Fresh Goods Friday 460 – The Austin Powers ‘I’m spent!’ edition

by and 9

Yes, yes, yes! It’s the end of a dramatic week of weather, of news, of new bike launches and of people being in and out of the office like yo-yos… This is the time of year where everyone decides to launch their new bikes and to visit us with secret things we can’t tell you about. It’s also when many of the parents here take a week or two off and where others in the office make the most of those still-light evenings to try to thrash themselves on trails full of nettles and brambles, all aware that those long evenings won’t be long forever.

And in between all of this, we’ve got a new magazine back from the printers (thanks Andy Carter – the Singletrack-reading master of the printing works down in Lincolnshire) which everyone reckons is one of the best-looking (and reading) issues of recent times. We have a lot of fine Fresh Goods filling the shelves and we have the nominees of the Singletrack Awards to sift through too. It’s all in there! Phew! So, in between catching up from press launches and holidays, prepping for the next trip or secret bike story, and wearing ourselves out on bikes for fun, it’s a wonder we have enough energy to bring you episode 460 of Fresh Goods Friday!

Spanner Bike Haute Gravel

This is a bit of a departure from the full-on enduro-gnar carbon fibre shred-sleds that we normally show you, eh? This is a bike for a slightly gentler pace across the countryside, taking in view and admiring glances alike. Spanner Bikes is Andrew Maddison, who has spent the last decade helping guide everyday riders through the mire of having frames made in China to exacting specs. He’s taken all of this knowledge and is now starting to offer a service where you design the bike, and he’ll get it made in China, in titanium for you, handling all of the to-and-fro and the shipping and customs too. As a way of showing just what can be done with the right factory, this Haute Gravel is a twin top and downtube, extended seat-mast lovely with a quirky four-legged fork. While a standard frame will run you £1200, this is a little more complex (and comes with a fork too).

Singletrack Magazine Issue 126

Yep, the new issue of Singletrack hits the shelves this week. With 148 pages of extra colour-packed gorgeousness, each one written with overflowing love and gushing enthusiasm by beautiful people. (OK, we made the last bit up…)

Giro Tyrant Helmet

The Giro Tyrant was launched this week to great fanfare. And it’s immediately split the office between those who think that it’s a super cool helmet and those that think it looks like a canoe or ice hockey helmet. However, if it’s your thing, then it’s definitely a good looker with some great tech in there for the money. Although it costs £150, the same MIPS Spherical system is only available elsewhere in Giro’s £259 Aether road helmet.

Alpinestars Vector Helmet

fresh goods friday 460
For safety and G-Force Cosplay.

With 19 air scoops all around this bright Alpinestars Vector helmet, Andi hoping that the sun will begin to shine again so he can enjoy the feeling of personal air-conditioning. The Vector has been designed to be both strong and lightweight, great features for a helmet, and it features a MIPS rotating safety buffer. With the cooling, safety and comfort boxes checked, Alpinestars had time to work on the hygiene aspect of the Vector too with quick-dry anti-bacterial and washable inserts. Other smart features include a fully adjustable dial sizing system, adjustable visor, and room for goggle storage.

Join Us – Become a Singletrack member

If you like what we do – if you like our independence then the best way to support us is by joining us. Every penny of your membership goes back into Singletrack to pay the bills and the wages of the people who work here. No shareholders to pay, just the people who create the content you love to read and watch.

Nukeproof Horizon Comp Flat Pedals

fresh goods friday 460
When there’s so much colour choice you panic and go for black

These Sam Hill inspired Nukeproof pedals feature large platforms, adjustable pins and angled edges to help you avoid clipping passing rocks and ruts. They are constructed of nylon-reinforced composite with chro-mo axles, and have high quality DU bushings and two sealed cartridge bearings, and are available in seven colours that all differ in price!

DT Swiss 1200 Spline Premium Carbon Wheels

As you’ll have seen yesterday, DT Swiss has just released its first carbon mountain bike wheels in a decade and they’re worth the wait. Coming in sub-1700g, these wheels are still 30mm internal width, with DT Swiss’ new ratchet hubs. Very clicky. Very nice.

Park Tool PP-1 Piston Press

fresh goods friday 460 park tool piston press
Bee scoop

You know the scene: pull your bike out of the back of the car and go to put the wheel in, but then you find that your kit bag has been pressing on the front brake lever for the whole journey and now the disc won’t fit in between the brake pads. This is what the Park PP-1 was meant for. With a sharp wedge at one end, it lets you sneak in between the pads and press them back into place. Handy too after brake bleeding and related brake faffing. It’s pretty specialist, but it does save you from trying to wedge a dirty screwdriver in to separate (and contaminate) your pads.

Suunto 5 GPS Sports Watch

fresh goods friday 460
What’s the time, Mr Wolf?

The Suunto 5 GPS Watch boasts a battery life of up to 40 hours – with intelligent battery mode that can prompt you to charge it up before it knows you’ll be out on a ride or run. It features GPS tracking of your activities as you might expect, but also works as a personal fitness coach, monitoring your activity, fitness and your resting. It also works with Strava and Trainingpeaks built-in too, including heatmaps for finding new training routes. Oh, and it tells the time!

Revolution – How The Bicycle Reinvented Modern Britain

fresh goods friday 460
Further reading for those who have finished Singletrack issue 126

The takeaway punchline of this book is that, essentially, the bicycle expanded the gene pool and enabled a better Britain. Before the bicycle, few people travelled from the villages where they grew up and then they married their cousin. With the bicycle, though, men (and women!) were free to see what was over that hill, and the next one.

Shiny Sauce

fresh goods friday 460
Note: Shiny Sauce has NOT been used on that wall

Shiny Sauce is an environmentally safe, biodegradable, pH-neutral, water-based, general-purpose cleaner that will cut through mud, mould, algae, bird fouling, sticky pollen, dead insects, traffic film and light grease and oil contamination with ease. And it has a nice label.

Wacaco Nanopresso

This neat little espresso maker is a compact, hand-powered machine that comes with a scoop, cup, a cleaning brush and a sturdy travel case. It’s surprisingly easy to use, as sometimes the more compact an item is the fiddlier. It makes a single or double shot with a nice crema on top. Simply add boiling water!

And, finally, here’s this week’s Chain! With thanks to our own Antony DeH!

And that, as they say, is all we have time for this week. There’s plenty more lining up for next week, but for the moment, we want to concentrate on having another coffee, some of Amanda’s amazing flapjack and think about #drinkbeeratyourdeskfriday

Amanda Wishart

Singletrack Art Director

When Amanda arrived at Singletrack she had only been riding for a couple of years, but having already ticked off a healthy list of uplifts and races including Megavalanche, we didn’t see any problems with her keeping up. Previously serving 11 years in a publishing house, she was keen to continue her art and design career without being tied to a desk, and has progressed as both a rider and a designer from all the fresh air Calderdale offers.

She began mountain biking to keep herself occupied out of snowboard season, but bikes have since taken over as the preferred sport. It’s not a hobby - it’s a lifestyle, and the impact riding has had on Amanda’s life is more than just how she chooses to spend her weekends. Relocating to Calderdale, giving up driving, being more eco aware are all either directly or loosely related to the sport and the future of it.

Her love of bikes isn’t for the adrenalin rush, the exercise, achieving goals or even the travelling, it’s mostly about the people she meets along the way. She’s our in-house tree hugger and is interested in any earth positive products and vegan trail snacks.

Comments (9)

    that Spanner bike looks ace for the money

    A sturdy tire lever does the same job as the piston press, but yeah its nice to have a tool for the job.

    Trouble with the sturdy tyre lever, Jimmy, at least around here, is that they’re rarely, er, sterile… 🙂
    And if you’re going to ruin £20 of brake pads by rubbing grunge into them, it’s almost worth the proper too…

    Don’t SRAM brakes all come with a little red wedge thing that nicely prises pads apart for £24.99 less? I’m pretty sure my last 2 bikes even came with them.

    It’s a tool which is going to spend most of it’s time rolling round the bottom of a tool box or drawer. If you’re worried about “sterile” it’s going to need cleaning before it’s used anyway! (especially when you inevitably try to justify it’s existence by finding other leverage based uses for it)
    Freshly wiped screwdriver for me thanks!

    ive go one of those piston presses.

    managed to chip pistons with it. contaminate pads with it and its hard to align pistons with it.

    i keep trying to use it as i spent over 20 quid on it. Last time i did i cracked an s4 caliper.

    id be interested to know how others get on with it.

    I recently bought a cheap version off Ali express. £9, I like it, wouldn’t justify spending the park money

    gert big flat blade screwdriver does the job for me. Do like that Spanner Bike, Andrew was great in helping me design my own Chi Ti as well. Top Bloke.

    You don’t contaminate pads with a screwdriver if you push the screwdriver behind the pad (then push that pad against the other). I thought everyone knewed that. 🙂

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