The Fresh Goods fairy godmother has been a little lax this week, only delivering a handful of nice shiny new kit for us to fight over. This is partly good news, as it means we can all spend some time on the kit we already have on test and get our reviews out the door on time!
There’s also good news for Ross, who after five weeks of injury has finally been able to ride a bike again, but that creates a problem for the rest of the Singletrack Team. A bicycle-riding Ross means an excitable Ross, and this giddy ad sales manager has just received a rather large, and rather sharp digging Hoe! Great…
Smith Forefront 2 Helmet
- Price: £180 With MIPS (£160 without MIPS)
- From: Smith Optics
Smith has sent over its latest Koroyd equipped helmet for us to test. The Forefront 2 is designed for “all-mountain riders who demand superior protection” which sounds like pretty much everyone who rides a mountain bike (yes, except DH types).
Features include AirEvac ventilation with a whopping 20 vents to keep you running nice and cool, eyewear integration channels front and rear, a fully adjustable visor and optional MIPS protection. Smith has also used its VaporFit adjustable fit system and XT2 anti-bacterial lining to boot.
Gloworm X2 Advanced Lights With Wireless Control
- Price: £265
- From: Glowormlites.co.nz
The latest range of Gloworm lights has all been given a load of improvements for 2018. The X2 comes with a wireless remote button meaning you don’t have to mess around too much with the installation process or worry about where to route wiring.
The Gloworm X2 also has thicker High Flex Cables which are 4.5m in diameter whereas previous versions of the light had the older 3.8mm cable. The thicker cable is designed to allow the internal wires to move more freely and should improve durability.
Other updates for the X2 induce a wide-angle optic, improved programming for ease of use and a universal mounting system which actually works with all Gloworm light systems. The 1700 lumen system has a claimed runtime of 3 hours and weighs 89g.
While the arrival of new lights in the office is exciting, it’s also worrying too and reminds us that the bright nights are slowly getting shorter 🙁
Gloworm Alpha Lights
- Price: £110
- From: Glowormlites.co.nz
For nightriders on a budget, the Gloworm Alpha light set could be one to keep an eye on.
While the Alpha doesn’t get the same wireless control as the X2 it does get the dame updated programming for easier use. The 1200 lumen system uses the same mounting system as the rest of the Gloworm range and offers a 2-hour runtime on maximum brightness.
The lack of fancy features means that the Alpha is actually 25% lighter than the X2 at just 69g (light only) and is the smallest light in the Gloworm range.
Specialized Butcher BLCK DMND
- Price: TBC
- From: Specialized
New Butcher tyres from Specialized get the latest BLCK DMND casing and Flip-Up construction which apparently offers better cornering stability, and flat protection even when running low pressures. The Butcher tread design remains unchanged which is great news for us as we’ve gotten on along very well with previous versions.
We have both 29 x 2.6in and 27.5 x 2.6 versions of the tyre in for test so watch out for a review of both at a later date.
- Price: TBA
- From: Hebo.com
Hebo is a new name to us, perhaps not to anyone with an interest in motorbikes as the brand caters for our motorised cousins too.
The bright yellow jacket isn’t listed on the Hebo website so we’ve reached out to them for pricing, but what we do know is that it is made of a lightweight, water-resistant material, it can be easily packed down into a pocket and has a built-in glasses/goggle wipe. Ross seems to be happy wearing it too.
Full-Size Garden Digging Hoe
- Price: £24.49
- From: Amazon
OK, so this is the source of Ross’ giddiness. Ross tells us that this full-size digging hoe, or Azada (or Chillington Hoe – Gardening Ed) isn’t for building naughty trails and getting up to mischief but to tend to his vegetable patch where he grows the world’s largest courgettes. Hmmm.
Singletrack Issue 120
- Price: £6.50
- From: Us
The latest issue of Singletrack Magazine landed this week. In this edition we head to the hills with Hans Rey, Missy Giove, and Timmy C. from Rage Against The Machine, Barney takes his kids on a bikepacking adventure and we test three of the hottest enduro, or ‘Beyonduro’ bikes from Whyte, Santa Cruz and Nukeproof.
Continental X-King 27.5 x 2.0
- Price: £34.95
- From: Continental
Now for the start of the weekend and we’re going to leave you with two pieces of music. First, we have the latest track from Aphex Twin. Apparently, the video was meant to have been aired on TV but was canned as the last moment because of the likelihood of it causing an epileptic fit.
The second video is a classic from the Orb which we hope might act as some electronic reverse rain dance and convert those heavy grey clouds to little white fluffy ones.