September 14, 2012
As the autumn draws near, weekends are soon going to be full of cold extremities, mud coated calves, going in a straight line anywhere will be a thing of the past and a hipflask will pretty much be survival gear. After our let-down of a summer, it’s going to be brilliant to have a season that does exactly what it’s supposed to. We’ve started stockpiling mud spikes, lights and waterproofs, knocking year-old mud off our favourite winter boots and generally getting into an autumn-o-pocalypse mindset – expect to see Fresh Goods following suit…
Lapierre XR 529
When Martin from Hotlines and Lorna from Lapierre first turned up at the Singletrack office with Nico Vouilloz’s personal XR 29, Jon came back from a brief test ride raving and ranting about how much he’d enjoyed the Gallic marathon race bike. The same thing happened to Matt when he went to the Alps for the Lapierre launch and spent a few days hammering the carbon fibre 100mm big wheeler on French downhill runs. With all that said, it was a matter of time before one turned up at the office for us to have an extended play on.
This is the entry bike to the XR range, the 529. It’s got a full carbon fibre frame, even down to the rocker link, using a pivotless back end and neat shock cradle. This medium comes up on the scales at a rather impressive 26lbs with a Rock Shox Reba RL 100mm fork with remote lockout up front, Fox Evolution CTD shock, Shimano XT 2×10 drivetrain, Formula RX brakes and smattering of Lapierre’s own brand finishing kit.
The back end uses a 142x12mm through axle to keep things stiff and 15mm axle up front to minimise any front end twang.
We’re loving the colour scheme too – and the rather cute and dinky head tube plus negative rise stem and flat bars help keep the front end nice and low.
Design maestro Sim is off on his American honeymoon, but he’s got this waiting for him when he returns – it’s another 100mm travel full suspension big wheeler. Must be something in the water around here at the moment. The hydroformed aluminium frame has a tapered headtube up front, a 142x12mm through axle equipped four-bar rear end and a neat ‘Holloform’ shock rocker. Although it’s labelled as a marathon bike, the ISCG05 mount and dropper post routing gives some indication that the bike isn’t just aimed at the all-day-in-lycra brigade.
Price: £2,200 for Revolver 2 complete bike, frame only TBC.
We already know that Sim’s planned build is colour perfect to match the red and black paintjob. It’s a designer thing. The wraparound seatstays should aid precise tracking from the back end too.
Post mount and through axles – the rule rather than the exception these days, even on distance orientated bikes. As you’d expect from a Candian brand, the swooping stays give plenty of filth clearance
Light & Motion commuter lights
Yup, bike light season is here, even if you only plan to potter to and from work. If you’re dodging traffic then a set of decent commuter lights are a must and Light & Motion have a few quality options to suit. From left to right we have the Urban 400 (£109.99) which kicks out 400 lumens at maximum power for a claimed 1.5hr runtime. There are another two settings to reduce the power and increase runtime, as well as a flashing mode. Unlike some mid-powered off-road lights, it offers some side visibility too and there’s a built-in charge meter to let you know when it’s time to attach it to a USB port and charge the Li-ion battery up again.
The Vis 360 (£129.99) system offers all round lighting coverage thanks to the connected 115 Lumen front and 5 Lumen rear lamps. It’s designed to be worn on a helmet and you’ll get two hours of runtime on full power with a claimed five hours on medium. The rear lamp doubles as the battery pack and once again it uses a work-friendly micro USB charger.
The Vis 180 Micro (£39.99) rear light packs a blinding 25 Lumen output with 180° visibility. It runs for 6 hours on maximum and weighs just 60g. As well as medium and flashing modes, it also has a ‘paceline’ mode for when you get caught up in some peloton business.
Blackburn Super Flea Front light
Using a single CREE XPG R3 LED, the Flea pushes out 105 Lumens from its integrated Li-Polymer battery. It’ll run for 1.1 hours at full power and can be bar mounted or used with a helmet/head mounting system. Blackburn also offer a lifetime warranty on the light as well…
Blackburn Scorch 1.0 front light
With a CNC machined aluminium body and 180 Lumen output from the CREE LED, the Scorch offers an hour’s runtime at full power or three at the standard setting. It uses a tidy tool free bar mount or can be used as a mini torch. The really neat bit is the magnetic USB charger which clips to the back and is impervious to water or dirt. The charge indicator also lives at the back too..
WTB Volt SLT and Volt Race saddles
WTB’s new line of Volt saddles builds on their years of saddle evolution with their signature angled whale-tail design, grooved centre channel and broad, sloping nose. The Volt SLT (£109.99) uses titanium rails, a rather bling white nylon cover with Kevlar corners for a claimed weight of 220g. The Volt Race (£39.99) uses the same basic shape but uses cromoly rails and ABR corners to create a more affordable saddle. Both feature the DNA memory padding and a cut out ‘Comfort Zone’ on the base to relieve pressure on your bits…
FollowMe Tandem tag-a-long trailer
The FollowMe tandem trailer is designed to let your child tag along using a proper bike. It attaches onto the back of any non-through axle rear end and kids bikes with wheels from 12-20″ sit in the adjustable metal cradle, locked in place by special axle nuts. A bar then clamps to their down tube to stop it flopping about – you can see it in action here. Sadly we’re all out of kid’s bikes, but you can get the gist. When not in use, the whole assembly folds up and locks in position. It’ll take a combined weight of 45kg.
One Industries Intel short
Orange! The Atherton’s clothing sponsor One Industries may have a background in moto but they’re launching a whole range of downhill and trail bike clothing for 2013. We caught up with them at Eurobike (more on that soon) but the lovely Andy G sent us a set of their Intel shorts to test in the meantime. They’re a long-cut trail short designed to fit over pads with a pair of zipped hips pockets and removable liner included. The material is four way stretch with elasticated waist adjusters to keep the fit comfy, plus they have a load of vents. They also come in black if you want to be boring…
From: One Industries
Some things arrive at the office and just leave us confused. Sometimes they’re things to do with bikes and sometimes they aren’t, as in the case of this. A quick bit of detective work by Chipps and it turns out this was meant for a tanning salon to make the ladies a lovely shade of Tango.
From: The postie