Eurobike 2018: New Shimano & Giro shoes, ropey spokes, and a heavier Orange

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thule raid backpack hydration
Thule has a new backpack range called Rail.

Swedish brand Thule is expanding its range of hydration backpacks for mountain biking, and chose Eurobike to debut its new Rail series. Available in 8L, 12L and a 12L Pro version, the Rail backpack builds on the existing Vital backpack, but uses a sturdier harness, stiffer padding and a few new stowage features to provide a more suitable backpack for trail riders and enduro racers.

The packs still come with the same 2.5L Hydrapak reservoir inside, though they’re all designed to be compatible with a back protector. The 12L Pro model comes with a Koroyd back protector as standard, which is both insanely light and well ventilated.

thule raid backpack hydration iphone
The side strap now covers the open pockets on the waist.

The waist harness has been beefed up to provide more load-bearing support. The shoulder straps now anchor further down the pack, which not only helps with stability, it also has the effect of securing the contents of the side pockets, which Thule leaves open to provide easier access to things like nutrition and  a camera/mobile phone.

thule raid backpack hydration
The Rail ditches the overflow storage pocket of the Vital pack, but it’ll still take a chin bar from a convertible full-face helmet.
thule raid backpack hydration
The sternum strap now better integrates with the side straps, which we’re told improves stability when the pack is loaded up.
thule raid backpack hydration magnet
The excellent magnetic hose remains!

 

thule raid backpack hydration
Compared to the Vital pack, which uses thin and flexible padding, the Rail gets a much beefier and stiffer back panel.
thule raid backpack hydration
Neat storage dividers within.
spokes rope
Spotted on the Chiruo booth, these carbon wheels are built with spokes made of … rope?
crank brothers cleats
Fresh colour-coded cleats from Crank Brothers.

Crank Brothers had a few new things to show at Eurobike, including a complete overhaul of its cleat range. Designed for use with pedals such as the Eggbeater, Candy and Mallet, the new cleats are now colour coded to help distinguish their release angle and float. Up top are the two ‘Standard Release’ options, which both feature a 15° release angle. The Gold cleats provide 6° of float, while the Silver cleats provide 0° of float.

crank brothers cleats
The new Easy Release cleats have a shorter 10-degree release angle.

Down below you’ve got the ‘Easy Release’ cleats, which are better suited to beginners and those who are taking the leap into the clip-in pedal world. Both of these come with a shorter 10° release angle, which means they’re faster to unclip. The Rose coloured cleats give you a 6° float, while the Bronze cleats have 0° float. Crank Brothers will offer all cleats separately aftermarket for £24.99.

crank brothers highline dropper post
Due to refinements in the stack height, the Highline dropper post now comes in a 150mm and 170mm travel option.
stamp pedals crank brothers
New Stamp 1 flat pedals use a polycarbonate construction instead of the alloy bodies found on the rest of the Stamp range.
stamp pedals crank brothers
Despite the cheaper construction, the Stamp 1 still comes with full-height adjustable steel pins, and a thin overall platform. Inside is the same IGUS/bearing combo that the more expensive pedals use.
stamp pedals crank brothers
These will sell for £46, and come in three different colour options.
giro goggles full face helmet
Giro had a colourful display at its Eurobike booth, including this dazzling array of goggles and convertible helmets.
giro apparel jersey shorts
For 2019, Giro is going to be offering limited edition series for its apparel range, which will be available exclusively through Giro dealers.
giro jacket flat pedal shoe
The Giro Jacket remains in the flat shoe lineup, but gets an updated fit and finish. We reckon this grey/gum option is looking particularly nice.
giro riddance shoe aaron gwin
The Chamber II SPD-compatible shoe is brand new, and Giro has added an Aaron Gwin signature model for those who like to clip-in to their pedals.
giro riddance shoe aaron gwin
Gwin probably has a specific team member who polishes his white shoe soles.
giro privateer shoe lace
There are more lace-up options from Giro for 2019, including the Privateer model, which trades the EC90 carbon soles of the higher end models for a cheaper nylon composite sole. Still gets rubber tread blocks though.
giro vr90 empire lace
The Empire VR90 returns with some dazzling colour options, including this blue reflective number.
giro vr90 empire lace
POP!
giro helmet aether mips
While not a mountain bike lid, the new Giro Aether MIPS helmet is particularly interesting due to its dual-shell construction and MIPS Spherical technology.
giro helmet aether mips
We’ve seen MIPS Spherical in the Bell Super DH, and now sister brand Giro is using it on the Aether. This design uses two shells with a polished surface in between to provide the MIPS slip-plane. Elastomers connect the two shells, and allow them to slide against one another.
giro helmet aether mips
See the black-polished surface of the inner shell?
orange 329 downhill prototype 29er
Orange prototype 329 downhill bike – now with added weight!

Orange has been teasing its 329 29er downhill bike for a year now, and we got a much closer look at the most recent version during Fort William a few weeks ago. This one at Eurobike was a little different though…

orange downhill weight mass heavy
Bolt-on weights for the underside of the downtube.

Feedback to Orange was that its gravity bikes were getting too light – riders including Rowan Sorrell of Bikepark Wales have been experimenting with strapping on lead weights onto the frames of the bikes they’re riding, in order to increase stability and weight centralisation. The theory goes that more mass on the frame helps it to stick to the terrain better, while changing the sprung/unsprung mass ratio to improve suspension performance. Ever ridden an e-MTB and noticed the suspension worked better compared to the regular version? The theory here is the same, but Orange is just doing it in a neater way rather than having to physically strap things onto the bike.

The 329 prototype uses two bolts underneath the downtube, which are spaced the same distance as bottle cage bolts. Three steel weights can then bolted onto the downtube. On the note of those bolts, Orange is considering adding them to other frames in its lineup, which would mean – for the first time – owners of bikes like the Orange Five and Stage 6 – could fit a water bottle onto their bikes. We think that is absolutely brilliant – what do you guys reckon?

headbadge tantrum cycles
Best head badge of Eurobike? Seen on Tantrum Cycles new Shinning 160mm travel 29er enduro bike.
shimano shoes
Shimano normally sticks on the conservative side, which is why we’re loving this colour option on the new XC5 SPD shoes.
shimano xc5 lace shoe
The XC5 is marketed as a bit of a do-it-all SPD shoe for XC, gravel and touring riders.
shimano shoes xc7 spd
As well as new XC5 and XC9 shoes, Shimano has a new XC7 too. Do you dig the red fade?

Comments (1)

  1. That orange satin colour on the last XC7 shoe is very ‘hot rod car’… Very nice!

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