Core Bike 2013: Ison Distribution

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The newly youthful and slender boss of Ison Distribution, Lloyd gave us a personal tour of the huge amount of stuff on show at the Ison booth at Core Bike. Here are some of our highlights.


First off, Surly has been going great guns this year, with the fat-bikes constantly selling out and other oddball bikes like the new Krampus on everyone’s ‘must ride’ list. (This is also our chance to apologise for missing out the price of the Karate Monkey in the current issue’s bike test: it’s £379.99 frame and fork and from £1049 complete.)

Someone bought Surly a new paintbox for 2013


As seen overtaking you at a 'cross race near you; the versatile Cross Check


Ison also brings in the All City range of urban bikes. We like!

Banshee Bikes

After years of languishing in the UK under the name of Mythic due to a trademark issue, the bikes are back to being Banshee and the name issue is behind them. The bikes will be distributed by Ison Distribution as of… now. And here’s a quick look at the first three:

Banshee Spitfire: ‘An aggressive 140mm travel 26in trail bike’. The Banshee is designed by a Scotsman, who spends a lot of time in Whistler. Should make it ideal for a ‘do everything’ bike for the UK then. Frame price is £1489 with a Fox CTD and only about £1550 with a Cane Creek DBAir. Oh and modular dropouts mean it can run as a 27.5er too.

Banshee Spitfire. Fast bikes are red.

Banshee Rune: More travel at 160mm, the Rune is Banshee’s ‘Do anything else’ bike.

The Rune is 160mm of allmountainness.

We brought you news of the Banshee Prime nearly two years ago: and now it seems finally ready to release. The Prime (back then anyway) was a pioneering 140mm long travel 29er. Of course everyone’s at it now, but given how long this has been in development (apparently Banshee made 50 test bikes that were ridden by riders all over the world) we reckon it should definitely be one to look at if you’re in the ruggedy 29er market. £1489 again, with upgrade to Cane Creek DBAir for less than £100.

Banshee Prime - a 140mm 29er



Swappable dropout chips let you adjust the ride-height and angles


Swap the dropouts on the Spitfire and you have a 27.5in bike.

Not forgetting Salsa. A selection was on show, from the revamped Casseroll and the disc road Vaya to the long-legged Fargo.


Renthal’s bars have been quietly appearing on a lot of bikes in the last year or so, but not everyone needs a 780mm-wide monster bar. How about 740mm instead? The Fat Bar Lite is nearly 90g lighter than the Fat Bar (at around 270g vs 360g) and comes in 740mm width and 10, 20, 30 and 38mm rises. Backsweep is 7° and upsweep is 5°, just like the Fat Bar.

And if you're an XC racer, you can still trim 'em


Renthal's DUO stem still only comes in 50mm, but does have a direct-mount option for big forks too.

There are now four different compounds available for Renthal’s Lock-on grips: Kevlar, Super Comfort, Soft or Medium.

Bulletproof grips! Kevlar compound on the left.


Small, but important: Gusset's headsets now come in seven different tops and bottoms to fit every bike (mostly).


Gusset's Kamon pedal has custom MAZ pins which are flanged to bottom out firmly on the pedal body, which should stop them wandering.

Halo Wheels:

Ison’s own-brand Halo wheels have been around for a long time now and we spotted this prototype set of carbon-rimmed  wheels behind the stand. They’re in their second generation now, featuring a tubeless-ready profile and should be appearing ‘sometime this year’.

Carbon for you? Should be around a grand a pair.


Yes, there already is a middle-way wheel from Halo.

Identiti AKA

And talking of middle-ways, Identiti’s all-round mountain hardtail can also be adapted to 27in wheels, by virtue of its ‘back and up’ sliding dropouts. For a bike designed three years ago, that’s terribly prescient. Or a bit of a lucky coincidence… Lloyd wouldn’t say which.

The AKA from Identiti


Back and up is the key, so you don't end up with a tippy-tall bike.

Among the touring components was this slim-clamp extra mount form Genetic – for riders with too much bar clutter.

Mount your lights AND stare at your GPS


Having trouble fitting your bike, this post has up to 30mm of lay-back

Society suspension

What started as a single jump-bike fork has now expanded into a range of eight suspension forks from jump bikes to this Fury fork for XC racing. With 100mm of travel, 30mm stanchions and a 1500g weight, it only costs £250.

For racers on a budget, the Society Fury


The chunkier forks also come in 26in or 29in, still for under £300.


Drift Cameras

As used by a certain Mr Steve Peat, Drift’s cameras look to be making a bit of a charge this year with the HD Ghost. With HD recording, natch, it offers 1080p video, a 2in Gorilla-Glass screen and a wireless two-way remote. The lens can rotate 300 degrees and the screen lets you (or your mate) see if you’re pointing in the right direction. The two-way remote is more than just an on-off button. It can tell you what mode the camera is in, let you take still (11Mp) photos too and change recording mode. The camera is waterproof out the box and there are dive cases if you’re going more than 3m under water. It’s even WiFi enabled so you can set it up using your phone. Another great feature is the loop facility, where the camera is always recording, so no need to miss all those ‘why didn’t you tell me you were going to crash on the fire road?’ moments.

The Drift Ghost HD is £299.

ODI SDG Lock On Grips.

Confused? Don’t be. ODI has teamed up with SDG to produce a signature grip featuring SDG’s circular logo (which happens to be quite comfy) on the palm section and with wedges on the finger-side for added grip the harder you hang on.

And now you can match your collar and cuffs.

And finally, here’s the Cam Zink-designed Sensus Swayze grip with an almost fingerprint-like pattern.  Comes in more than purple too.

Roadhouse. Now that was a good Swayze film, right?



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