Fresh Goods Friday 698 – Up To No Good Edition

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Roll up! Roll up! Come get yer Fresh goods ‘ere! Despite it being Good Friday – which means the Annual Chocolate Celebration is almost upon us – we have zero items of brown confectionary here.

What do we have to show you this week? Yet another midpower e-mountain bike (sorry not sorry), new multi-tool and repairs ‘n’ spares solutions, a revamped range of premium tyres, a super-sealed bottom bracket, some lady gloves and a battery powered boombox.

But yes, we have no brown eggs.

No Good Friday!

Focus Vam 2 SL 9.9

Listen. We are still asking the bike industry for normal mountain bikes to test. But the only test bikes that seem to be arriving of late are midpower e-mountain bikes. We’ve currently got the Specialized Levo SL Alloy (50Nm motor with 320w peak power) and the Whyte E-Lyte 150 Works (55Nm, 600w peak) on test. Honestly, they’re like buses these e-bikes. Except they’re not. They’re a whole load lighter than they full-fat e-bikes. This Focus Vam 2 SL 9.9 (in Large) here weighs in at 17.5kg. Sporting the Fazua Ride60 motor (60Nm, 430w peak)) with a not-easily-removable 430Wh battery, it offers a modest 125mm rear travel and 130mm travel Fox 34 fork up front. Carbon frame with a flex-stay design. And yes, it comes with thru-headset routing and a one-piece bar-and-stem.

Crankbrothers BC18 SOS Bottle Cage Tool Kit

  • Price: £99.99
  • From: Extra UK
  • SQUIRREL_TEXT_13024317

This is the first of four new ‘SOS’ items from Crankbrothers. We thought we’d feature them individually because lumping htem altogether would just end up being confusing and hard to identify which pic was what etc. SOS stands for Save Our Shred by the way. This BC18 SOS Bottle cage is a left or right entry cage that holds a pale grey tyre lever which in turn holds a tyre plugging tool and a bunch tubeless plugs. There are two clips on the side of the cage. One is empty (intended for CO2 or a minipump). The other holds a metal cylinder with a screw top lid. Open the lid and out pops (it’s spring loaded slightly) the SOS multi-tool. This multi-tool has a lot going on with it:

  • 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8mm Allen
  • T10, T25 torx
  • Flat screwdriver
  • Tyre lever
  • Chain tool
  • 0, 1, 2 spoke wrenches
  • Valve core tool
  • CO2 head

Crankbrothers TS18 SOS Tube Stash Tool Kit

  • Price: £89.99
  • From: Extra UK
  • SQUIRREL_TEXT_13024318

Okay. So imagine the BC18 kit above but replace the bottle cage with a broad Velcro strap arrangement for attaching an inner tubes to. That’s what this TS18 SOS kit is.

Crankbrothers TT17 SOS Twin Tube Tool Kit

I [Benji] will freely admit that it took me a shamefully long time to work out how to crack this sucker open. I could have just read the the instructions but who does that eh? Anyway, eventually I did realise that all you need to do to is press the grey buttons located at the top of each tube and then the tubes simply open out like wings. One tube is contains the same super-comprehensive SOS multi-tool as described in the BC18 above. The other tube is essentially empty (there is a removable just-so container in there) and it’s up to you what you store in there. CO2? Tubeless repair stuff? A Cadbury’s Fudge? A mini Peperami? Whatevz. The whole thing mounts on bottle bosses. Oh yeah, there’s a tyre lever with a tyre plug tool and tubeless repair strips provided also.

Crankbrothers TS2 SOS Tube Stash+

  • Price: £29.99
  • From: Extra UK
  • SQUIRREL_TEXT_13024320

Coming after the three MacGuyver-tastic SOS kits listed above, this modest TS2 jobber may feel rather underwhelming. Yet, it may well also be the SOS item that is most relevant to most riders; most of us already have a multi-tool ‘solution’. What we could do with it a basic strap-on puncture repair kit. Which is what this is. Tyre lever, tubeless strips, tubeless stabber and a strap for holding onto an inner tube and/or CO2 cartridges. Sorted.

Michelin Wild Enduro Rear

The first of three rejigged rubbers that form Michelin’s new Wild Enduro tyre range. This is a rear-specific tyre designed with rolling resistance reduction very much in mind. In terms of terrain or conditions, it says ‘mixed’ but we think it’s more at the dry end of the spectrum.

MIchelin Wild Enduro MH

An interesting looking tyre. It reminds us a bit of a WTB Verdict. And a bit of a Maxxis Minion DHF. And possibly a Specialized Butcher, if you squint. The overall layout of the knobbles sort of says ‘loose mud’ kinda tyre. But the specific design of the knobs – especially the full-length in-line-of-direction siping – sort of says cornering/steering. Maybe. It’s a brave move to predict a tyre’s behaviour by looks alone but who doesn’t love a bit of pontificating about tyres? Anyway. This is an interesting looking tyre.

Michelin Wild Enduro MS

The third and final tyre in the rejigged Wild Enduro line is the MS. Apologies to Michelin in advance but the, like it or not, the lingua franca of MTB tyres is Maxxis-Schwalbe. The new Michelin Wild Enduro MS reminds us of a gappier Maxxis Assegai in parts, and a Schwalbe Magic Mary in parts. Which is to say, very promising! As ever, it’ll be the nature of the rubber compopunds and the feel/performance of the casings that will also have a big say in how these new Wild Enduro tyres work on the trail. With Continental and certain Specialized tyres having recently edged their way into people’s tyre choices, it’ll be interesting see if Michelin can also get toe in.

Enduro Bearings Maxhit BSA Bottom Bracket

For folk who really don’t want to touch their bottom bracket for as long as possible once installed, here is the MAXhit BB from Enduro Bearings. Basiucally, the cups are also the cartridge bearing holding… things. “MAXhit is Enduro’s latest patent-pending innovation; where the bearing is actually the component. MAXhit bottom bracket bearings are designed to thread directly into your bicycles bottom bracket shell, eliminating the need for the aluminium cups that are traditionally used to carry the bearings. This unique design frees-up space for much larger balls that more than double the load capacity compared to standard BB bearings. Machined entirely from 440C stainless steel and guaranteed for life, Maxhit BB bearings include proprietary double-lip labyrinth seals and Enduro’s extra high pressure grease to ensure a lifetime of trouble-free, heavy duty performance.”

Pearl Izumi Women’s Cyclone Gel Glove

  • Price: £40.50
  • From: Pearl Izumi
  • SQUIRREL_TEXT_13024266

According to Pearl Izumi, these gloves’ “style touches and fit make this piece uniquely for women.” Three-layer softshell back-of-hand fabric. Ax Suede Uno synthetic leather palm with 4-way stretch. Shaped gel pads reduce bulk and claim to improve grip comfort. Hook and loop closure. BioViz reflective bits.

Formula Belva

Okay, so we don’t actually have one of these but I thought I’d stick it in FGF purely because a triple-clamp enduro fork is an interesting concept. The air-sprung Belva uses the same lower architecture as the Formula Selva series of single crown forks. So, 35mm stanchions, 15mm thru-axle, 43mm fork offset. And travel is either 170 or 180mm. This is not a downhill fork. But yeah, interesting. What do you think? Anyone interested in trying something like this?

Tribit Stormbox Flow Speaker

  • Price: £64
  • From: TRIBIT
  • SQUIRREL_TEXT_13024240

A 25w portable bluetooth speaker that doesn’t seem to cost the earth. Has a mahoosive battery inside (4.8Ah) that will keep your ABBA collection sounding amazing for around 30 hours. Has a bass button that turns it up to 11 too. Why have we got it? Well, some people (Wrong people) like to ride with music coming out of their bags. However, there are others who like to go places with no power and listen to audio books in a tent (There’s an audio book mode – no really!). Incidentally, research has shown* that people who listen to the Singletrack podcast when out and about are perceived by others to be on average more attractive than the general population.

*No it hasn’t.

Members Discount Of The Week

Mountain Warehouse have now come on board to join the 1000’s of discounts available to all our full members. Click the image above to go explore the offers.

Not a full member? Join today for instant access to all the members benefits like this one.

Thread Of The Week

The winning forum posting this week was perpetrated by tall_martin for this fruity thread:

The winning TOTW in FGF gets a prize. So @tall_martin please email editorial@singletrackworld.com for your random prize (it will probably be a Singletrack Forum Bottle Opener). Don’t forget to include your postal address, as it really speeds up delivery logistics like. K thx bye!

The MTB race run that broke Lachlan Blair’s Leg

“Short story – having a delightful time in Cyprus, weird incident, broke my leg, compartment syndrome, 6 operations, 27 days in hospital, MVP my girlfriend Imy for spending the last month in Cyprus smuggling snacks into the hospital for me 🙏”

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What is Fresh Goods Friday?

It’s Singletrack’s long running, weekly roundup of all of the new products that have been sent in to the magazine.

Where do all of the goods come from?

They’re sent in by bike companies and marketing agencies

What happens to all of the products?

They’re featured and then some are reviewed down the line in either Singletrack Magazine or in online reviews and photoshoots.

What happens to them when you’ve finished with them?

They’re usually sent back after review, or kept on long-term test bikes. But no one ever asks for shorts and shoes back. Trust us on that. Once we were asked to return some brake pads.

I’m a company making the next big thing. How much does it cost to feature in FGF?

Nothing. Nil. Zero. Diddlysquat. Sod all. Just send all ‘next big things’ to us at – Fresh Goods Friday, Singletrack Magazine, Lockside Mill, Dale Street, Todmorden. OL14 5PX. Please note that if you require the products back after they have featured then you are responsible for arranging collection at your cost. While it is our policy to feature everything we receive in FGF if we decide your product is not suitable for publication we won’t do it. Publication is at our discretion. Whether a product goes on for publication as a review is at editorial discretion. Beer, coffee & spirits will ALWAYS be tested.


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Orange Switch 6er. Stif Squatcher. Schwalbe Magic Mary Purple Addix front. Maxxis DHR II 3C MaxxTerra rear. Coil fan. Ebikes are not evil. I have been a writer for nigh on 20 years, a photographer for 25 years and a mountain biker for 30 years. I have written countless magazine and website features and route guides for the UK mountain bike press, most notably for the esteemed and highly regarded Singletrackworld. Although I am a Lancastrian, I freely admit that West Yorkshire is my favourite place to ride. Rarely a week goes by without me riding and exploring the South Pennines.

More posts from Ben

Home Forums Fresh Goods Friday 698 – Up To No Good Edition

Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)
  • Fresh Goods Friday 698 – Up To No Good Edition
  • tomhoward
    Full Member

    Already running an MRP Bartlett on my 160mm Deviate Guide, love the stiffness of the fork architecture, but the damping leaves a little to be desired, interested in how the formula performs.

    3
    dartdude
    Free Member

    Actually disappointed Tom that you haven’t a carbon Dorado.

    sillyoldman
    Full Member

    Is that a tube spacer to prevent bearing side load like on Profile style BMX cranks? If they were featured on basic BBs, bearing life would be massively extended.

    sharkattack
    Full Member

    I’ve been saying for years that I think dual crown enduro forks are inevitable. We just need the big 2 to milk every penny from every possible iteration of fat, heavy, creaky single crowns.

    Then they’ll arrive with the ‘next big thing’ which is magically stiffer and lighter etc.

    tomhoward
    Full Member

    ‘Actually disappointed Tom that you haven’t a carbon Dorado.’

    Next bike will have something similar, but not exactly that 😉

    sharkattack
    Full Member

    Rulezman?

    tomhoward
    Full Member

    Possibly, but more likely a stock Intend Infinity, probably. So a full DH fork rather than enduro, but still, upside down, DC and enduro-able

    1
    stumpy01
    Full Member

    That Focus hides it’s e-bikeness well. Looks pretty nice & svelte(-ish).

    Prices wrong on those Crank Bros tools, Shirley (although probably not)? £100 for a bottle cage & multi tool or £120 for 2 teeny boxes and a multi tool  🤣

    1
    mashr
    Full Member

    Then they’ll arrive with the ‘next big thing’ which is magically stiffer and lighter etc.

    You mean 20mm axles are coming back?! Woohoo!!

    Onzadog
    Free Member

    @tomhoward not the Push 9.1?

    Re the Maxhit BB, great idea but it’s not the bearing size that causes me issue, it’s dirt ingress.

    Re twin crown forks, anyone remember the Judy XL? I think even long legged trail bikes have got to the point now where twin crown forks would be a good idea

    danp63
    Full Member

    I love Michellin wild enduros, have them on all my bikes but part of the attraction is the price. These better be significantly better for the money. At least schwalbe can claim some sustainability credentials for the premium price tag.

    tomhoward
    Full Member

    Nah, single crown innit. Doing a DH bike next.

    SID XL FTW

    fahzure
    Full Member

    Keep your powder dry, Tom. There’s an EXciTing USD option soon to come.

    didnthurt
    Full Member

    That Focus might be the best looking ebike I’ve seen. Very discreet.

    tomhoward
    Full Member

    ‘Keep your powder dry, Tom. There’s an EXciTing USD option soon to come.’

    Yeah, I’m in no rush, so we’ll see 😊

    b33k34
    Full Member

    One of the things that keeps people coming back to Maxxis/Schwalbe and Continental is that their tyres remain consistent – if you buy a DHF you know the tread is the DHF tread.  Their compounds have had the same name for years and are self explanatory.  MaxxGrip is softer.  Easy.  Continental – compounds endurance/soft/super soft.  easy.

    I like the old Wild Enduros, even though I’m still not clear on magi-x vs gum-x and have to spend time working out which is which before ordering (the magi x is for ‘experts’ but the gum x has ‘lower stiffness for better handling’. Both have ‘more grip’).

    But now theres a Enduro Rear ‘racing line’ that seems to have a different tread to the ‘Enduro rear’ and the MS and MH “racing line”.  So it’s a different tyre, not really a variant.

Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)

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