Archive for the ‘Tech Sneak’ Category

Sea Otter 2009: Components

April 20, 2009

Wandering around Sea Otter this year revealed several technical advancements and components that caught my eye for one reason or another. Here’s a brief rundown for you…..

Fizik introduced a new saddle and new Team colors

Fizik introduced the Antares saddle in new Team colors

Fizik’s “Antares saddle, which is offered as an inbetween choice for those that do not like the Arione’s length or the Aliante’s concave top, is now available in “Team Colors” which celebrate Fizik’s sponsorship of several Pro road cycling teams.

The Antares, which is somewhat shorter than an Arione and one centimeter wider, is another “flat” profile saddle, unlike the Aliante.

The saddle is also offered in several other color options and rail types.

Fizik's new test saddle program: Coming to a shop near you.

Fizik's new test saddle program: Coming to a shop near you.

Fizik also showed this test saddle program that dealers can get and allow riders to try before they buy. A reasonable solution to the “what if I spend all this cash and hate it” problem that high end saddles engender.

All three of Fizik’s saddles for road are featured with the Aliante, Antares, and Arione done up in a special “Test Orange” so you won’t be able to get away with just riding off into the sunset with a free saddle.

I suspect it should be a hit as WTB’s similar program has been pretty successful at much the same thing for mountain bikers.

SRAM announced the "Select Program" with five colors for components.

SRAM announced the "Select Program" with five colors for components.

SRAM announced a unique new option for buyers of X-0 and Noir parts with their “Select Program”. Basically, there will be anodized or colored decals for various bits in five colors. The colors are “Red, Pink Slip, Gold Nugget, Tango, and Cash”. Colors can be added to shifters, cassette carriers, rear derailluer paralellograms, and cranks. Much of the color is anodized aluminum with the Noir cranks getting individually colored graphics across the arms.

Some sharp eyed folk may notice other colors than those listed on pro’s bikes. These are special “Black Box” Select Program parts for professionals that will not be offered for sale to the public.

Bontrager showed the newest Switchblade fork at Sea Otter

Bontrager showed the newest Switchblade fork at Sea Otter

Bontrager showed the new G2 Switchblade carbon fork at Sea Otter. This fork will be available in 26 inch and 29 inch versions with the G2 offset, (51mm- 29″er/46mm-26″er), and “standard” 29″er offset, (46mm).

Amazingly, the fork will weigh nearly 300 grams less in 29″er form than the current Switchblade fork. Also, the new version will have 100% carbon fiber construction for the legs and an aluminum steer tube, crown, and drop outs. The drop outs face forward and feature a post mount for the disc brake. No cantilever mounts will be offered.

Even more stunning- Bontrager isn’t going to charge anymore money than it does now for the current Switchblade. $299.99 will score you this fork when it becomes available in the summer of 2009.

Sea Otter : Fox Racing Shox Upgrades

April 19, 2009

It looks like Fox Shox are revamping their line a little bit.  Originally brought to you by

The FIT (Fox Isolated Technology) cartridge-style dampers previously introduced on the 36 and 40 platforms are now littered throughout the 32 range for 2010 from the racer-oriented F-Series all the way through the coil-sprung Vanilla.

By separating the damping oil from air, the new floating piston designs reduce the chance of oil cavitation – and the loss of damping performance that results – relative to the existing open-bath models while the reduced oil volume also helps shed 71g, too. Additional massages to F-Series chassis shave even more weight, now making the top-end cross-country forks truly competitive weight-wise at 1.43kg (3.15lb) for the lightest models.

Smaller diameter damper shafts afford lower-friction seals, too, while an expanding rubber bladder at the top of the cartridge accommodates internal volume changes without any extra o-rings, thus maintaining comparably low levels of friction as on the open bath models.

Another feature Fox brought us their “ProTune”  to compete with the several suspensiong tuning companies out there.  Some companies, like Push, even revalve the suspension to make it ride as you need.

Trek District Full Bike Photos

April 17, 2009

Trek District Debut

April 17, 2009


Finally after being pushed back about 8 months the belt drive bike from Trek, the District, is being shipped!  One arrived at our shop this morning and we will be building it up this morning.  Keep a look on this post as we update it with photos and a short spin around on the bike.

12:40pm  On boxing photos :

5:$5pm Busy day at the shop, click over at the latest post for full photos.

Jango Bikes Now Available in the US

April 16, 2009

The line of bicycles by the name of Jango are finally hitting the US market this month.  The line is brought to the market by Topeak, makers of cycling tools and accessories.  We first saw them at Interbike 2008 with the catchy colors and designs on the paint schemes. There are 6 different models ranging from 26″/700c and men’s or women’s specific.


The unique design of these bikes are the “ports” that allow plug and play off many various accessories including cages, fenders, racks and so on.  The number is sitting around 30* for all these accessories but more are being released as the months pass.

We are looking forward to the first reviews of consumers and stocking shops as the bikes are built and put on the shops floors.  The only downfall I see of these bikes are the specific oriented accessories.  You won’t be able to walk into any bike shop and purchase these accessories off the show room floor.  I’m intrigued to see how dedicated these parts will be, years ago Trek tried to have a dedicated plug and play rear racks on their Navigator (comfort hybrid) series.  The system ran for a couple years and now all their frames are standard braze on rack months.

*Here are the accessories listed on the Jango website as of date:
U-Beam Lock
Side Frame for U BeamRack
Trailer Fender
QuickTrack Tubular Rack, Front
Tubular Lowrider with Kickstand
Trailer Pole and Flag
Side Pannier Bag
Handlebar Bag
Wedge Pack
Topeak Ratchet Rocket
Topeak Mini Morph™
Topeak Mt. Rocket ALT MasterBlaster
Topeak BabySeat
Topeak Handy Phone Pack
MTX TrunkBag
MTX TrunkBag EXP
Adjustable Chain Cover

DeFender™ M3 for 26″ Bike, Rear
Panoram JV12
RedLite™ UFO, mini

Dynamo Front Light (EQ models)
Topeak RedLite™ UFO
WhiteLite™ JP 2W

WhiteLite™ HP 2W PowerPack
Easy Mount Kickstand
QuickTrack Tubular Rack, Rear

QuickTrack U BeamRack
Topeak Modula™ Cage
Fender for 700C Bike, Front

Fender for 700C bike, Rear
Topeak DeFender™ M1 for 26″ Bike, Front
Cable Lock

2010 Shimano Ultegra Preview

April 2, 2009

1238632387ultegra_groupIRVINE, CA (BRAIN)—Shimano Ultegra 6700 is entirely new for 2010 and borrows the look and many features of the Dura Ace 7900 series to drop 150 grams of weight compared to Ultegra 6600.

The most noticeable change is the redesigned crankset that borrows Dura Ace technology for its hollow large chainring to keep things light and stiff for crisp shifting. The look is also clearly Dura Ace inspired. The new crank saves 15 grams over the current Ultegra SL crank.

And like Dura Ace, ST-6700 Dual Control Levers feature hidden cables so everything is under the tape. The levers have carbon blades, are more compact than previous Ultegra levers, now have reach adjustment and easier braking from the hoods.

ST-6700 levers are backwards compatible with 6600 series Ultegra drivetrains and brakes, though Shimano says mixing the groups will not take full advantage of the new features. The front derailleur stroke of the new group is similar to the 6600 front derailleur, but the brakes have revised pivots like Dura Ace.

Derailleurs all adopt wider pivots for less flex and the group uses an asymmetrical chain similar to Dura Ace.

Brakes have revised pivots similar to Dura Ace groups, but because the front derailleur stroke remains similar to 6600 Ultegra, backward compatibility is possible.

Rounding out the new group is the WH-6700 Ultegra wheelset, which weighs 1650 grams and is Road Tubeless compatible.

Find the original article here.

April Fool’s is Over the Top

April 1, 2009

This is a distributor of bicycle parts that has several April Fool’s “new products” on their dealer site.




My all time favorite :


Bontrager’s April Fools

April 1, 2009

Press Release – Bontrager inForm® Technology Aids Armstrong’s Recovery



Lance Armstrong and Bontrager today released more details regarding Armstrong’s recent collarbone surgery. While it was previously reported that Armstrong’s right clavicle was screwed and plated back together after his March 23rd crash at the Castilla y Leon stage race in Spain, Armstrong and equipment sponsor Bontrager, jointly announced that he was the world’s first recipient of an inForm® CarbonClavicle™ Upgrade.

Originally slated to be released at the AAOS (American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeon) Convention May 18-24th in Las Vegas, Bontrager moved up the launch date of the inForm CarbonClavicle to aid the return of Armstrong to the peloton.

“The original intent of the Bontrager inForm line was to use medical research to aid us in creating better cycling contact points, such as saddles, shoes, and grips. But when we did the research into the most common cycling-related injuries, the broken collarbone proved to be an area where we could  actually help cyclists get back on the road sooner,” relates John Balmer, head of Bontrager Development.

The CarbonClavicle, available for both left and right shoulders in four male sizes and four WSD (Women’s Specific Design) sizes, is an actual carbon fiber replacement of the clavicle. Developed with the aid of Sports Medicine Specialist Dr. Mark Timmerman, a Bontrager consultant, the inForm CarbonClavicle has greater shock absorption, greater impact strength, and a greater tensile strength—all while being grams lighter than the OEM bone.


“The installation on Armstrong was completely coincidental. But I must admit, the Bontrager marketing team was doing high-fives when we heard about Lance’s crash. It really was a marketing god-send. I mean, could there have been a better way to launch the new Bontrager medical Upgrade line?” explains Chris Clinton, Bontrager Marketing Manager.

The installation procedure is substantially quicker than the conventional collarbone repair procedures of stabilizing, drilling and pinning, as this is a full replacement. Essentially, the broken bone is completely removed and the CarbonClavicle is anchored in place. Armstrong’s procedure took approximately 30 minutes and will reduce his recovery time from 3 weeks, to 5-7 days for the sutures to fully heal.

The delay in releasing details was due to an extended approval process with the UCI, which has now ruled that since this piece is structural yet provides only minor aerodynamic advantage over the traditional ‘bump’ of a healed broken clavicle, it falls with the current parameters of the UCI rules.

Future sponsorship plans include full support and pre-emptive upgrades for the full Trek-Livestrong U23 team. “These guys are early in their careers, and if averages apply to the team, we think we can prevent about ten or more future breaks across the 12 members of the team,” adds Clinton.

Backed by Bontrager’s best-in-industry 5-year warranty, inForm CarbonClavicles will be available through referrals from Trek and Fisher dealers exclusively. Retail prices will be set by the retailer.

For more information, visit Bontrager online at

Thanks for visiting

March 28, 2006

We are excited of the upcoming venture and what the next years will bring to the cycling industry!