By: kiritozhang Translator: alanyu
Winspace is one of the Chinese independent brands with a good reputation in China, whose products have a high quality and have few problems. They neither make too much marketing, nor join in the price war, which means their bikes are not cheap. Most of the brands starting from the same period as Winspace is either collapsed or stop further developing.
I heard about Winspace at my school-days, but the first time that I have tried Winspace T1300 is three years ago, and that bike has made a good impression on me. It is now replaced by T1350.
I’m not keen on highly integrated models, so I was attracted by the simple design of the frame when I found Winspace has updated their SLC to 2.0 occasionally. I bought the frame on my own cost after the 2018 International Bicycle Fair in Shanghai.
One of the selling points of SLC2.0 is its lightness. It is claimed 780g, and my scale showed 870g for a size 52 frame with the hanger. Considering the claimed weight is for the frame without paint and hanger, it is acceptable. The uncut fork is 380g, which is at average level. The seatpost by Winspace is 200g, just so so.
The frame comes with a ceramic BB (for 24mm spindle), which is a thread-together type. In my opinion the thread-together is a stupid design. If you use Shimano BB spanners, the frame can be easily rubbed at the last period of mounting. Adequate grease is required at the BB shell part and the thread part to ensure the dismounting, but it’s still very hard to dismount even with enough grease. It just resolves the current problem but makes a different problem. Winspace claims that they have a special tool for the BB, but they don’t offer it with the frame. As the picture shows, the BB is threaded-in half when it came to me, without any grease. If the mechanic threads it in directly, you will have a nightmare when you need to dismount it. I replaced it with a normal Shimano BB86 BB.
Frame: Winspace SLC2.0 size 52
Stem: FSA OS-99 CSI
Bar: FSA Energy
Groupset: Shimano R8000 + Xcadey 2Xpower
Saddle: Prologo Dimension NDR CPC Triox
Pedals: Speedplay Zero
Wheels: UNAAS 40 carbon spoke
Tires: Continental Gatorskin Sprinter
UNAAS is a bicycle shop from Norway. They started their own brand products after earning a good reputation. This pair of wheels is a media testing product instead of the purchase on my own cost, which comes with a pair of Continental Gatorskin Sprint. I was too lazy to dismount the tubular to weigh it.
There are several shops selling UNAAS wheels on Taobao (Chinese AliExpress), but I couldn’t find much information on this carbon spoke wheelset. I tried to find some information on their official website, but there is no English or Japanese website! I have never learned Norwegian, and I couldn’t understand the idea of those Norwegians. At least they should have an English website if they want to make their brand popular. (Translator’s note: I agree…) However, I still failed to find any information on this carbon spoke wheelset. I thought that the agent got the beta version and the wheels were not released.
The reason why SLC2.0 attracts me is that it is a climbing frame with little aero design but mounted with the direct mount brakes. DM brake is definitely a plus.
The paint of Winspace in recent years is my taste and it keeps in the fashion. The “Italian design” logo and “SLC2.0” logo are combined together on the top tube. I have to admit that Europeans have a good sense in the aesthetic design of the bicycle, and the designer in mainland and Taiwan need to learn more. You can see that on other bikes of Winspace, whose paint and logo is very attractive.
SLC2.0 is designed for lightness. The square top tube, square down tube and square bottom bracket means there is no any aero design.
The internal routing starts from the top of the down tube. The head tube has a flat back.
The transition between the head tube and the fork is one of the few aero design on SLC2.0.
The seatstay is very thin, which made me think the bike could offer a good comfort, but it turned out to be the opposite after my first ride.
The seatpost is 27.2mm round tube. You can change other seatpost and clamp. The stocked clamp is 16g. You can shave down only a few grams if you replace it by a tune clamp. However, the finish of the stocked clamp is quite low.
The picture on the official website shows a non-offset seatpost, but I got an offset one due to out-of-stock. I don’t mind this as both can be used to setup my saddle correctly, but Winspace should mention it.
My SLC2.0 is mainly covered by a layer of varnish and the marble carbon pattern underneath can be clearly observed. Not so many brands use marble pattern compared to 3k or UD, while Winspace uses it on most of their bikes. You may consider this if you like the pattern.
UNAAS carbon spoke wheel is not the fully integrated carbon wheel (hub, spokes and rim all integrated together, such as lightweight). The carbon spoke of UNAAS used ACM technology, which has a carbon body and two metal ends. You can change the spoke and true the wheel after an accident.
The quality of the stocked quick release is at average level.
There are six sizes marked by the seattube length, starting from 45cm to 58cm. STR (Stack to Reach) is quite racing, starting from 1.33 of size 45 to 1.47 of size 58. The frame comes with an FSA 15mm headset cap.
Don’t judge a book (bike) by its cover (shape). I felt quite harsh when riding SLC2.0, which is similar to Winspace T1300 and T1500, whose rear triangle offers a low comfort. My Gatorskin can never marked as a supply tire, the alu bar has a high stiffness, and the stocked carbon seatpost is also not a good filter. All these high stiffness parts truly transferred the vibration from the road to my body. I suggest a comfort carbon bar and a comfort seatpost, also a pair of supply tire.
There is no perfect product. The rider who choose SLC2.0 as a racing bike may not care the harsh ride, as I’m comparing to other light weight bikes. The comfort of SLC2.0 is still better than a lot of aero bikes.
The geometry is also racing. The steering and alignment are very good in a hilly route with a lot of turns. Some riders have told me that the BB lateral stiffness of SLC2.0 is not so high and their tire could rub the chainstay. I haven’t met with this issue so far, may be due to my low power output. My sprint power is 1100W during 10s. I think the BB lateral stiffness is enough for most riders.
If compared with other big brands, the riding quality is similar to Specialized Tarmac SL4 including the handling, stiffness and comfort. Some Specialized sellers also agreed with me after some test rides. Some other sellers (not Winspace seller of course) all have a good remark on SLC2.0.
UNAAS 40 carbon spoke wheelset + SLC2.0 is a good combo. The first impression of this wheelset is its acceleration. You can accelerate easily while climbing, and it’s easy to keep the speed on a gentle slope, which is mainly contributed by the stiffness and lightness of the carbon spoke.
However, it doesn’t perform well on flat. The cross section of ACM carbon spoke is a diamond shape with 2.0mm thickness, and it has more drag than cx-ray whose cross section is water-drop-like with 0.9mm thickness. The end round part of the carbon spoke is also thicker than that of the steel spoke, resulting in a smaller WR of the hub. The high rolling resistance of Gatorskin and the square tube shape of SLC2.0 result in 30W higher output than riding with Merida Scultura with Fulcrum Racing Speed 35 and Continental Competition in the same crit. I think the Gatorskin is the main problem.
The battlefield for SLC2.0 is climbing. It responded quickly and firmly each time I tried to accelerate. 72.5° headtube angle and 45mm rake give a good tolerance in handling. The rider can corner confidently when descending. However, the collaboration between Winspace and their team pro riders results in the relatively low comfort of SLC2.0, which requires the rider’s control capability of the vibration.
The brake track of UNAAS has the groove similar to AC3, but it’s deeper, giving a better braking performance in dry. The braking performance is in the first tier of the wheelsets I have used. However, in a heavy rain, the groove is not as useful as your expectation, because the brake track is still the normal material, unlike ZIPP NSW which use the special ceramic material.
I have lent the wheelset to my friend for a rainy-day race. He was 55kg and used the pads coming with the wheel. His bike is Trek Emonda SLR with shimano BR-R8010. He remarked a good accelerating performance of the wheel, but a low water proof hub and had to pay for the maintenance of the hub.
Summary of the frame:
SLC2.0 is a good frame, but the retail price of CNY 9800 (USD 1400) is not low among the Chinese brand frames, which is competing with some big brands frame. If the price can be a bit lower, it will have a very good value for its cost.
Pros: A balanced performance, light weight.
Cons: Relatively low comfort, an aggressive geometry, not suitable for long rides.
Summary of the wheelset:
UNAAS is introduced into China around two years ago. As a Norway small brand, the price is not high, close to the Chinese brands wheelsets. It has a good value for its cost.
Pros: High acceleration performance, good braking performance, the spoke can be changed. Cons: ACM tech is not well developed, high drag, low water proof hub.
Cons: ACM tech is not well developed, high drag, low water proof hub.
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