Summer! The smell of cut grass, swarms of tiny flies, dandelions seeds on the wind and trails covered with the strange thing called dust. The weekend is almost here for you to enjoy that all, set to a backdrop of freewheels clicking, the snick of gears and the steady drip of sweat. Until that point, you’ll have to kill time by taking a look at what’s landed in the Singletrack office this week…
We saw Salsa’s big wheeled 120mm travel bike at Eurobike during the tail end of last year but we’ve finally got one to test. It’s a linkage driven single pivot design doing without a pivot on the seatstay, instead relying on flex in the flattened tubing. It’s all kept stiff with a 142x12mm rear Maxle rear end and up front you can stick forks ranging from 120-140mm travel in the tapered headtube. This bike is built up with a selection of importer Ison Distribution’s finest bits and pieces, with Salsa bars, stem and post, White Brothers fork and Halo wheels.
Price: £1,199.99 for frame, Fox RP23 shock and Salsa seatclamp
From: Ison Distribution
We like the neat headbadge…
Fox D.O.S.S. seatpost
It’s been a while coming, but we’ve finally got our hands on the Fox uppy downy post! Available in 30.9 or 31.6mm diameters, this post has 125mm of travel with a fixed 40mm drop setting, though a 100mm version is available too. It’s a fully mechanical design, with a cable operated remote. You can adjust the speed the post extended by adjusting the pressure in the air valve on the base of the post and it’s got a cunning system that uses ball bearings sat in grooves to prevent any side-to-side play when the post is locked in position.
If you fancy trying one out, Mojo are doing a demo day on the 2nd and 3rd of June at Cwmcarn – more details here. We suggest you don’t follow Mojo boss Chris Porter (on his unfeasibly long bike) into any berms at speed, it can end in tears.
From: Mojo Suspension
The remote can be positioned on top of the bars or underneath and can be flipped to sit on the right or left hand side. If you push the silver lever you can drop the post either 40mm or all the way down but if you push the black lever from the fully extended position then it’ll just give the 40mm ‘Trail’ drop.
Fox 36 Float FIT RC2
The Fox 36 Float has been a benchmark for hard hitting performance and relatively light weight despite the 160mm of travel. We liked last year’s RLC version a lot. The only thing was that the lockout part of the RLC damping cartridge was neither here nor there on a big fork. We hardly ever touched it, preferring to tune in some pedalling platform with the low speed compression adjustment instead.
However, Mojo had been playing about with a Float fork with the high and low speed compression adjustable FIT RC2 cartridge from the air TALAS and coil Vanilla forks stuck in over the past year. Matt’s been riding one over the past few months and has been pleased with the range of adjustability and low weight the combination gives. Fox have now decided to create a factory version for 2013 and replace the Float RLC with the Float RC2 instead. Enduro suspension twiddlers rejoice!
Price: £909 with 1.125-1.5″ tapered steerer, £889 with 1.125″ straight steerer.
From: Mojo Suspension
More knobs to twiddle can only be a good thing in our opinion – especially when you can turn the fork from super comfy to racer hard as and when you desire. The durable (and shiny) Kashima coating on the legs remains and they use the new SKF seals to reduce static friction while keeping out mud and dust.
Mavic Crossmax SX wheelset
The name Crossmax may conjure up thoughts of Annecy based Mavic’s super lightweight racing wheelsets, but these SX versions sit at the burlier end of the spectrum. They’re geared towards enduro riding – and by that they don’t mean sitting down in the saddle for eight hours, taking in the countryside at a gentle pace. They’re packed with Mavic’s latest and greatest technology, featuring (prepare yourself for an onslaught of acronyms) the UST compliant, SUP welded, ISM machined, FORE drilled, Maxtal alloy 21mm wide rims mated to tangential pull hubs with super fast ITS-4 freehub at the back, all rolling on QRM+ cartridge bearings, joined by with Zicral alloy spokes.
All that adds up to a weight of 1,755g for a pair of tough wheels – and they’re compatible with pretty much every standard out there thanks to the included adaptors.
Price: £660 for pair
They also look massively pimp in white…
Fox Float CTD BV rear shock
As Chipps reported from Sea Otter, the venerable Float rear shock has had another overall for 2013. They’ve been attempting to simplify setup both front and rear with their new CTD system, which stands for Climb, Trail, Descend. Guess which setting does what? In the Trail setting you can pick from three settings of Pro Pedal damping, while Climb is extra stiff and Descend is fully open.
The end of the shock (black bit) had been redesigned meaning that the slim shock body above now has the same volume as the old extra high volume can of old. That’s also helped drop weight but you can still tune the air spring by adding or removing spacers to get the feel spot on. A remote kit will also be available, which will combine with the new CTD system on the forks.
From: Mojo Suspension
Mojo Tweaked 36 Top cap socket and Fox 10wt Suspension Fluid
If you’re into servicing your own forks or just fancied playing about with oil heights in the air spring of your 36 fork then you may have already run into issues with the extremely low profile of the 32mm diameter top cap and your standard socket set. Happily Mojo can machine up sockets to give a totally flat edge, which reduces the chance of rounding the cap out – they can also provide sockets to fit 32 and 34 series caps too.
From: Mojo Suspension
Panaracer Driver29erPro 29×2.20″ tyres
A sure sign of the season to come is the kind of tyre that arrives at the office. With that in mind, the sight of these super fast rolling summery tyres made us extremely happy. The centre has low profile squares with a file-like underneath but they still have decently chunky blocks on the edge. It uses a folding Aramid bead with ZSG rubber compound.
Cyclo Tools Hexagonal Ball Ended Key Set
If you’re anything like us, you’ve probably got a selection of random allen keys but curiously always fail to find either a 5 or 6mm when you need them most. Here is the solution to that quandary, with a selection of eight ball ended keys made from chrome vanadium steel in a plastic organiser, so you should be able to find what you need – until the allen key fairy comes and nicks them all again.
Genuine Innovations Fat20 CO2 cartridges
As tyres have got fatter (and bigger in diameter) the standard sized CO2 cartridge has been found a bit lacking, sometimes lacking the puff to blow up high volume tyres. Genuine Innovations have now come up with these 20g cartridges, which they say can take a 26×2.4″ tyre up to 32psi happily and inflate 29×1.95″ rubber up to 43psi.
Price: £14.99 for six, £5.99 for two
Cyclo Cross 2011/2012 picture book
Revel in the joy of muddy suffering with 220 pages of lovingly shot images from the lens of Balint Hamvas. It’s printed in full colour on high quality paper and is probably the perfect addition to any coffee table. The smell of embrocation isn’t included, but you can meet the author and two time cyclocross World Champion Zdenek Stybar if you turn up to the book launch at Evans Cycle’s West End store on Mortimer Street on the 29th May…
From: Cycle Photos
An Epic Tale DVD
The Cape Epic is one of the toughest races out there, taking in 781km of challenging South African terrain over eight days. Curiously enough, in the nine years it’s been running it’s never been won by a South African team. This movie charts the attempt by David George and Kevin Evans of Nedbank Team 360Life to put that to rights, going up against the very best marathon racers the world has to offer. We’re looking forward to sitting down, cooling down with a beer and watching other people suffer and sweat..
Here’s a little teaser:
From: Simatella Films