Posts in the category Road Bike

IB14: Alex Widens Rim Collection to Include Fat Bikes, 29+, Even 36″?

Alex Rims new 2015 36 fat  (9)

Alex Rims are a pretty good barometer of what is happening in the industry. The rims are often used as standard equipment on complete bikes so they seem to produce rims that are in demand at prices that help keep the cost of complete bikes low. If the addition of new models like the Blizzerk and MD50 suggest that fat bikes and 29+ have really hit the mainstream, what does that say about their new 36″ rim the MD25?

Details next…

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Found: CyclingCeramic Bearings from the Pro Peloton – Bottom Brackets, Jockey Wheels & More!

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The pros are an interesting bunch, always looking for any little edge they can get. Sometimes it’s aero, sometimes it’s nutrition and sometimes it’s just making the parts they’re already using work better. For the latter, CyclingCeramic says half the pro peloton at this year’s Tour de France turned to their bearings for their wheels, bottom brackets and/or derailleur pulley wheels.

Shown above on official partner IAM Cycling’s team bikes, you’d also unofficially find them on at least four more of the largest, most well known teams’ bikes, too.

What makes them special? They start with high quality ceramic balls, then polish them for 45 days to enhance the smoothness and roundness, which minimizes surface contact area. Then, they use a tougher, lighter polyamide carrier to position the bearings between the races. For the bottom brackets, which see higher forces than the other parts, they developed a special hardening process for the races to improve durability, overall smoothness and resistance to corrosion. Lastly, they developed their own seals that maximize the “fluidity” of the balls’ movement inside while keeping contaminants out. It’s all hand assembled in France in their own facility, so they have control over the final product. Roll on for product pics and options…

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EB14: Varibike Goes Off-Road, Mountain Bike with Your Feet, Your Hand, or Both

Varibike offroad mtb hand cycle  (2)

In spite of appearances, the fork on this bike is not backwards. This is a Varibike – the bike you can pedal with both your hands and your feet. The German company has been around for a few years now and is expanding their line of bizarre looking bikes. Why all the extra equipment? Studies have shown that the system allows riders to put out up to 31% more power while increasing endurance. It also allows rider to get a better workout in a shorter period of time, which is beneficial if fitness is your main goal for cycling.

Having offered a few pavement oriented bikes in the past, Varibike is now expanding into offroad riding as well as more performance based pedaling. Connect the dots on the drivetrain next…

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First Look! Ritte’s New Ace in the Hole is a Full Monocoque Carbon Road Bike

2015 Ritte Ace road bike exclusive first look

Without knowing what it was (and Ritte wasn’t exactly ready to say), we spotted a rideable prototype of the all-new Ritte Ace earlier this summer.

Designed over the past 18 months, the Ace is a true monocoque carbon frame that’s made as a single piece over a hard inner mold, and it’s their design from the ground up. It borrows the geometry from the Vlaanderen since they liked its handling, but used hi-mod T700/T1000 carbon and added interchangeable cable ports to handle either mechanical or electronic drivetrains with ease.

It’ll be offered as a frameset come January 2015, and until then all the specs and techy details will remain under wraps. That said, we’ve got a few less blurred pics below and a bike on the way for our own pre-launch test. Stay tuned…

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Warm, Bright, Reflective, the Pactimo Fall Collection Has it All

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As both the season and day light wind down, there is a lot of talk about lights. Indeed, lights are very important both to allow you to see and get you noticed by drivers, but clothing can also play an important role in visibility. Brightly colored threads help you stand out in the day while reflective panels make you pop against a car’s headlights.

Even though many riders acknowledge the need for visible clothing, for many cyclists style comes first for better or for worse. When Pactimo set out to create their Fall line for 2014 their goal was simple -  create a collection of clothes with attention grabbing colors and smart reflective panels that don’t look like you’re wearing a safety jacket.

Combined with Pactimo’s value for the money and fit that we love, and you have some very interesting, very attention grabbing Fall cycling gear. See what makes the new gear shine next…

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IB14: Hermes Sport Back w/ Gorgeous New Proprietary Hubs & VK Wheels

2015 hermes sport VK series carbon and alloy road bike wheels

Way back in 2009, Alex Webster started building wheels under the brand Hermes Sport. They used off the shelf components but gained a following for being well built and race ready. And light. Sometimes really, really light.

From the outset, he wanted to grow the brand into its own line using its own components. As things go with small businesses in a difficult economy, the dream sometimes falls behind available resources. A couple years ago, he put the Hermes Sport brand on hiatus and focused on building non-branded wheels with off the shelf parts for others.

But, all that while he was developing his own hubs as a foundation for the relaunch of the brand. His goal was to build the company anew upon his own parts, designing the wheels as a system rather than just a collection of off the shelf parts.

And thus is born a new line of Hermes Sport VK carbon and alloy wheels. The foundation is a streamlined, premium new hub and custom rims…

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Closeup: New FSA ITC Seatposts Offer Flip Flop, Independent Angle and Offset Adjustment

2015 FSA ITC seatpost design weights and specs

Introduced at Eurobike, FSA’s new ITC (Independent Top Clamp) seatposts are wrapping up production and first batches should be hitting FSA’s warehouses soon.

The design uses a rounded base for the top clamp section to adhere to, allowing it to rotate through a wide range of angles completely independent of your saddle rail position. Even better, the top clamps are available in two versions, giving you a total of four offsets: 0, 10, 15 and 20mm, and in any direction you want. If your seat angle’s not too steep, that’s effectively seven different positions from a single post!

They’ll be available in alloy and carbon versions with 27.2 and 31.6 diameters. Click through for full specs and weights…

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EB14: Fulcrum Gets Carbon Tubeless, Tubular Mountain Bike Wheels, Plus Alloy Models & Stealth Road

2015-Fulcrum-Red-Carbon-tubeless-mountain-bike-wheels

While sister brand Campagnolo unleashed new top level carbon clinchers for the road, Fulcrum added them for the mountain. Along with carbon tubulars and new alloy clinchers, too. These come just one month after they introduced their latest top level alloy racing wheelset, the Red Power HP, and about two months after we spotted prototypes being tested by Merida Multivan. For road, they added a blacked out Nite version of their Racing Zero alloy wheels that promises better braking performance.

The Red Carbon tubeless ready clinchers will be available in both 27.5″ and 29″ sizes with these subtle gray-on-black graphics. The rim is full carbon, and the hubs get carbon shells with alloy flanges built around a cup-and-cone bearing system. It’s all tied together with bladed, double butted stainless steel straight pull spokes. Weights are impressively light at just 1,356g for the 29er and 1,288g for 27.5″, thanks in part to a titanium freehub body.

Roll on down for detail pics and more…

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Efneo Launches x3 Gearbox Crank & Ultra Silent, Ultra Quick Rear Hub

The Efneo x3 internally geared crankset

Efneo, a Polish company run by a family, is bringing bicycle components to market to make a cyclists life easier. We covered their idea of an internally geared crank two years back, and they are now gearing up to start taking pre-orders for the x3 gearbox crank and the Active silent hub. While an internally geared crank and a silent hub are not new ideas, Efneo hopes to bring them to market for all types of bikes, and with the help of crowdsourcing.

The x3 crank is an internally geared, shiftable crankset that can be installed on any bike. While the idea is not new, as it has been seen in Hammerschmidt, Schlumpf and the Metropolis Patterson, the x3 is the first one to incorporate 3 speeds, not just two. Similar to other systems, the benefits are touted as being able to offer instant gear changes, being able to shift without pedaling and cleaning up the drivetrain so there is less maintenance. Offering a range similar to a 28/40/50 crank is impressive, and it seems to be able to mount without any strange parts or adapters.

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