Taipei Sneak Peek: Ritchey’s 35mm Bars and Stems, Swiss Cross Disc Frame, New Wide Tubeless Wheels, More
As a company steeped in tradition, Ritchey looks like they have no problem keeping up with the latest componentry as illustrated by the number of new products tucked away in their booth in Taipei. Most of the new goods will be new for 2015, but it gives you a taste of what’s to come. In addition to disc brakes for cross, Ritchey also had 35mm bars and stems, new 220° stems, and super wide, fully tubeless rims for mountain bikes on display.
Details after the break.
Built as a disc specific frameset, the Swiss Cross disc uses post mount disc tabs that are tucked into the rear triangle. Both the frame and the WCS disc cross fork are capable of using 140mm rotors with a 160mm max using an adapter. While the frame is modern in the brake department, the rest of the standards stick with tradition using quick release front and 135mm rear axles, a threaded bottom bracket, and a 1 1/8″ straight head tube.
The Swiss Cross Disc uses the same geometry as the current Swiss Cross and will be offered in 49 to 59cm sizes.
If Ritchey and other companies at the Taipei show are any indication, 2015 will be the year where 35mm bars and stems will be widespread throughout mountain biking. There are a number of companies that have already adopted the standard, but there have been a number of hold outs as well. It seems like after Taipei, the number of companies who don’t offer a 35mm option will be few. We all groan when new “standards” are introduced, but with how wide bars have gotten lately, the added strength makes some sense.
Ritchey will be joining in on 35mm with a WCS Carbon Trail Rizer and WCS Trail Low Rizer, which will be 760mm and 780mm wide respectively. Each bar will have a 15mm rise and 9/2° back/up sweep. Claimed weights are 210g and 290g for carbon and aluminum. The WCS MTN Trail 35mm stems are constructed from 3D forged aluminum and will be offered in 45, 60, 80, and 90mm lengths. Only offered in zero rise, the stems use the new 220º handlebar wrap instead of the 260º clamp of previous stems.
Also getting the 220º treatment are a line of road and mountain stems for 31.8mm bars. The C220 stems offer similar benefits to the c260 design but allows for easier bar installation and the front access bolts simplifies installation.
The other big surprise hiding in their booth were these WCS Trail V2 and WCS Vantage wheels which both feature impressively wide rim profiles with a full tubeless rim bed. In the case of the Trail V2 wheels, the aluminum rims have a 25mm internal and 29.6mm external width while the rim bed is fully sealed for tubeless use that only requires a valve. The Vantage wheels carry a 21mm internal and 25.6mm external width and stand 24.4mm tall. Both sets of wheels will be available in 650b and 29″ sizes, and will fit most axle standards and Shimano/SRAM or XD freehub bodies.