Sea Otter 2012 component round-up: Continental to WTB

Wheels, tires, transmissions, saddles and bearings

Sea Otter’s wealth of exhibitors has turned the event into the de facto location for early-season product introductions. We’ve covered a number of the new bikes already (with more yet to come) but here’s a look at some of the components that caught our eye over the weekend.


Wheels and tires feature heavily in this first round-up, with new Dicut aluminum road clinchers and a new range of mountain bike wheels from DT Swiss called Spline on show. We also came across revamped 25mm-deep aluminum road clinchers from Industry Nine with new tubeless-compatible rims designed in-house, and new Iodine-level 29er wheels from CrankBrothers with tubeless rims, convertible hubs and the company’s trick aluminum and steel spoke design.

New tires include a redesign of WTB’s soft-conditions Moto mountain bike tire, tubeless-compatible 29er treads from Continental with proper UST beads and lightweight sidewalls, and the return of the Onza brand name (courtesy of a Swiss buyer) with a range of new tires for a wide range of conditions. And yes, there are lots more 650b options coming, too – more on that later.

Speaking of Continental, the German company also launched their own tire sealant using an ammonia- and protein-free synthetic latex base and four different shapes and sizes of particulates to help plug holes. According to Continental’s Brett Hahn, the new formula is designed to clot like human blood and the bottle’s nozzle is conveniently sized to inject right into a Presta valve.

Rotor unveiled several new sizes of mountain bike Q-Rings, a new SRM-equipped mountain bike crank and a less expensive forged version of their 3D hollow drilled road crank. FSA showed a belt-compatible version of their intriguing Patterson two-speed transmission, and Prologo offered a sneak preview of their 2013 saddle range.


Finally, Enduro displayed a needle bearing upgrade kit to replace the standard DU bushings in shock eyelets. This isn’t a new item – it’s actually been around since 2008 – but today’s crop of longer-travel bikes and more complicated linkage systems make it more applicable than ever. Enjoy this first round of component coverage but rest assured that if you don’t see something here, you’re bound to find it in one of our upcoming instalments.