Friday Five-a-side: this week’s best new bike gear
It’s Friday, and that means only one thing in the BikeRadar office – it’s time for our Friday Five-a-side round up of the most interesting bits and pieces of road cycling kit and mountain biking gear that have arrived on the post van this week…
The master of innuendo-based bicycle names, Cove, has sent us its latest frame ready for ragging. The Hummer 650bj is a 140mm travel trail hardtail and is now ready for 650b wheels. The frame has neat welds and a bolt-through rear end. The driveside chainstay starts as a plate to give more room for chainrings and to avoid chain suck.
The new Ghost-S from Drift is an evolution of the Ghost. The Ghost-S films at 1,080p with an impressive 60fps, while the battery life has been bumped up to 3.5 hours. There are various modes for differing light conditions, and the Clone mode allows you to control multiple units from one master camera. On top of that there’s an LCD screen that uses scratch resistant Gorilla Glass as well as the usual rotating lens, remote, WiFi and 3m waterproofing.
RaceFace next sl chainset:Jonny Ashelford / Future Publishing
RaceFace reckons the Next SL is the lightest production carbon chainset around, so we’re pretty stoked to get one in to have a good look at. The carbon arms are hollowed out to reduce weight, and the cranks use RaceFace’s new Cinch interface. The cranks have interchangeable spiders, so there are plenty of ring options available, including spider-less single rings. The 30mm spindle should mean it’ll fit pretty much any bike too.
Sherpa baruntse hooded down jacket:Jonny Ashelford / Future Publishing
Sherpa Adventure Gear was founded by the nephew of one of the Sherpas who helped Sir Edmund Hillary reach the summit of Everest in 1953. The Baruntse jacket features a rip-stop outer, which is downproof and water resistant. There are all the suitable pockets and adjustable hems, along with a hood to keep that extra bit of warmth in.
Travers are taking on the fat bike world with their Fat Race – you guessed it, a fat bike race bike. In the world of fat bikes, we reckon it should be a relatively speedy bike, with a build weight which would put some long travel trail bikes to shame… just. It’s not just the 4in tyres that are big, but also the wide 100mm bottom bracket and 170mm rear hub, all done to make sure you can squeeze a drivechain around the wide tyres. Fat Races are made to order. The frame can run single-, double- and triple-ring setups, 160mm rotors and if you really want, a dropper post.
A rather special looking road bike has dropped into the office, ready for a test in Cycling Plus magazine. The Cipollini Bond is a full carbon road bike, constructed in Italy in a rather interesting way. Instead of a traditional one-piece monocoque, the front and rear triangles are built separately, and then joined in a process called ‘Atomlink’, which is said to give greater reactivity and power transfer – sounds fast. Befitting of a £2,600 frame, Paligap has built ours with some rather Gucci kit including mechanical Shimano Dura-Ace, Ritchey finishing kit and Ritchey Carbon WCS Apex wheels. It doesn’t weigh much, but it does cost a lot.
Specialized has sent in a toasty looking road outfit ready for the cold commutes. We’ve got the RS13 Winter Partial Gore Windstopper jacket, which has a three-layer design with a windstopper middle layer, and pockets that have been coated to protect their contents from spray. We’ve also got a pair of RBX Winter bib tights, which feature roubaix fabric to add warmth and a Teflon treatment to add some rain protection.
The Lynx shoes are, in theory, mountain bike shoes, but our cyclocross racing tester Robin is going to be putting them through their paces on the muddy tracks and steep banks of the CX races across the south west. The carbon sole should offer plenty of stiffness, while the rather terrifying metal studs, and open tread pattern will hopefully give plenty of grip in the slippy stuff. Up top, there’s two BOA dials for effective closure across the foot, and plenty of ventilating mesh. Inside, the insole has a ridge along the middle, which sounds as though it might be uncomfortable, but Robin reckons this feature worked well in the last pair of DMT shoes he rode in.
Fi’zi:k volta r1 saddle:Jonny Ashelford / Future Publishing
Fi’zi:k has sent us a couple of new, slightly funny-looking saddles. First off, there’s the Tritone. As the name suggests, it’s for triathletes, and features a cut-off nose to help you get further forward on the saddle when getting the power down. We’ve also got the Volta R1, a super lightweight carbon bodied and carbon railed race saddle. It’s round profile might look somewhat alarming, but we’re going to put as many miles as possible on it to see just how well the shape works.
Pere performance wear:Jonny Ashelford / Future Publishing
It’s very easy to take for granted how good decent sports wear can be, and what a difference it can make to rides. Quite often, children’s sportswear is overlooked, but really, who wants grumpy, cold, wet kids? Pere offer a range of cycling, triathlon and running kit featuring technical materials just right for kids who’re into sports. Their range includes softshells, rain jackets, bib tights and jerseys, all designed with kids in mind.