11spd: this week’s best new bikes and gear

Dynamo lights, a mail-order DVD, brake pads, rubber sheeting and more weird stuff in this week's 11spd

What a week it’s been here at BikeRadar — we’ve had hot MTB news coming from all directions, with Santa Cruz releasing the all-new Megatower, Orange updating its Alpine 6 and Calibre launching the Sentry.

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It’s not all been dirty news though — on the road side of things, we saw a glut of new kit from Campagnolo, including its all-new Record EPS 12-speed groupset, which we first saw back in January at the Tour Down Under. We also saw the unthinkable happen, with Paul Components releasing a set of bar ends that are actually not bad looking.

If you’re not quite full yet and need another spoonful of hot cycling gossip, read on to check out all of the latest road and MTB kit to land at BikeRadar HQ.

Saracen Zenith Trail

The Saracen Zenith Trail ticks all of the 'modern trail hardtail' boxes
The Saracen Zenith Trail ticks all of the ‘modern trail hardtail’ boxes
Jack Luke / Immediate Media

The entry-level MTB market has exploded in recent years — all of the big players in both the traditional and direct-sale spheres now have their own take on the ‘totally capable, eminently upgradeable and alarmingly affordable hardtail’.

Saracen’s £899.99 Zenith Trail is one of this number, with the alloy-framed 120mm-travel hardtail ticking many of the spec boxes expected of a modern trail bike — a 1x drivetrain, stretched and relatively slack geometry, and tubeless-ready wheels are all things we expect to see in 2019.

This particular bike is in for testing and you should expect a full review in the coming months.

  • £899.99, international pricing N/A

Busch & Müller IQ-X headlight and µ tail light

We've got this B&M IQ-X in for testing
We’ve got this B&M IQ-X in for testing
B&M

In a recent episode of BikeRadar Diaries, Jack asked readers to suggest what dynamo lights he should try out on his Mr Pink.

Well, the people have spoken and you nominated Busch & Müller’s (or B+M as it’s most often referred to) lights as your preferred option.

We now have an IQ-X headlight and the German light specialist’s newly-released µ tail light in for testing.

The front light features fancy beam-shaping optics — common on German-made lights but rarely seen elsewhere — which maximise road illumination while reducing glare for other road users.

The front light also features a standard 10mm-wide mount, so it can be mounted just about anywhere, particularly if you pair it with something like a Nitto lamp holder.

This is B&M's newest miniature rear light
This is B&M’s newest miniature rear light
B&M

The rear light, with its funky articulating mount, is specifically designed to be mounted on mudguards. This is ideal for Jack’s Mr Pink, as it’s not uncommon to have a large Carradice saddlebag stuffed with tasty treats hanging from the back, obscuring the seatpost.

Keep your eyes peeled for an upcoming video outlining all of the updates to Jack’s bike and a review of the lights in the near future.

  • IQ-X headlight – £117 / €139.90
  • µ rear light – £48 / €49.90

Racing the Clock: UK Time Trialling 1979–1983

A mail-order DVD — what a throwback!
A mail-order DVD — what a throwback!
Jack Luke / Immediate Media

This DVD (remember those?), compiled by Andrew Millward of Cycling History Publishing, is a must-have for fans of UK time trialling, drillium, 20th-century cycling panache and gurning faces.

The DVD mostly comprises footage taken by Godfrey and Geoffrey Turner, who were both very keen cyclists and filmed the Road Time Trials Council (now the CTT) championships for 18 years.

Everything about the DVD, from its contents to the fact that it’s mail-order only (yes, really!), is achingly charming.

  • To purchase the DVD, send a letter with your address and email along with a cheque for £17 to CH(P) Ltd Film Order, ℅ Andrew Millward, 20 Reddings Road, Mosely, Birmingham, B13 8LN. UK mainland postage only.

Kool Stop Dura 2 Salmon brake pads

Rim brake pads in 11spd? We really are spoiling you lot
Rim brake pads in 11spd? We really are spoiling you lot
Jack Luke / Immediate Media

First mail-order DVDs and now rim brake pads?! We truly are having a throwback edition of 11spd this week.

Kool Stop’s Salmon compound brake pads are the stuff of legend in the cycling world, with every other forum user and the likes of the much-missed Sheldon Brown singing their praises.

The sticky pads are said to provide the very best possible wet weather braking on alloy rims, while, supposedly, being less harsh to your rims than typical pads.

These are destined to live on Jack’s All-City Mr Pink — a bike that is all too familiar with wet and grimy conditions — where they will replace the now worn pads on the bike’s Velo Orange Grand Grand Cru long reach calipers, which featured in a previous edition of 11spd.  

  • £8.99, international pricing TBC

Time OSMOS 15 shoes

Time recently released its OSMOS range
Time recently released its OSMOS range
Jack Luke / Immediate Media

We’ve got our mitts on this set of oh-so-very white shoes from Time, which made its triumphant return to the world of cycling shoes a few weeks back.

The OSMOS 15 shoes sit at the top of the range and feature a full carbon outsole, a funky heat-bonded synthetic upper, two Boa IP11 dials and buckets of Euro-tastic style.

It’s still fairly grimy here in the UK, so these puppies won’t see a cleat for a while yet but, nonetheless, they already have us dreaming of silky, shaved, winter-weakened legs gleaming in the spring sun.

  • €350 / $400, international pricing TBA

Ass Savers Fendor Bendor Big

We question the logic of having such a large clip-on mudguard but love it all the same
We question the logic of having such a large clip-on mudguard but love it all the same
Jack Luke / Immediate Media

Ass Saver-style clip-on mudguards have become increasingly popular in recent years, with everyone from dedicated roadies to everyday commuters donning one in a bid to keep the dreaded brown streak at bay.

As their popularity has grown, so too has their size — the original Ass Savers could be cut from something about the size of an A4 sheet of paper but this beast… well, you’d probably need a roll of wallpaper to make something quite this large.

While we can’t help but wonder why you wouldn’t just go for proper full-cover mudguards once things get this large, we salute Ass Savers for having the chutzpah to create such a thing.

  • €15, international pricing TBC

Pearl Izumi Tour Road lace-up cycling shoes

These reasonably priced kicks from Pearl Izumi look great
These reasonably priced kicks from Pearl Izumi look great
Jack Luke / Immediate Media

Two pairs of flashy white shoes in one week? We truly are spoiling you.

Featuring a composite sole with a carbon cleat insert, a bang-on-trend lace-up closure and a cool-weather friendly upper with less ventilation than usual (often a good thing for UK climes), these shoes come in at a perfectly reasonable $130.

Most importantly, with their handsome red laces, they look really cool, and if the performance of these flashy kicks is as good as their looks, we could well be onto a winner.

  • £119 / $130, international pricing TBC

Silca Hirobel frame clamp

Silca recently acquired Hirobel
Silca recently acquired Hirobel
Silca Hirobel

Silca recently acquired Hirobel, moving the fellow USA-made brand’s production to Silca’s HQ in Indianapolis.

The clamp is designed to work with awkwardly shaped frames
The clamp is designed to work with awkwardly shaped frames
Silca Hirobel

Hirobel is best known for its funky work stand clamps that use straps attached to a bar, which is fitted with specially shaped cones that hug the frame at tube junctions, to support a bike. The clamp itself attaches to a regular, jaw-style work-stand clamp.

As the clamp attaches in more than one location, its makers claim it distributes stress better than a regular clamp and, as a result, reduces the chance of any crushing forces damaging components. We can see this system working particularly well on awkwardly-shaped aero bikes.

The blocks are designed to hug the joins of a frame
The blocks are designed to hug the joins of a frame
Silca Hirobel

Silca also claims that the clamp makes life much easier on modern bikes as it allows the bike to be worked on with the seatpost out — something you will appreciate if you’re working on a bike with a dropper or seatpost-mounted Di2 battery.

  • £145 / $185 / €185

Lazer Coyote helmet

Lazer's Coyote looks like it could be a great budget trail lid
Lazer’s Coyote looks like it could be a great budget trail lid
Jack Luke / Immediate Media

The Coyote is Lazer’s all-new and oh-so-very affordable MTB lid, coming in at just €79.95.

The helmet features 21 vents, Lazer’s easily-adjustable Turnfit dial and a very on-trend large visor. Silly as it might sound, the finish of the helmet is also notably nice for a budget-minded lid.

The helmet features more adjustability than usual for a cheaper helmet
The helmet features more adjustability than usual for a budget lid
Jack Luke / Immediate Media

This is a particularly competitive price point in the trail helmet market but, providing the Coyote performs well, we can see it becoming a staple stock option in bike shops across the land.

  • Regular — £69.99 / €79.95
  • MIPS-equipped — £89.99, international pricing TBC
  • Available early April

Lindarets Belltower DB bar end mount for Spurcycle bells

Looking to mount your Spurcycle bell discreetly? This could be a great option
Looking to mount your Spurcycle bell discreetly? This could be a great option.
Lindarets / Shapeways

Handlebars are becoming evermore cluttered with accessories, making it trickier than ever to discreetly mount a bell.

Enter the Belltower DB — this cool, 3D-printed part replaces a bar-end plug and mounts a Spurcycle bell in its place.

The Belltower DB follows on from the original Belltower, which raises a Spurcycle bell a little higher on a regular flat bar for improved ergonomics. This little accessory is remarkably popular among the high-end bell’s surprisingly big fan base.

A very small bit of modification is required to make the bell work with the Belltower DB mount, but for those desperate for a clean cockpit on their drop bar bike, it’s the nicest solution we’ve seen yet.

The Belltower DB is available via Shapeways
The Belltower DB is available via Shapeways
Lindarets / Shapeways

Parts are not held in stock and are instead available via Shapeways — a remote 3D-printing service that allows for small runs of parts to be produced on demand.

As an aside, Lindarets is an interesting design house that is worth reading about — the brand focuses on what are best described as neat and discreet solutions to cycling problems and its portfolio is filled with all sorts of things you never knew you needed in your life.

  • $30, international shipping available

3mm thick SBR rubber sheet

Who knew choosing rubber sheeting could cause so much anguish?
Who knew choosing rubber sheeting could cause so much anguish?
Felix Smith / Immediate Media

These two sheets of 3mm-thick rubber may appear to have no place on BikeRadar but resident mudguard-botherer Jack Luke has a lot in store for this seemingly innocuous sheet.

These sheets are due to become a set of suitably nerdy mud flaps. However, choosing this particular rubber was no mean feat and just goes to show that even the most trivial of cycling tech decisions have the ability to cripple those susceptible to obsessive obsessing.

  • £3.30
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