PCW16: Alpinestars preps for Fall/Winter 2016 with Riding Pants, improved Jackets, and more

Alpinestars fall winter 2016 2017 rain cold weather gear fat bike pants-9

Alpinestars fall winter 2016 2017 rain cold weather gear fat bike pants-16

Often most associated with motor sports, Alpinestars has been making a concerted effort to get into mountain biking in a big way. The coming year continues that trend, and while it’s a bit hard to think about next winter before this one is even over, that’s the realities of the product cycle. For fall/winter 2016 Alpinestars has updated a few of their popular pieces as well as added entirely new products that will leave you with fewer excuses to get outside, all in typical Alpinestars style…

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Posted in Feature, Mountain Bike1 Comment

Factor Bikes Launch the ONE with Baden Cooke

FactorOneTDU2016-2

FactorOneTDU2016-1

Late in 2015, we revealed Factor Bikes new models, the UCI Legal ONE, O2 and ONE-S. All of these bikes are linked to a project with the UK’s first Professional Continental Cycling team, One Pro Cycling. Originally starting as a side project from motorsport and automotive company bf1systems, Factor Bikes has grown into a showcase for innovation. In 2009, the company released the Factor 001, a carbon machine that featured split downtube and aerodynamic fork, disc brakes and integrated power meter.

In 2014, Australian ex-professional cyclist and winner of the Tour de France’s green jersey, Baden Cooke, joined Factor Bikes as a consultant. Baden was tasked with creating a UCI legal bike to showcase in the world of professional cycling. Nowadays, Baden is a co-owner of the company with Rob Gitelis, an American who owns a manufacturing company in Taiwan. The 2016 Tour Down Under was chosen as the venue to officially launch the Factor ONE, O2 and ONE-S bikes. I was fortunate to get a few minutes of Baden’s time away from the Factor pop-up booth, and gather details and photos of the Factor ONE. Continue reading “Factor Bikes Launch the ONE with Baden Cooke”

Posted in Feature, Road Bike9 Comments

Road to NAHBS 2016: Don Ferris of Anvil Bikeworks

Photo by Probably Dead, Used with permission of Don Ferris
Photo by Anvil Bikeworks
Photo by Anvil Bikeworks

Don Ferris is so pervasive within the frame building community that many take for granted that he exists. His company, Anvil Bikeworks, develops and fabricates the fixtures that help build many of the bikes you’ll see at NAHBS this year. At this point, it is unusual to walk into a frame builder’s shop and not see something of his work.

But knowing how much the fans of the community enjoy the cult of personality, it is a crying shame that Don, due to his customer base of frame builders, is relegated to the background. He is one of the more dynamic members of the industry. Few others have gone from the wrong side of the law, to the Antarctic, to UBI, to giving up a successful career as an esteemed frame builder in order to build the tool that the community uses to do their jobs every day.

When editing, I enjoyed the story so much that I left it a little longer than the others because, hey, this is the internet…

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Posted in Clothing-Gear-Tools, Feature, Interviews, NAHBS16 Comments

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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Posted in Clothes-Gear, Clothing-Gear-Tools, Commuter, Feature, Reviews, Road Bike, Training11 Comments

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, NAHBS8 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 Bike10 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, NAHBS18 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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Posted in Feature, Interviews, Mountain Bike, NAHBS, Road Bike2 Comments

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