August 3, 2012
Well, the sun is shining outside the office, but for how long? The Singletrack office has mostly decamped to Sleepless in the Saddle with a supply of new Singletrack brollies to ward off the rain and hopefully encourage the sun to shine, but there’s only so much the power of voodoo can do. We wish you well if you’re off to SITS or any of the other events on this weekend – but in the meantime, here’s some Fresh Goods for you to take a look at…
Kinesis FF29 complete bike
Kinesis are well known for their keen handling frames and even keener pricing. This is their ‘aggressive’ 29er and designer Dom has created something that takes all of Kinesis’ aluminium manufacturing know-how and his geometric trickery to produce what they reckon is a ‘TRAIL DESTROYER’. We’re looking forward to finding out – we hope no trails will be hurt in the process, only riders.
Price: £1,699 as seen or £499 frame only.
From: Upgrade Bikes
It’s made from an enhanced 6000 series ‘Kinesium’ aluminium which they say is 25% stronger than common or garden 6061. The top and down tubes are ‘Super Plastic Formed’ – think hot hydroforming – which allows for thinner walled tubing in complex shapes. The chainstays are nice and deep to provide the classic direct power delivery while the ‘SuperTaper’ seatstays are tapered to provide a spot of lively ‘ping’ and comfort.
The tapered headtube is nice and dinky to keep the front end low. It’s designed to work with forks from 100-120mm of travel, with the head angle at 70.5° with a 120mm fork for the medium and large sizes, while shorties get their own 70° head angle on the 15.5″ frame size. There’s an interesting article on sizing over on the Kinesis website should numbers get you all hot and bothered.
This bike is specced with new 15mm axle equipped X-Fusion Slide 29er forks, also from the Upgrade family. They come with rebound and lockout adjustment, plus they’re internally adjustable from 80mm to 120mm and a 650B adaptor is also available. The Kinesis Maxlight XI wheels are also brand new for 2013, being tubeless ready with eyeletted 22mm wide rims for maximum strength and minimum weight.
Kinesis Maxlight XI FF29 fork
Should you wish to shun the comforting ways of the front pumpers and really get intimate with the trails, then these carbon fibre forks are designed to replace 120mm travel 29er forks with 490mm of monocoque carbon fibre. They’re said to give “just enough” flex for comfort and they use a tapered steerer, 9mm open dropout and Post Mount brake calliper attachment.
From: Upgrade Bikes
Continental RevoSeal tyre sealant
Continental’s Rubber Master Rob Scullion has fired a pair of bottles of their new tubeless sealant over to us. It’s designed to be used with ‘Tubeless Ready’ systems but it’ll also go quite happily into tubes and work as a puncture sealant. The mixture is ammonia and protein free so it won’t degrade your tyres – and most importantly, it’s safe to use in the British summertime, still functioning in temperatures as low as -20°C.
Should you change a lot of tyres or just work in a shop, then a one litre drum is going to be available. Just be careful…
Price: £9.99 for 240ml
Forcefield Sport Lite 1 back protector
British protection brand Forcefield may be a relatively new name to the world of mountain biking, but their motorbike protection line has been getting rave reviews. They’ve recently announced that their bike range is going to be exclusively distributed by the mighty Madison in the UK, so expect to see a lot more of it. This is their entry level back protector, using their ‘Nitrex Evo’ flexible shock absorbing material, which they say provides better repeat impact protection than a hard shell design. It’s also designed to mould to the body and offer plenty of ventilation.
As well as traditional spine protectors, they also make a broad range of shirts, shorts, vests and pads…
Forcefield Zeus elbow and knee pads
See? These elbow protectors and their matching knee counterparts use Forcefield’s removeable NeT armour which is also flexible, light and breathable. The outer shell is made from tough nylon and there’s additional foam padding placed to protect the bits around your joints too..
Price: £69.99 for elbows, £74.99 for knees
Pinhead Headset Lock
With a set of top end forks costing almost a thousand quid, it kinda makes sense to protect them against theft, even if the rest of your bike is conventionally locked up. The Pinhead lock uses a specially keyed bolt head and adaptor to replace your headset cap and frustrate any would-be speed mechanics from a quick street strip-down. Each key is individually number and you register with Pinhead after buying it, so spares can be sourced if you lose the original. They also do seat clamp and QR replacement security bolts…
Zefal Profil Mini MT01 pump
Much beloved by bike guides the world over, the mini track style pump is extremely useful for pumping up big volume tyres quickly. This is Zefal’s take on it, with an extra long 600mm hose and high volume barrel. It’ll do pressures up to 130psi happily and the folding aluminium base and locking T-handle should make it nice and stable in use.
With most of the Singletrack staff headed off to bask in the sunshine at Sleepless in the Saddle, they needed some rubber for all conditions and so Panaracer sent us a selection of their race-friendly rubber as well as some chunkier items. The Comet Hard Pack is, as you may guess, designed to be super fast rolling, with low profile and densely packed tread. The Soar is more of an all rounder, with a more raised centre but hooked side knobs for middling levels of filth – think post watershed. To follow that analogy, the Swoop designed for the sort of stuff that’d make Mary Whitehouse quite upset, with chunkier, blocky treads. They’re all available in 26 or 29 versions with folding or wire beads, apart from the Swoop, which is 26 only.