Posts in the category Feature

Photo Gallery – More 2015 Specialized Mountain Bikes & One More Road Tire

2015 Specialized Enduro Evo with Boxxer dual crown fork and Ohlins coil over rear shock

If you thought our first round up of 2015 bikes from Specialized was lacking in gravity oriented models, your wait is over. We’ve also found more frameset colorways, a couple fat bikes, a cost-is-no-object women’s full suspension racer and…another road bike tire.

Above, the new 650B Enduro Evo with Rockshox Boxxer dual crown fork is about as close as you’ll get to Specialized downhill bike without actually buying a, um, Specialized downhill bike. Equipped with Ohlins rear coil-over shock, chain guide, Thomson seatpost and Spec’s new Slaughter rear tire on Roval 650B DH wheels. Word is there are very few 26″ full suspension bikes left in their 2015 lineup.

Drop in for more…

READ MORE ->

First Look: Big Ed Fat Bike brings Big Tires for Scott 2015

Big_Ed_Close Up Image_2015_BIKE_SCOTT_Sports-1

There was a bit of talk about horses for courses among the Scott Week presentations, since bikes that may work well in one area of the world, might not be ideal in others. The horse analogy may have continued in the naming of Scott’s new fat bike, but instead of Mr. Ed, meet Big Ed. We expected to see a number of impressively light, super capable mountain bikes among Scott’s 2015 offerings, but a fat bike? That was surprising.

Fortunately for Scott, being new to the fat bike scene means that they are able to jump right in with a RockShox Bluto equipped bike. Built with suspension corrected geometry and modern axle sizes, Big Ed looks like it will be another popular option in the world of fat bikes.

READ MORE ->

Exclusive First Look: Kuroshiro Takes on 29+ with Hybrid Composite Polymer enso 950

 

kuroshiro enso 950 29+ carbon rim (5)

Earlier this year while Minnesota was trapped in Nature’s icy grip, we met with Mauro Bertolotto of Raceware Srl. Mauro was very excited to show us a special project he had been working on – the first Kuroshiro carbon rim. Unlike most companies that specialize in high end carbon goods, Kuroshiro was starting with products specifically designed for fat bikes. Using a number of intriguing technologies, the Enso 685 was designed to be one of the lightest fat bike rims on the market.

Now, Kuroshiro is introducing their second product, the all new Enso 950. After deciphering the naming structure, we’re left with a 29” rim that is 50mm wide. Perfect for the growing 29+ market. Created to be just as impressive as the 685, the 950 continues with a bit of new carbon technology to offer even higher performance.

Just like the 685, the feature packed 950 won’t come cheap, but it’s not every day you can drop 5 pounds from your bike with a single swap…

READ MORE ->

Photo Gallery: 2015 Specialized Road & Mountain Bikes Overview

2015 Specialized Venge LR "Lunch Ride" 1x11 road bike. Photo: Scott Bellecitti

2015 Specialized Venge LR “Lunch Ride” 1×11 road bike. Photo: Scott Bellecitti

This year, Specialized skipped their major press event where we usually get to weigh and photo everything and get all the nitty gritty. But, their dealers still had their event, and thanks to the legendary Dale Brown over at Cycles de Oro, we’ve got a huge gallery of images and a few details.

From what we’re seeing, there’s a bit more excitement on the road side, even with the new 650B version of the Enduro that was just shown in detail. The pavement, or, rather, off-pavement, side is being led by the Diverge gravel bike. At least for those two, we have some pretty solid information and spec.

There’s plenty more to see though, starting off with the new Venge LR (Lunch Ride), shown above. It’s built up with SRAM Force CX1 mechanical shifters for a 1×11 build around Specialized’s carbon crank arms. Retail is around $5,500. That pic’s from Scott at Mike’s Bikes, everything that follows is from de Oro…

READ MORE ->

Yeti Introduces New SB5C Super Bike With Revolutionary Switch Infinity Technology

2015_Yeti_SwitchInfinity_Mech

Among bike manufacturers, Yeti Cycles holds claims to one of the most rabid fan bases. Called the tribe, they’re a loyal group who’s numbers where recently bolstered by the dearly departed SB-66. That bike and it’s larger wheeled counterpart, the SB-95,  introduced the Switch Link suspension system.

What set that technology apart from a myriad of competitors was a counter rotating main pivot. Acting as a dual link, as the suspension was cycled through it’s initial travel, the pivot changed directions. This allowed Yeti to control the leverage rate throughout the travel and eliminate chain growth from affecting the suspension performance.

In it’s initial iterations on the SB-66, 75, and 95 models, the ability to tune the handling to distinctly alter each bikes suspension performance proved it’s versatility. Yet the Colorado based company thought there was still room for improvement…. READ MORE ->

Factory Tour: From Raw Metal to Finished Pedal, VP does it All

VP Components Modus Taiwan Factory Pedal Production Tour409

There are a number of things that come to mind when thinking about Taiwanese manufacturing in the bicycle industry. On the small island you’ll find every level of producer making complete bikes right down to the individual bolt. Much of the production is similar to what you would find in the US with companies getting a number of different parts from their suppliers and then assembling the final product on their own factory floor.

Then there are companies like VP Components. Where raw materials are swallowed up by the gargantuan facility only to be spit out as finished goods. VP may be a relatively new name to the US market on the consumer side, but if you’ve ridden bikes for any amount of time you have probably used their products without even knowing it. Situated as one of the largest suppliers of OEM headsets in the world, VP is also one of the last producers of high quality, inexpensive square taper bottom brackets. Oh, they played a big roll in the development of reliable methods to mass produce the ISIS BB standard in Taiwan as well.

All of the buildings on VP’s campus work together in harmony to fulfill VP’s specialty of one stop production. Their customers receive completely finished and packaged products that are ready for the store shelves, or to be assembled into bikes. Capable of producing up to a half million items in a single month, bottom brackets, headsets, and pedals all roll out of the facility on a regular basis. And yes, they have their own BMX track….

READ MORE ->

First Look: Mavic Lightens Up with new Crossmax SL Wheels

Crossmax SLR 275 29 mavic mou (6)

Until now, Mavic’s updated Crossmax Wheel Tire Systems on the mountain side have been geared towards the ever popular buzz word, Enduro. However, each successive launch has brought lighter and lighter wheels, and the all new Mavic Crossmax SL is the lightest yet. Not only are the wheels the lightest in the new WTS range, the wheels are the lightest mountain bike specific wheel system Mavic has produced. Designed specifically for cross country riders, racers, and fast trail riders, the Crossmas SLs certainly aren’t the uber wide wheels that have become so popular lately. Instead the wheels offer impressive durability with a new rim profile to create an impressively light aluminum wheel at an affordable price.

READ MORE ->

All New Specialized Diverge Gravel Road Bike Takes Back Roads to Adventure

specialzied Diverge It would be hard to pinpoint a specific moment in time when adventure biking became a marketable concept, but if you put a finger on the pulse of road biking today, the gravel grinding concept would be the thing that gets the most rider’s hearts pumping.

The formula of course is simple. We’ve been doing it for years, since we were kids really. Except back then, it was just tromping through the woods on mis-adjusted bikes.

Today, a combination of carbon technology, reliable wheels, and disc brakes, makes the world beyond pavement far more comfortable to explore. Taking off where cyclocross bikes left off, the new Diverge models from Specialized are purpose built to conquer dirt roads and goat trails.  READ MORE ->

Review: Magura TS8 eLECT Suspension Fork – Electronic, Brains Free Lockout For the Win!

Magura-eLECT-TS8-suspension-fork-review

Last summer, Magura introduced their eLECT suspension fork with built in sensors to automatically stiffen the fork up for climbing. It also gave the rider manual control over lock out by way of a Bluetooth remote button.

Where the Rockshox/Lapierre collabo utilizes outboard sensors and the Fox iCD is simply a manually controlled electronic lockout lever, Magura’s system is both simpler and smarter. It’s simpler in that it only has a lockout mode, not a multi-mode like the Rockshox system with variable levels. It’s smarter in that it does the lockout on its own, not requiring the flick of a switch. As such, it makes for a very efficient, lightweight system that (in it’s best configuration) requires absolutely no thought from the rider, leaving you to focus on racing. That’s good, because this fork and the eLECT system is itself entirely focused on racing as far as I’m concerned. For now anyway – there are a few changes and some interesting product testing going on at Magura, which I’ll recap at the end.

Check out the tech, weights and ride review to see how it all works…

READ MORE ->