The rigours of racing between the tapes demand high performance from both competitors and their bikes, and so the development of bikes, and the components fitted to them, are inextricably linked to racing. At BikeRadar we’re lucky to have two members of the team, Rob Weaver and Luke Marshall, who have competed at World Cup level downhill. They, along with our tech-expert Seb Stott, dig deep into how the world of racing has, or hasn’t, influenced the design of the modern mountain bike in our latest BikeRadar Podcast. How much do you think racing has influenced mountain bike design? Let us know in the comments! Joe Norledge racing at the Glentress 7 on Scott Scale. Peter Smith (@petersmithmtbphotos — Instagram) How to listen to the BikeRadar Podcast If you want to download the BikeRadar Podcast to your iPhone, you can find it on iTunes. Alternatively, it can be streamed via Spotify and all the other usual podcast services. Don’t forget our other mountain bike series, Tech Talk, which can easily be found through the links below. In these, Tom Marvin and Seb Stott have a detailed look at a particular aspect of mountain bike design or technology. The late UK racing legend and DH pioneer Jason McRoy rode this Specialized FSR at Mammoth Mountain – things have changed considerably over the years! James Blackwell/MBUK Previous BikeRadar Podcast episodes Episode 1 — Cycling Plus‘ Bike of the Year Special (Spotify/iTunes) Episode 2 — MBUK‘s Trail Bike of the Year Special (Spotify/iTunes) Episode 3 — The BikeRadar Podcast | How do £10k bikes even exist? (Spotify/iTunes) Episode 4 — The BikeRadar Podcast | SRAM versus Shimano, and more! (Spotify/iTunes) Episode 5 — The BikeRadar Podcast | Why do all bikes look the same? (Spotify/iTunes) Episode 6 – The BikeRadar Podcast | Is it time to ditch ‘The Rules’? (Spotify/iTunes) Episode 7 – The BikeRadar Podcast | Road tubeless — the what, why and how (Spotify/iTunes) Episode 8 – The BikeRadar Podcast | Purism be damned, this is why we love e-MTBs (Spotify/iTunes) Episode 9 – The BikeRadar Podcast | Do you really need more than one bike? (Spotify/iTunes) Previous BikeRadar Tech Talk Podcast episodes BikeRadar Tech Talk Podcast Episode 1: Fork Offset — all you need to know BikeRadar Tech Talk Podcast Episode 2: Mountain bike suspension dampers BikeRadar Tech Talk Podcast Episode 3: Mountain bike geometry BikeRadar Tech Talk Podcast Episode 4: Linkage forks Bikeradar Tech Talk Podcast Episode 5: Wheel size BikeRadar Tech Talk Podcast Episodes 6 and 7: Suspension Springs and MTB Drivetrains
Happy Monday Frothers! ‘Tis the start of a new week here at Flow HQ, but sadly that means it’s also the end of the 2019 Cape to Cape over in Western Australia, which from all reports has been one of the most thrilling and successful editions ever. Mick has been out in the Wild Wild West for the past week shooting photos for the event, so for those of you who haven’t checked them out yet, make sure you get a look at some of the best shots over on the Flow MTB Instagram feed. While he was over there, Mick also papped some amazing shots of a very special custom Giant Anthem that was gifted to Brendan ‘Trekky’ Johnson to celebrate a very special milestone. That bike is a b-e-a-uty! There’s been plenty happening elsewhere too, with Norco having unleashed its brand new Optic, which is basically nothing like the previous generation Optic. Check out our video on the 2020 Norco Optic below to see what we mean; As well as new bikes, there’s also been a big development in the suspension world, with Giant Bicycles surprising everyone with the launch its new Crest 34 fork. We were one of the first news outlets to run a story on it, and from first glance, it actually looks like it could be a decent trail fork. Given that it’s manufactured entirely in-house by Giant, we wonder what Fox and RockShox are thinking right about now… There’s been heaps of other new product news over the past fortnight too. Stan’s NoTubes has developed a clever tubeless tyre repair tool called the DART, and Canyon has unveiled a bunch of new models within the 2020 Spectral range. We’ve also got our hands on a fresh Lux in for a proper long term review, so be sure to take a closer look at our 2020 Canyon Lux CF 8.0 test bike here. Say hello to our newest long term test bike – the 2020 Canyon Lux CF SL 8.0! Perhaps the most exciting story of the past week though has been the announcement of our latest competition, where you or one of your lucky riding mates, could win a 2020 Giant Reign 29er! No, that isn’t a typo – you could actually win a carbon fibre Reign 29, along with an epic weekend at the 2019 Cannonball Festival in Thredbo, worth over seven thousand dollars. If this is news to you, get entering right now for one of the biggest competitions of the year! With that important slice of news out of the way, it’s time to get stuck into this edition of Flow’s Fresh Produce – our regular product round-up article where we take a closer look at all the new test goodies that have showed up for review here at Flow HQ. Grab yourself a cuppa, sit back, relax, and enjoy! BikeYoke Divine SL Dropper Post The BikeYoke Divine SL is one seriously lightweight dropper post. German brand BikeYoke has been making waves in recent years with its superb Revive dropper post – a big favourite here at Flow. The Divine SL is a newer model from BikeYoke, though this one is firmly targeted at the weight-sensitive XC riders out there. Claimed to be the lightest dropper post in the world, the Divine SL features just 80mm of travel. That might not sound like much (especially alongside BikeYoke’s own 185mm travel options) but for XC riders and racers, 80mm is likely to be sufficient. The short-travel design means much of the internals of the Divine SL can be made significantly smaller. Along with a machined alloy body that has been relieved of as much excess material as possible, the Divine SL comes in at just 401g (31.6mm) and 388g (30.9mm) on our Scales Of Broken Dreams. The shorter internals mean the base of the Divine SL post is actually hollow, which isn’t unlike what you’d see with an XC fork from Fox and RockShox. Because of this, the Divine SL is cuttable – so if you’ve got sufficient room to do so, you could remove a few extra grams by slicing off part of the outer tube, just like you would do with a regular seatpost. Total length is 400mm, and the Divine SL is available in 30.9mm and 31.6mm diameters. You can get a 2x compatible handlebar remote, or the 1X Triggy that we’ve received with our test post. From: MTB Direct (AUS), or BikeYoke (INTL) Price: $620 BikeYoke Triggy 1x Dropper Post Lever The Triggy X is BikeYoke’s dropper post remote, which is compatible with a wide range of cable-activated dropper posts. You can mount it via the standard bar clamp (shown), or via a SRAM MatchMaker clamp. To go with our Divine SL test post, we’ve got the BikeYoke Triggy remote. This is a 1X specific remote that sits underneath the left-hand side of the handlebar, and features an adjustable paddle as well as a SRAM MatchMaker compatible mount. If you’re running a Shimano brake lever, BikeYoke makes the Triggy in an I-Spec version so you can bolt it directly to the brake lever clamp. From: MTB Direct (AUS), or BikeYoke (INTL) Price: $85 BikeYoke Shifty A fancy fidget spinner? Ah that’s where it goes! BikeYoke’s Shifty is designed as an upgrade for SRAM 1×11 and 1×12 derailleurs. As well as dropper posts, BikeYoke manufacturers a whole range of upgrade components, including aftermarket shock yokes for existing Specialized and Canyon bikes (that’s where the BikeYoke name originates from). One of the smallest and most unassuming devices that BikeYoke manufactures is this little machined alloy wheel called the ‘Shifty’. What exactly does it do? It’s designed to replace the stock plastic wheel in the back of your SRAM 1×11 or 1×12 derailleur, which according to BikeYoke, can exhibit ghost shifting when riding through particularly wet and muddy conditions. The Shifty utilises a sealed cartridge bearing to provide smoother cable operation, and in theory more accurate shifting, regardless of the conditions. Available in a black, gold or red anodized finish, at the very least it looks rather snazzy! From: MTB Direct (AUS), or BikeYoke (INTL) Price: $50 BikeYoke Squeezy BikeYoke made the Squeezy to provide more even force distribution around frames and seatposts. It’s also quite light. Also in our BikeYoke test box was this little seat collar called the Squeezy. Made from CNC machined Al-7075-T6 alloy and featuring a Ti-6Al-4V titanium torx bolt, the Squeezy weighs just 9 grams (36.4mm size), making it exceptionally lightweight. BikeYoke says the Squeezy isn’t just light though, with a band-style design that makes it less prone to ‘pinching’ your frame’s seat tube and seatpost, and instead providing more even clamping force around the entire circumference. From: MTB Direct (AUS), or BikeYoke (INTL) Price: $45 AMS Honeycomb XL Frame Guard All Mountain Style makes a range of stick-on frame protection, including this XL kit we’ve applied to our Canyon Lux long term test bike. Arriving just in time to fit to our newest long term test bike, this XL Frame Guard kit from All Mountain Style (AMS) is one of three different frame protection kits from the Barcelona-based brand. Designed to shield your bike’s paint finish from rock chips and cable wear, the stick-on panels are made from high impact-resistant PVC that is sufficiently flexible for wrapping around curvy downtubes and slender seatstays. Automotive-grade adhesive is designed to create a strong bond between the guard and the frame. The XL Frame Guard kit comprises of a large panel for underneath the downtube – a particularly vulnerable area on any mountain bike – along with arrow-shaped panels to line the underside of the BB shell, and several rectangular strips for protecting the chain and/or seatstays. AMS also makes an XXL kit that comes with additional panels, as well as specific kits for fork legs, crank arms, and chainstays. From: Lusty Industries Price: $89.95 Hornit Clugs Weird name, simple bike storage. With a load of different test bikes on the go at the moment, this box of Clugs from Hornit has come at the perfect time to help with some storage organisation. Proclaimed as the ‘World’s Smallest Bike Rack’, the Clug is designed to help you store your bike vertically on a wall. Hornit makes an array of different Clugs to suit various types of bikes, with the smallest Clug suiting road bike tyres, and the XXL Clug suiting plus tyres up to 3.2in wide. Using a simple U-clamp structure that bolts straight to a wall of your choosing (wood or brick is fine, though not hollow plasterboard), the shapely Clug is designed to hug your bike’s front tyre. The weight of the bike isn’t supported by the Clug itself though – the Clug merely holds the front wheel to stabilise the bike, while the majority of the weight is supported by the rear wheel, which remains on the ground. Clever! From: Pushys Price: $24.99 – $34.99 Shimano Deore XT BB-MT800-P Press-Fit Bottom Bracket Shimano’s XT-level press-fit bottom bracket will soon be pressed into service *giggle* We recently received an SLX M7100 groupset from Shimano for a long term test, though one of the missing pieces of the puzzle is this press-fit bottom bracket. Designed specifically for Shimano Hollowtech II cranksets (all modern Deore, SLX, XT & XTR cranksets), the BB-MT800-P bottom bracket uses sealed cartridge bearings and resin cups for a smooth fit with alloy or carbon PF92 bottom bracket shells. From: Shimano Price: $49 Shimano SL-MT800 Dropper Post Lever The second dropper post lever in our list comes from Shimano. This one’s designed to bolt straight to a modern Shimano brake lever via the I-Spec EV system. Also joining the SLX groupset is Shimano’s under-the-bar dropper post lever. Designed to mount directly to a new-school Shimano left hand brake lever via the I-Spec EV mount, the MT800 dropper lever gets lateral adjustment via the single mounting bolt. A sealed cartridge bearing promises smooth actuation, and the cable-activated design is compatible with a wide range of dropper posts already on the market. From: Shimano Price: $89 Shimano RT-MT800 Disc Brake Rotors Fancy heat-fighting disc brake rotors from Shimano. More puzzle pieces, this time for the 4-piston SLX M7120 disc brake callipers. The latest RT-MT800 disc brake rotor sits at a Deore XT M8100 level, and uses Shimano’s Ice Technologies sandwich construction that sees a stainless steel braking surface mated to an alloy core for improved heat dissipation. The outer rotor is then mounted to a forged alloy central spider, which is hollowed out for weight savings. Look closely at the backside, and you’ll see a pocket designed to fit a speed magnet for e-MTBs. We’ve got both 203mm and a 180mm rotors with a Centerlock disc rotor spline, though Shimano also offers this same rotor in 160mm and 140mm sizes. There isn’t a 6-bolt version, though Shimano still makes those in the existing RT-86 rotor. From: Shimano Price: $89 (180mm), $105 (203mm) Shimano TL-BT03S Bleed Kit A basic tool to suit our basic mechanical abilities. And to help us get those SLX brakes installed and setup, Shimano sent us out the basic bleed kit that includes both the lever reservoir cup tool, and a plastic syringe for injecting fresh mineral oil through the system. We foresee some workshop beers and an epic Essential Mix playlist in our near future. From: Shimano Price: $40 Fox Defend Shorts Fox Defend shorts get a neat ratchet closure system for adjusting the waist. Fresh threads have just arrived from Fox Racing, including a tough looking pair of shorts that fall under the ‘Defend’ label. These are the regular Defend shorts (Fox also makes Defend Kevlar and Defend Pro Water shorts), which means they get an over-the-knee length using TruMotion 4-way stretch fabric, along with a ratchet closure system for the waist as well as zippered hand pockets. You can get these in Black, Cardinal Red and Maui Blue, with waist sizes from 28 up to 40, and there’s also a women’s specific Defend short too. From: PSI Cycling Price: $149.99 Fox Defend Gloves Possibly made from crocodiles, the Fox Defend gloves aim to provide protection and flexibility in one. For the paws we’ve got a set of matching Defend gloves, which combine protective panels over the top of the fingers and the back of the hand, with a thin single-layer Clarino® palm for flexibility and tactility on the grips. Available in four colours from Small through to XX-Large, From: PSI Cycling Price: $59.99 Fox Trail Cushion Socks Regulation height, non-regulation colour coordinating. Hipster roadies everywhere are twitching for unknown reasons right now. These are fancy foot gloves from Fox in the form of the 8in Trail Cushion socks, which we’re informed meet regulation height standards. Constructed from a 52% nylon, 37% cotton, 9% polyester and 2% spandex mix, these socks are meant to be breathable while providing a little extra cushioning under the heels and soles for all-day comfort. Available in S/M and L/XL sizes in three colour options. From: PSI Cycling Price: $29.99 Mo’ Flow Please! There’s plenty more to check out on Flow Mountain Bike, including all our latest news stories and product reviews. And if you haven’t already, make sure you subscribe to our YouTube channel, and sign up to our Facebook page and Instagram feed so you can keep up to date with all things Flow! The post Flow’s Fresh Produce | The World’s Lightest Dropper Post, Bike Storage & An Upgrade For SRAM Derailleurs appeared first on Flow Mountain Bike.
Cyclocross?? Seriously Cam? Yep, seriously. Well.. seriously serious about not being that serious. But seriously though… What a time. Trek invited me out to their headquarters in Waterloo Wisconsin to be a part of a huge event they host each year called the TREK CX CUP. It’s a Cyclocross World Cup Race, so that portion of it IS quite serious. The best riders from all over the world duking it out for valuable points, prize money, and glory. But if you know anything about TREK, you know that they seriously know how to have a good time. TREK CX CUP is a weekend full of fun on bikes for all-ages with no shortage of shenanigans. From this video’s thumbnail, you might notice a couple things. First, I seem to be wearing a bunny rabbit costume.. More on that later. Second, there seems to be a 2-time Cyclocross World Champion on the bottom left giving me a judgmental stare-down. Yep, that’s my Cyclocross coach, Sven Nys. He and his pro racer son, Thibau Nys got my Cyclocross experience kicked off on the right foot by giving me a quick tutorial. You know, things like – how to carry your bike on your shoulder, what to eat (apparently I need work in the burger, french toast, and sausage category) and how to properly celebrate if you just won the race. I won’t have to worry about that last tip too much, but for the category I would be registering in, the “Legend’s Race” — I would need one more item before being fully prepared… A quality costume. That’s where the bunny rabbit suit comes in. Time to rub elbows with some of bike riding’s most colorful characters — from Jens Voigt to Jeffrey Daniels. Last but certainly not least, no Trek function would be complete without some quality time spent with Uncle Gary (Gary Fisher.) You’ve heard of Dr. Evil’s Secret Volcano Lair… But you ain’t seen nothin’ until you’ve bounced to the beats of DJ Ted Alsop at THE SECRET BAR with Uncle Gary. Don’t tell anyone. It’s a secret. You know what isn’t a secret anymore? This YouTube Channel! Yep, the word is out… Weekly videos — get your laugh on, then get out on your bike. Sound like a plan? Ok good. Hit that subscribe button and let’s keep the good times rollin’. We took last week off with no upload in order to mourn the loss of one of our best friends in the whole wide world, Jordie Lunn. Thanks so much for all the comments on the last video, it really means a lot y’all. Any time Jordie was around, everything just became exponentially more fun and we’re so lucky to have had so many good times with him. Even if you never got the chance to meet him, I’m sure he put a smile on your face at some point while you were watching him on the screen. One of the best bike riders in the world, but most importantly he was a one-of-a kind amazing person. Our video two weeks ago had the Jordie-factor in full effect and his spirit will forever live on in all those he inspired. We may or may not have snuck one of those classic Jordie chuckles somewhere in this video… so listen closely and let me know if you hear it. #longliveJordie Thanks for watching everyone – talk to you next week. -Cam
Loic Bruni relives an intense year of racing including one of the closest season finales in World Cup history.( Photos: 26 )
Wolf Tooth just announced a nifty work around for geometry correction – two different lower headset cups that offer a +10mm increase in height, which should roughly translate to a 3mm increase at the bottom bracket height and a .5º increase in head angle. You can scope their fitment guide here to see if it will work for you. Find the rest of the info in the press release below… Details External Cup Any frame that uses an external cup headset with a 49mm lower head tube inner diameter Upper and lowers headsets sold separately Enduro stainless steel sealed bearings included $54.95 68 grams 6061 aluminum cup, stainless steel bearing Zero Stack Any frame that uses a zero stack headset with a 56mm lower head tube inner diameter Upper and lowers headsets sold separately Enduro stainless steel sealed bearings included $54.95 62 grams 6061 aluminum cup, stainless steel bearing [Press Release] – If you’ve been following Wolf Tooth for the past few years (or even the past few months), you know that we enjoy finding options that allow you to do more with your current bike. It’s just what we engineers do and we can’t really turn it off. The latest options we have are lower headset extenders, which are compatible with most EC and ZS headsets. The need for a lower headset extender can come down to a desired change in bike geometry. A lower headset extender can be used to increase bottom bracket height and slack the head tube angle, which improves stability on descents and at high speeds. This is helpful for getting rad, sending it, shredding, etc. A lower headset extender can also help you keep your geometry the same. Say you’re riding a suspension-corrected frame, but you want to ride it with a rigid fork instead of a suspension fork. The addition of lower headset extender with your new rigid fork would allow you to keep the same geometry. See, options that allow you to do more with your current bike. www.wolftoothcomponents.com