It may only be September, but the 2020 model year is coming in hot, with so many freaking new mountain bike and product releases that we’re struggling to keep up! Just in the past week we’ve seen Trek redefine its XC lineup with the brand new Supercaliber, while at the other end of the spectrum Norco has unloaded its biggest and baddest e-MTB yet; the Shimano-powered, 170mm travel Range VLT. We also got ourselves along to the Focus 2020 dealer show in rAdelaide, so if you haven’t already, make sure you check out our Top 7 bikes from the Focus 2020 range here. The 2020 Trek Supercaliber is absolutely wild! Make sure you check out the full story on this super-trick race bike here. As well as staying on top of new bike releases, thankfully we’ve been putting plenty of saddle time aboard them too. Wil got out for a gravity enduro race on the weekend aboard the Merida eOne-Sixty 9000 long term test bike, and Mick has been checking out the brand new Trek Rail – a new long travel e-MTB from Trek that he reckons his a huge step up from the Powerfly LT. If you’re not into electronics on mountain bikes though, fear not! We’ve just published our long term review of the Canyon Spectral AL 6.0, which Wil called a “bonafide hooligan bike“. Party on Wayne Amongst all that, we’ve been sent a barrel-load of new test gear, so here’s a closer look at the freshest and tastiest kit in the workshop at Flow HQ! 2020 Trek Fuel EX 9.8 The Fuel EX lineup is brand spanking new for 2020, and we’ve just received a 9.8 model for a proper long term test on home soil. In case you hadn’t heard, Trek has completely revamped its Fuel EX lineup for 2020. There’s a brand new frame, a move away from the Full Floater suspension design, and some notable tweaks to the geometry to bring the EX up to date with the competition. Suspension travel remains at 130mm on the rear, and the frame is still rolling on 29in wheels, though stock bikes will be coming with humongous 2.6in wide Bontrager tyres – like the XR4 Team Issue ones shown on this Fuel EX 9.8 here. Trek has upped the fork travel to 140mm though, and it’s slackened out the head angle to 66°, giving the Fuel EX a bit more muscle for descending. Also noteworthy is the big hole in the downtube on the carbon fibre models – ala Specialized SWAT. There’s a latch underneath the bottle cage that opens up the treasure chest within, and Trek includes a soft pouch for storing tools, spares, snackeroos, and anything else you want to stuff down in the hole. There’s a tonne of new features on the 2020 Fuel EX, so make sure you read Mick’s first ride review from the launch. This Fuel EX 9.8 is one step down from that top-end 9.9 model, and we’ve got it on test for a proper long term review on Aussie turf. Stay tuned for more! From: Trek Bikes Price: $6,999 Fox Dropframe Helmet Part full-face, part open-face, part kayaking helmet. Fox calls the Dropframe a “maximum coverage open face helmet“, and it’s easy to see why. Taking the trail/AM helmet design to the next level, the Dropframe sees the helmet shell extend down and around the rider’s ears for added protection around the sides and back of the skull. It’s about as close as you’ll get to a full face helmet, without having a claustrophobic chinbar. It also looks ideal for the new crossover market between mountain biking and kayaking. Compared to the recently released Giro Tyrant, the Fox Dropframe is a much simpler affair. It’s available in four sizes, but there’s no adjustable harness on this helmet. Instead, the bucket-like shell uses plenty of thick foam padding to keep the fit snug and secure, and additional pads are included in the box for dialling in the fit for your noggin. It gets more ventilation, particularly around your listening gear, and it has a big fixed visor to keep the lines clean. We’ll be interested to see how the Dropframe goes during the warmer months, so stay tuned for a comparison review against the Giro Tyrant. From: PSI Cycling Price: $ Fox VUE Goggles The VUE is a premium-level goggle from Fox with a clever interchangeable lens system. To match the Dropframe lid, Fox Head has also sent us a set of its premium VUE goggles. These feature a pre-curved, injection-moulded polycarbonate lens that offers a huge field of view, and the lenses are easily interchangeable thanks to the clever TruLock system. The VUE goggles get heaps of multi-density foam padding for a comfortable fit and for keeping the dust out, though clear tear-offs are supplied in the box in the highly unusual event that we end up riding in mud. Yuck! From: PSI Cycling Price: $ Fox Enduro Knee Guards The Fox Enduro is a lightweight, pedal-friendly, slip-on knee pad. And rounding out the enduro garb is a lightweight set of knee pads from Fox. Funnily enough, these are called the ‘Enduro Knee Guard’, though they’re designed to be sufficiently flexible and breathable for everyday trail riding too. Using a tube-style construction with open-eyelet mesh panelling on the rear, they’re designed to slip straight on over your legs, a bit like a knee warmer on steroids. Knee cap protection comes from Fox’s own F3 Amor plate, which is made from a flexible material not unlike D3O. The pad has various cutouts and channels to help it curve around your knees while pedalling, and it can also be removed when its time to wash and de-stink the pads. There are four sizes available from Small through to X-Large, and each pad features elasticated cuffs for a slip-free fit. From: PSI Cycling Price: $ DT Swiss 180 Straightpull Hubs The new DT Swiss 180 Straighpull hubs utilise SINC ceramic bearings and the new Ratchet EXP freehub system. This is a set of DT Swiss’ ultra-premium 180 hubs, which feature its own SINC ceramic bearings inside, and a heavily machined body that has had as much excess material removed from it as possible. The weight? Just 283g. For the pair. That’s insane! And cool, but that’s not the reason we’ve got these hubs. The reason is to check out the Ratchet EXP freehub mechanism, which is a brand new system from DT Swiss that is replacing the venerable Star Ratchet design in its high-end wheelsets and 180 hub series. We’ve got an in-depth article about the Ratchet EXP freehub system coming soon, so stay tuned to the Flow website for the full back story. From: Apollo Price: $439 (front), $809 (rear) Smith Optics Attack MTB Glasses Fresh shades from Smith Optics, which use the power of MAGNETS! US eyewear and helmet company, Smith Optics, has launched a new MTB-specific version of its Attack glasses. Like the Attack and Attack Max glasses, these feature removable arms that clip on and off the lens via the power of witchcraft a magnetic latch. Smith includes two lenses with the Attack MTB glasses – a mirror finish ChromaPop lens, and a low-light Amber ChromaPop lens. What’s ChromaPop? It’s a series of light filters that help to boost both colour and contrast so everything looks like it has an Instagram filter applied to it. We’ve used it before and it’s great. Until you take the glasses off and the whole world returns to its naturally bland state. So what’s new? The main difference with the Attack MTB glasses over the standard version is the additional frame coverage around the top and bottom of the lens. Mountain bike glasses can get a rough time, so the reinforced lens should help ward off some of the bumps and scrapes along the way. You also get a two-position adjustable nosepiece, and a clamshell case for storing the glasses and the additional lens. From: Smith Optics Price: $369.95 USWE Airborne 3 Hydration Pack More practical than a fanny pack? The USWE Airborne 3 is designed for minimalist mountain bikers. Fanny packs and bum bags may be all the enduro-rage at the moment, but no matter how good they might be, they all tend to bounce around when properly loaded up with water and gear. Providing a minimalist option for those who don’t want to ride with a huge backpack, but still want to carry a decent amount of water is the Airborne 3 from USWE. Coming in at just 449g, the Airborne 3 is designed to take up minimal real estate on your back, while still being more secure than a bum bag. Inside the Airborne 3 you’ll find a two litre hydration bladder, with a drinking hose that can be routed over the left or right shoulder. There’s three litres of storage volume on offer, so you can pack in a lightweight outer shell, food, spares, and your MiniDisc player. The piggyback pouch on the front clips on via four nylon buckles, and can be removed entirely. Like all USWE packs, the Airborne 3 gets the ‘No Dancing Monkey’ harness system, which promises bounce-free riding. From: Lusty Industries Price: $169.95 Specialized Ambush ANGi MIPS Helmet ANGi is now joining the Specialized Ambush helmet (and you) for the ride. The Specialized Ambush has been around for a little while now, but the latest version has been updated with the new MIPS SL liner, and a clever electronic device called ANGi. This little gizmo sticks onto the rear of the helmet, and uses a host of sensors to detect if you’ve had a crash. Under the rapid acceleration/deceleration that you might experience if your head hits the ground hard, the sensor triggers a warning to an app on your phone, and will then alert your selected contacts to let them know your last known whereabouts. How gnarly is that! In case you accidentally bumped the sensor and you’re not actually unconscious on the ground next to your bike though, you can cancel the countdown timer on the app to avoid accidentally alerting your significant other/family members/BFF. The ANGi unit relies on a compact CR2032 watch battery to send signals to your smartphone, and we’re told it lasts for ages before it needs replacing. Clever crash sensor aside, the latest Ambush also gets the MIPS SL liner system, which sees sections of the internal foam padding attached to the EPS shell via numerous rubber MIPS anchors. As well as being a bit lighter than the standard MIPS liner you’ll find in other brands’ helmets, the MIPS SL system also takes up less room inside the helmet. From: Specialized Price: $300 The post Flow’s Fresh Produce | A Brand New Trek, Magnetic Shades & $1200 Hubs! appeared first on Flow Mountain Bike.
Wheels are something that take a beating and Roval has announced a lifetime warranty and crash replacement policy to keep you rolling. Rider: Fabio Wibmer Photo: Harookz Morgan Hill, CA (Sept. 17, 2019)— Roval Components is proud to announce the Roval Warranty and Crash Replacement Policy. All Roval products come with lifetime coverage against defects in material and workmanship for the original owner and two years of coverage for subsequent owners. In addition, all of the brand’s products include no-fault two-year crash replacement for riders in the USA. “Roval wheels have been engineered to exceed the performance requirements of today’s best riders. Our wheels stand up to top riders including Peter Sagan, Fabio Wibmer and Alison Tetrick, so we’re confident in offering our new Lifetime Warranty and “**it Happens” no-fault crash replacement to everyone aboard Roval wheels,” says Ben Capron of Roval. Lifetime Warranty The warranty outlines that Roval wheels are warrantied to the original purchaser for as long as they own them. This warranty covers defects in materials and workmanship when used normally in accordance with Roval’s published guidelines. Roval will even provide warranty coverage for two years from the date of the original retail purchase to the second, third, or even later owners. There are other important details and terms related to this warranty, find the full Warranty Policy here. “**it Happens” No-Fault Crash Replacement Policy If a Roval product is damaged while riding within the first two years of ownership and it’s not covered under warranty, Roval will still replace or repair it for free†. This policy applies to all Roval product purchased in the USA, whether it came stock on a bike or was purchased aftermarket. Crash replacement/repair is serviced through a rider’s local Roval Dealer. Terms and conditions apply, see full details at Roval’s warranty page:https://rovalcomponents.com/pages/warranty.
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New E-Ticket Bike by Foes Racing Photo: Pat Carrigan From the day Disneyland first opened their doors in 1955, millions of attendees gained entry first with an admission fee before purchasing a separate book of tickets that actually got them on the rides. These tickets were distinguished in alphabetical order—the A-tickets were for the slowest, dullest rides; B-tickets brought some added excitement; and both the C- and D-tickets upped the level of wonder and fun. It was only four years after they first opened when enough new rides had been completed that the E ticket was added to the booklet. Ah, yes, for those old enough to remember, the E-ticket was the gold standard for all that was the most thrilling and memorable. Over time, the word “E-ticket” became synonymous with an experience unlike any other. Enter the Foes E-Ticket. REMEMBER THE MATTERHORN? There’s a reason that Brent Foes is in the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame, and it has nothing to do with his talent on a bike. It does, however, have a lot to do with his talent to make a bike. For over three decades Brent Foes has proven himself a master craftsman with a remarkable sense of foresight for mechanical necessity, which helped usher mountain biking into a new realm of long-travel suspension. That was when back in 1991 he designed and built his first bicycle with 6 inches of travel—an unheard-of amount of suspension at the time. Foes has continued to cultivate an unparalleled artisanship in his chosen medium—6061 T6 aircraft-grade aluminum—ever since. Foes Racing bicycles are known for their resiliency and ability to be ridden aggressively. A hallmark of the brand is to produce each model—from trail and enduro bikes to fat bikes and World Cup-winning downhill racers—in low quantities with high quality. With this one-of-a-kind Foes, the company is considering a short run of limited-edition power-assist bikes. We got our hands on Brent’s first attempt at making an e-bike to see what could be possible from Foes in the pedal-assist category. THE BIKE The same visually perfect welds that he became famous for stitch together this unique machine. “This bike is a mix between our Mixer Enduro bike and the Mixer Hydro downhill bike. It really is its own creature,” says Foes sales manager Bobby Acuna. The term “mix” has been part of Foes’ design parlance since 2014 when they began adapting the mixed wheel-size combo that matches a 29-inch front wheel with a 27.5-inch rear wheel. Two test mules were created before arriving at this final geometry iteration that will come in two sizes: medium and large. Unique from Foes’ other frames, the bike has a hydro-formed top tube and down tube that adds to its robustly awesome, industrial look as it wraps into the externally mounted battery. Another show of bulletproof engineering is this motor guard. THE MOTOR With its American headquarters located just a lunch drive away, choosing Shimano as the engine and drive component supplier for their first electric chassis was an easy decision. Foes selected the 250-watt STEPS E8000 motor, owing to its reliable reputation to its celebrated response for out-of-the-saddle pedaling. THE PARTS Paying a retail price of $10,000 will get you a complete bike with your choice of fork, shock and custom color. You could also go the made-to-order route and get a frame only for $6700 that would come with all the drive parts, including a motor, battery, shock and rear axle. Our test bike came complete with a suite of Fox hydraulics—36 fork with Fit GRIP2 damper, Float X2 rear shock and Transfer dropper post—rolling on Stan’s Arch MK3 enduro wheels with Schwalbe tires (29×2.5 inches up front and 27.5×2.4 inches in the rear). The cockpit on this bike is wide and clean. The STEPS display looks even tinier here. Controls in the cockpit were mounted to a 50mm Answer ATAC AME stem and 800mm-wide by 20mm rise Thomson Downhill handlebar with 9 degrees of backsweep and 5 degrees of upsweep, which would be able to leverage the bike in the desired direction once motoring on the trail. WHO IT’S MADE FOR If you’re the type of consumer who likes to pick a familiar, ordinary product from the eye-level shelf, keep shopping. The Foes e-bike is for the aficionado who can truly appreciate its rarity and brand legacy. This top-shelf item may be out of reach for most, but if exclusivity is an attraction, consider the e-bike your perfect north. THE RIDE The demeanor of the Foes is true to its bloodline—born and bred to rip and shred. The 2.4:1 suspension ratio provides a supple feel at the beginning of its travel and allows small trail chatter to be easily absorbed. The bike stays planted well through the middle of the shock stroke, while its slight rising rate in the suspension curve encourages aggression from the rider of this 160mm-travel bike. If you back down from a gap, drop or line, it certainly won’t be at the bike’s dissuasion. We found ourselves riding harder and charging deeper into turns and jumps, producing only smiles from each confidence-inspired test rider. One thing you can always expect from Foes is incredible welds and build quality. The Shimano motor’s power delivery encouraged riding the Foes with a similar mindset as you would ride a traditional bicycle; it complemented heavy torque inputs better than some other engines on the market that are able to assist power, but only seem to be most effective at a specific pedaling cadence. And the larger range of gears on the 11-46T rear cluster could easily be utilized thanks to the Shimano XT shifter’s capability to change two gears at a time when moving down the cassette, which encouraged quick and accurate acceleration, thanks to the electric assistance from the Shimano unit. The front end is forgiving, both in the slack head angle and the long-travel Fox 36 Performance fork. The bike’s handling left us feeling extremely well-centered over the wheels. Foes absolutely nailed the weight distribution and balance of the motor and battery placement on the chassis. Railing turns without worry of the front wheel washing out made us fall in love with the control of this bike—all carve with no push in the turns. It jumped well, and while its hefty weight of 50.635 pounds was certainly noticed when loading and unloading the bike, it seemed to become an unnoticed characteristic in the dirt. THE VERDICT Want to break out of the plastic mold of owning a run-of-the-mill carbon bike, literally? The Foes delivers one heck of a good time in an unparalleled package of metal artisanship that will most likely outlive the 1000 recharge cycles of an ordinary lithium-ion battery and produce long-term fun that’s worth the investment. SPECS Foes Racing E-Bike Price: $10,000 Motor: Shimano STEPS E8000 250W Battery: Shimano 504 Wh Charge time: 5 hours Top speed: 20 mph (with assist) Range: 31–62 miles Drive: Shimano XT, 11-speed, 11-46T Brakes: Shimano XT Controls: Shimano XT Fork: Fox 36 FiT GRIP, 160mm Frame: 6061 T6 aluminum Shock: Fox Float x2 Tires: Schwalbe 29×2.4” Eddy Current (f)/27.5×2.5” Nobby Nick (r) Weight: 50.625 lb. Color choice: 11 options Sizes: M, L www.foesracing.com THERE ARE SO MANY WAYS TO GET ELECTRIC BIKE ACTION In print, from the Apple newsstand, or on your Android device, from Google. Available from the Apple Newsstand for reading on your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch. Subscribe Here For more subscription information contact (800) 767-0345 Got something on your mind? Let us know at hi-torque.com The post First Look: The New E-Ticket Bike by Foes Racing appeared first on Electric Bike Action.
Evan Geankoplis is the fastest upcoming American Enduro racer you’ve never heard of. His day job has him turning wrenches at his local shop, but on the weekends he travels around the country chasing podiums. Post race season, it’s all about hanging out and ripping his local trails. Watch him hit all the sneaky inside Read More The post Video: Ripmo Workless With Working-Class-Hero Evan Geankoplis appeared first on BIKE Magazine.
FOX US OPEN, BIG BEAR, CALIFORNIA See below to see what professional racer, Anneke Beerten, had to say about her weekend in Big Bear. Happy trails. – Anneke The post Anneke Beerten Recaps the Fox U.S Open of MTB appeared first on Mountain Bike Action Magazine.
With some unexpected tech in some unexpected places, the Gore C5 Vent Bibs will be your go-to option every time they're clean ... and maybe even sometimes when they're not. The post Tested: Gore C5 Vent Bib Shorts + appeared first on BIKE Magazine.
Fork Offset Explained by Chris Cocalis Over the past year or two, we’ve heard companies advertise about the short offset forks used on their bikes, claiming to enhance cornering performance. So, what exactly is a short offset fork? We decided to reach out to Pivot CEO and Founder, Chris Cocalis to see what in the […] The post What in the world is fork offset? appeared first on Mountain Bike Action Magazine.
Contest highlights from Audi Nines MTB 2019—slopestyle and freeride The post The “Audi Nines” Is Europe’s Gnarliest Freeride Contest appeared first on Mountain Bike Action Magazine.