Reviewed: Indigo Lighting’s 5.01 – The Brightest Single LED Bike Light?

Indigo5-2016-1

Indigo5-2016-1

“The new Indigo 5.01 is still the brightest single LED bike light” – a bold claim to make. Indigo Lights purports their single high CRI (color rendering index) emitter light boasts 1,850 lumens, Road and MTB lighting programs and “Broad Beam Technology” in a cordless and self-contained, compact design. Cyclists who roam the pavement, trails and gravel roads of the Northern Hemisphere may be unfamiliar with the Indigo brand, but cyclists in Australia know the brand well. Designed in my home state of South Australia, the guys behind Indigo don’t just design lights, they ride them too. Click on through to see how the Indigo 5.01 light fared in the Northern Hemisphere… Continue reading “Reviewed: Indigo Lighting’s 5.01 – The Brightest Single LED Bike Light?”



“The new Indigo 5.01 is still the brightest single LED bike light” – a bold claim to make. Indigo Lights purports their single high CRI (color rendering index) emitter light boasts 1,850 lumens, Road and MTB lighting programs and “Broad Beam Technology” in a cordless and self-contained, compact design. Cyclists who roam the pavement, trails and […]

Posted in Components, Reviews4 Comments

First Impressions: RIP up and JET down from an Idaho yurt on Niner’s new bikes with 29 & 27.5+

Niner Bikes Idaho Yurt Trip

Niner Bikes Idaho Yurt Trip

What’s better than riding mountain bikes in the back country? Apparently riding mountain bikes to a yurt in the back country to spend the night, then riding back into town the next morning. Such was the opportunity given to us in order to test the latest rigs from Niner. Two days. Two bikes. Two different wheel sizes. If you haven’t seen the news yet, Niner is now on the 29/27.5+ bandwagon with two new bikes. For the ride up to the Sun Valley Trekking yurt we would be on the new JET 9 RDO. The ride down? That was reserved for the new RIP 9 RDO.

With the Ride Sun Valley bike festival done and dusted, it was time to pack an overnight bag and head out on the trails high above Ketchum, ID…

Continue reading “First Impressions: RIP up and JET down from an Idaho yurt on Niner’s new bikes with 29 & 27.5+”



What’s better than riding mountain bikes in the back country? Apparently riding mountain bikes to a yurt in the back country to spend the night, then riding back into town the next morning. Such was the opportunity given to us in order to test the latest rigs from Niner. Two days. Two bikes. Two different […]

Posted in Bicycles, Fatbike, Feature, Mountain Bike, ReviewsLeave a comment

Review: From desert dust to Midwest muck on the Intense ACV 27.5+ Full Suspension MTB

Intense ACV 27 plus mountain bike new 2017 sedona review-23

Intense ACV 27 plus mountain bike new 2017 sedona review-26

At this current point in mountain bike history, it’s more surprising when a company has something to show us that isn’t Plus or Plus compatible. The new option seems to be spreading quickly, mostly due to the fact that the newest generation of 29ers can be an either/or scenario.

Intense is doing things a little differently.

Rather than offer a bike that can convert back and forth between two different wheel sizes, their new ACV is focused on fat. Well, mid-fat. The ACV is built around the stock 27.5 x 2.8″ tires and has a geometry that is tuned to match. During our annual pilgrimage to the Sedona desert, we got a sneak peek at what Intense had in store for their newest model. And in what’s becoming standard practice for the company, we received an ACV of our own to review on our home trails ahead of the launch to see what makes this Plus sized bike tick…

Continue reading “Review: From desert dust to Midwest muck on the Intense ACV 27.5+ Full Suspension MTB”



At this current point in mountain bike history, it’s more surprising when a company has something to show us that isn’t Plus or Plus compatible. The new option seems to be spreading quickly, mostly due to the fact that the newest generation of 29ers can be an either/or scenario. Intense is doing things a little differently. […]

Posted in Actual Weights, Bicycles, Fatbike, Feature, Mountain Bike, Reviews11 Comments

SRAM XX1 Eagle 1×12 mountain bike group – Actual weights, install & first ride

sram xx1 eagle actual weights and install notes

sram xx1 eagle actual weights and install notes

We weighed pre-production parts at the SRAM Eagle 12-speed group launch earlier this year, but now we’ve got our own group installed on our own bike for a proper long term review. We also covered the technical details in another post and even had some first ride impressions on the Kona demo bike provided by SRAM. But, there’s nothing like mounting it up to a familiar bike and hitting the trails. In this case, I brought the bike with me to Dixie National Forest (just outside Bryce Canyon) and tackled Thunder Mountain Trail, which turned out to be the most beautiful mountain bike ride I’ve ever done. But before that, all the parts were thrown on the scale to get true production weights…

Continue reading “SRAM XX1 Eagle 1×12 mountain bike group – Actual weights, install & first ride”



We weighed pre-production parts at the SRAM Eagle 12-speed group launch earlier this year, but now we’ve got our own group installed on our own bike for a proper long term review. We also covered the technical details in another post and even had some first ride impressions on the Kona demo bike provided by […]

Posted in Actual Weights, Components, Feature, Mountain Bike, Reviews25 Comments

Review / Tour: American made Saris Freedom SuperClamp is a quality rack option for almost any bike

Saris Super clamp review factory tour usa america built made-33

Saris Freedom SuperClamp 4 bike rack review fat bike fatbike compatible (26)

Today, America celebrates its independence. Along with the constant fireworks and everything red, white, and blue, it also reminded me of the little American flag on the back of the Saris Freedom SuperClamp rack. There’s often quite a bit of talk around products that are made in the USA. It doesn’t always equate to a better product, but it certainly still means something. Just ask one of the roughly 200 employees at Saris’ Madison, WI factory. It’s not hard to see that domestic manufacturing is something that Chris and Sarah Fortune find as a source of pride. After purchasing Graber in 1989, the pair rebranded it as Saris – a combination of Sarah and Chris.

Since then Saris has acquired CycleOps, and PowerTap, bringing even more production in house. It was here in Madison that I got my first look at their impressive manufacturing facility as well as the beginnings of the Freedom SuperClamp. Before I knew it, there was a brand new rack bolted to my car and I was trying to figure out how to stuff a different 4 bike hitch rack inside my car for the long drive home. After seeing exactly how the rack was made, I had a chance to put some serious miles on the Freedom SuperClamp to see how it held up. Fortunately, being American made isn’t the only thing it has going for it…

Continue reading “Review / Tour: American made Saris Freedom SuperClamp is a quality rack option for almost any bike”



Today, America celebrates its independence. Along with the constant fireworks and everything red, white, and blue, it also reminded me of the little American flag on the back of the Saris Freedom SuperClamp rack. There’s often quite a bit of talk around products that are made in the USA. It doesn’t always equate to a better product, but […]

Posted in Clothes-Gear, Factory Tour, Fatbike, Feature, Mountain Bike, Reviews7 Comments

First Ride: Lapierre reworks cross country with new XR full suspension

Lapierre-XR-629_carbon-eishock-full-suspension-cross-country-marathon-XC-mountain-bike_photo-by-Manu-Molle_riding-gap
photo by Manu Molle

To round out its 70th year of building bikes in France, Lapierre has rolled out several all new bikes for both road and trail riding in 2017. Their two new flagship mountain bikes, both carbon full suspension designs based on the same Lapierre OST+ virtual pivot suspension tech, exist about as far apart on the mountain biking spectrum as you could imagine. The XR is an updated version of their lightweight cross country race bike that gets a trail riding overhaul to make it more capable on today’s technical XC courses. The Overvolt AM Carbon on the other hand is an e-bike, but with a rather unique motor and battery arrangement. Take a look at the XR after the break, in addition to our first ride impressions…

Continue reading “First Ride: Lapierre reworks cross country with new XR full suspension”



To round out its 70th year of building bikes in France, Lapierre has rolled out several all new bikes for both road and trail riding in 2017. Their two new flagship mountain bikes, both carbon full suspension designs based on the same Lapierre OST+ virtual pivot suspension tech, exist about as far apart on the mountain biking […]

Posted in Bicycles, Mountain Bike1 Comment

Review: Mashing absoluteBLACK’s oval narrow-wide ring & chainguide – should you switch to oval?

Absolute Black-6

Absolute Black-6

AbsoluteBLACK sent me their 32t oval narrow-wide chainring & chainguide system to try so I could see what all of the fuss is about. Sporting no logos, their robust, yet subtle jewel-like design is their trademark and going on appearance alone, this ring is at the top of my list in the looks department. Regardless, my job here is to see how it performs, so I wiped the drool off my face and hit the trails. Now, for those of you that have (still) been under a rock, this IS NOT like BioPace. It’s almost backwards from that oval design.

I’ve ridden a couple of ovals for a short bit, but the true test was to get them on my familiar home trails to gain an accurate perspective as to how they perform. Check out my thoughts on how absoluteBLACK’s MTB oval works in the real world vs. on paper and whether or not their guide can keep everything on track during all of the “ups & downs”…

Continue reading “Review: Mashing absoluteBLACK’s oval narrow-wide ring & chainguide – should you switch to oval?”



AbsoluteBLACK sent me their 32t oval narrow-wide chainring & chainguide system to try so I could see what all of the fuss is about. Sporting no logos, their robust, yet subtle jewel-like design is their trademark and going on appearance alone, this ring is at the top of my list in the looks department. Regardless, my job here is […]

Posted in Actual Weights, Clothing-Gear-Tools, Components, Mountain Bike, Reviews23 Comments

Review: Dare VSR Aero Road Bike – Part Two, with rim brakes

DareVSRReviewNoDisc2016-25

DareVSRReviewNoDisc2016-1

A little earlier this year, we provided a tech overview of the Dare VSR Aero Road bike -a road bike capable of running disc brakes or rim brakes, with the appropriate fork, wheels, brakes and dropouts installed- and started the long term review . Part One covered the full ride review of the bike as fitted with disc brakes. Here, Part Two demonstrates the process of switching to rim brakes, along with details about weight of individual components, handy information for the component weight conscious cyclist in us. Click on through for Part Two… Continue reading “Review: Dare VSR Aero Road Bike – Part Two, with rim brakes”



A little earlier this year, we provided a tech overview of the Dare VSR Aero Road bike -a road bike capable of running disc brakes or rim brakes, with the appropriate fork, wheels, brakes and dropouts installed- and started the long term review . Part One covered the full ride review of the bike as fitted with […]

Posted in Bicycles, Feature, Reviews, Road Bike1 Comment

New Scapin LTD SL ultralight road bike gets just 20 units worldwide – first look, first rides

2017 Scapin LTD SL ultralight carbon road bike

2017 Scapin LTD SL ultralight carbon road bike

If you’re looking for something truly unique without suffering the wait times for a custom build, it’s hard to get much more exclusive than one of just twenty bikes to be offered. And, fortunately, the new Scapin LTD SL is more than just a bike with low serial numbers…it’s a comfortable, fast and darn good looking road bike, too.

North American Scapin importer Stage Race Distribution helped define this project’s parameters and walked it through production with the Italian brand. Then they brought this one down from Canada for us to ride. So, we took them through the rolling hills around Greensboro, NC, for 110+ miles over two days of riding, barbecue, Mexican food and local brews…

Continue reading “New Scapin LTD SL ultralight road bike gets just 20 units worldwide – first look, first rides”



If you’re looking for something truly unique without suffering the wait times for a custom build, it’s hard to get much more exclusive than one of just twenty bikes to be offered. And, fortunately, the new Scapin LTD SL is more than just a bike with low serial numbers…it’s a comfortable, fast and darn good […]

Posted in Bicycles, Reviews, Road Bike20 Comments