Posts in the category Gadgets

EB14: Lightweight Makes SmartWheels to Sense Pressure, Brake Track Temperature & More

Liteweight smart  (2)

There may have been a few tire pressure monitoring systems announced recently, but Lightweight’s new Smartwheel system certainly takes the cake, or carbon as it may be. Using a microchip and complex sensor array embedded in the carbon fiber rim, Smartwheels are not only able to measure tire pressure in real time but brake track temperature, wheel speed and more.

According to Lightweight the system is able to be built into the rim with zero weight penalty. The chip is fairly light itself, and since it will sit in a hollowed out compartment in the inner foam core, the weight of the displaced foam causes it to break even. You will not be able to see the chip in production wheels as they will be underneath the carbon – the cutouts above are only for testing purposes.

To accompany the wheel system, Lightweight will have their own smart phone app. Download the details next…

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EB14: K-Edge Gets Fast w/ New Aero Garmin Mount, Plus New GoPro Garmin Combo Mount

The new K-Edge Aero Garmin Mount was developed at the request of Team Sky. Apparently, after they switched to K-Edge mounts to increase the strength if their Garmin mounting device, they wanted something more aero. In the wind tunnel, the team was seeing turbulence coming off the standard 500 mount. They asked founder Joe Savola if he could make something more aero. Oh, and could he do it in three weeks so they’d have it for the Tour de France?

Yes, he could, and the result is the new Aero Garmin Mount. The team also wanted the computer to sit a bit closer to the handlebar, so this model is a bit shorter than the 500 mount. Retail will be $39.99, available Oct. 1.

With the advent of cameras being allowed on race bikes, their popularity in the peloton pushed up development of their new GoPro mount for their computer mounts…

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EB14: Crank Brothers Adds Entry Level Cobalt 1 Wheels, Clever Y-Tools & More

crank brothers cobalt 1 wheelset

The new Crank Brothers Cobalt 1 wheels bring their paired spoke design to a much lower price point.

They have a 21mm inside rim width using the same rim shape and bead hook design, but it gets a new extrusion that uses more traditional spoke lacing. That is, it’s still a paired spoke design, but they’re drilled and use much shorter nipples. Those, compared to the longer alloy spoke sections of their other wheels, saves money, as does the simpler rim construction.

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ANT+ Opens Up Suspension Control, Data Protocol; Magura Springs for It

Magura eLect Rear shock fork system (2)

ANT+ has just finalized a Suspension Device Profile, allowing manufacturers of ANT+ enabled devices and suspension manufacturers to easily incorporate the code into their products.

With nothing more than a firmware update to your computer, sports watch or smart phone, you could gain not just control over your suspension, but also have it dump full performance data from your ride into the device. Imagine being able to see how much of your travel you’re using on each ride, how it’s handling the hits and how often you bottom out, then using that to tweak your performance beyond the basic settings. With data going the other direction, you’ll be able to dial your compression settings or activate a lockout, among other things as the tech progresses. That’s the promise, now it’s up to the component and accessory makers to bring it to reality.

Fortunately, Magura’s already on board, and they already have the equipment in the pipeline to take advantage of it. When we reviewed their eLECT fork with automatic “smart” lockout, we learned their remotes are switching over to ANT+. That goes for their rear shock, too.

Check out our interview with the ANT folks for a deeper dive on how their data transmission protocol works, then head past the break for the full press release…

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The Unstealable Bike? With Yerka Project, the Bike IS the Lock

Yerka project unstealable bike frame lock (2)

As more and more citizens look to bicycles as a means of transportation, bicycle locks seem to be under increased scrutiny. Many companies are looking for ways to improve the portability and effectiveness of current lock designs, but some bike designers are looking at it from another angle. Instead of carrying around bulky, heavy locks, why not make the bike a lock. After getting their own bikes stolen, that’s exactly what three engineering students from Chile are setting out to do with the Yerka Project.

The idea behind the project is pretty simple – most lock can be broken while still leaving the bike intact. When the lock is part of the bike, if thieves try to break the lock, it will essentially break the frame rendering the bike unrideable. Continue on to see the Yerka Project in action…

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Smartglasses Get Smarter with Virtual Finger Control from Myo Armband

myo band recon jet

You’ve probably seen the guy by now. You know, the one person you know that has Google Glass furiously swiping at their temple trying to access the camera instead of accidentally searching for something in Google? Thanks to Thalmic Labs’ Myo arm band, there is a smarter way to navigate through smartglass options without even touching the device. The big news for cyclists is that in addition to Google Glass, the Myo band is also designed to work with the Recon Jet – cycling glasses with a built in heads up display.

Using hand gestures alone, users can control the Jet’s functions while keeping their hands close to the bars. Compatible with both snow and bike applications from Recon, the Myo arm band offers a direct connection to the Jet by using the official Myo remote application.

See the Myo/Jet combination in use after the break…

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Pyle Audio Gets Into Bikes with ANT+, Google Maps GPS Enabled Bike Computer

PSBCG90_vertical copy

As if there weren’t enough options for cycle computers already, now Pyle Audio’s Pyle Sports division is getting into the cycling game with their new PSBCG90 Smart Bicycling Computer. Since the 1960′s Pyle has been a name in the audio world with products like their Pyle Driver woofers, but since the 2000′s the company has been expanding their reach to include the sports and outdoor markets as well.

Admittedly a far cry from metal detectors, cooler bags with built-in sound systems, and hunting cameras, their first attempt at a cycling computer brings some interesting features to the table. Pyle PSBCG90 Smart Bicycling Computer in addition to a super long name offers post workout GPS functions, 80 hours of memory for functions like Ghost riders, and ANT+ compatibility, all under $140.

Details next..

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MagZip is the Zipper All Cycling Jackets Need Right Now

under-armor-magzip-magnetic-zipper-closure1

OK brands, pay attention. This is the zipper you need on your next generation of cycling jackets. It’s called MagZip and it works with one hand.

I’ve fumbled with cycling vest and jackets with one hand (in vain) while riding too many times to count, and I have an almost 100% failure rate. I’ve either ended pulling off to zip up a jacket or tried doing it with both hands off the bar, which is somehow much harder than it should be considering I can ride no handed just fine when I’m not trying to do anything with my hands. I’m sure I’m not alone.

The MagZip could solve all of that. It uses tiny neodymium magnets to pull the base of the zipper together and position it in perfect, closed alignment. Then, it can simply be pulled up with one hand. Brilliant, but it took quite few years to develop. Video and more below…

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Cool Commuter Gear: Square U-Lock, Windmill, and Bespoke Multitool

Vier Lock closed

Vier Lock: Why Didn’t I Think of That

Some cool new commuter gear found its way across our desk this weekend just in time for your back-to-school shopping. We have the world’s most compact U-Lock, a nifty wind generator light, and a crowd designed multitool from Brooks.

The new Vier Lock may be the head slappingnest why-didn’t-I-think-of-that product release we’ve seen. Their four-piece, square lock disassembles into a convenient burrito-sized package that can slide under your saddle, drop in your purse, or get stuffed into your cargo pants with somewhat more ease than its U-shaped bretheren. READ MORE ->