Zipp’s Trade-In/Speed-Up: The Particulars

If you look at the ads on this site one you’ve seen over the last few days is for Zipp’s Trade-In / Speed-up promotion. A lot of you are clicking on it because we have stats for that sort of thing. I clicked on it too. Why am I writing about it? I was confused about some of the mechanics of this promotion and if I was you might be as well.

Basically, if you’re going to Kona, you bring wheels with you, trade them in at HP Bike Works (the LBS in Kona), pay the difference, put your new Zipp wheels on your bike, and race to victory. Your old wheels you’re trading in are Lucky Bucks, buying down the price of your new Zipp wheels. You could do this before your race in Kona, or you could execute this transaction in Kona immediately post-race.

If you’re not going to Kona, you can still take advantage of this. You take your wheels to your LBS (if it’s a Zipp dealer), and they’ll take care of the transaction for you. I wouldn’t assume this is a forever thing. It’s a current promotion; I don’t know how long it’ll be in effect.

I’m often more interested in the process of getting the thing than the thing itself. (Hence prescriptive bike fit systems; Reader Forum threads on bike fit and bike travel; and an upcoming article you’ll see on the process of ROKA eyewear with progressive lenses.) I had process questions about this promotion. So I dove into this, drove my Zipp friends a little crazy, but here goes.

Disc Versus Rim Brakes

Let’s cut to the chase. Almost every new tri bike has disc brakes. This program is as much in service of Cervelo, Quintana Roo, Felt and the other disc brake tri bike makers as it is in service of Zipp. You all are holding off on your new tri bike purchase because you have a garage full of expensive rim brake wheels. So…

You can take your Zipp wheels to your LBS, or haul them to Hawaii if you’re going to Kona, and you’ll receive instant credit. Trade in your Zipp rim brake wheels and get the disc brake wheels you need. Or whatever. If you take your HED, ENVE or what-have-you wheels, you’ll still receive credit, but we don’t know yet what that credit will be. Pro’s Closet will take a look (at pics of your trade-in wheels) and give you a “yes, we’ll take them” answer within a day, and the trade in value. Zipp wheels to trade in? Instant credit.

How Many Wheels?

Can you, let us say, trade in a half-dozen Zipp wheels to buy two? Yes. And this really surprised me. But… yes. That’s the answer. Drive all your wheels to your participating LBS, dump them off, trade them in, each wheel buys down the price of a set of new Zipps.

U.S. or Worldwide?

This promotion is U.S.-only except, of course, if you’re traveling to Kona. If you want to make this a simple Kona transaction, tote your extra wheels to Kona. This isn’t trivial, because of the vagaries and expense of airline baggage travel. For more on this, visit Ministry of Travel on our Reader Forum and we’ll tackle questions on what it might cost on the airline on which you’re traveling to take extra wheels to Kona.

LBS Versus Online

What if you don’t have a convenient LBS for this transaction? There’s a list of LBSs, and about 125 have already signed up to be a part of this promotion. Also on that link is a list of Internet Partners, and there are 5 in North America.

Are These the Wheels You Want?

What are the most desirable aero wheels these days? HED, Zipp, and ENVE are the Big Three as of this writing. These are the aero wheel brands you say you want, more than any other brand, when we query you.

Tubeless versus Tube Type

I’m just going to add my own $.02 here: You might want to think about your future tire use. You’re already moving, perhaps, to disc brake. Do you think you may be moving to tubeless within the life of these new wheels? If so, look more at 404s and 808s (the pic highest above) than at 454s and 858s (the pic just above) which – notwithstanding the fact that I’m clearly seeing Sebi riding these wheels with tubeless Schwalbe tires, are not rated for tubeless. This is also the chance for you to choose a cassette driver that will work for (say) 10-speed 1st-position cogs.

The Pro’s Closet

This is where your used wheels will end up. Who are these folks? If you’re Angela Naeth, who just won Ironman Chattanooga, or Lionel Sanders, who just won Ironman Augusta 70.3, and you’re in receipt of new product, what do you do with all that stuff you, a pro, have in your closet? Get it? But it’s not just for pros. Yes, there’s our Classifieds Forum and you can sell your used stuff there. But if you just want it gone, you send it to The Pro’s Closet. Or in the case of this promotion you take it to your LBS and then you don’t even have to worry about sending it to the Pro’s Closet. (Your LBS will do the shipping for you.)

If this article does not answer your questions, I’ve just placed a thread on our Reader Forum to answer what I didn’t cover here. If you write a Facebook comment just below this article, great. But if it’s a question, then I will only be answering the questions asked on the Forum thread I just linked to.