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On 20 January 2016 at 11:45 | updated on 03 February 2016 at 08:42

Testing the Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mm Speed Skating Frame

Testing the Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mm Speed Skating Frame

The FIRS has just authorized the use of 3x125 mm frames (and wheels) on marathons, for junior, senior and master categories. This set-up is spreading little by little amongst long distance competitors and lovers. We got hold of Powerslide's latest creation: the Triple X 3x125 mm frame. Feedbacks...

By  Alexandre CHARTIER

Test Bench

Platine Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mm

Powerslide has released two 3x125 mm frames on the speed skating market:

  • The Vi Alu 3x125 mm, suitable for leisure practice or long distance fitness skating
  • The Triple X 3x125 mm, designed for competition

Both will often be compared throughout this test for you to be able to judge according to you needs. A more detailed test of the Vi Alu will be soon available.

Platine Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mm

Design

The Triple X 3x125 mm has sharp and tense lines, despite quite a massive structure. It conveys feelings of rigidity and solidity, even aggressiveness. But let's not be mistaken, Powerslide left a lot of material. Black with silver lines, it looks pretty modern.

Finish

Powerslide delivers a well-polished frame. Its design is a mix between extrusion and machining, with laser finish. Angles have been rounded so that they are not sharp, as they sometimes are. The millimetric marking at the bridges to adjust the set-up is very useful. There are only two oblong slots, the adjustment possibilities are a bit limited if you don't own powerslide boots with an along slot set-up (X-slot concept).
The German brand opted for M7 axles with torque heads (star-shaped) for a better hold and a slower wear than hexagon axles.

Platine Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mm

Measurements

Platine Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mmDespite its hollowed design, the frame is quite heavy, with 227 grams on the scale. Powerslide focused on solidity and rigidity at the expense of the weight.

The Triple X is quite low, with bridge heights that are similar to those of the EOSkates 3x125 mm frame. Compared to a 4x110 mm frame, the extra height isn't disturbing as long as your ankle is toned or if you have a rigid speed skating ankle boot.

The 12.6 in version (321 mm) works well for skaters of small build. It has good maneuverability despite the rigidity of the whole. Taller and stronger skaters would probably have enjoyed a 12.8 or a 13 in version.

Set-up: wedges (often) recommended!

According to the type of boots that you use with this frame, you may need to add flat wedges to prevent the middle wheel from touching the boot, since it is bigger than 14 mm. You will gain 2 mm with the wedges.

Rigidity

Amongst all the frames we have tested over the last months, Powerslide's Triple X 3x125 mm is the most rigid, especially when you compare it to the Vi Alu 3x125 mm, which is not destined to the same public.

Contrary to the latter, the Triple X is rigid from one end to the other. But you quickly get used to it. With the Vi Alu, when you push hard into the ground, your energy isn't transmitted as well as with the Triple X which is very responsive : At 30 kph, there's not much difference between the two models, but as soon as you accelerate and put more weight into your pushes, the rigidity of the Triple X makes all the difference.

It is quite simple why: the support bridges are placed very low between the wheels, under the fixing slots, which means that the two-thirds in the center of the frame (in-between) don't move at all. The energy loss is reduced to the max. Moreover, it is made from aluminum 7005, which is one of the most rigid aluminums used in skating.

This frame was clearly designed for long straight routes like the skating marathon of Dijon or the 2015 Berlin Marathon for example, where Bart Swings broke the time record in 56 min 49 sec. It is also with this very frame that Bart set the lap record at the 24 H of Le Mans Roller at 5'32 sec.

Platine Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mm

With use

We have tested the Tripe X on cycle lane, road circuit and Vesmaco track. The Triple X makes the difference compared to the 110 mm models of the brand as for energy efficiency and response. It is far more easier to stay at 40 kph in 125 mm with that frame.

Platine Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mm

Platine Powerslide Triple X 3x125 mm

On road circuit, the frame is particularly efficient in strait lines. On the other hand, when you turn, since there is less surface in contact with the ground than with a 4x110 mm frame, you lose in grip, and the middle wheel takes all the weight. But if you stay at against-the-clock speed, everything goes all right.

On track (tested in Nantes, France) there's nothing to declare when you skate at warm-up speed, but as soon as you get over 35-40 kph, you have the same sensations than on road circuit: you lose grip. It is also due to the technology of the wheel cores that still tend to distortion. It will probably evolve towards more rigidity for more suitability to track skating.

On marathon, it is where the 3x125 mm Triple X gives its best, proof is with the performances of skaters like Bart Swings or Guillaume de Mallevoue on the P2P.

Conclusion

This frame is destined to skaters looking for performance with 3x125 mm frames on races like marathons, or like the 24 H Le Mans, where it's allowed. It can also be used for long distance skating, but in this case, make sure you put on comfortable wheels. Since your ground clearance is higher, your ankles work more, especially with rigid ankle boots.

Strong points and points to be improved

Pluses

+ Rigidity
+ Finish quality

Minuses

- Could be longer (e.g. 12.8 or 13 in)
- Weight
- Price (especially when you add the wheels!)

Technical Facts

Brand: Powerslide
Model: Triple X 3x125 mm
Year: 2015
Designed in: Germany
Made in: China
Length: 321 mm (12.6 in)
Axles: Aluminum 8 mm axles, M7 with torque head
Interaxial distance: 195 mm
Oblong slots: One at the front, one at the rear
Height of the rear bridge: 61 mm
Height of the front bridge: 50 mm
Public price: 229€
Recommended use: competition - marathon, 6H races, 24H races, or straight routes.

Links

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Released  on 20 January 2016 - Read 13219 times

By :
Fondateur et webmaster de rollerenligne.com. Alexandre est un passionné de roller en général et sous tous ses aspects : histoire, économie, sociologie, évolution technologique... Ne le branchez pas sur ces sujets sans avoir une aspirine à portée de main !

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