was on 110s, and perhaps 3 of the top 5, was on 110s. It's difficult to say for certain just by looking at the pictures, but it appears to me that 110s had a slightly better showing in terms of top placements (in the elite group). I've actually noticed this more and more though...where 125s aren't the go-to choice, even amongst some of the elite skaters.

So, I'm curious to know what the opinions of others are regarding this topic. For me, if I were going to race tomorrow, I would use 110s. I've mentioned this before on this forum, but I skate at the same trail year round. And, I used to track my times pretty consistently up until a year or so ago. Anyway, I was able to break all of my personal bests in practice using 125s. But, when I tried using 125s in a race, I didn't feel confident. Admittedly, I bought a cheap set of 125 frames on ebay that were 12.2 in length, I believe. And, everyone has told me if I tried a longer frame, I would have a different opinion. Maybe so. I haven't been competing so I haven't wanted to invest the money. I'm actually thinking of maybe giving 125s a second chance, but I like 110s so much and after seeing the results at Duluth, I really don't think it's worth it. Just curious to hear thoughts regarding this topic...

I found the results at Duluth especially surprising considering the conditions. Again, wasn't there, but looking at the times and hearing there was a tailwind would typically point to 125s having the better results.
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Old September 18th, 2018, 12:11 AM   #2
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And the women had a photo finish between skaters on 110 and 125 and a mix in the rest of the top 10 too. The course proved to be 99% dry, but given the forecast and how wet the roads were on the way to the start, that was very much in doubt. I wonder if that played a role in anybody's choices.
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Old September 18th, 2018, 07:55 PM   #3
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I think there were a few reasons for this...

Fran really prefers 110s over 125s. He skates better on 110s, and I heard him telling a lot of people about his preference. The winner was skating for Fran on the MPC team, so it is possible that Fran had some influence on his decision. But, i don't know that for sure. There were a few other MPC skaters there, but i didn't really do an inventory of who was on what.

Another reason I can think of is that many of the skaters in the lead pack were primarily indoor skaters. I'm not an indoor skater anymore, so somebody may correct me; however, I've heard that 125s still haven't really taken off indoor. Some people are doing really well on them, but many people are still using 110s inside. They probably didn't want to swap frames for Duluth.

Ken skated away from the entire pack solo on 110s. I'm 100% sure that he could have done the same on 125s. I think 125s work great for me, but I think that for some skaters, 110s are just as fast or even faster for them.
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Old September 18th, 2018, 10:49 PM   #4
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Great perspective!

It's interesting because I'm not sure you would see the same results in mountain biking. Maybe you would, but I question whether someone on 27.5" wheels could win a race like Leadville, even if they were that much stronger than everyone else. I think you would almost have to be on 29" wheels in this day and time to have a chance.

The cool thing about the 125 mm change in skating is that it hasn't killed 110 mm wheels, even outdoors. I like the fact that people have options and can still win on both. I do think 125s are probably faster, but then again, when you look at people like Fran who have probably done more testing than a lot of us could ever dream of, maybe I'm wrong. Maybe there is only a marginal difference between the two...or maybe the 125 mm wheels and frames haven't been fully optimized yet.

I was just really surprised to see the results (of 110s). I know for me, I've briefly skated with a few guys that I felt were harder to drop (when they were drafting) when using 125 mm wheels. I think if you're in a pack and the speeds aren't changing too much, then 125s are probably a great tool for keeping up. I don't know...I would like to give 125s a second chance just to see. With a tail wind, on a silky smooth trail, skating solo, no doubt 125s are the way to go.
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Old September 22nd, 2018, 01:52 AM   #5
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Theoretically 125mm wheels are faster.
However, 110mm wheels may be faster depending on the conditions of the gear.
Also, a person with good physical fitness can be quick regardless of equipment conditions.

In the wheel gear condition,
The turning force of a heavy wheel is faster.
(It is similar regardless of wheel weight in continuous driving.
Wheel weight is effective in acceleration.)

Therefore, depending on the conditions, 110mm can exceed 125mm.
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Old September 23rd, 2018, 12:02 AM   #6
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I was told Eddie Matzger was on 110s today for the 100K (I was there, but only noticed the new boots). I'm pretty sure he was on 125s for A2A the past few years. Considering how he excels at the longer races like the 100K and A2A, I think this is a meaningful data point.
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Old September 23rd, 2018, 03:43 AM   #7
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110s havenít died off because 125s arenít legal at Worlds
except for the marathon. The confined area of a skating rink
negates the roll of the bigger wheel.
In Europe, you pretty much have to be on 125s to place high.
130mm wheels are just around the corner.
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Old October 1st, 2018, 10:07 PM   #8
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Rob makes a good point. The outdoor scene in the US, even at the marathon level, is led by the top indoor/track skaters (in the US), especially at a race like Duluth. So, it does make sense that most of these guys/gals would use 110s for a marathon, simply because that's what they use for indoor and track. And, I agree that looking at pictures of the European races, almost everyone seems to be on 125s.

For whatever reason, and maybe it's because the racing scene is smaller in the US (and largely made up of indoor/track skaters), but I don't believe 125s have taken over here. As Brian pointed out, if anything, I've seen some skaters, who had been using 125s in the season prior, actually shift back from 125s to 110s. It would be interesting to know why.

There are some good skaters that haven't sold out on 125s (who aren't just indoor and track skaters), and that's interesting to me. If it's accurate about Eddy using 110s at New York, I think it may say something. And, I know that some of the elite skaters who placed top 5 or 10 at Duluth probably would have finished the same, regardless of what wheel size they were on. But, I still find it intriguing that if 125s were that superior to 110s, even the "good" skaters would be affected by wheel size at a race like Duluth...which tends to favor roll, especially with a tailwind.

I don't know...I need to pick up a set of 125s and re-do some of the testing I did a few years ago. If we do in fact jump to 130s that seems a little much in my opinion, but who knows
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Old October 1st, 2018, 10:48 PM   #9
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Reviewing pics from the NYC 100K, most, if not all, in the lead pack were on 110s, including Eddy.
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Old October 2nd, 2018, 08:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gopherfan View Post
Reviewing pics from the NYC 100K, most, if not all, in the lead pack were on 110s, including Eddy.
It looks like 10:1 or 15:1 for sure. I see a few in there, but not many.
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Old October 2nd, 2018, 09:16 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SkateMO View Post
If we do in fact jump to 130s that seems a little much in my opinion, but who knows
They are coming. I have 130s on my skates now.
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Old October 2nd, 2018, 09:58 PM   #12
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It looks like 10:1 or 15:1 for sure. I see a few in there, but not many.
It kinda depends on the definition of lead pack. The only 125s that I distinctly remember were used by Morgan Williams and Sonic, who were lapped by what I called the lead pack. I also exclude those dong the marathon like Dave Dolnick and Herb Gayle, both on 125s. I'm pretty sure the top 14 were on 110s followed by Morgan, Sonic, then me doing a bunch of solo skating on 110s.

Personally, I've stayed on 110s largely because of cost and partly because I'm just not that close to being competitive in race results anymore. I know cost is also a factor with Peter Doucet, though he clearly is a factor in the results. While out skating a gradual downhill today, I could feel myself winding out to a max speed where I wish I had another gear. It is the same feeling I get at the end of Duluth. I sometimes wonder if 125s would give me that gear, but then I tell myself it must be me and not my equipment based on results like NYC. Then again, 125s might be a band-aid or crutch that makes sense for a skater of my ability.
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Old October 9th, 2018, 01:42 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gopherfan View Post
It kinda depends on the definition of lead pack. The only 125s that I distinctly remember were used by Morgan Williams and Sonic, who were lapped by what I called the lead pack. I also exclude those dong the marathon like Dave Dolnick and Herb Gayle, both on 125s. I'm pretty sure the top 14 were on 110s followed by Morgan, Sonic, then me doing a bunch of solo skating on 110s.

Personally, I've stayed on 110s largely because of cost and partly because I'm just not that close to being competitive in race results anymore. I know cost is also a factor with Peter Doucet, though he clearly is a factor in the results. While out skating a gradual downhill today, I could feel myself winding out to a max speed where I wish I had another gear. It is the same feeling I get at the end of Duluth. I sometimes wonder if 125s would give me that gear, but then I tell myself it must be me and not my equipment based on results like NYC. Then again, 125s might be a band-aid or crutch that makes sense for a skater of my ability.
It is the bigger wheels or the higher deck height that would give you that 2nd gear? Have you tried putting 10mm or so between your frame and boots on the 110 setup? I don't know the answer here and I haven't tried it either but I am curious.
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Old October 9th, 2018, 03:35 PM   #14
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Thinking back to going from 80 to 84 to 90 to 100 to 110, I'd say mostly deck height was the difference, but rolling resistance would also be a factor. 110 to 125 would also be lighter.

I sometimes switch between my EO and Powerslide frames which have significantly different deck heights despite both being 4x110. I can tell the difference in top end speed. I'll go with deck height being the major factor. My alignment/balance over my wheels has never been great so adding deck height always scares me, but it has always been faster in the end.
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Old October 12th, 2018, 01:40 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gopherfan View Post
Thinking back to going from 80 to 84 to 90 to 100 to 110, I'd say mostly deck height was the difference, but rolling resistance would also be a factor. 110 to 125 would also be lighter.

I sometimes switch between my EO and Powerslide frames which have significantly different deck heights despite both being 4x110. I can tell the difference in top end speed. I'll go with deck height being the major factor. My alignment/balance over my wheels has never been great so adding deck height always scares me, but it has always been faster in the end.

you are right.
The laws of physics at the deck heights are also found in elementary school textbooks.
Most users simply do not know their content.
The optimal height of the deck is fixed.
However, almost everyone wants a lower deck height for stability reasons.
It is the result of the uncomfortable truth that the consumer made.
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Old October 15th, 2018, 05:30 AM   #16
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Eddy Matzger was on 125s today for A2A. I didn't get around to ask him why. He was with four other skaters right up to the end (at least 3 were on 110s and the fourth crashed out of the race with an unknown set-up). As I heard it, the crash led to a race stop then restart which may have affected the results.
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