May 27, 2011
It’s Friday and that means two things: you can spend your afternoon ogling at all the shiny test kit that’s landed in the Singletrack office and tomorrow you can enjoy your freedom to roll across the trails, roll about in bed or in front of the sofa.
Giant Anthem X.29
This is the big wheeled version of the light and nippy Anthem X racey full susser. There’s 100mm of travel at either end, the rear using the Maestro multilink suspension system and a set of standard offset Fox F29 forks up front with a 15QR axle and tapered headtube to keep it all stiff.
Finishing kit is a nice mix of Shimano XT and some nicely colour matched Giant own brand gear.
We like the 26″ versions of the Maxxis Crossmark tyres so these bigger versions will hopefully give the same decent rolling resistance along with improved cornering grip from the larger contact patch.
There’s plenty of swooping going on with the AluXX hydroformed frame. Geometry has been tweaked over the smaller wheeled version with a slightly steeper 71 degree head angle and some other 29 specific changes.
Blue cables are a nice touch. This bike is destined to be part of a big wheeled, fully suspended bike grouptest in the mag later in the year.
From: Giant UK
Shimano M666 SLX brake
Technology trickle down is here! Based on the latest XTR lever design, the new and satanically numbered SLX brake moves away from a radial design back to the move conventional style. they also gain a hinged clamp and the two piece caliper now comes with IceTech pads with the neat heatsink on them.
Shimano SM-RT67 SLX Centre-Lock disc rotors
We’ve also got a load of matching SLX rotors. They don’t use the flash layered steel and aluminium construction of the posher XTR disks but they do keep the lightweight alloy spider and they use the Centrelock fitting system.
Price: 160mm : £24.99, 180mm : £29.99, 203mm : £34.99
Shimano XT M780 XC SPD pedals
Much like XTR, the new XT pedal has split into XC and Trail variants. Both have a redesigned cleat for improved stability and now have an oval shaped body which claims to improve mud clearance. The axle is made from hollow cromoly and now runs on sealed cartridges for reduced maintenance.
Shimano XT M785 Trail SPD pedals
Here’s the Trail version with the integrated pedal cage which they say improves pedal to shoe interface by a whopping 850% over the old design.
Shimano XTR M985 Shadow+ rear derailleur
This is the new and magic XTR Shadow+ rear mech (as Chipps covered HERE) with the built in clutch mechanism that takes in chain slack and pays it back out more firmly as you shift, holding the chain tighter than a standard spring. The theory is that with less flapping about at the bottom you should be able to run a 1×10 drivetrain without the need for a full chainguide and should reduce chain loss on multi ring setups too.
The little gold lever switches the clutch on and off to enable easy removal of the rear wheel. It’s an interesting concept and one we’re looking forward to testing out on the trails.
Bionicon Men’s Forest Merino Hybrid Jacket
Travel and angle adjusting bike specialist Bionicon do some really high quality technical clothing too. This hoody is made from a mix of Merino, nylon and lycra to offer plenty of comfort and stretch as well as a degree of water and wind resistance. The sleeves are articulated in the elbow, there’s a nice high neck and built in hood too.
Bionicon Men’s Forest Merino Shortsleeve
Using special superfine MAPP (Merino Advanced Performance Programme) wool this top offers all the wicking and warming benefits of our favourite kind of sheep but in a nicely tight fitting bike specific package. There are raglan bits on the shoulders to stop your rucksack straps from chafing and it also comes in grey and blue if euro-purple is a bit much for you.
Bionicon Men’s Forest Softshell Bike Shorts
Bionicon reckon they’ve come close to making the best bike short possible. They are feature packed; Schoeller Softshell fabric with a dirt and water resistant NanoSphere treatment, a nice wide waistband for comfort and neat zips on the sides to ensure good fit with knee protectors. They’ve got stretch panels for comfort, plenty of mesh lined pockets including a large map one on the front – they also come in blue if you don’t plan on going to any raves mid-ride.
Strangely more-ish for something that makes you feel like you’ve been tear gassed, it’s a whole kilo of the spicy Japanese snacks.
SRAM X0 2×10 chainset
Matt’s been trying to shed weight from his much loved Lapierre Spicy Long Termer and he’s now got a full Xo group to go on there. This is the carbon fibre armed 39/26T double, using an alloy spine to strengthen them. Matt’s gone for shorter than average 170mm arms to reduce pedal striking after being coaxed by the Biggest Hands In Mountain Biking to make the bike even slacker and lower than it is now.
They use the GXP outboard BB system and they have moulded alloy spline interface and pedal threads. Weight is coming up on the scales at 664g sans BB, which ain’t bad…
Price: £379.99 w/o BB
From: Fisher Outdoor Leisure
Fox Float Adaptive Logic RP23 Kashima
Woop! Look how golden it is! Lucky lad Sim has been sent the brand spanking and very latest Fox rear shock to put on his Long Term Orange Five. As well as tweaks to the way the Pro Pedal system works, it uses the super slippy Kashima coating on the body and shaft. For a bit more detail head to Chipps’ article on the 2012 Fox kit at the Sea Otter but this is the first one we’ve had to fit on a bike.
Pro Pedal is now switchable from either fully on (3) or your choice of level from zero to two. It’s a good thing if you like a bit of low speed compression on all the time to make everything feel perky but then want even more when you’re climbing without having the fiddle with the twisty knob…
Kashima Coat – much better than a cashmere coat we think.
From: Mojo Suspension
Wear the Fox hat?
On his head.
Shimano SH M315 SPD shoes
These are the top line, custom fitting Shimano XC race shoes. They’ve got a super stiff carbon fibre sole and they use Custom-Fit insoles and uppers that can be heat-moulded to fit you exactly to get the best possible fit. The upper is made from Rovenica, a super fine synthetic material that feels like leather but is designed to be lightweight and perform well in the wet.
Removeable toe spikes are fitted (for getting traction in the mud and tap dancing, if last week’s commenter is still wondering) and they use a low profile ratchet and offset wide velcro straps to secure them and prevent hot spots.
X-Fusion Vengeance HLR fork
This is the first fork we’ve seen from X-Fusion and it all looks rather good. The 160mm travel, air sprung fork has high and low speed compression and rebound adjustment and uses a non-QR 20mm through axle. The HLR cartridge is a twin tube design for full independent adjustment too. It’s also very keenly priced for a long travel single crown fork – and this is the top model, the low speed compression and rebound only RC fork being even cheaper…
The fork comes with your pick of 1.125″ taper and 1.5″ steerers and it’s also 650B compatible – just in case.
From: Upgrade Bikes
Piolo iPhone stand
Whassis then? It’s a cunning stand that enables iPhone 4 owners (although it does seem to work with you iPhone 3 povs too) to stand up their phones so they can watch the BBC iPlayer or video on their fancy crystal clear screens. It’s dead simple, you can attach it to your keyring and it comes in lots of nice (Pantone) colours.
They’re made from TPE bendy plastic and the design is the work of Sheffield based Andy, who (according to their website) will allow his wife a puppy if they sell a million of them. She’s being short changed we feel. They’re all made in the UK too…