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Blingy Things

New DH Parts from Interbike – Forks, Wheelsets, Stems, and more!

BIKE Mag’s David Peacock has gone through the DH Bikes, as well as the kits and helmets, and says “finally we’re getting around to some of the cool parts hanging about the show floor.”

After the jump, you’ll find photos and some info on the new Enve and Gravity carbon bars, the RockShox Vivid Air, White Bro’s DH fork the Groove, and much more.

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Hope Industries: Newer, Lighter, Cooler, Stronger, Anodizeder and More CNC’d

Hope is phasing out its powerful V2 hydraulic disc brake design for 2013, replacing it with an even more powerful V4 caliper. The key change is a return to a four-piston layout with bigger and longer pads for more surface area – and more grip – than the old two-piston configuration. Hope also says the new caliper is stiffer for improved lever feel and power.

Naturally, Hope machines the aluminum V4 caliper in-house as a single piece and the updated form features an array of subtle cooling fins and a big window to help dissipate heat. The matching levers are unchanged for 2013 and still feature machined aluminum construction (with nearly everything done in-house) plus independently adjustable reach and pad contact.

According to Hope, the new V4 is slightly lighter than the V2 with complete single brake weights starting at 400g. 

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News: RockShox Shows Off 27.5 (650B) Forks – SID and Reba 27.5 forks on display at Eurobike

650B is coming whether you’re ready for it or not. Of course, in the past few months it suddenly became known as 27.5-inch or just 27.5″, which is sort of annoying, but actually makes more intuitive sense than the old ‘650B’ nomenclature.

There’ll be more 27.5 bikes in 2013 than ever before. The Euros are jumping on the bigger-wheel bandwagon and since every proud citizen of the EU carries a digital scale with them wherever they go, they are loving the idea that 27.5 offers better rollover than 26er wheels with fewer grams than 29ers.

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AfterShokz ‘bone conduction’ headphones – First look

Most of us know that cycling with headphones in is a big no-no, but we might make an exception with innovation from AfterShokz.

The basic idea is that, because the headphones dont sit inside your ears, youre still able to pick up the noise going on in your surroundings.

The bud that normally goes inside your ear sits on your cheekbones and uses bone conduction technology. AfterShokz say that, unlike conventional headphones that use your eardrums as transmitters, their product delivers sound through your cheekbones to your inner ears.  Continue Reading →


Specialized Prevail Helmet

A side view (See I told you it looked good!)

This is a helmet that I’ve been looking forward to.  For the last two years I’ve been using the S-Works Helmet & have been very pleased w/ it.  Light, easy to use, well ventilated, etc.  All the standard stuff you look for in a helmet, done very well & it looks good (IMHO).  Biggest drawback was it fit a bit snug, rather oblong not round in shape.  I was right on the cusp of a L & well vanity wouldn’t let me go there.

The Prevail’s claim to fame isn’t just the whole light & ventilated thing, rather it’s aerodynamic advantages.  It’s the first regular road helmet really done w/ aerodynamics on a par w/ weight & comfort.  Specialized claims that the Prevail will put you 250 meters farther down the road after an hour riding at 250 watts than you would be wearing a Giro Ionos.

Bike Radar Prevail Review

VeloNews Review

Initial Thoughts (1/8/11):

  1. Fit problem solved in Med. it’s a great fit for me, between the old one & a Bell.
  2. It’s looks if any thing to be better ventilated, then the S-Works one.
  3. It’s light. Claimed weight 215g, ours was 227g (not claimed but still reasonable)
  4. Arguably better adjustment. By the way look back at the ’10 TDF. The Specialized guys all used their new Prevails, Giro’s new wonder helm wasn’t universally taken to. Something to think about.
  5. Again IMHO it’s good looking (even Sam likes it & it used to be he didn’t like the big vents @ the back).
  6. Biggest two Drawbacks:  1. It’s pricey @ $230.  Why are helmets so much anyway?  2.  It takes a keen eye to notice spot it over Specialized’s $110 Propero.  On the other hand while we can’t perhaps afford Di2, we could fork out the money for the very best helmet out there, so…


This helmet has been the bomb. Never have I liked a helmet before, I’ve always tolerated them. As a friend of mine who’d been a Pro in the late ’80s put it “I wish somebody somewhere could give me one good reason to NOT wear a helmet”. That’s kind of been my view.

However, I have found two more “negatives”

  1. I have left it at quick mart stops. I’m not kidding. There is so little to the helmet that one can on occasion forget about it & flat out leave it behind.
  2. It’s a cold helmet in the winter. If you don’t like wearing skull caps do not use this helmet.

I have found a “solution” to the glasses issue. I use quotes around solution because I am not coordinated enough to place them in the back while on the move.


Shimano PD-M985 XTR Trail Pedals Preview

Shimano’s New PD-M985 XTR Trail Pedals

(Cool Pop of color- does Shimano watch HGTV?)

These are part of the all new XTR group for 2011.  I’m not much of a “trail” guy (lacking a certain degree of technical skills) but having been on bigger pedals for a while now (Look Quartz) I can see the value of pedals w/ larger platform.  Die hard XC racing, weight weenie-dom & the parking lot bike pick up are all great places for minimalist pedals, everywhere else I’m not so sure.  None of us have tried these yet, perhaps if I don’t “steal” the Candies I can come up w/ a reason to snag these (“testing” perhaps)

Speaking of Shimano’s  Mountain Bike Pedals, I’ve got a set of PD-M737s new in the box.  Shimano introduced SPD pedals in 1990 (so says the Speedplay website).  I “accidentally” ended up on Frogs in the early ’90’s so these must date to around ’91 or so.  Perhaps not very “blingy” I just thought it was cool.  If any one is interested in MTB history is a good place to go.

(Sam's photos are better)