Boardman AIR 9.4 – One bike to rule them all?

In my ongoing project, I am testing a road bike up against my beloved Boardman TTE Signature. To be able to do that properly I had to get a very good road bike if it would have any chance of competing. Being a Boardman Bikes ambassador I naturally picked a bike from their line-up. The choice ended up with a Boardman AIR 9.4 with carbon clincher wheels and Ultegra Di2 gearing.

Like I mentioned in my blog post Tri/TT-bike vs Road bike – what should you choose, a road bike comes with a lot of benefits compared to a tri-bike, but in the end of the day it is just slower. Could we begin with a road bike with a superb aerodynamic frame, put on a triathlon seat and aerobars to mimic the position of a tri-bike and end up with similar aerodynamic performance? Could we have one bike with great performance both as a road bike and as a tri-bike? Could we have one bike to rule them all?

I had tried my new AIR 9.4 for a couple of weeks and my initial impression are very positive. My expectations for the bike as a road bike where quite high and I was not let down. It is super responsive, quick and entertaining ride where you can feel that all the power you put in the pedals result in forward momentum. Yet, it does not feel uncomfortable or unstable. What impressed me most was the performance when I went down in my aerobars. It was nearly as confident and stable as my TTE(!). Note that the bike was built in a rush with a couple of inexpensive aerobars I had laying around, and it is not completely done in that regard. I will also get gear shifter for the aerobars.

Boardman AIR 9.4 in size M. I am 180 cm and have my TTE in size S. With the Sitero seat I get a nearly identical position as when I am on my TTE except from a bit higher front due to the build height of the aerobars, which I will sort out.
Clean back end with no visable rear brakes to catch the wind
Hidden front brakes which actually perform quite well
Maintance wise it is not as easy as the classic brakes, but it is not a nightmare to change pads or adjust the width.
The hidden rear brakes
Elite AIR
The aerodynamic seatpost have three different bolt holes to increase the possibilities to fint the correct position
I changed the stock seat to a Specialized Sitero, which is the same I have on my TTE
Boardman AIR Elite Seven carbon clincher wheelset with 45 mm rim in front and 55 mm back. Personally I go for sligthly deeper tubular rims in races, but for most people a 45/55mm combo clincher wheelset is a better choice due to easy and less pricey change of tubs and less negative effects of heavy crosswinds.  When I have a deep tubular wheelset as my race wheels I also have a set of training wheels since the cost and hassle of a flat tire. With these clincher wheels you dont need that extra set of wheels.
25 mm Open Corsa CX tires is delivered with the bike. I use the same tires in tubular version on my TTE.
The Thule axle does not come stock but is practical when Jonas is going with me in is Thule CX1 trailer 😉
Slam that stem! The handlebars is exactly the same height as my aerobars on my TTE when it is in the lowest position. The aerobars build a bit to much so I have to find someone with less build height or/and get a stem with steeper angle. The junction box have to be changed from a 3-way to a 5-way in order to put gear buttons on the aerobars. And I will clean up the front.
The aerobars work fine, but I miss the possibility to change gear from them
The cockpit
Bold colors for a bold man 😉
The handlebar and aerobars have the potential for a cleaner set up, but the frame and other components looks very clean indead.
But how does it performe compared to this bike? My TTE Signature

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triallan

Jeg er en 30 år gammel triatlonentusiast som prøver å bli så rask som mulig til å svømme, sykle og løpe. Treningen, konkurransene og utstyrsmanien blir godt dokumentert på bloggen min.

8 thoughts on “Boardman AIR 9.4 – One bike to rule them all?

  1. Spennende!
    Er i tenkeboksen på å kvitte meg med en P3 og erstatte den med en aerosykkel med mulighet for å klaske på et sett aerobars for tri.
    Boardmanen er fresh, men vi er i 2017 og må ha disc.

  2. Hei.
    Mener du kan koble kablene fra temposkiftene direkte inn på koblings punktet på hendlene. Even

      1. Ikke 100% sikker, men hadde store planer om det du gjør, og mins at det var bare å bruke en av de ekstra inngangene på hendelen til temposkifter kabelen. Mulig du må koble opp di2’en mot en data og programmere så skifter knappene snakker samme språk, opp/opp ned/ned.
        Penger spart og mindre synlige kabler. Even

      2. ..måtte sjekke. Bare nap ut en av plastkorkene som sitter på koblingspunktet til girhendelen og plug inn temposkifteren, funka med en gang🤙🏻Even

    1. Specialized sin løsning er nok noe av det bedre ja, men å ettermontere det koster sikkert nærmere 10 000 kr (uten at jeg har sjekket opp i prisen men prisen på Specialized har gått kraftig opp det siste året), så jeg må ha en løsning som er økonomisk gjennomførbar

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