FGF 553 – The ‘Hannah’s So Happy She’s Lost Her Voice’ Edition

by and 13

It’s all good fun here at STW Towers this week. We had Hannah’s birthday (and subsequent member discounts) though it was slightly dampened by her big birthday present not showing up. Her partner was supposed to be flying over from the USA in time to celebrate it, but ended up in Chicago Airport for a couple of days instead, waiting for the right kind of Covid test results to satisfy the authorities. But all is good now as he’s arrived and is heading into quarantine with a Hannah who appears to have lost her voice – we assume through too much shouting at the sky.

Meanwhile, the rest of us are looking forward to the first weekend of World Cup racing this year. Hopefully everyone will manage to stay upright, as the XC crowd seem to be breaking bones with alarming frequency at the moment (see Tom Pidcock and Kate Courtney). We’re also getting some miles in on test bikes, someone is doing a an overnighter on a mountain somewhere and we’re all starting to get into a summer mood, despite the apparent drizzle outside the window.

‘Coming Home’ seems an appropriate opener…

So, let’s get you settled into this week’s Fresh Goods Friday and get your weekend started off right!

Orbea Rise

This is the Orbea Rise M10. It’s an eMTB but of the ‘low fat’ breed. That means it’s got a smaller than standard battery capacity of 350Wh connected to a Shimano EP8 motor that has been custom tuned down for Orbea to deliver a maximum output of 60nm compared to the standard EP8 at 85nm. The theory is the lighter weight of the bike (this is around the 40lb mark) demands less of both battery capacity and power output.

This model comes with a carbon frame, Fox Factory 36 forks and Factory DPX2 shock. There’s an almost full XT groupset on there with brakes and shifting (Cassette is SLX).

Specialized’s Levo SL has some serious competition here by the looks of it and we heard a rumour there’s an alloy version in the works that will come in at under £5k.

You will be seeing this bike very soon as we gather our collection of eMTBs together for a grouptest.

And now here’s a video of Mark binning it completely on his second ride out on it.

Thule Rail Hip Packs

We’ve been sent the set of Thule Rail hip packs, coming in 4L, 2L and zero litre sizes… This translates to ‘Hydration pack’, ‘Bottle Carrying’ and ‘Kit only’ depending on your water carrying needs. Each pack features one-handed access to your phone in a fancy plush pocket, a divided central compartment with key clip and a blinky light mount at the back. The 2L version allows a water bottle to come along for the ride, while the 4L bag includes a hydration bladder with hose that loops around the waist belt. 

Thule Rail4

This is the biggie of the range, with an integrated water (Hydrapak) bladder and a lot of pockets and bungees and things. It’s still pretty compact, but for that bigger local loop, it’s probably all you need.

Thule Rail2

The Goldilocks of the Thule Rail series holds a lot more than it first appears. There’s secure space for two water bottles either side of the main compartment. If you don’t use them, they just fold flat like they just don’t care, but fully loaded, you can get two big bottles in, with enough room for tube/tools/snacks/whatever in the main bag. And there’s a one-hand opening, plushy lined phone pocket for capturing those sweet nugs of Instagram gold.

Thule Rail0

Zero seems a bit harsh a name, as you can still pack a few essentials in this bag, in addition to your JumboPhone, there’s a separate main compartment that’ll carry a tool, levers, wallety things and other slim items. It assumes you’ve got your spare tube already strapped to your bike with something like a Singletrack Rockband, but there’s still room for a couple of CO2 and an old fashioned patch kit…

Triumph TR6P Trophy (Saint) Motorcycle

  • Price: less than an ebike.
  • From: A cool old geezer with a really impressive shed.

Charlie says: I have got this ebike transport revolution thing sussed out. So, you want a bike that you can whizz around on but can’t be arsed with all the rules and regs of the road. This is the answer, get an old motorcycle that is not only so old that the road tax is free, but also the government think you don’t need a MOT!

This was originally ordered by the Metropolitan Police back in 1966. Then in 1972 (the year I was born) it was auctioned off to a civilian, and last taxed in 1978. To put that in musical terms: purchased when the Beatles were tripping in a yellow submarine, and last used on the road when Rod Stewart was asking if you think he is sexy. Is he sexy? (comment below).

The drum brakes are just about the fastest brakes you can get, really fast, like race winning fast. Unfortunately, they are no good at actually stopping the bike. Triumph called these police specific models the “Saint”, which apparently stood for “Stop anything in no time”. Stop anything but the bloody bike. I figure they just rammed the crooks fleeing a jewellery heist on the Old Kent Road, or overshot and just went on to the next hold up.

The bike was cheaper than a new e-bike too. Insurance is £50 a year. Two tyres were £105. A throttle cable was £7. Do you want tech… the other tank has a mount for a Pye Radio Telephone! I have burnt my leg, and my knuckles are bleeding, my moustache tastes of petrol (and Henry Westons) but I now know how to strip a carb… and that is grade AA manly sh1t right there. No one will steal it because they won’t be able to start it. And starting it actually keeps you fit. I have seen the future, just like garlic and bread… motor and bike. Brrrrmmmm brrrrm.


The FK1 is Italian shoe brand DMT’s enduro and freeride offering. Available in a choice of green or black, the FK1 features a proprietary full engineered knit upper coupled to a Michelin OCX compound sole. The shoes are designed to be breathable and quick drying with the engineered knit flexing and conforming to the shape of the foot, while still being tough enough to stand up to the rowdiest enduro stages. DMT also claim they’re suitable for all levels of rider form beginner, to commuter to elite racer.

Muckynutz Skinz Frame Protection

Muckynutz has expanded its offering of products to include the new Skinz range of adhesive protection patches. 3 sets are available for frames, forks and stays, in a total of 4 designs available in either matt or gloss finishes. The decals in each pack are made up of a 300 micron composite vinyl, a product commonly found in the motorsport industry, and use an adhesive that won’t damage frame finishes. Frame Skinz comes with 17 patches while the Fork and Stay Skinz packs get 4 patches each.

An all-weather lube that lasts longer and doesn’t need to be applied as often? That will be the new LinkLube Premium All-Weather lube from Peaty’s. It’s a mixed weather formulation meaning the same lube is great for dry dusty, or wet and gritty trails. The new lube promises to penetrate between chain links to replace moisture and grit with long-lasting, oil and waxes. Prices start at £9.99 for 60ml rising to £15.99 for 120ml.

Squire Stronghold 50 Lock and Chain

If you’ve spent a small fortune on your bike then it seems like a false economy to skimp on security. At £109.99 the Squire Stronghold 50 lock and chain isn’t cheap, and at 3.420kg it weighs as much as some frames, but its super solid design and build should be enough to help you sleep at night. At 900mm long there is plenty of chain to wrap around your bike and something solid while the Cen Grade 5 padlock itself boasts anti-drill protection and a 6 pin cylinder offering over 250,000 possible key combinations. The entire length 10mm hardened Boron Alloy Steep is wrapped in soft material to keep it from damaging frame finishes too.

Squire Warrior 65 Combination

If you like what you see above but prefer a combination lock rather than an old fashion key Squire has the Warrior 65. Again you get a hardened steel shackle, 900mm length and soft chain cover for protection, but this time a would-be thief has 100,00 possible combinations to filter through in the hope of opening it up.

Squire Hammerhead 290 D Lock

This is a Gold Sold Secure rated D, security rating 10, lock with an anti-pick 5 pin tumbler with double locking mechanism. The D part of the lock is octagonal, which apparently makes it harder to cut or get a grip on. It weighs 1.91kg.

Squire Hammerhead 290 Combi D Lock

If you’ve a habit of losing keys, this could be the option for you. If you’re forgetful, it’s not: the 6 wheel combination lock gives 1 million possible options. It’s a Silver Sold Secure rated D, security rating 9, lock and again has an octagonal D shape. It weighs 1.88kg.

Squire Security Extension Cable

If you want to lock up your wheels as wheel as your frame, maybe this will help. It only has a security rating of 4, although it is 12mm thick.

Squire Inigma D-Lock

If you lose keys but not your phone, then this app operated lock could be what you need. Sold secure Gold, it has a double shackle locking system that should prove challenging to a thief. The app doesn’t need data to connect to the lock, and you can assign one code to many locks if you want to unlock all the bikes at once (could be an interesting way to start a race?). Battery life is 5-6 months before needing a recharge via USB.

And with that lot, it’s time to let you head into the weekend, heads buzzing and tunes humming, ready for that summertime weather. Don’t forget to complain that the trails are now, suddenly a bit too loose and sandy/gravelly/dusty for you and wouldn’t it be nice to have a bit of rain for a change. Alternatively, just get on a bike – any bike – and head out in a random direction, just for the hell of it! Cheers all!

Coming in your inbox once a week

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive Singletrack editorial wisdom directly in your inbox.

Each newsletter is headed up by an exclusive editorial from our team and includes stories and news you don’t want to miss.

We hand pick these deals and refresh them every week.
Singletrack may earn a small commission from any purchases you make

Thanks for popping by - why not stay a while?IT'S FREE

Sign up as a Singletrack Member and you can leave comments on stories, use the classified ads, and post in our forums, do quizzes and more.

Join us, join in, it’s free, and fun.

Comments (13)

    “Meanwhile, the rest of us are looking forward to the first weekend of World Cup racing this year”

    nope, it’s the third – they’re just allowing the part-timers in this weekend 😉

    The triumph is fantastic.
    Be very interesting to see how long the ‘lock picking lawyer’ took to get into those locks!

    I realise £5 for a pint is now cheap, but £150 for some flat pedal shoes seems like an awful lot of money.
    I must be so out of touch with prices………….


    Absolutely on the money.

    But it is at the intersection of fashion and sport. Conspicuous consumption.

    These will be my new ones, when my 5Tens finally kick-it;


    If the phone pocket on those hip packs stops your phone screen smashing to pieces when you land flat on your back when you’ve cocked up a manual, I’ll take one.

    Glad to hear Hannah’s chap finally arrived; those delays can’t have been much fun.

    I do like that Orbea…..

    @brakestoomuch We could use a Ryvita to test it. I took the photos and thought the size of the phone pocket is great, and the zip works one-handed for those emergency photos mid-ride… but it’s just a regular pocket.

    I’ve got a broken phone you can borrow for testing. 🙁

    Ah motorcycles and MTBs. I have more motorbikes than push bikes in m garage to the tune of 4 to 1.
    I recently spent a week rebuilding my race bike (motorbike) and then switched to some MTB maintenance.
    It’s these times when I touch both in the same day I understand why MTBs cost so much. They are so highly developed, and precise that parts barely clear each other, yet fit perfectly into place, and small amounts of torque on a bolt can change the way a bike feels.
    Switching back to my race bike which is highly developed with lots of fancy racey parts feels clunky, and cumbersome.

    How big is the bladder in the Thule pack? Ta.

    That Triumph is truly a thing of beauty, and the same age as me, so it must surely be a wonderous thing

    “Meanwhile, the rest of us are looking forward to the first weekend of World Cup racing this year.”
    Maybe the first weekend of World Cup DH this year but not the XC boys and girls have had two rounds already ….. its always about the DH 🙂

    @The Pinkster – it’s 1.5 litres.

Leave Reply