Posts in the category Feature

Review: Northwave Extreme XC mountain bike shoes are light, fast & perfect for cyclocross

Northwave Extreme XC mountain bike shoes review and actual weights

A few years back, I tested the Northwave Extreme road bike shoes and liked them…still ride ’em, in fact. So when the chance to test their lightweight, racy Extreme XC shoes came up, I stepped up. Like the road shoes, the 2014 model (tested…long term review, here) came in a really bright color alongside the standard black. For 2015, the green carries over and they added a sweet angular gray urban camo with bright orange highlights. The Extreme XC model also gained a Velcro strap near the toe and a partnership with Michelin to develop grippier outsole traction pads. Otherwise, the shoes are similar in materials and design, enough so that this review bodes well for the current version, too…


PBE15: More on the new T47 BB from White Industries, Enduro, and Paragon Machine Works

White Industries Engin Cycles Paragon Machine works t41 threaded press fit bottom bracket-26

If you missed the big news on Thursday, there’s a new bottom bracket standard in town. Now before you start sharpening those pitchforks, this one appears to be a bit of a different animal. The short of it is that it uses the same shell as a PF30 bottom bracket, but it is threaded to eliminate the press fit part of the equation.

A true collaboration between companies, at the Philly Bike Expo you could basically take in every step of the process by walking from one adjacent booth to another. Start at Paragon Machine Works for the Bottom Bracket shells, move over to White Industries for bottom brackets, and finish at Engin Cycles for the complete build (and the prototype White Industries T47 crankset)…


Industry launches new, larger threaded T47 bottom bracket standard – say goodbye to PressFit!


The first Engin Cycles frame with the T47 bottom bracket standard.

An idea has been floating around some of the smaller industry players for about a year now. Brands like White Industries, Chris King and Paragon Machine Works were all thinking that people liked threaded bottom brackets, but that frames and cranks had changed so much over the past decade, getting larger diameter tubes that didn’t go as well with the tiny English threaded BB. These ideas progressed in distinct conversations running their own courses until one company contacted another to make a bottom bracket, and then everything really fell into place to (hopefully) replace the pressfit bottom bracket.

The driving force was to take the advantages of a 30mm spindle and modern frames and combine them with the proven durability, quiet performance and lovability of the traditional threaded bottom bracket.

The result is a new standard called T47, for “Threaded 47”. It measures M47x1, meaning a 47mm outside-thread diameter with a 1mm thread pitch (25.4 tpi equivalent). That puts it very close to the 24 tpi (threads per inch) currently used on English threaded bottom brackets, so it’s essentially been proven on bicycles for many, many years. And that slightly finer thread pitch helps to manually hand tap and chase the threads, a handy feature for frame builders.


Mega Roundup #1 – Random Tradeshow Bikes from Europe & beyond


Now that we’ve gotten (most of) our important fall tradeshow coverage posted, our attention turns to the weird, the random and the outrageous things we spotted while walking miles upon miles each day.

Adorning the Melon Helmets booth were two insane rat rod cruiser bikes that, as far as we could tell, were indeed rideable. And both were among the more creative (but not the weirdest) bikes we saw…


Review: Light & Motion Vis 180 USB Tail Light


As modern LED and battery technology continues to raise the performance bar, the new wave of high-powered bicycle lights currently hitting the market are without doubt the most powerful and efficient we have ever seen. Remember the days of sealed-lead acid batteries and halogen globes? We do too, though thankfully those days are long gone! But as compact and as eyeball-tearingly powerful as some front lights have gotten (how’s that 6000-Lumen Halo light from TrailLED?!), sometimes it’s easy to forget that rear lights are also improving too.

For road and urban riders, having a highly visible rear light is arguably more important than having a stoopid-powerful front light, mostly because you don’t have eyes in the back of your head. And quite frankly, we need to give drivers as much help as they can possibly get when it comes to noticing us on the road.

The Vis 180 tail light from Californian company Light & Motion is a great example of how modern lighting technology is making us more visible, and (hopefully) safer. 70 Lumens of LED-driven power, a claimed 6-hour run time, and a compact alloy body make the Vis 180 one of the big boys in the lighting game. Does it live up to the price-tag? Read on for the full review!


Full Suspension Fat vs. Plus – Is there room for Both?


Since the introduction of full suspension fat bikes, one of the most often asked questions seems to be, “why?” The fat tire creations are definitely one of those bikes that has its own little niche, and to understand the need you really have to ride it.

As someone who can appreciate the use for a full suspension fat bike but never really felt the need to buy one, the full suspension Plus bike poses an interesting question. Now that there is a fat tire middle ground for full suspension, for a company like Salsa is there really a need for both? Apparently I wasn’t the only one to ask that question at the Salsa demo for Biketoberfest, and the answer is really one you have to decide for yourself….


Review: Turner Cyclosys cyclocross bike cuts, runs & jumps onto the scene

2016 Turner Cyclosys cyclocross bike ride review and actual weights

After testing the concept for years on frames built for him and his wife’s personal use, Dave Turner introduced his first production cyclocross bike in April this year, just prior to our closeup look at Sea Otter Classic.

Then, just prior to the current cyclocross season, we had a couple weeks to ride one around our local gravel paths, ‘cross training loops and trails. Unfortunately, they needed it back before Interbike to use as a demo, so it didn’t see any racing action, but we packed in as many hard, fast and jumpy rides as we could to test the alloy frame to the limit…


2016 SR Suntour Durolux R2C2 reinvents the entire fork, becomes an enduro monster

2016 SR Suntour Durolux R2C2 enduro mountain bike suspension fork ride review

Compared to the prior model, the all-new 2016 SR Suntour Durolux fork is a beast. It’s bigger, blacker and has an impressive new cartridge damper that gives you complete control over virtually every performance facet you could want. We’re gonna dive deep, so first, a little background…

In 2001, the brand switched all high end forks to a closed cartridge systems to simplify things and make the products easier to service. They call it QSP (Quick Service Product) and Cartridge Science, which basically means if something goes wrong, you just swap in a new cartridge to fix it.

SR Suntour sponsors a lot of top riders in the EWS and downhill circuits, so they had plenty of World Cup level riders to push the products to the limits. As mountain biking has gotten faster and faster over the past few years, they had to take a fresh look at their damper cartridge so it could keep up. Thanks to feedback from riders like Kyle Warner, James Doerfling, Remy Absalon, Garett Buehler, Brett Tippy, Mike Hopkins and the Voul Voul Racing Team’s young up and comers, they identified created a list of goals for a new fork…


Biketoberfest 2015: QBP Celebrates Lancaster Facility with first Dealer Show, Reno’s Next

QBP east Lancaster PA tour Biketoberfest 2015DSC07808

Dealer or not, QBP’s latest moves are worth paying attention to. Obviously, for dealers of QBP (Quality Bicycle Products), the opening of new distribution centers is great news as it should help cut down on delivery time. Consumers benefit as well, as the ability to get product to shops faster means you’re more likely to find that part you’re looking for without having to order it on line.

Earlier this year, QBP relocated from a leased facility in Middletown, PA to their new home – a purpose built, Energy Star certified 122,000 square foot building in beautiful Lancaster, PA. Showing their commitment to the area, the building is owned by QBP and was even built with one wall meant for future expansion. After starting out of Minneapolis, MN, QBP’s first expansion was to Ogden, UT. Now with Lancaster up and running, QBP is already set to open another distribution center in Reno, NV in December. Needless to say, business for one of the largest distributors in the U.S. is good and it bodes well for the cycling community as a whole…