Can you believe it? We’re already 16.12 per cent of the way through 2020… it only seems like a few weeks since we were singing Auld Lang Syne and polishing off the booze supplies that we readily relied on for getting through the family Christmas.
Time flies when you’re creating the kind of quality content that we love to put up on BikeRadar on a daily basis.
For example, did you see our piece on those new woven Rapha shoes? Or, very aptly for the past couple of weeks, our tips for riding in to a headwind? Alternatively you might have spotted Helen’s first report on her rather lovely Specialized Diverge X1 long-term test bike or listened to our latest podcast on how gravel bikes have improved cyclocross, which you can stream on Spotify, iTunes and below!
Right, on with First Look Friday and four spectacular new arrivals at BikeRadar HQ.
DMT KM1 shoes
Rapha might have stolen the show this week with its aforementioned woven shoes, but it isn’t the only ones spinning and weaving its way to footwear glory.
DMT, the high-end Italian manufacturer of rather special shoes has its own range of shoes with an engineered knit construction, including these brightly coloured cross-country and marathon shoes.
The idea behind the knit is to introduce plenty of breathability in a very lightweight package. And they’re certainly light, with these orange kicks coming in at 696g for the pair (a more subtle colourway is available too!)
There’s no tongue, as such, you just slip your feet into the sock-like shoes. They’re tied down with a Boa IP1 dial, and DMT says that the way the knit is engineered, and the internal webbing, help distribute load across the foot.
Down below is a dual-compound carbon sole with Michelin-supplied rubber lugs to give you that all important traction when you occasionally have to get off and push. Finally, there’s toe protection to stop you stubbing your pinkies.
- £320 / $439.90 / €349
Cadex Boost saddle
Cadex is the high-end component brand from Giant, and the Boost is its all-singing, all-dancing saddle.
While there are many brands out there with carbon-railed saddles and fancy finishes, Cadex claims that the Boost is a saddle designed to give maximum power transfer without adding weight.
Power transfer, from a saddle? I hear you say. Well, if you’re sat pedalling, you’re effectively pushing fore and aft on the saddle as you pedal, so it stands to reason that a saddle that flexes in the right way is going to help with this.
Oh, and it’d better be comfortable too.
The base is made from a 2-piece ‘Advanced Forged Composite’ frame to reduce this energy-sapping flex. At the same time, ‘Particle Flow’ technology, appropriately placed cut-outs, and the rails entering the base away from the regular saddle pressure points apparently keep this 139g fly-weight saddle perfectly comfortable.
You know it, I know it. There’s little worse than having your bike stolen, especially if someone has invaded your property to do so.
While a dedicated thief is likely to make off with your bike, making that process as hard as possible will not only put the less committed off, but will make life much harder for the more determined. This means more noise, more time and more chance of getting caught.
Ground anchors should be right at the top of your list when it comes to getting secure, and Hiplok’s ANKR is one of the most stylish around – if you keep your bike looking good, why not get your security on point too?
The white outer section bolts to your wall or floor, and then the black inner slides into this, covering the bolts, which is co-secured with your lock.
This means there’s no need to be knocking ball bearings into the heads of your ground anchor securing bolts to prevent them being undone. So, if you want to move or remove the anchor, all you’re left with is a couple of holes.
The ANKR will be available from March 2020 and is Sold Secure Gold rated for bicycles and motorbikes.
Barista & Co Coffee Makers
Like salt and vinegar on chips, ketchup and mustard on a hotdog and a sprinkling of Parmesan on your bolognese, coffee and cycling just go hand in hand.
There are a few, odd, non-coffee drinkers in the BikeRadar office, but when it comes down to a deadline, most of us reach for our coffee-brewer of choice and make ourselves a caffeinated brew to get our creative juices flowing.
This trio of coffee brewers (along with a couple bags of the good stuff chucked in too) have therefore made a bit of a splash in the office, as we vie to put our amateur barista skills to the test.
The One Brew is basically a French Press without the need to press – steep the grounds and then pour through the mesh-protected spout.
Barista & Co says it’s good for tea, iced tea and cold brew coffee as well.
Next up is the Brew It Stick coffee and tea infuser.
Fill the mesh compartment with coffee or tea leaves, pour hot water over it (into your cup, obviously), spin and then steep for around five minutes for a relaxed, relatively mellow cup of coffee or tea.
There’s then a handy drip-pot to put the Brew It Stick in while you enjoy your fresh cuppa.
Finally, we have the Twist Press Coffee Maker.
This works similarly to an AeroPress, in some ways. Twisting the handles forces infused water through a paper filter into your cup for a slightly stronger, more intense coffee than you’d get out of the One Brew.
- One Brew: £22
- Brew It Stick: £12
- Twist Press: £30