Friday wings round once again, so prepare yourself for bad puns and more product than you can shake a seatpost at…
Genesis Grapil 20
It’s been a long time coming, but we’ve finally wrestled one of the first production Genesis Grapil full suspension bikes from the hands of designer Dom. Made from double butted 6061 aluminium, it’s designed to be a worth tag-team partner for extended bouts of big mountain riding, as well as pitting yourself against techy death-matches in the woods. They reckon they’ve got the handling clinched, with relaxed angles, 140mm of travel up front and 120mm of linkage activated single pivot bounce out the back, running on low-maintenance and friction Norglide bushings. It’s going to be unleashing the smackdown (hopefully not of the rider) as part of our ‘Lakes bikes’ test for Issue 77…
The 44mm ID headtube will fit every fork standard current being promoted, even the Big Daddy of full 1.5″ forks, and with a 142x12mm Maxle back end, it should be more than stiff enough to shred Giant Haystacks into scattered straw.
Okay, we’ll stop trying to put any more rubbish puns in. This model is the Grapil 20 and comes equipped with a full Shimano SLX group with a double up front. ISCG mounts are present for chainguide fitting, while suspension comes from the other S, with a Monarch rear shock and Revelation RCT3 fork with 15mm thru axle up front.
Ergon may be best known for their range of anatomical grips, but they also do a full range of bags with just the same attention to fit and comfort. This BX3 bag is the largest they do, giving up to 16L of storage, complete with hydration bladder pocket. It uses their ‘Adaptive Carrier System’ which aims to keep loads compressed and close to the body with four adjustable straps. The back can be adjusted to fit people of different heights and two different sizes are available for the long and the short…
From: Extra UK
Lightweight padding only on a few points should keep the fit comfy even when full.
Hayes CX Five
It seems that the recent surge of disc cyclocross (and road) bikes has reawakened a need for decent cable operated disc brakes. Here’s the new CX Five from Hayes. It’s not expensive, runs off road levers and comes in this polished nickel finish. It’s not that light at 200g for the caliper alone, but compared to one of those hydraulic converters, it probably does OK. We’ll be testing these out very shortly…
Clement Crusade PDX cyclocross tyre
A venerable name from the old school of the road has been resurrected and given a lot of new life by some enthusiasts in the States. In the range are some mountain bike tyres and these cyclocross tyres. Clement is also pioneering a ‘tubeless tubular’ where there’s no inner tube and the tub runs on air and sealant to keep itself inflated. These tyres, meanwhile, are going to be helping Chipps round the gales and rain of the Three Peaks Cyclocross at the weekend…
Price: £35 each for the tyres
Shimano Zee groupset
As we’ve reported previously, Zee is Shimano’s rough and tumble groupset for people who don’t want to get as spendy as Saint requires. It still looks like amazing kit for the money, with the proper short cage clutchy RD-640 mech (£69.99), tough single ring specific FC-640 chainset with steel pedal inserts (£109.99) that comes in both 68/73mm and 83mm widths with 36T ring and very Saint looking quad piston M640 brakes (£144.99 fully bled, without rotor). There also a full range of hubs to go with the group and bits like cassettes, chains and disc rotors are shared with the popular SLX group.
Scotland Mountain Biking – Wild Trails Vol.2 book
If you’re in need of an extra dose of highland wilderness riding then Vertebrate have released a second volume of Scottish trails, with 24 all new routes for you to get just-lost-enough on. It’s written by Phil McKane and the pics are from Andy McCandlish, while the step-by-step routes are illustrated with proper 1:50K Ordnance Survey maps and graded for difficulty, length and time.
From: Vertebrate Books
Lixard Skins DSP bar tape
Chipps swears by this bar tape – and after having had a fondle (of the tape) we fully agree. It’s got a tacky but not unpleasant texture thanks to the ‘Durasoft Polymer’ material used instead of the usual cork type stuff. It’s made to grip well in the wet, a property we imagine will come in useful when he takes on the Three Peaks race this weekend…
One for the commuters here – the Indic8or does what the name suggests, attaching to your arm with an elasticated strap and switching on four bright LEDS when you stick your hand out to erm, indicate. We strapped it to Patrick and tried our best to fool it, but it does a remarkably good job of going on and off when required. It’s designed to be splash proof and runs on a pair of AAA batteries…
Craft Zero Extreme Men’s Crewneck top
More clothing from the Swedish sporting wear makers, with this long sleeved and winter friendly long sleeved synthetic base layer. It’s got flatlocked seams for comfort, feels nice and soft and should keep you beautifully cosy. Warm clothing is our favourite bit of winter – possibly the only one.
Vulpine Softshell jacket
Vulpine is a pretty new British brand, aiming at the high end of the market. This softshell jacket is designed for use on or off the bike, with a tight but not too roady cut, discreet reflective detail and loads of nice features such as the magnetically closing pockets and fold out splash guard. It’s got the breathable and waterproof properties you’d expect and it doesn’t feel overly thick either, which should make it a cold weather choice for the sweatier folk out there.
Craft Neoprene Booties
More warm! This time it’s a pair of neoprene overshoes with reinforced Kevlar bits on toe and heel, with a velcro strap to keep it all in place. The seams are all taped to slow water ingress and the logos are all reflective which will helpfully keep you seen at night, as well as ruining flash photography…
Craft Siberian glove
Craft also have the other extremities covered with these Thinsulate fleece lined winter gloves. The outer is made from a wind resistant fabric, they’ve got decently long cuffs to cover up any exposed skin and the synthetic leather palm is covered in silicon dots for improved grip. From a quick feel, they seem have managed a good balance between outright insulation and maintaining a bit of feel through the palm too.
Need to keep your saddle dry? Need to promote something? This is the solution – OnYerBikeSeat will custom print saddle covers for marketing use, made from ripstop nylon with an elasticated hem. They should also make you popular with anyone that hates having a wet bum as soon as they sit down…