According to the nursery rhyme, Friday’s child is “loving and giving”. That may be true, but Friday’s adult-with-a-job is a jaded shell of a human being who’s just barely hanging on for the weekend. Luckily this is BikeRadar, where we offer a soupçon of solace for tired souls. Yes indeed fair reader, it’s time for 11 speed, your weekly round-up of lust-worthy bike tat!
New road bike gear
Svelte LS jersey and funky arm warmers
The range and diversity of cycling kit on the market has never been better, but somehow a lot of it still ends up looking rather samey. Luckily there are plenty of interesting micro-brands out there like Svelte, for roadies who want something a little bit different. The Heritage long sleeved jersey is a nicely understated top that looks perfect for spring or autumn, or as a mid-layer when it’s properly chilly. The fabric is 36 percent merino wool which should mean minimal stink, and it’s practical too, with both a zippered security pocket and an extra button-down one in addition to the usual three at the back.
For something a little funkier, the Green Geo arm warmers certainly stand out. They’ve got the usual brushed interior for snugness, and they’re available in a wide range of sizes for a good fit.
If they’re just not outlandish enough, Svelte does some that are even more eye-catching.
- Long sleeved Heritage jersey - £110 / $156 / AU$205
- Green Geo arm warmers - £20 / $28 / AU$37
Fizik R1 shoes
We saw the new Fizik R1s at Eurobike last year, and now we’ve got our hot little hands on them. The R1 is a flyweight racer’s shoe – this size 43.5 pair weighs just 520g – that uses a two-dial BOA system for a fit that’s meant to be snug and secure. Naturally for a flagship shoe, the soles are full carbon. Fizik says they’re lighter than the existing R3, but just as stiff. With very generous venting, these look like a prime pick for summer…
£279.99 / $400 / AU$TBC
Anker PowerPort 6+
Between GPS computers, lights and our phones, it seems like we’re always having to juggle cables and USB ports to keep everything charged up. The PowerPort+ 6 from electronics maker Anker looks like a great solution to our woes. Plugging into the mains, it offers six USB ports, one of which uses Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 2.0 standard to charge supported devices significantly faster than your bog standard port. The non-QC ports will still deliver up to 2.4A, which is far more than the typical laptop output. We need to put the Anker to the test, but if it lives up its promise we think it could make the average cyclist’s life a good deal easier.
£27.99 / $35.99 / AU$TBC
VeloVita Pocket Packs
Smartphones can be delicate beasts, so why not protect your investment with one of these handy little wallets from VeloVita? The Pocket Pack is available in two different sizes to fit most models. Internal pockets will hold your essentials (bank cards, a grimy banknote…) while your phone is retained by elastic straps. The Pocket Pack is designed to be weatherproof and ergonomic, with a curved back that fits the curve of your, er, back.
- Small (iPhone 5 size) - £25
- Large (iPhone 6/Galaxy 6 size) - £27.50
Scott Addict Team Issue
The Scott Addict isn’t new – we’ve reviewed several different versions of it already – but it is bloody lovely, especially in its feathery Team Issue configuration. This gorgeous machine is in for a Tour bikes test in our sister magazine Cycling Plus. It weighs just 6.3kg in a 54 despite having aluminium clinchers (very posh ones), and naturally it’s got Shimano’s delightfully unaffordable Dura-Ace Di2 flagship groupset. The Team Issue uses Scott’s top level HMX carbon for a claimed frame weight of just 790g, plus 300g for the fork.
£6699 / $8549.99 / AU$LOADS
Are you in need of bike tools and just can’t stand the colour blue? As it happens, you’re in luck! Pedro’s takes a jaundiced view of your workshop needs (see what we did there?), and it offers a tool for every occasion. The brand has just switched its UK distribution to Silverfish and to celebrate has sent our Bristol HQ a selection of odds and ends to play with. How about the impressively muscular Equalizer pedal spanner for £31.99 / $40? Or a set of five useful screwdrivers for £27.99 / $40? God we love tools.
New mountain bike gear
Fox Metah helmet
The Metah is a fresh new trail helmet from Fox. Like most designs now, the Metah’s polycarbonate outer shell and impact-absorbing EPS foam liner are formed in one mould. Fox has clearly concentrated on temperature control with 10 large vents across the Metah. Inside, the single dial retentions system used in the Metah is a first from Fox and also incorporates a height adjustable cradle. The design certainly divided opinion in our office – though nobody was impressed with the helmet's non-adjustable visor. It’s available in various colour combinations and our S/M test lid tipped the BikeRadar scales at a heavier than claimed 408g.
£100 / US$150 / AU$220
Park Tool Multi-tools
Park has redesigned its popular multi-tool range with options that are lighter and more compact than before. The ultra compact MT-10 is the smallest option in the range and weighs just 75g. Along with Phillips and flat-head screwdrivers, there’s a T25 Torx key, 3,4, and 5mm Allen keys – the latter usefully gets an 8mm adaptor too.
The 94g MT-20 is only slightly larger and features the same tools as the smaller MT-10 but also includes a CO2 inflator. The MT-30 is considerably larger and heavier at 158g but is an altogether more complete package with 2.5,4,5,6 and 8mm Allen keys, T25 and T30 Torx bits plus 8/15mm spanners and both types of screwdriver – no CO2 inflator on this one, though. Last up is the 240g MT-40, which is similar to the MT-30 but does away with its spanners in favour of a chain breaker and CO2 inflator.
- MT-10 - £19.99/US$23.95
- MT-20 - £29.99/US$31.95
- MT-30 - £24.99/US$33.95
- MT-40 - £49.99/US$54.95
OneUp Shark 50t sprocket and cage kit
Drivetrain specialist OneUp Components has launched a new, ultra-wide range kit for riders with Shimano’s XT M8000 transmisision. The Shark kit consists of a massive 50t cog along with a modified derailleur cage and an 18t hardened steel sprocket.
In order to fit the dinner-plate sprocket and keep things 11-speed, the stock 17 and 19t cogs of the Shimano cassette are replaced with the supplied 18t hardened steel cog. This creates a cassette progression of 11, 13, 15, 18, 21, 24, 28, 32, 37, 42, 50. The Shark upgrade cog is said to add 80g to the 447g weight of an XT 11-42t cassette.
The result is what OneUp claims to be the widest range cassette available for use on a standard freehub body (any 8-9-10spd Shimano freehub), OneUp suggests that running Shark with a 4-tooth larger chainring will increase your gear range at both ends. For more info check out our first look article.
US$125, international pricing TBC
Outdoor Tech Big Turtle Shell wireless speaker
There are Bluetooth speakers and then there’s this beast! Containing a hefty 7800 milliamp lithium-ion cell, the cheekily named Big Turtle is good for 16 hours of continuous music playback while its outbound USB port will happily charge other devices at the same time. Its claimed 110-decibel output can be accessed via Bluetooth or through one-touch NFC if your device supports it, while those who prefer good old-fashioned wires will be glad of the auxiliary cord in the box.
The two grab handles built into the base of the speaker make for easy transport and also open up various hanging/strapping options too. Its rugged, rubberised construction and IPX5 rated water resistance mean the turtle will be able to follow you though all but the worst conditions.
£159.99 / US$199.95 / AU$299.95
Turner’s much-respected RFX model dates back to before the last millennium and returns for 2016 in this fourth carbon-framed iteration. 160mm of DW-link suspension now sits between its 650b wheels and behind a large 49/62mm-diameter tapered head tube with plenty of room for an optional angle-adjustable headset – one that offers up to 1.5 degrees of adjustment at the 64.5-66 degree head angle.
Following on from first ride impressions of the model filed last year by our American colleagues, this bike will go to the testers at our sister title Mountain Biking UK who will be putting it through its paces in very different conditions.
Frame-only price £2695 / US$2,995