It’s the end of yet another week – and that means it’s time for another installment of our Friday Five-a-side round up of the most interesting bits and pieces of road cycling and mountain biking gear that have recently landed on our doorstep.
Take a closer look at what we’ll be testing in the upcoming weeks and months.
New mountain bike gear
Camelbak Kudu 12
The Kudu is Camelbak’s entry into the enduro pack market. The Kudu will be available in early 2015 in the 12 (shown here) and a more voluminous 14 version. The Kudu 12 comes with a three-litre (100oz) bladder and offers ample storage space for knee and elbow pads, a full face or half-shell helmet, and it even comes with a tool roll. Its most important feature is the removable spine protector, which is rated to CE 1621-2 Level 2 standards.
US$200 / £TBA
Feedback Sports Velo Hinge
The Feedback Sports Velo Hinge is a clever little bicycle storage solution for cyclists living in cramped quarters. The Velo Hinge has two key benefits over the rubber-dipped hooks that many cyclists line the walls of their garages with: it folds down when not in use, and it can swing sideways, so your bike takes up less space.
US$24.99 / £N/A
Answer Big John gloves
While they may look like a pair work gloves from your local hardware store, the Answer Big John gloves have all the features you would expect in a pair of mitts designed for mountain biking. The Big Johns have pre-curved synthetic leather palms, fleece padding the top of the thumbs for wiping sweat away, and touch-screen sensitive Answer-IT pads on the thumb and index fingers.
US$29.95 / £TBA
RockShox RS-1 fork
RockShox attempted to turn the suspension world upside down this spring when it unveiled the RS-1, an inverted suspension fork designed for the rigors of world cup cross-country racing. The company claims the upside-down design boosts small-bump sensitivity as well as stiffness.
The RS-1 is available in 80, 100 and 120mm versions, and is a 29er-only product, at least for now. We’ll be putting the RS-1 through the paces this summer. We took a first look at this inverted fork back in April.
US$1,865 / €1,658 / £TBA
Race Face Indy SS jersey
The Indy SS jersey offers a relaxed look but packs a full list of features for an all-day trail adventure. Made from a cool-touch, quick-dry and sun-protected material, the Indy should be ideal for even the hottest days. Further features include a small zippered stash pocket that doubles as a goggle/glass wipe.
New road gear
Lake Cycling CX402 shoes
Despite the misleading moniker, the CX402 is actually Lake’s newest road – not cyclocross – shoe. Featuring Kangaroo leather, Boa dials and sole that is either the standard three-hole or Speedplay, perhaps the most remarkable thing about the shoe is the carbon sole, which is partially heat mouldable to custom fit the foot. The CX402 comes in red, white or black.
US$530 / £369.99
Specialized Shiv Pro Race
The Specialized Shiv family ranges from the top-end S-Works Di2 for US$11,000 down through the US$3,200 Shiv Elite. This Pro Race is the second-tier model, but still comes with full-on race wheels (Roval Rapide CL 60 carbon clinchers), Magura hydraulic brakes for unusually strong stopping power for a TT/tri bike and a mix of Shimano Dura-Ace and Ultegra mechanical parts.
The enormous down tube is fitted with a hydration bladder, which holds about 22oz, the drinking tube of which can be attached via a magnet to the aerobars. Check back for a review on this after we do a couple of time trials and triathlons on it.
Hutchinson Black Mamba CX tyre
The French rubber manufacturer took the fast-rolling tread from its cross-country race model and applied it to a tubeless cyclocross casing for dry conditions. While Hutchinson’s early tubeless ’cross offerings were quite stiff, we have been impressed with the recent models with softer casings. The UCI-compliant 32mm width also comes in a tubular. Claimed weight for the 127tpi tubeless version is 340g.
US$89 / £TBA
iBike Newton+ power meter
While most power meters work by measuring the force a rider creates — at the pedal, crank or rear hub — iBike goes a different route, measuring most of the forces opposed to a rider’s forward movement and calculated what the watts should be.
The Newton+ uses an accelerometer, pressure gauges and a somewhat extensive initial set-up process to calibrate to your bike and body’s particulars. A unique feature to the Newton+ ia a reading of drag measurement in Cda.
Whether you call it a fender or a mud flap, creator Miles Schwartz says the end result of the product is the same: “it keeps the quap off”. With a one-size-fits-most approach, you just bend the Duck Flap into your frame or fork and ziptie it on.
US$14.99 / approx £8.74 (excluding shipping)