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Howies Vail Merino Wool T-shirt

Some things are obviously good value for money. Some things need a little more contemplation before their value becomes clear. The Howies Vail T is a ‘normal’ T-shirt made from thin merino wool. Merino is well known for being able to absorb moisture without feeling wet, and for shrugging off smells. It also feels comfortable next to the skin, unlike scratchy wool jumpers of old.

June 2nd, 09 6 5,561 Categories: Clothing

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Rock Shox Lyrik Solo Air

Standing in the queue for the bike-park gondola I compared my Solo Air to a triple-clamp fork on someone else’s late 90’s downhill bike. With 35mm stanchions the single crown Lyric made the other fork look weedy. To have a fork that is as strong as Popeye, literally bulging in the fork lowers to accommodate big bushings, while staying relatively light (2313g) is just fantastic.

June 1st, 09 6 11,345 Categories: Forks, Recommended

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Knog Frog Lights

Emergency or ‘just get me home legally’ LED lights have been around for a while now and while most consist of single LEDs (one in white, one in red) Knog do things a little differently.

May 30th, 09 8 5,578 Categories: Lights

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Magura Durin

Looking around at the number of dedicated XC forks you’d be forgiven for thinking fork manufacturers had decided that the market was dead and that we all need 160mm forks on all our bikes. Admittedly the need for 80mm forks isn’t what it was so it’s nice when someone, in this case Magura, comes along and makes one. And does a good job of it too.

May 29th, 09 8 5,760 Categories: Forks

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Straitline Stem

There’s something to be perversely admired about a company that kicks convention in the teeth and smiles doing it, and Canadian company Straitline have a lot of shattered enamel on their 5.10s.

May 28th, 09 18 5,144 Categories: Bits

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Islabikes Rothan

When you find that nearly everyone you meet is doing a double-take at your new purchase you know it’s either because you’ve bought something quite stupid, or you’ve chosen one of those products that attracts attention for all the right reasons.

May 27th, 09 17 8,370 Categories: Bikes, Recommended

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Freak Bike: Santa Cruz Easy Rider

This bike ticks all the boxes to qualify for a place in Singletrack’s “Bike Pron” feature: Would it draw a crowd if it were leant up against the food tent at Mountain Mayhem? Is it a bike that we’d all like to ride, even if we wouldn’t want to own it? Is there a good story behind it? So that’s a resounding ‘yes’ to all of those.

May 26th, 09 19 11,136 Categories: Bikes

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Identiti Alloy QR Seat Clamp

Are you a saddle dropper? If not, why not? The usual reply is “I can’t ride with my saddle down”. This confuses me greatly. What advantage to bike handling can there possibly be in having a saddle wedged up your crotch?

May 25th, 09 14 4,824 Categories: Bits, Recommended

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Cane Creek Double Barrel Shock

This shock comes out of a collaboration between Cane Creek and Ohlins Racing, the Swedish suspension gurus who have cut their teeth on the likes of Supercross and GP bikes to produce a handmade (every single one is made by just one man, called Paul, and individually numbered), fully adjustable, high performance, piece of mountain bike engineering.

May 24th, 09 17 6,329 Categories: Other Stuff

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Hope 1.5in Stepdown Headset

Those of us with fat head tubes have traditionally only had two choices when it came to 1.5-into-1 1/8th headsets: cheap and nasty ball-bearing ones that weigh a ton and go rusty after about three rides, or very expensive ones that are okay.

May 23rd, 09 4 5,886 Categories: Bits, Recommended

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Singular Swift

Yes, it’s another 29in wheel bike. But for a change, it wasn’t sent from a manufacturer eager to get themselves into this subset of a niche before the boat left, but a bike we wanted to look at because it actually looked ‘right’.

May 22nd, 09 4 10,198 Categories: Bikes

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Shed Shackle

The Shed Shackle is a security device that you fit to your shed, providing a fixed er, shackle to lock your bike to. It’s not going to stop anyone breaking into your shed but it might stop them making off with your bike, which has to be A Good Thing

May 21st, 09 4 5,067 Categories: Security

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661 Veggie Wrap Shin Pads

For SPD users the journey into flat pedal riding can be a perilous one. Sure, you’re going to improve your technique and learn to bunnyhop properly, but you’re also liable to landing a set of pins into your leg. The problem is that a lot of shin guards look like they’ve come out of the Darth Vader spares bin, and for a lot of people are a bit over the top.

May 20th, 09 13 6,557 Categories: Protection

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Alpkit Fat Airic

My body is definitely getting old. If it’s not, then I’m getting a lot weaker. There was a time when I’d sleep straight on the ground or with a thin Karrimat. There was a time where dossing in a phone box would do as well or the nearest gutter but time, like my hairline, moves on…

May 19th, 09 4 5,385 Categories: Other Stuff, Recommended

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