Could that be summer, peeking its little sunny head round the corner? Or is it just the glint of our tears as we stare out at another day of foiled ride plans and wet shoes… OK, so it’s not quite that bad, but we do love a bit of melodrama. And it’s not all been bike riding anyway, with people being away, bikes being built and a sort of mid-summer (for that is upon us) re-gathering of our mountain bike lives.
We’ve got Hannah off at the Crank Tank trade thingy in Idaho and Wil is off to something secret and Specialized in Northern California. And then we have Amanda off to the Bike Connection summer gathering next week. But we’re not jealous, no sirree (OK, maybe a lot) because we’ve got fun stuff to distract us!
Ross is building up a new super bike, Andi has a new frame arriving next week and I’m taking stuff apart and trying to put it back together again in the right order, but with one-more-sprocket! So it’s all fun times here and we’re not jealous of those folk off to America, or riding the Trans Provence, or working on their tan lines somewhere nice. No, because we’ve got – er (looks around for something that they don’t have…) – Eccles Cakes! That’s right. I bet they don’t have delicious Eccles Cakes in Lake Tahoe!
Right, on with the show, while I shower my keyboard in Eccles Cake crumbs…
FGF453 | Specialized Stumpjumper EVO Alloy 29 – Frameset
- Price: £2100.00
- From: Specialized
Oh yes, here’s a sneaky spy shot of the new frame that Ross has just bought to replace his trusty Transition Sentinel. This is the frame-only version of the Specialized 29er Stumpy EVO (the bike is reviewed in the current issue of the magazine as it happens) and it’s made Ross all giddy at the stealthy looks (see how many Specialized logos you can spot…) and the comedic slackness of it all. It should be up and running by next week, so stay tuned for the whole bike run down.
FGF 453 | REV Grips
- Price: £99.99
- From: Cyclorise
The how much for a pair of grips? That’s what we thought, to be honest, but David here has been using some for a few months now and has no plans on sending them back any time. Short of stealing his handlebars, the only way we could get a go ourselves was to get our own set in. It seems that the lure of buzz-free grips via the medium of suspension is a strong one – and our local shop, Cycle Factory had taken orders for a half dozen the same afternoon they announced they’d be stocking them.
What manner of witchcraft is this?
FGF 453 |Shimano XTR 9100 Front Hub
- Price: £134.99
- From: Freewheel
The final piece of the puzzle, (not counting the rims, which aren’t here yet, or the actual frame to fit them on) but this is the final Shimano bit to get Andi’s secret new bike frame up and running with 2020 Shimano XTR 9100 series stuff. And then he’s got about ten minutes to get it ridden and written about before we start seeing Shimano XT and hopefully SLX start appearing on the shelves.
FGF 453 | FUNGUYS Grips
- Price: £16.99
- From: Fabric
Half mushroom, half micro-hex texture with a soft compound and closed end, these grips claim to be durable, tough and FUN.
FGF 453 | Smoove Prep – and Lube
- Price: £14.99 each
- From: Cyclorise
And here are a couple of bottles from South African lube company, Smoove. There’s a Universal Chain Lube (for lubing universal chains, of course!) and Smoove Prep, which is a chain cleaner ideal for getting rid of your old chain lube before you turn completely over to this way of life. Huw Oliver certainly liked it in his review for us.
FGF 453 | Quick Release Mudhugger Guards
- Price: £20.99 Shorty, £26.00 FRX
- From: Mudhugger
Using the slots and reusable hook and loop straps, you can attach and remove the guard with speed and ease. Great for those who transport their bike in the back of a car, or if you live somewhere with weather that changes on a daily basis… You can of course fit them with zip-ties too, if you want, but with the 2 short and 4 long straps provided, there’s no need.
Summit Gear Bothy Bag
- Price: £54.99
- From: summitgear.co.uk
It was on a biblically wet weekend in March, while shooting the e-bike article that’s in the current issue that I first saw these Summit Gear bothy bags. As the owner of a two and four-person emergency shelter for my occasional guiding forays, seeing Phill from MTB Wales’ teeny tiny version was a revelation. It’s about the size of a tall can of cider and weighs about the same, probably less, yet it’ll fold out into a waterproof, windproof shelter big enough and good enough to sit inside on a horrible day and eat your sandwiches (or if needed, keep an accident casualty warm and dry while help is summoned.) Compared to a Terra Nova or similar, it’s a bit more expensive and a lot more teeny.
And, purely because Colin Hay is touring the UK with Men at Work this week, here’s the bizarre cameo he got in Scrubs…
Here’s our regular playlist of the week to go along with our Fresh Goods. Each track is picked by a staff member here in the office and added to their individual playlist over on our Spotify page. Head over there to identify exactly who is responsible for each choice.
Tunes tunes tunes, get dancing.
The Singletrack MTB Chain
Remember to use the hashtag #themtbchain to suggest your additions. If we like your suggested tune and your reason for adding it then it will be included in the playlist.
Check out our MTB Chain page here to keep up on the additions and to try out more of our Singletrack playlists.
All of the Singletrack staff have their own playlists that list all their choices for each FGF. So if you want to see who is responsible for which song you can find out by checking out their personal choices.
Staff playlist | Andi
It’s Friday home worker Andi’s playlist this week (How did he manage to score that?) and since he’s currently still sat on zero Spotify playlist followers we thought we’d pity share his almost genre defying playlist for you to consider.