It's not a stretch to say that more design, engineering, and manufacturing expertise goes into Zipp’s 88 and 188 hubs than goes into many high-end frames. The result is a set of features and a level of performance found nowhere else in the cycling industry at a weight of just 276g per pair.
Due to the force generated by modern quick-release skewers, we designed the 88 and 188 with the option to adjust bearing preload after clamping the skewer. The KammNut used to set the preload can then be rotated for an aero benefit that allows us to use an oversized 17mm axle that’s 490% stiffer than a 10mm axle with no additional drag.
We’ve also reduced friction by spec’ing grade 10 Swiss steel bearings that roll more smoothly than many ceramic bearings. If you choose to upgrade, the grade 2 silicon nitride balls specified in our ceramic bearings vary by less than 2 millionths of an inch. On an 8% grade, the reduced friction equates to removing 340 grams from your bike compared to typical bearings.
To build a lighter, stronger, more durable hub body, Zipp has partnered with the world’s leading aluminum supplier to develop a proprietary alloy called Z310.9. This material offers nearly twice the strength of 6061 aluminium.
To maintain the high precision of Zipp hubs, we use electrical discharge machining, a specialized process that cuts with an extremely thin high-voltage wire submerged in water. EDM allows us to machine 50% harder materials at tolerances 20 times greater than those allowed by traditional machining and heat-treating.