Review: Garmin gets safer – Edge Explore 1000 w/ incident detection and Varia radar integration

Edge 1000 Explorer Varia 20160201_172627

Edge 1000 Explorer Varia 20160201_172627

Testing Garmin’s first unit with “Incident Detection” sounded like a fun experiment, and I even considered taking and ghost riding one of the lesser used bikes in my possession to set it off. Ultimately, I didn’t need to stage a crash as my riding took care of that for me, but I’m happy to say the crash incident detection works – even if it’s not a huge crash. Adding to the Edge Explore 1000’s list of features is integration with the Garmin Varia radar detection device. After my first experience with the Varia, this is exactly what it was missng…

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Road to NAHBS 2016: Carl and Loretta Strong of Strong Frames

Photo by Loretta Strong
Photo by Loretta Strong
Photo used with permission of Carl Strong (jumping)

Strong Frames has gone through several phases in its over 20 year existence. It grew from a one man band in Carl Strong’s grandmother’s garage to a million dollar a year company with twelve employees at its largest. In the past ten years, however, the company has been poetically distilled down to its current, ultra-focused, customer-centric format.

Getting to do this interview was very exciting for me for a couple of reasons. For one, having spent my last few weeks interviewing builders and frame builder community members, Carl Strong’s name has come up quite a few times as someone who deserves accolades within the community for his work in helping new builders to get established and as someone who people have gone to for advice. For another, this interview was an opportunity to talk to the better half of Strong Frames, Loretta Strong, who is a massive reason why the company is the way it is today…

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Posted in Feature, Gravel Bikes, Interviews, NAHBS6 Comments

Coastline Cycle Company surfs in w/ the Supermoto inspired “One” bike for street, dirt & more

Coastline cycle company c3 chad battistone urban supermoto commuter fun bike bicycle disc brakes 275-11

Coastline cycle company c3 chad battistone urban supermoto commuter fun bike bicycle disc brakes 275-3

There are a lot of new bikes out there. There are so many that for a new company to make a splash with a new bike, it really has to be something different. Something, interesting. Something… like the first offering from Coastline Cycle Company.

To call this thing a commuter really isn’t a worthy description, but neither is city bike, or even mountain bike. The brainchild of industry veteran Chad Battistone, Coastline Cycle Company is hoping to capitalize on those looking for a bike that is as fun as it is practical, and ride in with a new wave of affordable yet performance oriented carbon components as well…

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Posted in Commuter, Feature, Mountain Bike9 Comments

Road to NAHBS 2016: Renzo Formigli of Formigli Bicycles

Photo by Donald Sempken
Photo by Bob Wilkinson
Photo by Bob Wilkinson

Renzo Formigli of Formigli Bicycles comes from a long line of racers, so it is interesting that he would take to building bikes rather than following the family tradition of racing and coaching. Though his decision to make bikes was made as a young boy, his career path was solidified when, as a young man, he was introduced to the art by Cino Cinelli himself. Today, Formigli produces aluminum, steel, and carbon framesets in his Italian factory and ships worldwide…

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Posted in Feature, Interviews, NAHBS14 Comments

Road to NAHBS 2016: Patrick Gauci of Patrick Cycleworks

Photo by Wyatt Clough
Photo by Marcell Lovell
Photo by Marcell Lovell

The exciting thing about covering new builders is seeing patterns between them and current, established builders and not knowing exactly what they will turn into as they mature.

Ontarian and new builder Patrick Gauci of Patrick Cycle Works is one of a group of builders that started their careers in aerospace before trying their hands at frame building. Patrick works as an Aircraft Structures Mechanic by day, and builds frames by night. Still at the stage where he is building for friends and family, Patrick has acknowledged that he’s learned a lot over his short career as a builder. He is enthusiastic, however, that he’s found a way to explore his passion of cycling in a deeper way…

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TDU 2016 Tech: Richie Porte’s BMC Teammachine SLR01

BMCRacingPorte2016-7

BMCRacingPorte2016-1

BMC Racing is a UCI WorldTour professional racing team, sponsored by Swiss-based bicycle manufacturer, BMC. The team is co-owned by Andy Riis, owner of BMC bicycles, and Jim Ochowicz, founder of the 7-Eleven Cycling Team. The team has signed many big name riders since its inception; Cadel Evans, Philippe Gilbert and Thor Hushovd to name a few.

As implied by its name, BMC bicycles supply the team’s frames. Founded in 1986 by American Bob Bigelow, the brand came to fruition when Bigelow lost his distribution license for Raleigh bicycles. Undeterred, Bigelow nurtured and grew BMC, eventually garnering the attention of the now defunct Phonak Cycling Team in 2001. BMC bicycles and the original Team Machine have changed considerably in 15 years. The company has grown exponentially, and gone is aluminum as the frame material, replaced with the latest in carbon technology. This Teammachine SLR01 belongs to Richie Porte, the team’s latest star signing for the 2016 season and beyond. More about Richie’s bike… Continue reading “TDU 2016 Tech: Richie Porte’s BMC Teammachine SLR01”

Posted in Feature, Road Bike6 Comments

Road to NAHBS 2016: Steve Bilenky of Bilenky Cycle Works

Photo by David Luddy
Photo by Steve Bilenky
Photo by Steve Bilenky

The story of how internationally renown, well-oiled jam band, Bilenky Cycle Works, came to be is labyrinthine. Steve Bilenky, who wants it emphasized that he is only a small part of an excellent team, began his industry career at ten hustling bicycle repairs for neighborhood kids out of his family’s garage. That led to job at the local Schwinn shop assembling and repairing bikes, where he pored over catalogs and absorbed every bike thing he could. Steve was modifying old cruisers and blasting around in the woods with his friends in the 70’s before mountain bikes were a glimmer in the proverbial eye.

His academic and professional direction initially would take him away from bicycles, and his deep-seeded entrepreneurship would draw him into all sorts of unusual ventures. Inevitably,  he would return to Philadelphia and bicycles where he went from repair and frame alteration to starting his first bike brand, Sterling Cycle Company – all on his way to Bilenky Cycle Works…

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Posted in Commuter, Feature, Interviews, NAHBS8 Comments

PCW16: Ridley Breaks into more affordable Aero with new Noah road bike and Dean Tri/TT bike

Ridley Noah aero road bike Dean tri bike_-16

Ridley Noah aero road bike Dean tri bike_-11

As we walked into the Ridley presentation, we were immediately handed a Belgian beer and offered a seat. Things were off to a good start. Ridley is very proud of their Belgian roots and it shows in the final product. Beautiful bikes that are built for punishment. Bikes that are as no-nonsense as they are purpose built. To paraphrase, Belgian culture is one of pragmatism, or no bull shit. 

So when it comes to making two new models that will cater to a lower price point, Ridley wanted to provide everything needed for a great ride that still had the Ridley DNA, but could be built to reach a more attainable price point. These aren’t exactly budget builds at $3-5k, but for what you’re getting at those prices, the new Noah and Dean look like great rides for those that are “tough enough”…

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TDU 2016 Video: A Day Inside the Lampre Merida Team Car

LampreMeridaTeamCarVideo2016-1

LampreMeridaTeamCarVideo2016-1

Lampre Merida have been a fixture in the world of professional road cycling for many years. They’re easy to recognize in the peloton with their distinctive blue, pink, and green team kits, a colorway which continues to their Merida Scultura and Reacto team bikes. The team opened their account for 2016 at the first UCI World Tour race of the season, the Tour Down Under in Adelaide, South Australia. I’ve been a fan of the Lampre team for many years, and was stoked to feature the bike of Manuele Mori, a 35 year old professional cyclist in his 14th season.

On January 22, 2016, I was given the opportunity to ride in the front passenger seat of the Lampre Merida team car for Stage 4 of the race, beginning in the Adelaide suburb of Norwood, and ending in the seaside town of Victor Harbor. Suffice to say, I was stoked! Joining me in the car for the stage was Philippe Mauduit, Director Sportiff, and Ronny Baron, professional mechanic extraordinaire. To better remember the day and document for others to see, I took along my GoPro camera and recorded the experience. Click on through for the video… Continue reading “TDU 2016 Video: A Day Inside the Lampre Merida Team Car”

Posted in Feature, Road Bike, Video5 Comments