Concluding BikeRadar's round-up of the 2012 Fisher Expo is a 'best of the rest' look at some of our highlights from the St Albans show, including DZR's SPD-compatible trainers, downhill helmets from Bluegrass and Troy Lee and a state-of-the-art virtual reality trainer from Tacx.
San Francisco-based DZR specialise in casual shoes that are equally at home when used as a trail or urban cycling shoe. With soles stiff enough to make them effective when pedalling hard, all models shown in the gallery feature their Variable Flex Shank nylon midsole, which aims to strike a balance between power transfer when pedalling and flexibility for walking. Each also contains a rubber insert on the sole that can be removed to reveal an SPD/Time/Crank Brothers/Frogs compatible cleat, while commuting credentials are boosted by a reflective badges. View the gallery for pricing info.
Formed last year as a "gravity" offshoot of Italian helmet firm MET, Bluegrass' range expansion continues apace in 2012. On the full face front, the Intox (£84.99) is brand new this season, weighing a claimed 950g (medium) and, as ever with their helmets, catching the eye. It's available in the "Babe Orange/Cyan" below, plus yellow, red and black graphic options. Sizes range from 52-54, 54-56, 56-58 and 58-60cm.
The Explicit (£109.99/900g - medium) gets graphic updates for 2012, now available in green, orange, white and black. It has a fibre glass shell and full removable and washable internal padding. The range topping Brave (£134.99/900g - medium size) comes with orange, blue, green and Megavalanche graphic options.
Troy Lee Designs
Sticking with downhill lids, here are some more options in TLD's new D3 Carbon range following our look at the Pinstripe Blue version last year. The Zap CF Orange and Zap CF Yellow versions, like that one, costs £425.99/$450.
Zap CF Yellow
We may be heading into the time of year where you can do it for real, but for a few months anyway, the Tacx Genius Multiplayer T2000 (£1,349.99) virtual reality turbo trainer allows you to ride up and down your favourite Alpine slopes and Northern Classic routes without leaving your front door.
It's their flagship model, and asides from the obvious visual aids such as the computer game-like virtual reality world and actual videos of European routes, it offers a more realistic riding experience than a standard trainer can offer. This includes BlackTrack, a turntable for the front wheel connected wirelessly to your PC which allows you to steer in the virtual reality setting. More ingenious is the motor brake, which simulates gradients between +/-20 percent, so whether it's brutal inclines or swooping descents, the rear wheel is driven by the brake to make it feel like the real thing.
The trainer works with ANT+ technology, so you can use your own power, heart rate and cadence meters, and needs to be plugged into the mains to be used. It comes complete with cadence sensor, heart rate belt, training films, software, trainer tyre, mat, bag and sweat cover - all you need is a computer. And if you're connected to the web, you can compete against others in races. Check our video below from last summer's Eurobike trade show for a closer look.
Taiwanese pump firm Airace were showing off several new products. First up is the Turbo CO2 Mini Pump, which comes in mountain and road versions. Both allow manual hand pumping, but also come with a C02 canister for rapid inflation.
Turbo Road CO2 Mini Pump
The mountain pump (£29.99) comes in black and titanium options, is compatible with Schrader and Presta valves, and inflates to a maxiumum 80 psi (5.5 bar). The road pump (£29.99) is lighter, comes in white and titanium, compatible with Presta and Dunlop valves and inflates to 120 psi (8 bar).
A little more heavy duty is the Speed F2 G frame and floor pump (£32.99) a hand pump with retractable hose that turns it into a mini floor pump. It inflates to a maximum pressure of 140 psi (10 bar), has an alloy barrel and works with Presta, Schrader or Dunlop valves.
A number of design features are present on all Carrera Sport's sunglasses we saw at the Fisher Expo, with just the lens changing the price. These include a novel nose piece which can be adjusted not only on a horizontal plane but a vertical one too. All lenses are interchangeable and come in a variety of shapes to suit your style. There's also the option of adding an optical adaptor inside for those who need optical correction but can't wear contact lenses. The ear pieces are very pliable, allowing you to mould them to get the perfect fit.
This C-TF02 Photo model costs £159.99 and comes with a single pair of photochromic lenses