Fisher-Price Recalls Potentially Genital Maiming Toddler Trikes

Mattel Inc. is recalling 7 million of their Trikes and Tough Trikes toddler tricycles “that could cause injury if a child strikes, sits or falls on a protruding plastic ignition key.” That doesn’t sound all that terrifying does it? But for some strange reason most of the press releases regarding this product recall don’t use the language from the CPSC website; they put it a little more bluntly over there:

Hazard: A child can strike, sit or fall on the protruding plastic ignition key resulting in serious injury, including genital bleeding.

Oh God.

I could see some old school, tough dad shrugging off the less graphic version of the recall explanation “Ah whatever, kids are too soft these days. When we were kids we rode our bikes around all day without helmets, with pointy sticks in our mouths…once in a while we’d slow down long enough to take some candy from a stranger.” He might even balk at the recall notice if it went:

Hazard: A child can strike, sit or fall on the protruding plastic ignition key resulting in serious injury, including GOUGING OUT OF AN EYEBALL.

“Lose an eyeball, bah! Tommy’s  got two…who needs two eyes anyway? And so what if he lost an eye? He could get an eye patch and then he’d look like a pirate. Pirate’s are awesome, everyone knows that. He’d look even cooler if he lost hand or a leg too. Maybe we should get him that Fisher-Price Little People Chip N’ Chop Wood Chipper set.”

But bring the jewels into question and Old-School dad is going to change his tune right quick, “Bleeding genitals! Why didn’t you just say bleeding genitals?” (Well because it’s a really, incredibly unpleasant phrase to hear for anyone, but it does drive the, um…point home.)

Click more to see photos of the deadly-crotch-wrecking-ignition-keys in question, and to read the CPSC release…


Ride the Divide Mountain Bike Movie – Rent it on YouTube?

Ride the Divide, the story of several riders who competed in the “world’s toughest mountain bike race” over 2,700 miles from Banff, Canada to the Mexican border along the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains. The trailer’s above, and it if sufficiently whets your appetite, click here to go to YouTube, where you can rent the entire film to watch over the next 72 hours for just $2.99. Just don’t click on the “Rent Now” ad that pops up unless you’re serious, there’s no “Close” button. Oh, and I don’t know what all that “glad you guys get to watch free” junk is during their intro.

Save the Tatas – Wheeltags’ New Pink Rim Graphics Support Breast Cancer Research

The graphic says it all, well, except for being able to click the image to visit their site. For that, you can click here:

Interbike 2010: Focus Dumps Redskin Moniker, Names 29er Black Forest, Plus Other Updates for Range

In addition to the prototype FSL full suspension bike they had on display, German brand Focus Bicycles had minor updates to some of their better known cyclocross and mountain bikes.

Shown in full production trim for the first time was their new 29er. You may remember that it was ill advisably codenamed “Redskin” when first shown as a prototype at Sea Otter. Well, fortunately, they took the advice of the Western sales and marketing team and came up with something different. Please welcome the Black Forest 29er.

Make the jump for weights, specs and photos of it and the other updates to their Raven, Thunder and Mares Cross bikes, too…


Interbike 2010: Focus Debuts Prototype FSL Lightweight Full Suspension XC Racer

Focus Bicycles had a few updates and such floating around, mostly minor spec updates, fresh paint and small frame tweaks. But lurking near the back of the booth was this prototype, lightweight full suspension XC race mountain bike.

Named the FSL, it’s an entirely new frame that has Focus’ new FIRST (Full Intergated Rear Suspension Technology) design. The most obvious design feature is the top mounted rear shock, reminiscent of Danish brand Pronghorn’s frames. Look closer, though, and you see the stealth bomber shaping of the top tube, slick brake mounts and other niceties that set it apart.

UPDATED: More frame info added.

Jump past the break for more photos and info…


Things You Can’t Have (Yet) From Embrocation Cycling Journal, Cinelli, And Rapha

The guys from Embrocation Cycling Journal have got style in vast quantities, just about everything they touch turns to aesthetic gold — they ooze style like the Reverend Terry Jones oozes hate and stupidity. I mean, check out these custom Cinelli Ram 2 integrated bar/stem units. Kind of ridiculous aren’t they? These things were imagined and designed by Embrocation founder and Rapha Continental media-dude Jeremy Dunn. Now I don’t even OWN a road bike and I would never want to purchase a totally absurd, over the top item like these bar/stems, but damn…I think I would marry them. Or at least date them for an extended period of time until they realized what loser I am and decided to run off with some guy with an ironic mustache.

For several more detailed photos of these bars and some shots of the Rapha-made Embrocation team jacket comprised of Unobtain-e-olyester (shoot, that almost worked), click “more.” READ MORE ->

Mercedes Gets into e-Bike Biz with SMART brand

Mercedes, under their smart car banner, is launching a pretty sophisticated looking electric bicycle. Here’s their blurb on it:

The e-bike is another idea from smart for electric mobility on two wheels with no local emissions. The pioneering ebike electric bicycle study embodies sophisticated technology, versatility and futuristic design. In a word: typical smart.

Impressively, they mention “no local emissions” which subtly recognizes that the electricity to charge it has to come from somewhere, but as we’ve learned over the years, we’re talking pennies on the dollar versus the cost and environmental impact of using a standard car.

Built to sell next to the e-scooter, which has twist throttled power on demand, the e-bike will offer four levels of automatic pedal assistance, meaning it won’t have a throttle…you’ll have to pedal at least a little bit.

Weighing in at 48.5lbs (22 kg), the smart e-Bike has a range of 18, 31, 43 or 56 miles (30, 50, 70 or 90 kilometers) depending on assistance level. . The gear ratio is automatically adjusted in two levels depending on the speed, while the maximum speed depends on the terrain and rider input. The smart features a 250 watt brushless direct current wheel hub motor that is integrated in the rear wheel. The propulsion current is stored in a compact lithium-ion battery with voltage of 36 volts and capacity of 9.6 Ah. The battery pack is housed above the crankset on the frame and is concealed behind panels on the frame. The battery can be fully charged in two to three hours.

Other highlights include a belt drive rather than a chain and complete smartphone integration to show controls, battery level, etc.

Images after the break…


Review: Smith Pivlock V90 sunglasses


When I first saw Smith’s Pivlock V90 sunglasses advertised, I’ll admit to being pretty dismissive of their main selling point.  After all, the bike industry is awash in hyperbole, and the ability to easily remove the temples from eyewear has never been high on my list.  Besides, the look was a bit too techno bike /run geek for my tastes (and that’s saying something).  Sure enough, one of my fashion forward riding buddies- owner of a bike shop that doesn’t even sell Smith sunglasses- eventually showed up at a ride sporting a pair.  His enthusiasm about the Pivlocks’ light weight and great fit spread and sure enough, some of the more aesthetically conservative riders in our group started wearing them.  Waiting for the missus to emerge from a changing room one afternoon, I asked the clerk to let me try a pair on- and promptly joined the club.  Click ‘more’ to find out if my indifference turned lust has grown into to love…


Interbike 2010: Urbane winter cycling apparel from Swrve and Mission Workshop

While there were a number of companies showing very attractive and classy riding gear at Interbike last month, these two pieces in particular jumped out at us:

Swrve were on hand with their whole range of urban cycling clothing.  Here’s designer Matt sporting a very nice, very cozy, and very warm cycling cap made of itchless New Zealand merino wool.  The Belgian Merino Wool Cap has flatlocked seams to keep it comfortable under a helmet, and the look is hard to beat.  $55 and made in the USA.  Hit ‘more‘ for a cold and wet weather jacket to pair it with…