Fresh Goods Friday 586: digital thirst edition

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You may have noticed the Singletrackworld homepage looked a bit different yesterday. This was due to the new issue of the magazine coming out.

Basically, when the new mag comes out we want all the content simultaneously going online so all our members can access it however and wherever they chose to.

In some publishing circles it’s similar to something called Digital First. Except that usually refers to stuff going online first with a view to it (maybe) going into print at some point afterwards.

The way we do/did it was more of a synchronised launch. We might tweak the way we do it for the next issues but hopefully you get the idea.

Anyway, that’s what our week was taken up with. We still found time to do FGF though. Here ‘yare…

Turn smashing. If you like that sort of thing.

Rockrider All Mountain MTB Bottoms

A STW Forum favourite

Mountain bike trousers for under forty quid. Tapered cut. Stretchy fabric. Shins and bum panels get some DWR coating. Not much (or indeed, anything apart from two pairs of press studs) in the way of waist adjustment. Two zipped hip pockets.

Pretty impressive from first inspection. As ever with budget clothing, the main thing will be durability. Let’s see how they are after six months.

Rockrider ST 500 MTB Bottoms

Hot pants

I [Benji] have had a pair of these once before. Throughout winter 2020/21. They were great. Until they weren’t. Basically they wore through where my body meets the saddle (medical name: arse). Having said that, I still opt to ride in them!

They have decent water repellency. I like the single thigh pocket. But the best thing is the brushed lining. They are very cosy riding kecks for fifty quid. My previous bum panel problem is a concern though.

Rockrider ST 700 Rain Jacket

Don’t shoot!

The fabric looks like it’ll be good. I like the colourway (yes, colourway). But… the fit is very much a tale of two halves. A top half and a bottom half.

The bottom half looks to be a bit too high at the front for MTBing. And the top half is… mahoosive. Great if you want to look like Wilfrid from the Bash Street Kids – and good that you can properly fit it over a peaked helmet in awful weather – but feels rather OTT and oppressive when the hood is not deployed. It’s hard not to have it sit up to your nose and down to your eyebrows. Letterbox stylee. Needs to be ridden in to see if these fears are unfounded.

Kali Maya 3.0 Helmet Artist Edition


Low Density Layer ‘Rheon’ technology (a gel padding for rotational impact protection). Composite Fusion Plus construction, no less. Meaning, layers of multi-density cone shaped EPS.

But whatever. This is all about the colourway (yes, colourway). It’s called Dandelion. We (quite) like.

Kali Mission 2.0 Knee Guards

Pretty much every mountain biker on Earth is permanently on the lookout for The Perfect Pad. Will these be they? We shall see.

4-way stretchy constructions. ‘Abrasion resistant’ kneecap (wish mine were). Extra tall length for comfort and stability. Here’s hoping.

Rapha Trail Hip Pack

Yes, we have a hip-pack group test coming up. This is a typically £nice offering from Rapha. Ripstop fabric. Three litre storage capacity. Aquaguard zip. 100% Recycled Nylon.

Nice colourway (yes, colourway).

Rapha Trail Knee Pads

Mo’ pads. Rapha: “Fit knees like a glove as a result of their industry-leading experience across bib shorts and tights.” Make of that what you will.

Another of this week’s items featuring ‘Rheon’; a polymer that is flexible during use but reacts to impacts by “concentrating more material into the impact zone”.

Arrow Wheels AGRS Road Gravel Hope Wheelset

When does XC turn into Gravel?

Full disclosure: I [Benji] am friends and ride pushbikes with the guy behind Arrow Wheels. He lives over the hill from STW HQ.

These are Arrow Wheels’ gravel hoops. Toray T700S & T800 carbon fibre. Smooth Wall Technology; no folded prepreg during curing. Carbon Strip Reinforcement: the rim bed uses a unique carbon strip to the spoke bed which reduces weight without sacrificing any strength. Hookless design. Two rim finishes available, gloss or matt black.

PNW Loam Dropper Post 200mm

Post-adjustment, this is now a 190mm dropper

PNW’s shortest, lightest and most customisable dropper yet. The new Loam also features swappable silicone bands, giving you the opportunity to match your bike (or mood). This one features… a black one. Soz.

25mm of travel adjustment. This here 200mm one has been quickly (after a quick YouTube search) adjusted to be 190mm. No tools required. Just hands (and a fingernail).

PNW Pine 27.2 Dropper Post 90mm

Droppers, you know, for kids!

Technically, this isn’t PNW’s kid dropper post (that’s the PNW Fern). This is just the skinny 27.2mm modest-travel dropper with external cable routing.

Great for kids (those that are heavy enough to actuate the post anyway), old bikes, CX/gravel bikes, bikes with faffy internal cable routing that you just can’t be bothered dealing with etc etc.

PNW The Loam Lever

Grey pride

“A yoga mat for your thumb”. Super smooth actuation genuinely improves the feel of any cable actuated dropper post. Oversized sealed cartridge bearing. The problem with The Loam Lever is that it makes other dropper remotes feel rough AF.

PNW Loam Pedals

Pin it!
Spin it!

A new entry into the crowded flat pedal market. These look worthwhile though. Vital stats: forged and CNC’d 6061 Aluminium, sealed cartridge and roller bearings (no bushings). 445g, claimed. 22 replaceable pins per pedal, 105mm x 115mm.

As with all flatties with similarly bushing-less designs, the Loam pedals will sink or swim depending how you get on with the axle bulge near the crank.

Personally, I have no issues with bulged pedals. I ride (well, descend) with the middle of my foot sitting over the axle. This means the narrow part of my shoe soles is adjacent to the bulge. Plenty of room, whilst still fully on the pedal pins. Not a problem. Some folk who ride with the ball of their foot over the axle may have issues.

Initial rides on these pedals are very promising. Super planted. Review to follow further down the line.

PNW Rover Hip Pack

Used and abused
Great for dinky camera gear

It wasn’t designed as such but this is (accidentally) a brilliant little bumbag for mirrorless camera gear. That’s what I’ve used it for anyway. Even the press-stud-on bottle holder is ideal for storing a lens in!

Well made, comfy, decently padded and weatherproof too. Enough compartmentalisation to be useful without having trouble finding things.

Singletrack Magazine Issue 141

New issue arrived!

As we’ve already blathered: “You have probably noticed that we’ve just published Singletrack Magazine online. If you’re a member, that means you can go and read the articles right now, if you want to. You’ll find a few extra images, plus some videos – but it doesn’t smell like our printed magazine, and it’s riskier to read it in the bath.”

Gil Scott Heron. Just because Gil Scott Heron:

The best nuclear power station incident-based song of all time?

This week’s #STWFGF winner

Every week we’re now running a competition over on Instagram to win a free subscription to Singletrackworld (or some other item of merchandise if you’re already a subscriber/member).

Simply tag your Instagram riding pics with #STWFGF and… that’s it.

Ideally we want riding-a-bike pics but… we ride alone as much as anyone, so we non-riding pics too.

We sift through the tagged candidates at the end of each week and pick a winner. The winning Insta pic gets proudly displayed in Fresh Goods Friday.

Congratulations and respec’ to Ash Napier for this week’s winning shot. Send us a DM on Insta and we’ll sort you out with your prize.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Ash Napier (@ash_napier27)

Thread of The Week

This week’s thread of the week goes to @barrysh1tpeas for the stop boozing thread.

See you next week for more even fresher goods. TTFN!

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Viewing 27 posts - 1 through 27 (of 27 total)
  • Fresh Goods Friday 586: digital thirst edition
  • kimbers
    Full Member

    good shout on the value riding pants

    Free Member

    No no no to colourway.

    Full Member

    Not that I’m complaining at all, but I get the feeling rapha have a very different idea of their (potential) customer’s for that pack and pads to much of their kit. Compared with some of the competition they’re actually quite reasonably priced.

    Full Member

    Rapha knee pads!

    Not only that they exist, but they feature on STW.

    Everything that I knew to be true had to be questioned now – nothing can be taken for granted anymore. What is the world coming to?

    I will have to go and lie down now.

    Full Member

    Those Rockrider pants are great. I bought them for nettle/bramble season and have kept wearing them through the winter. A bit boil in the bag in September but better than getting impromptu bramble tattoos

    Full Member

    What’s the point of the 500 pants if the AM ones have waterproof panels?

    What’s the difference?

    Full Member

    Not only that they exist, but they feature on STW.

    Pinkbike reviewed them too, and really liked them 😲

    Full Member

    What’s the point of the 500 pants if the AM ones have waterproof panels?

    What’s the difference?

    Warmer, more waterproofing and 25% more expensive.

    Full Member

    Pinkbike reviewed them too, and really liked them 😲

    Phew, $180 so I guess £200 for the trews, my faith in rapha is restored.

    I’m half tempted to go read the comments section but I’m worried I’ll be disappointed.

    Full Member

    Phew, $180 so I guess £200 for the trews, my faith in rapha is restored.


    Full Member

    Well colour me surprised, a dollar RRP that’s not somehow a lower number than it’s sterling equivalent.

    Still, £130 puts them at rather more than most which is much more normal pricing for rapha than the bum bag and pads which are about the same as most.

    Can’t say I’m likely to be in the market for the trousers (or the bum bag at that) but I’m intrigued by the pads for when mine need replacing.

    Full Member

    Technically, the AM trews have 2 popper positions so they do have “some” waist adjustment. But I know where you are coming from – I had my local seamstress add belt loops for a fiver.

    Full Member

    I like the unusual Kali helmet colours. ✌

    Full Member

    I bought some ST 500s last year and have worn them all winter without, so far, having any bum wear issues. However I paid £40, they are now £50. Still reasonable but a big price hike when the AMs are the same price as last year.

    Full Member

    Good shout Vincent G. I shall update the deets.

    Full Member

    See if you can get the Osprey Savu included in your hip sack review.

    Full Member

    Back in I think 2012/14 I had some dealings with Rapha with regards to supplying materials, chemical finishes, etc. They were a bunch of arrogant, know all pricks, who seemed to have little to no idea about product development from a performance perspective. If you bought some Rapha stuff back then I think you were either easily swayed by marketing or just really liked having a band round one arm like a 1930’s German as the kit was bloody expensive but no where near the quality of Assos, Castelli, etc.
    Before I went to see Rapha I read an interview with Simon Mottram where he was saying something like ‘Rapha was about promoting cycling, it wasn’t a clever way of making a profit’. Then the first time I went to Rapha’s HQ I walked up the stairs into the office and greeting you is a huge screen that was showing everyone live sales data from around the world – TY v’s LY, Actual v’s Budget, etc, it looked like something you’d expect on Wall Street/Canary Wharf. Rapha would say that as a brand they understood road cycling and sold top quality products. The reality was that they were ruthlessly in pursuit of profits and that marketing and image was more important than product, performance, fun or sport.

    That said though the new MTB stuff looks ok. Must be the Wallmart Waltons influence.

    Full Member

    If you bought some Rapha stuff back then I think you were either easily swayed by marketing or just really liked having a band round one arm like a 1930’s German


    I know some people don’t like Rapha, but comparing those who do to Nazis really does say more about you than them……

    The reality was that they were ruthlessly in pursuit of profits and that marketing and image was more important than product, performance, fun or sport.

    If you don’t turn a profit you don’t survive – that’s just basic economics, applies to every single company….

    Full Member

    I dimly recall when the colour scheme for the whole web site (including the forum) changed to match the new issue of the magazine. I think the issue numbers may still have been in the single digits when that stopped though.

    Full Member

    Back in I think 2012/14 I had some dealings with Rapha with regards to supplying materials, chemical finishes, etc.

    You were supplying them for whatever it cost you, I assume?

    Free Member


    If you bought some Rapha stuff back then I think you were either easily swayed by marketing

    “back then”…? ! 😂

    Full Member

    I need everyone else in Britain to spend bazillions with Rapha (which may well only get you 2 bib shorts and a short sleeve top) because then with all that extra VAT that is paid to Rishi S, they may be able to reduce NI payments for normal people or reduce the tax on heating for the elderly.
    (Though they’ll probably just cut the taxes for the billionaires, again).

    Meanwhile I’ll be buying normally priced stuff.

    Full Member

    Another Decathlon ST 500s wearer here – flipping marvellous in the cold and wet. Got a really nice high kidney covering back. Great to see Decathlon kit getting a more regular shout in.

    Full Member

    I bought the Rockrider all mountain trousers last winter after positive forum comments.

    The arse wore through in 3 months of winter riding – all with mudguards. 2 rides a week max. Disappointing.

    Also, the fly flap is a right pain. The fly is too short and covered by the flap to use on its own, so its faffing with poppers (impossible with winter gloves) if like me frequent mid ride (or post pub) stops are required.

    I fixed the worn bum panel with gaffa tape, went to pull it off to replace the other day, and the supposedly heavier duty fabric on the bum just ripped away. So now they are in the bin.

    Otherwise they are OK for keeping spray off but offer no warmth.

    You get what you pay for I guess.

    Full Member

    I’ve got one of them there Rapha bags as a birthday present, although it’s in black rather than dog poo brown. It’s really good. I don’t normally use bumbags – either jersey pockets or a Wingnut – but the Rapha gets used a lot more than other bumbags I’ve tried over the years, and more than the Wingnut. Normally I’d not look twice at Rapha stuff, being a massive cheapskate who rides in brambly woods), but I probably will now. I’m certainly guilty of a bit of inverse snobbery about ’em in the past, and I’m not alone.

    [edit] as an example of my cheapskateness I bought the Decathlon trooosers last winter, but returned them after Mrs Udder passed more than one cutting comment about them. On the plus side, I just got some nice Giro equivalents in the sale, and they’re even better for the same sort of price[/edit]

    Full Member

    I have the Rockrider trail pants too, only thing is for taller riders the run v short when pedalling in them, mine ride upto my calves and make my friends laugh!

    Full Member

    Having all the mag articles pop up on the front page and forum before getting the magazine is a bit like when you get a trailer for the film you’re about to watch at the cinema.

    Nice to have a physical mag, but a bit less anticipation of that first flick through, still in its wrapper at the moment 🙁

Viewing 27 posts - 1 through 27 (of 27 total)

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