by Matt Letch
April 4, 2012
We initially thought it was our Mark’s fault for taking off his winter tyres on his car, but we’ve since found out it’s Chris Porter, Fabien Barel and Paul Walton who are to blame – just so they can launch a mud guard.
Read on for a full confession:
“The new DFender from POWA Products is the first fruit of the collaboration between Chris Porter from Mojo Suspension and Fabien Barel’s long time mechanic and buddy Paul Walton.
In an attempt to keep spray to a minimum at wet races Paul came up with the plan to put the front mudguard on the brace right over the tyre. Chris tried Paul’s lashed up, zip tied guard during testing over two years ago and was so impressed he decided to work with Paul to make a saleable version!
Because of the low position and length of the DFender the spray which comes off the tyre at the front and which the rider would normally just ride into is slashed to zero – the spray from the rear of the tyre which normally covers the bike and rider is caught by the guard too.
Over the course of two seasons (he was busy racing too!) Paul tweaked the design and tested prototypes until a strong, light, flexible system was settled upon. The guard itself is the same whichever fork you are fitting it to, but there is a rubber adaptor and clamp system to tailor the fit to the Fox 32, 36 or 40 fork. There is also an Alps fitment (Fox’s evolution range) and RockShox mounts are to follow.
Every single part from prototypes, to tooling to finished parts and even nuts and bolts and packaging are all made in the UK, it’s something that more companies should try! There are still skills in the UK!
With impeccable timing, the guys have got it ready just in time for the summer! But as Jenn mentioned in her wet, wet, wet article this month, even when it’s not raining in Britain you often need to keep mouths closed to avoid tasting, er, dirty water when riding past farms! EEEuuuurrggghhhh….
The DFender retails at £59 and you can get them at www.powa-products.com
Shred the Gnarr!
Fitting (The bit where Matt cuts his finger tip off)
We’ve got some coming for test (we can’t believe how timely it is as we look at the slush outside) we’ll let you know how we get on with them.