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Our 2011 Product Preview!
To see all the new 2011 bicycles and accessories in person, we travel to Las Vegas for the best industry-only bike show in America, Interbike. It took place this year from September 20 to 24. The first two days are spent at the Outdoor Demo, which is held about 30 minutes outside of Vegas and not too far from Lake Mead, in Bootleg Canyon. It's our chance to actually ride all the bikes we've been hearing about on Bootleg's surprisingly technical and fun trails and road loops.
The show goes indoors to the Sands Convention Center for the final three days. It's appropriate that the Sands is attached to the dazzling Venetian Casino right on the glitzy Las Vegas Strip because once you enter the show floor you're overwhelmed with the sights and sounds of this huge cycling party, with miles of aisles and almost every manufacturer putting their best foot forward.
Most beautiful bicycle ever? Trick-or-treat special? We'll let you decide. One thing's for certain, this Kestrel/Avia 4000 TT/triathlon aero rocket will attract attention. The striking finish is by famed painter Troy Lee. The details are quite, well, detailed. If you purchase one you'll want the matching kit!
Avid's Shorty Ultimates are the cantilever brakes found on most of the top cyclocrosser's bikes this year. Avid added plenty of adjustment options to keep racers happy: cable pull, spring tension and of course, pad angle. Initial reports confirm that they're powerful stoppers sure to keep you in control in the muck and mud. Plus, the road-style cartridge brake shoes let you easily swap brake pads so that they're compatible with the wheels you're running. It's a great feature for those of you training on aluminum and racing on carbon. What's more, these beautiful stoppers have an in-line quick release and weigh only 230 grams a pair.
Yep, it's cross season. So celebrate with a rad new ride, like All-City's Nature Boy, a sweet build at a nice price. Its chromoly frameset has horizontal dropouts and internal rear brake cable routing. And, this bike is super versatile with removable brake mounts, hidden fender mounts, clearance for 38c tires, and bottle mounts, making it ready for action however you plan to ride it. Other highlights include a flip-flop rear hub, Tektro cantilevers and WTB tires. Plus, the "Awesome Lime" paint is awesome.
Proving that quality doesn't have to cost a fortune, Banjo Brothers bring cleverly designed and well-made bags to all cyclists. Their Commuter Backpacks sport tough exteriors paired with floating liners to keep your gear dry, even in a downpour. Other standard features include reflective stripes, a mini U-lock pocket, a cell-phone holder and a taillight tab. The Commuter is available in Black and White in Medium (1,500 cubic inch/$79.99) and Large (2,000/$89.99).
BH enters the 2011 cross scene with a bang. Their all-new RX1 has a host of features that will bring a tear to the eye of any mud-loving warrior with a penchant for Spanish bikes. A burly tapered fork and a 1.5-inch lower headset race provide front-end stiffness and superior braking. Internally routed cables keep the top tube sleek and easy to shoulder and deliver shifting that's unfazed by mud and grime. BH also opted to go with an ultra-efficient BB30 bottom bracket and oversize tubes so you can put your power down on course, while including shaped stays to temper some of the rough terrain. Pricing starts at $2,999 for a complete bike with a SRAM Rival group.
Black Market is known for their impeccable steel dirt-jump and park bikes, but this boutique brand is spreading their wings. Owner and rider Carter Holland loves all things cycling and therefore tried his hand at dual suspension and fixed gear rigs. The Killswitch, which debuted this year, is their new 4-inch travel, slopestyle bike. It’s singlespeed friendly and has a custom-tuned, X-Fusion rear shock. For 2011, keep your eyes open for the NSF one-speed/fixed gear commuter with a beefed-up rigid fork, and their new 5.7-inch travel Roam.
Have you ever had a bike stolen? Have you reported it knowing there's little that can be done? A cool recovery tool was unveiled at Interbike by the non-profit, Bike Revolution. Embracing both smart phones and social media, they've developed tamper-resistant, scannable Pulse ID tags to identify and track down stolen bikes. These adhesive tags store a picture of your bike along with its serial number on a global database. When you report a stolen registered bike, local authorities and Bike Revolution’s social network is instantly updated. It costs $14.95 to purchase these scannable tags, and registration, listing of a stolen bike, stolen bike alerts, access to the database and the smart-phone app are all free!
"Handmade by machines." That's the tagline for BMC's Impec frameset. The Swiss company started the Impec project to produce the most exacting, precise and highest-quality carbon framesets possible. They use a 'shell node' system where each tube is precisely joined
to the rest of the frame so that BMC can individually tailor the carbon
layup for that tube's specific job for an unmatched ride quality. The initial results were such a success that 2009 World Champ Cadel Evans decided to race his at the Tour after just one ride. Plus, each bike is crafted one at a time in BMC's Swiss factory on a made-to-order basis with the most exacting quality control and the tightest of tolerances. All this Swiss precision will set you back $5,500 and you should expect a 5- to 6-week wait time as your Impec gets handmade by machines.
Love Campy? Love cross? Then you're going to love Campagnolo's new CX components. The CX cranksets feature a reduced bolt-circle diameter to accommodate smaller, cyclocross-specific chainrings and come in carbon and aluminum versions for 10 and 11 speed. They also use Campy's CX Power-Torque bottom brackets which have been improved with double-lipped seals to keep the elements out. Campy also rolled out CX versions of their Khamsin, Vento and Scirocco wheelsets. They're the same as their road versions, but have specially sealed bearings to thwart the mud and grime of nasty cross courses. Best of all, these goodies are available now so you can upgrade to Campy for your best cross season yet.
Top US crosser Tim Johnson doesn't have to worry about a heavy bike weighing him down. SRAM was showing off this just over 15-pound Cannondale SuperX in their booth. Cannondale's first carbon cross frame features SRAM Red components, Zipp 303 wheels, and Zipp's new Service Course aluminum bars, stem, and seatpost. It looks like Tim prefers classic bend bars, 32mm Dugast tubulars, a Prologo seat and Shimano XTR pedals.
Protect your dream machine from the risks of the road and trail with Cantitoe Road’s Shelter frame protector. This adhesive clear plastic protective tape is unlike ordinary types because it’s comprised of 50 layers of a micro-viscoelastic material that absorbs impacts and rebounds to its original shape. Think of it as a force field for your two-wheeler. The $29.95 package comes with 2 2- x 20-inch pieces.
You’ll stay high and dry on your next rainy ride as long as you’re packing Castelli’s Nano Flex warmers. Nano Flex is a new fabric that has the same insulating and breathing properties of Castelli’s standard warmers, plus unidirectional fibers that keep water out. As shown, moisture just beads up on the surface and runs right off. There are Nano Flex arm ($45), leg ($59.99) and knee ($45) warmers.
Few companies can top Chrome in the cool department and their attitude and style was on vivid display at Interbike. Their eye-catching booth featured employees building custom bags while we watched and it displayed their trendy new line inside slick urban scaffolding. Plus, they had a tattoo artist on hand to ink people up. One young man even had the Chrome griffin tattoo'd on his forearm. Why'd he do it? "I like it. It's a griffin." Exactly!
Possibly the coolest handlebars ever, Cinelli partnered with San Francisco artist Mike Giant to design the graphics on their RAM bar. This integrated bar/stem is super stiff, lightweight, and features a "wing" top section for comfort. Of course, it's all made of carbon and even includes a detachable computer/light mount. And, to get some fine artwork on all your bars, Cinelli also makes their renown tape with Mike Giant graphics.
When it comes to personal transportation, there's nothing more fun, efficient and elegant than the bicycle. However, carrying capacity has always been at a premium. Enter the Civia Halsted $995. This utilitarian rig is crafted with a sturdy steel frame and you can add a built-in front rack (sold separately). Ingeniously, the rack attaches to the frame (not the fork), so the rack doesn't turn when you steer meaning the bike handles great even with a load. Plus, it boosts the strength and load-carrying ability so you can pile on the groceries. The rack platform is even made from 100% recycled plastic.
We spotted these prototype Continental X-King tires on the bikes of two team Topeak-Ergon riders. They said it's a lightweight, all-duty tire that sheds mud very well. It has already been raced to victory at the Breck-Epic and Vapor Trail 125, and was flat-free in both events. If you want a set, they should be available early in the fall in 2.2 or 2.4-inch widths and UST, SuperSonic, and Protection models. Pictured is a well-used 2.4 and the sizing looks like it runs on the small side.
Crank Brothers has updated their entire pedal line for 2011 to increase durability and optimize their pedal-to-cleat interface. Both the Eggbeater and the Candy feature an updated axle that's 2mm shorter for more efficient pedaling. The pedals are made with all-new bearings and tougher bodies. In fact, most models come with a 5-year warranty to back it up. The most obvious change is to the Candy which now has tough aluminum wings in lieu of the older resin body (the Candy 2, Candy 3, and top-of-the-line Candy 11 get the anodized-aluminum treatment, while the entry-level Candy 1 retains an updated resin body).
Handlebar and stem experts, Deda was on the forefront of the 31.8mm movement that has since become the standard, and they're at it again. Their 35mm-diameter Trentacinque carbon handlebars and stem with titanium hardware and carbon are claimed to be 50% stiffer at a weight of just 346 grams. The bar tops are designed to be run without tape, thanks to a knurled surface that feels good, even without gloves. The 35mm diameter is about the same size as a 31.8mm bar with tape. Available in Red and White. Pricing hasn't been set.
With the days getting shorter and cooler, it's important to make sure drivers see you during your late afternoon and morning rides. DeFeet's Safe-T Kit includes their superb DuraGloves and ArmSkins in an eye-catching neon yellow. DeFeet's EcoMade fabric, which is composed of recycled plastic bottles, is woven into all of the pieces. We also liked their cool Share The Road Socks—the perfect message to flash with every pedal stroke.
You know who you are. You pedal uphill for hours just to get one sweet 30-minute descent. You slog over huge mountains with your long-travel bike in hopes of getting rad on the other side. Easton built their Haven components line just for you. Strong, light, easy on the eyes and built to be ridden hard, they're just what you need to upgrade your bike. We spied their Haven carbon wheelset, which weighs a feathery 1,450 grams and is available in all the common axle sizes for $2,300. Plus, Easton's so confident in their ruggedness that they're offering a 2-year, no-questions-asked warranty. Their Haven aluminum and carbon handlebars, stems and seatposts are equally impressive.
Tony Ellsworth tri bikes? You better believe it. The man famed for mountain bikes had requests for something a touch faster and so he unveiled the CO2efficient. Condensing Ellsworth's years of custom-building experience with road, tri and track frames, the CO2 features a near-net-molded carbon frame sure to save triathletes watts and time! Built using sustainable practices in Taiwan, the frame is then hand painted in Ramona, California. If this sounds like your kind of ride, you can purchase the frame for $3,295 or buy a complete bike with SRAM Force ($6,495) or Red ($7,495) components.
Once again, Enve Composites made theirs one of the most popular booths at the show by filling it with dream machines by master builders, likeParlee (left) and Vanilla (right). All these fabulous bicycles showed off Enve's line of carbon components, from their sweet 300-gram road rims to their trick forks, stems, seatposts and handlebars. We'd love to take these bikes home with us!
Now you can actually put a number on chain wear to ensure you’re running a good, safe chain, and so that a worn chain won’t prematurely wear out your cassette cogs and chainrings. Simply place Feedback Sports’ Chain Gauge on your chain and the digital display shows you how worn your links are. Designed in conjunction with chain-maker KMC, this $80 tool takes the guesswork out of drivetrain maintenance.
Finish Line’s Gear Floss is just the thing for cleaning between cassette cogs or any hard-to-reach nook and cranny on your bicycle. Each $7 package includes 20 washable 20-inch long ropes. They’re made of microfiber, which holds onto grease and grime and won’t leave lint behind, so they make cleaning fast, easy and effective.
First saddles, then bar tape and now shoes, Fizik is making you more comfortable one contact point at a time. Their new footwear line boasts two models for men and women, the flagship R1 and the more affordable R3. Both are handmade in Italy and use only the finest materials. Their innovative mobius rail and heel bands provide a glove-like fit that cradles your feet on the up and down strokes for maximum efficiency and comfort. The R3 comes in at $299 and has microtex/kangaroo leather uppers, while the R1 costs $399 and uses full kangaroo leather uppers, thermo-moldable insoles and featherweight carbon buckles. Don't your feet deserve the same loving Fizik care that your hands and backside already enjoy?
BMX riders are all about self-expression. And with the Spanish company, Flybikes, you can customize every minute detail of your ride from dust caps, to gyro plates, to custom colors. Flybikes' innovative designs lead to light, strong components, too. For example, their Uno Seat is an extra-stiff one-piece seat made of a nylon/fiberglass compound with external plates for extreme strength at a super-light weight. Their attention to detail is brilliant!
It pays to keep your eyes open at the big show. From the neatest new part to big-name cycling superstars, there's always something to see. Quietly occupying a corner in the continually busy Fox booth was the 2010 World Cup DH winning bike of British gravity fiend Gee Atherton. Fully sponsored by a number of huge brands, including Fox Racing Shox, of course, Gee's Commencal Supreme DH just came off the winning run at Windham Mountain, New York to be gawked at and drooled over in the Fox booth. Knowing that World Cup champions depend on Fox Shox, it's easy to rest assured they know what they're doing!
Tired of vibration and discomfort on longer rides? G-Form's replacement brake hoods are the first hoods to feature medical-grade pressure-relief gel inserts along the tops that damp vibration and provide a more comfortable perch for your palms. They'll be available in early December, 2010 to fit SRAM and Shimano levers.
Two years in development, and designed with input from pro racers like Levi Leipheimer, Giro’s new shoes look and feel race-ready. For example, with their Easton carbon soles, breathable microfiber uppers and even titanium hardware on the top-line Prolight SLX ($349) road shoes, you’re talking a gossamer pair weight of 200 grams (size 42). In fact, Giro is so determined to keep the weight down that every sole is weighed during production and rejected if it’s 3 grams too heavy. Equally impressive are the included EVA liners, which come with 3 different arch supports so you can dial in the perfect fit. Plus, they’re made of X-static, an anti-static silver fiber proven to reduce friction and heat for maximum comfort. It’s also anti microbial. Giro is offering 3 men’s and a women’s road shoe and 2 men’s and a women’s mountain-bike shoe.
Finally, a handy, simple and effective way to clean up after on-the-road/trail repairs. Just carry a Grease Monkey Wipe. These pre-packaged citrus-degreaser-moistened, non-toxic, all-natural 8- x 7-inch towels are perfect for cleaning up your components, hands or getting that chain tattoo off your leg. Cost is 99 cents each. You can also buy a canister of 30 wipes for your workbench for $4.95.
Where do old bicycle tubes go in the afterlife? If they're lucky, they go to Green Guru Designs to be reborn as backpacks, messenger bags and much more. Green Guru's Ruckus Backpack is built from these recycled tubes and fabric and makes a pretty serious statement. This Boulder-based company loads the Ruckus with functional features like a hydration pocket, laptop slot, padded straps and reflective accents. They're available now for $139.99.
Cyclocrossers take note: HED brought their revised Stinger 5 to Vegas. This heavily updated tubular wheelset answers the call for tougher, wider rims to fit tires from 25mm-wide and up. The new profile helps larger tires achieve a better shape for a smoother ride, while extra carbon plies are added for enhanced stiffness and durability. Weight is 1,314 grams for the pair with a price of $1,750. A highly anticipated Flamme Rouge version will also add a rear-hub grease port to keep your wheels running smoothly in the muck.
Hutchinson has finally solved the dilemma of adding tire sealant to tubes with non-removable valve cores. Their Protect' Air Max comes in an easy-to-handle size that'll fill 4 standard road tires with sealant (a larger 5-liter jug is also available). The real genius, however, is the use of a rubber gasket that allows sealant to flow into Presta valves with or without a removable core. Adding sealant just got a whole lot easier.
What happens when a misanthrope with a power drill and a couple of 3-inch screws has at it with your bicycle tire? If you're riding Hutchinson's new Serenity tire and "tube" system, you'll be able to hop on and ride. The Serenity inner tube isn't really a tube at all. It isn't filled with air, so it's flat-proof. And unlike other no-flat systems, Hutchinson promises a compliant ride, almost on par with traditional air-filled tires. Retail is expected to run about $80 for a tire and tube, and wear is estimated at 5,000 miles. These flat-free tires are perfect for heavier city and electric bikes with tough-to-remove rear wheels.
How tough is your hydration system? Hydrapak came to Interbike with a bicycle pump, a giant plexiglass box and a bunch of their bladders to prove a point: their bladders are leakproof and seriously durable. It took about two minutes of hard work to inflate one to the size of a giant beach ball, but as you can see, Hydrapak isn't full of hot air: their bladders are amazingly tough!
Interbikes’s bike-check room, downstairs in the Sands Convention Center is a beautiful sight to behold, though it can get a little chaotic. Hundreds of bikes were checked each day when cyclists, retailers, manufactures and media braved crazy Las Vegas traffic to bike to the show and then checked their bikes to keep them safe and sound. We all practice what we preach!
The gentle hum of an electric motor will be all they hear as you pass! iZip's electric-assist Express features a 750-watt motor that's over 2 times as powerful as most e-bike drivetrains. The high-power machinery turns a belt drive that's connected to a Sturmey-Archer Evol rear hub. The planetary-geared hub evens out the electric input and your pedal power to produce electrically assisted speeds from 0 to 20mph. You might not want to get to work faster than ever, but you will love passing gridlocked cars and Tour de France contenders on your way there!
Looking for a slick way to transport your bikes? Load 'em up on the Kuat Sherpa Hitch Rack. It carries 2 bikes with 20- through 29-inch wheels. There's also 13 inches of clearance between the bikes so they won't scratch each other. And, when you need to access your vehicle, the Sherpa just tilts out of the way—no bike removal necessary. Plus, the Sherpa weighs only 29 pounds for easy on/off, carries up to 80 pounds of bikes and even accepts Kuat's super-handy, plug-in Trail Doc repair stand.
One bad bird! Lapierre's Aerostorm TT frameset features sculpted aerodynamics, a hidden Shimano Di2 battery container in the down tube, a replaceable aero seatmast and adjustable fork rake. Available in 2011 in Small (50cm), Medium (54cm) and Large (56cm), this clock-beater includes a seatpost, clamp, fork and bearings to tip the scales at 5.2 pounds. The price is $3,900 and with the eye-catching Française des Jeux paint job, the competition will know they just got dusted by one funky chicken!
Ingeniously, LeMond Fitness’ Revolution Trainer ($549) takes the place of your rear wheel so you can say goodbye to tire wear and fussing with rollers on all your indoor rides. Plus, you’ll also be able to say adios to bringing a spare trainer wheel to events for warm-ups on your trainer. The Revolution’s ride is super-smooth thanks to a belt drive, and it boasts fan resistance that ramps up the intensity exactly like road riding. There’s also a 14-pound flywheel that complements the road-like feel, and the trainer weighs 32 pounds for easy portability. Add the optional Power Head ($349) with its Ant + compatibility and the Revolution can display and capture your watts and training data too.
New to Interbike was the 2-year-old Huntington Beach based company, LDG. Standing for Livery Design Gruppe, this 4-person firm designs everything fixie, and it’s all fabricated in house. They’re also at the forefront of the freestyle fixed-gear movement. To enhance their freestyle rides, they embrace more durable components from their BMX and MTB brothers. Combine a 14-mm rear hub specifically designed for fixies, add pegs, chainring, bashguard and a super durable one-speed frame, and you get the emerging breed of freestyle fixed-gear bicycles!
Limar, masters of the featherweight helmet, are expanding their line of lightweight lids for 2011. They trimmed the fat off their flagship Ultralight Road, bringing it down to 160 grams in Europe (and around 200 grams for the U.S. models). But road racers aren't the only ones that get to enjoy the weight savings: the Ultralight MTB tips postal scales at just a few grams more and provides riders with the same airy 22-vent design, a visor and graphics to match your favorite hydration pack. Even little ones get in on the action with the feathery Superlight for kids that cleverly trims the back to rest easily against trailer seats. Thanks to Limar, no one needs to get a sore neck ever again.
Look’s new top-line roadster, the 695 has to be one of the most attractive and adaptable bicycles on pavement. It boasts Look’s lovely sub-900-gram Continuous Fiber Design single-piece carbon frame, their HSC 7 carbon fork, and carbon dropouts front and rear. What makes the 695 so unique, though is Look’s proprietary Zed crankset, C-Stem and E-Post seatpost. The Zed is a one-piece 320-gram carbon crankset that accepts compact and standard chainrings and pairs with the frame’s massive 65mm bottom bracket for awesome pedaling efficiency. Thanks to special pedal-hole inserts, you can also quickly and easily choose 170, 172.5 or 175mm crankarm lengths. Meanwhile, Look’s C-Stem uses no spacers yet provides a cm of reach adjustment and can be set from -9 to 13 degrees to nail your bar height. And, Look’s E-Post has an integrated elastomer (3 densities are included) to keep your rides super smooth. Price for the frame, fork, crankset, stem, seatpost and Look Keo Blade pedals is approximately $5,500.
Power to the pedals! Power, as in watts measurement that is – the most accurate way to gauge your ride intensity and track your training. It’s courtesy of a new pedal/cyclo-computer/software system from Look and Polar called the Look Keo Power. The advantage of having power measurement in the pedals is being able to monitor each leg’s output individually to identify weaknesses and balance your efficiency. Compared to hub- and crankset-based watt meters, it’s also easier to move the system to other bicycles. The pedals include transmitters, that add only 150 grams to the Keos (pair). The Keo Powers are compatible with Polar’s CS500, CS600 and CS600X computers (sold separately). The companies expect the pedals to be available in spring of 2011 for about $2,300.
In a modest tent on the outskirts of the Outdoor Demo expo area, where most attendees usually pass without a second thought, these unique wheels caught our eye. They're called Mad Fiber and the rim, spokes, and hub shells are made of 100% carbon. Even with aero front/rear rim depths of 60mm and 66mm, the total weight for the set is only 1,080 grams! How do they do it? A special molding process and a specific fiber lay-up allows Mad Fiber to eliminate excess material and maximize the benefits of carbon. This process also provides a large surface area for bonding, which spreads the stress load and results in a super-strong wheel with no rider weight limit. Wind-tunnel testing has shown they're up there with the best aerodynamically, and they have a 4-year warranty. Now, that's nothing to get mad about!
Maxxis throws their hat into the tubeless road tire market with its Padrone, a 700 x 23c dual-compound clincher with carbon beads. It weighs 290 grams, has a 120-tpi casing and features their Silkworm puncture protection that runs from bead to bead to fight flats. Price hasn’t been set yet.
MyNav MN 700 Bike Pro isn't for the bike, or the car, or for walking, it's for all three! This cool GPS unit is designed as an all-in-one navigator that can take you from the highway to bike trails and to a coffee shop afterwards. Its 3.5-inch touchscreen is bright and easy to read, plus the MyNav can also issue verbal directions so you can keep your eyes on the road. The MN 700 logs and displays elevation profiles, training and trip data so you can analyze your rides with ease. The MN 700 should be available in January, 2011 for $599.
The Swedish company POC employs material and ergonomic specialists, engineers, industrial designers, doctors and of course, high-flying athletes to design their products—and it shows. For example, their Spine VPD Hydration Pack has all the bells and whistles for hydration plus it doubles as a back protector. Utilizing VPD (Visco-Elastic Polymer Dough) as its shock-absorbing core and a polypropylene shell, it's pliable and then hardens on impact for protection. Meanwhile, their Cortex DH helmet offers their patented MIPS technology that reduces the effects of oblique impacts (the most common impact) by utilizing a friction plate that reduces rotational forces on the brain. POC’s gear is beautifully designed, comfortable to wear and most importantly, exceedingly protective.
iPhone 4 and iPod Touch users who ride will rejoice when Pedal Brain's cool new cradle and app are released. They turn your device into an ANT+ enabled powerhouse of cycling information. You can sync to your calendar to track workouts and can upload data directly to the web in real time. The trick software also brings live graphing and GPS mapping within easy reach. And, because the sensor is in the cradle, it won't drain your phone battery. Prices start at $195 for the software and a tough nylon cradle and it should be available this fall. Watch for a carbon cradle later.
Batteries are definitely not included with the Pedalite Baglite. That's because it's solar-powered! The Baglite charges even in weak or artificial light, features constant or flashing modes and offers 360-degree visibility thanks to 2 white front floodlights and a red rear floodlight. Plus, it transfers easily from one pack to another by means of Velcro straps so everyone in the family can have a safe pack when they go out. The lights last about 3 hours from a single charge and are weather and impact resistant. The Baglite will be available around the new year for approximately $45. Fellow commuters, peace of mind is yours!
Make no mistake about it, it's h-o-t HOT in the Outdoor Demo desert! Thankfully Pearl Izumi brought a whole truckload of their Sun Sleeves. These innovative coverings look like arm warmers, but they actually offer UPF 40+ protection from the sun's harmful rays and repel heat to keep you cool. They're right- and left-specific and boast mesh panels on the bottom for additional cooling. Pearl also had an assortment of their new 1:1 Insoles to try out. These modular footbeds come with varus wedges and arch supports that conveniently slide into dedicated slots so you can customize the fit for maximum comfort and efficiency. And, you don't have to worry about buying extra equipment for them. All of the wedges and supports are included in the box.
Phil Wood & Co. is one of the oldest American cycling component manufacturers whose products are still completely manufactured here in the US—and they are products you can truly be proud of. One glance at their booth and you’re drawn into a selection of components that more closely resembles jewelry. The pictured hubs feature extra-high flanges for impeccable durability, and four, double-row pawls for instant and reliable pedal engagement. Their hubs come in a variety of forms for track, road, mountain, tandem and BMX bicycles. And although they're not the lightest hubs available, they'll probably last a lifetime.
An already awesome mountain bike, Pivot's Mach 5, is refined and renamed for 2011 as the Mach 5.7. The rear travel has been increased by 12mm, while the frame weight has been cut by 230 grams. Its tapered head tube with a slacker angle and lower bottom bracket translated into a great ride on the unfamiliar trails at the Outdoor Demo. This DW-Link suspension bike pedaled extremely well uphill and handled like a dream, all while providing Pivot's awesome bump absorption. Features that are carried over from last year include a press-fit bottom bracket and the direct-mount front derailleur. You'll be keeping up with your cross-country racer friends on the climbs then dropping them on the descents with this super ride.
We loved the sweet ride of Raleigh's International. Reynolds chromoly composes the frameset with chrome lugs adding just enough eye-catching flair. Although the International has been around for many years, this rendition features cutting-edge Shimano Dura-Ace components including wheels, and a classic San Marco Regal saddle. This versatile rig felt lively out on the road and light enough for racing, plus it's compliant and smooth for comfort. It'll be available this spring.
Tucked away in the corner of the convention center, the Urban Lounge is a place where one can collect their thoughts, sip a cocktail or latte while the DJ spins tranquil beats on her elevated platform above the bar. But come 3:30 on Wednesday and Thursday afternoon, the Urban Lounge transforms into a glitzy runway. This year's fashion show, called Ready-To-Ride, blended trendy cycling outfits with utilitarian commuters, sexy cruisers and easy-to-use accessories. The glam and boomin’ beats showed how convenient, safe and fashionable commuting has become. And the bikes, models and products filled us with a sense of freedom—bicycle freedom.
If you're looking for extra carrying capacity and a power boost while riding, the folks at Ridekick have just the thing for you. Their handy Ridekick trailer boasts 1,160 cubic inches for your gear and a powerful 500-watt motor with a handlebar-mounted throttle. Its lead-acid battery has an approximate 12-mile range and can propel you to about 19mph. Ridekick's souped-up trailer will be available in spring at a price of $549. What's more, the Ridekick attaches to almost any bike so you can get your shopping and bike commuting done quicker than ever!
What Colnago is to Italy, what Look is to France, what Orbea is to the Basque Country, Ridley is to Belgium. To celebrate their heritage, they're rolling out a few Flandrien models for 2011. The proudly Flemish livery will adorn select Helium, Excalibur and Icarus models, and it's sure to make all your pavé-obsessed riding buddies envious. The Helium we saw at Interbike was dressed up with one of the few SRAM Red LTE groups in existence and custom-stickered Zipp wheels. Although you won't be able to purchase that exact setup, you can get the frame for $2,900 and spec it out with your favorite components. Or you could get the complete Excalibur with Shimano Ultegra for $3,195. Either way you slice it, these Belgian bikes look fierce.
There are plenty of car racks with mounts for bikes with quick-release wheels. Now, there's one for bikes with through-axles too: Rockymounts' Drive Shaft. It has a center cam that opens wide for easy loading, then clamps down on your axle with high-friction rubber pads that prevent your axle from being unscrewed. It works with 15 or 20mm axles and fits standard fork mounts from Rockymounts, Yakima and Thule. The included base quickly transforms the Drive Shaft into a secure bolt-on mount. The Drive Shaft comes with the lock and 2 keys for $64.95, a small price to pay for peace of mind.
Salsa is so into epic rides that they've built their whole new line around getting out there and exploring. They've even come up with a new slogan: "Salsa. Adventure by bike." And we believe them with their interesting, innovative products like the Mukluk snow bike. Built with unbelievably fat tires, disc brakes and a 27-speed drivetrain, it's ready for the harshest conditions you dare to ride in. We liked their Anything Cage too, a cage on steroids built to hold insulated Nalgene bottles and other useful items that will fit. It retails for $20 and fits Salsa's 3-bolt frame mounts as found on their adventure-ready Fargo. It's a great way to free up bag space and it makes exploring on your bike easier than ever.
Wouldn’t it be great to be able to roll up to a 7-Eleven, swipe your credit card through this machine and get a spare tube for your ride? You can’t do that yet, but if Schwalbe manages to bring their tube vending machines to America, this convenience might soon be available. Right now it’s popular in Europe and they only need to convert the machine to accept credit-card payments in order to bring it here.
The first thought that came into our minds while looking at Nino Schurter's World Champion Scott Scale was, "I'm glad I don't have to race against that guy!" This bike was built for pure speed with a SRAM XX drivetrain, Avid XX brakes, a DT Swiss fork, and Ritchey bars and seatpost, all made of carbon. Trust us, this thing was insanely light! Check out the carbon tubular wheels with handmade Dugast tires!
Showers Pass, based in Portland, Oregon, knows a thing or two about riding in the rain, and their Elite Pro Jacket is proof positive. What sets this breathable, wind and waterproof jacket apart is the fit. Its snug pro cut prevents flapping, with stretchy softshell fabric on the sides to fit you like a second jersey. The sealed 2-way zipper lets you customize your ventilation and is slightly offset at the neck to clear your Adam's apple when zipped up. Core zips, a rear vent and wide cuffs keeps you from overheating and reflective accents front and rear keep you safe in the dim light of fall. It weighs just 8.5 ounces and sells for $230.
Do you wish your closet looked like this? Sidi displayed a wall-full of their Ergo 2 Carbon Lite shoes. These new kicks feature synthetic uppers, their handmade Carbon Lite Soles and an adjustable heel retention system. Of course, Sidi's excellent fit and legendary craftsmanship are still there. We didn't count how many pairs were displayed, but it's enough to last a lifetime!
Tired of lugging your pump in your hydration pack? Sick of your frame-mounted mini getting clogged with dirt on rides? SKS showed a clever solution at Interbike. Their Stowaway Handlebar Pump ($21.99) hides inside your bar and replaces your end cap, too. O-rings keep it snug and help it fit inside most bars. The pump head accepts Presta and Schrader valves and the Stowaway inflates tires up to 90psi.
Tubeless road wheels need strong, specially designed rims to form an airtight seal with tubeless tires. The result can be rims slightly heavier than standard tube-and-tire models, but not after the engineers at Stan's NoTubes get done with them. Their ZTR Alpha 340 Pro wheels ($1,100) are featherweight, tipping the scales at just 1,200 grams for the set. They use Stan's proprietary rim design for a better seal and come with Stan's rim tape, skewers and wheel bags. The ZTR Alpha 340 Pros boast super-smooth American Classic hubs and reliable DT Swiss spokes.
German company, Stevens, is getting a little more recognition on this side of the ocean, with several high-profile crossers, including Katie Compton, riding one this season. Stevens doesn't just make cyclocross bikes though, and they brought along their SLC Team to Interbike to prove just how well they know the road, too. It's a rocket, designed to be light, fast and agile with an oversize frame and chainstays that ensure awesome efficiency. And, the fork is built with slightly curved blades and a tapered steerer so you get the compliance and the precision handling that, with the frame, translate into that perfect ride you're looking for.
Big wheels, big results. Specialized's S-Works Epic 29er is new for 2011 and it already has a US XC National Championship to its name. Todd Wells raced this featherweight to glory in Sol Vista this summer and now you can own the same unbridled speed the pros use. The Medium comes out of the box at just 21 pounds and it's equipped with the best of the best. First and foremost is Specialized's FACT-carbon frame that boasts 100mm of their legendary FSR suspension. In addition to the Specialized Brain shock in the back, you get a custom-tuned, Brain-equipped RockShox Reba fork with a carbon crown and steerer for the utmost in efficiency and precision. You also get a SRAM XX group and a spread of Specialized's carbon components. Pick up this baby for $9,400 and make your way to the podium.
Specialized was celebrating the success of their most famous road racer, Alberto Contador, by displaying his Tour-winning S-Works Tarmac. His scorching-fast, Maillot Jaune-themed road rocket sports the same tapered steerer, massive down tube, S-Works oversize crankset and Zipp 404s that you can buy. Unlike your bike, though, Contador's features airbrushed graphics with his name and "Pistolero" victory salute. Vive le Tour! Vive Specialized!
If you think all socks are the same, wait until you try on a pair of Swiftwicks! They're super strong, soft and comfortable thanks to their extremely high-density thread count, which also keeps trail debris away from your skin. Just like the name implies, they efficiently move moisture for quick evaporation so you stay dry. Swiftwick socks are made in Tennessee, too.
It's a fact of life that setting up a roof rack can be challenging. 'No more!' Thule says. Their Speed-Link strap mounts quickly and easily attaches to your roof bars without tools. They'll keep your prized rides safe and secure on your roof, too. They lock in place with Thule's lock cores and have a metal strip inside the strap that prevents cutting. Thule expects to phase the Speed-Link mounts into the majority of their rack line over the next couple of years. We can hardly wait.
Just because you're commuting by bicycle doesn't mean you can't be stylish. Timbuk2's Shift Pannier brilliantly combines on-the-bike function with off-the-bike style. It's fashioned to work and look like a regular Timbuk2 messenger bag, plus it features stowaway rack-attachment clips for easy on/off, a carrying handle and a shoulder strap so you can comfortably take it with you walking or riding. They'll be availble in a few colors and will sell for $100.
Trek's Speed Concept is a technological tour de force. Its sculpted Kamtail aero shape feels like it instantly adds 3mph to your best pace. Look down as you're churning out the watts and you'll notice that there's not a cable or brake in sight. They're neatly tucked inside the frame! The clean lines and ingenious design translate into pure speed out on course and Bontrager's Speed Concept front end puts you in the perfect position—no wind tunnel required. Come into the store and we'll show you the rest of the impressive bells and whistles on this PR-shattering missile.
At the Trek tent, Trek World Racing Team member Emily Batty's XC Top Fuel 9.9 SSL race bike was displayed with a custom maple leaf paint theme. Upgrades for 2011 include front and rear remote lockouts, internal cable routing, and Trek's OCLV Mountain carbon for the frame, which has better impact resisitance than aluminum. Emily's Fuel had special custom touches, including a one-piece carbon bar/stem combo, stubby bar ends—and notice how her setback seatpost is reversed for a more forward seat position. Crazy.
Cross season is here, and TRP has a better way to stay in control with their CX9 Brakes. These miniature linear-pull grippers work with your exisiting road brake/shift levers and provide serious bite in all conditions, from dry and dusty to full-on mud-fests. Plus, the wide-open arm design sheds mud easily and the come with rustproof and super-light titanium hardware that allows them to clock in at a scant 148 grams per wheel. They're available in Black and Red and retail for $129.99 per pair.
Already a maker of stellar swim goggles favored by many triathletes, TYR showed their Gelseal Pilot Goggle at Interbike. It boasts a gasket made out of gel-like material called D.10 TPR. This is 30% softer than the previous gasket material. And, it means a great, leak-free fit and excellent vision and comfort. Add its varied tensile-strength strap and low-profile clearview polycarbonate lenses and you have one awesome swim goggle for all you workouts and races.
Talk about a joy ride! Ultramotor's A2B Metro is a handful of fun thanks to its electric twist throttle. And, its 749-watt motor can easily hit speeds of 20mph whether you're pedaling or not. So lean hard into that corner with the inside pedal up and accelerate through it—the A2B's 20 x 3.0-inch tires love to grip hard! It also comes with a rear shock and a suspension fork with beefy legs to help you roll over anything. Other great touches include a built-in speedometer, commute-ready rack, plush seat and reliable kickstand. The Metro sells for $2,800 and gives you a chance to hum that wedding classic as you tell your friends, "It's Electric!"
A stroll through FSA's space led us to Vision's cool new Metron TT component group, which features a crankset, derailleurs, shifters and a cassette—and carbon, titanium and ceramic materials. This surprising entry into the the hotly-contested groupset marketplace offers tasty touches and neat features that'll have many triathletes and time trialists clamoring for a test ride. We were impressed with the Aero shifters, which resemble brake levers and always return to their default wind-cheating position. You simply squeeze the levers to shift into easier gears, and press the lever bodies in with your thumbs to hit harder gears. Very trick.
For those roadies who have always wished for more stopping power, and brakes that work no matter the weather, Volagi displayed their Venga EL, a full-on carbon lightweight with disc brakes front and rear. Beyond the superior braking it also boasts a tapered steerer and a BB30 bottom bracket for pedaling efficiency. Plus, Volagi includes 6mm of ride compliance for comfort with their flexing Long Bow stays. Back to the discs, the front and rear disc mounts meet mountain-bike safety standards and even include fender mounts. And, since brake clearance issues are nil, you can run up to a 30c tires, too. The $3,600 Venga weighs 17 pounds and will be available in spring.
Lookin' good, sports fans! VOmax now makes officially licensed cycling apparel for your favorite NHL, NBA and MLB squads. The custom clothes maker is putting their 28 years of experience to good use by making your new favorite jersey, shorts and arm warmers. Their licensed jerseys and shorts sell for $79.95 each so you can show your team pride on every ride. Now you can do what you've always wanted to do: say, "Go Cubbies," without speaking a word!
Chain lube messing up your garage floor or workbench? Afraid to lube your bike in your dorm room or hotel? You’ll love White Lightning’s Bicycle Maintenance Mat. You get 2 per $7.95 package and each measures 16 x 18 inches. They’re comprised of a lint-free and absorbent top layer, an even more absorbent middle layer, and a plastic bottom that won’t let any lube through. The mats are so absorbent that they’ll hold up to a quart of oil! Besides being ideal for lubing your chain, they make a soft, clean, lint-free working surface on your workbench, too. You can even line your toolbox drawers with them!
A great way to upgrade your bike is with a new set of wheels, and WTB's new Strykers should be on your short list. They're available in 26-, all-mountain 26-, and 29-inch models with your choice of hub axle configurations. WTB tire designer Mark Weir has already won the Downieville Classic on the Strykers, which are tubeless-ready with tape and valves pre-installed. They also use WTB's Tubeless Compatible System, meaning they have a UST-ready bead. And, at only 1,430 grams for the 26-inch Cross Country model, you'll really notice the upgrade!
That's right folks, Yeti is celebrating their silver anniversary this year and they're doing it in yellow and turquoise style. For the occasion Golden, Colorado's favorite bike company is decking out their venerable 575 model and the new 303 DH WC with the livery that their World Cup racers used back in the day. But, if you want one of these custom-painted rigs, you're going to have to act quick—the 575 frameset goes for $3,000 and is limited to 250, and the 303 runs $3,800 and there are only 100 of them. The regular 575 is also seeing a few tweaks for 2011. It's getting a tapered head tube, a stouter swingarm, ISCG mounts, a direct-mount front derailleur and a through-axle rear end. Expect the 575 frame and shock to come in at around $1,900. On the trail it's worth every penny!
We spotted the elusive Yeti at... where else? The Yeti/Fox booth at the Outdoor Demo. Standing over 8-feet tall, he was quite a sight to see. With temps in the 100s, we were sure this bigfoot was about to become even more elusive!
Crafted in Seoul, Korea, Zimbale bags are made of heavy-duty cotton canvas with leather reinforcements and tabs for a classic look and excellent durability. The fabric is treated with paraffin on the outside and polyurethane inside for top water-resistance. Shown is their 2.3-liter Seat Pouch, which can also be handlebar mounted and boasts a spacious interior with a drawstring closure and a flip lid, so it’ll hold tools, a jacket and a lot more. It attaches to any seat and includes a taillight holder. The Seat Pouch is available in Black and Green and sells for about $54. Zimbale makes larger saddle bags and racktop models too.
Zipp spends countless hours in the wind tunnel and out on the road testing and refining their rim shapes. This results in some extremely fast wheels, and for 2011, the introduction of a carbon clincher. About 150 grams lighter than their 404 aluminum clinchers, and faster than their previous-generation 808s, Zipp's new 404 carbon clinchers use their wide Firecrest rim shape for the same aerodynamic advantage as tubular wheels. They've also engineered the rim shape for more stability in crosswinds. And, check out the aerodynamic dust caps on the hubs that save a whopping 2 to 3 watts! No detail is too small for Zipp.