It’s peak holiday season and we’ve installed a revolving door at the front of Singletrack Towers to deal with the high turnover of suntanned/stressed-out staff. This week sees the return of Amanda, allowing Benji to skip off into the sun next week.
I (Amanda) have spent three weeks learning from my mistakes on how to stay hydrated when riding in the heat. Given the temperatures this weekend, and the fact that many of you may be at a PMBA race in Llangollen, let’s review what we all know. It’s like revision for a test, you know it but it needs to be at the front of your mind:
Water is hydrating, but adding salts helps your body absorb it. If you chug away at just water, eventually you might dilute your salts, and that is bad. If you’re overheating, prioritise bringing your body temperature down – dip your head in a stream, or your entire body where possible! Wear sunscream. Don’t leave a Dynaplug in direct sunlight and pick it up, and if you do, make sure you have burn gel in your first aid kit…
Now the serious stuff is covered, go enjoy the sunshine, and if you’re racing at Llangollen keep an eye out for me and my camera. The only reason I go to events is to mingle with the MTB community, so come say hello.
Early Rider Seeker 20
- Price: £675.00
- From: Early Rider
A most excellently cartoon-looking bike for kids from Early Rider. No suspension. Decent brakes. Good standover. Handy cockpit. Impressive flat pedals. 8-speed drivetrain from Box with clutch mech and trigger shifter. 11-40T cassette. Narrow-wide chainring. External BB cups. 2.25in tyres with a nice tread. You can read more about this bike – and other proper MTBs for kids – in a future issue of Singletrack Magazine.
Lazer Cage Kineticore
- Price: £TBC ($299)
- From: Freewheel
For Rebel Alliance team building days out at the bike park, the Lazer Cage looks ace. 20 vents. Fixed visor. 5-star rating from Virginia Tech. Claimed 820g weight. Approved for downhill racing. Magnetic buckle. Goggle grip. Fibreglass shell with carbon fibre reinforcements and chin bar. Features Lazer’s “fully Integrated Rotational Impact Protection” Kineticore technology.
- Price: Complete bikes from £6,995.00
- From: Hope Tech
Well now. This is one of the nicest looking bikes we’ve seen for quite some time. Also, you wait three decades for high pivot idler bikes to become A Thing, and then two arrive at the same time (remember the Deviate Claymore featured in FGF 608?) I guess we’ll have to do some sort of HPI head-to-head then! This Hope HB916 then. Produced in Barnoldswick. The front triangle is constructed in one piece while the chain and seat stays are a mix of aluminium and carbon. Internal cable routing, frame protection, ‘Butty Box’ down tube storage and… bottle bosses. Because are a spoliled and/or delusional bike media types with warped minds, £7k for this doesn’t sound overly crazy.
Park Tool CRS 15.2
- Price: £109.99
- From: Freewheel
Headsets are still an exercise is brute force. To make the task of whacking and pressing metal things into or onto other metal things, our ST Workshop sponsors Park Tool have kindly supplied us with this crown race setting system. No more flat blade screwdrivers and hammers for us. This Park Tool CRS 15.2 system will do pretty much any combo of tapered steerer and headt ubes. It even comes with adapters for certain obscure/proprietary (mainly road frame) standards and there’s an extender section for when working on forks with REALLY long steerers. Thanks Park Tool!
- Price: £575.00
- From: Halfords
Remember Benji’s recent ‘How much to start mountain biking‘ feature? In it he made the wild claim that it only costs £605 to start mountain biking and – more importantly – to keep mountain biking for a good few years after the initial purchase. This Voodoo Braag is the bike that he’ll be riding up and down Helvellyn to prove his theory. Or not. After an inspection of the bike, we’re a bit more confident in the project. It’s a seriously impressive bike for the money. Decent geometry. Function where it matters. The only two things that are preying on Benji’s mind: the pedals (not pictured, slippery-looking metal flats), and riding inner tubes again.
Craghoppers Anderson Cagoule
- Price: £100.00
- From: Craghoppers
Have you ever bought something just because you like the look of it? Of course you have. You’re a human being. Benji is a version of a human being too and he’s purchased this pull-over (smock?) jacket almost entirely because of the colourway and the retro style logo. He doesn’t expect it to be much cop as an actual outdoor jacket but it’ll look good in the pub while he waits for the rain to blow over. And that’s the main thing.
LifeLine Tyre Seating Tool
- Price: £11.99
- From: Wiggle
This tool fixes to the rim and helps roll tyre beads into place. It only accommodates up to 2.2in tyres though, so we’re not sure how much use it’ll get here!
Brand-X Seatpost Shim
- Price: £3.99
- From: Wiggle
Amanda couldn’t be bothered internally routing a seatpost on her new test bike, so she’s dug out an old PNW externally routed one, at a whopping 90mm drop. It didn’t fit, but this shim means it will. For anyone wincing in horror, it’s a racey XC bike, so 90mm is better than nothing.
Beate’s Classic Ride Art Prints
- Price: £44.99
- From: Singletrack Store
We have two fresh art prints from Beate our long time ST artist. Both are high quality prints mounted on board.
First is the Isle of Wight, a magic place to ride where time moves at a different pace. Time feels slower, as I [Charlie] did when I last rode over the endless downs.
The other fine print is The Duddon Valley, a less ridden corner of the Lake District. However, it’s a classic Lakeland landscape of rocks and crags. Beate says “I enjoyed bringing out the stark contrasts and shadows cast by stone formations in the chilly crisp light”.
Knobs of Butter
- Price: from £24.98 (Members get a chunky discount)
- From: Singletrack Store
Charlie says: “There has been colossal demand for my small knobs, so we have created a combo bundle deal of a big tub and a small knob. The small 10g knob is good for a long weekend away or popping in your pack for mid ride application. It’s often used as lip balm, but don’t forget the first rule of Bum Butter. Don’t double dip. Full Singletrack Members get a hearty discount and free UK postage.
“And in this hot weather… all that sweat on your back is only going to one place. Butter your bum.”
Thread Of The Week
A hearty well done to tofu21 for this week’s winning forum thread. We’ve all been there. Most of us are very much still there in fact. Permanent residents.
Every week the winning TOTW in FGF gets a prize. And it’s the majestic Forum Bottle Opener that is to be awarded.
Ahoy there tofu21, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to claim your opener. Please include your postal address, as it speeds up despatch!
Please give @singletrackmagazine a follow on Instagram. Amanda’s back from her hols now so the usual super flow of lovely pics will resume.
Singletrack Recommended deals – Better Than Half Price!
While you’re here…
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.