Red Hook Crit Timbuk2 Travel Backpack

Brooklyn’s David Trimble has expanded his track bike criterium races into much more. The Red Hook Crit is a fully-branded machine at this point, collaborating with countless cycling companies. The latest being Timbuk2 and this Travel Backpack.

See more at Red Hook Crit.

Aug 25, 2014 No comments yet
Porcelain Rocket: Mr. Fusion Saddle Bag and Support System
mrfusion2

Scott at Porcelain Rocket has been working on this new modular saddle bag system for some time now. Dubbed Mr. Fusion, this harnessed bag system utilizes metal struts that either attach to your seat post, or post clamp.

I know this isn’t the first harness system out there, but I’m pretty stoked on how it turned out.

See more at Porcelain Rocket.

Aug 25, 2014 1 comment
King Kog Tie Dye Tees
KingKogTieDye

King Kog always has some of the best t-shirts. Rep their Oakland and Brooklyn shops with these new tie dye tees, designed by Aldo Rodriguez and available at their online shop.

Aug 25, 2014 1 comment
Gevenalle Cyclocross Derailleurs
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Gevenalle, formally Retroshift, has just completed their drivetrain package with two new ‘cross derailleurs. Simplicity is the name of the game and Gevenalle’s approach to rear mech. shifting in cyclocross is the BURD = Blatantly Upgraded Rebranded Derailleur.

“We start with a tough, durable no nonsense unit from Microshift that woks as well as any, but then set about making it better. Derailleur is disassembled and chain tension spring is adjusted to provide 25% more force. This provides a big advantage in keeping the chain planted on your chaining when the course gets rough or mud build up might lift another bikes chain off the chainring. Next we pack the units with good quality grease from the folks at Phil Wood and then we replace the pulleys.”

See more at Gevenalle.

Aug 25, 2014 No comments yet
Interviewed: Robin Sansom – Brand Manager at Blackburn Design
Blackburn-interview-03


Photo by Spencer J Harding

As both a “journalist” and a consumer, I get really excited when I see something new coming from a brand, especially one with a history like Blackburn. In recent months, I’ve gotten to know the brand a bit better, both through their Meet the Rangers program and from a product perspective. I’ve seen a few of their forthcoming products, many of which I think you’ll be stoked on but before those roll out, I thought you’d appreciate a little Q&A with the brand.

To give the readers of the Radavist some insight into Blackburn’s modus operandi, I reached out to brand manager, Robin Sansom for an interview.

Read on below!


The Radavist: Robin, you recently took over the reigns at Blackburn, correct? How long have you been in the brand management position? How many people do you have working at Blackburn currently?

Robin Sansom: I have been leading Blackburn for less than two years, but I have actually aged nearly four years in the same time … we have done so much great/fun stuff with the brand. Although we have a tight crew that includes designers, engineers and product folks, we are all very focused on making sure every product meets the standards of the brand.

The Radavist: For those of us who have never seen your offices (how is that possible?!) could you describe the work environment and the various roles of your co-workers? Who does what and who gets paper balls thrown at them the most?

Robin Sansom: I sit in the Blackburn Advanced Research Facility, or BARF for short. We’ve taken a modest lair of cubicles and transformed them into a small bike shop for rigging up test bikes. Our desks are nearby and the space is littered with samples and drawings from Blackburn’s past, present and future. Elsewhere in the building we also have a prototype shop and test lab.

Jim Blackburn was an industrial designer who also had an eye for hiring great design talent (Jim Gentes and Robert Egger, among others). They understood the needs of the user and made a connection with them through design. We are now recommitted to that ethos, and our designers along with the product experts, look at the world through the Blackburn lens to dream up new concepts. Engineers are in from the beginning as well, making sure the dreams are grounded in reality … or perhaps encouraging them to be bigger. Paper balls flying everywhere …

The Radavist: Now that we’ve got an understanding of how many people are behind the brand, what’s the biggest challenge working as a team, designing products?

Robin Sansom: Until recently, the primary challenges revolved around having a shared vision of the brand. We also can’t agree which tall beer is the best, but I’m certain we will sort that out with enough testing and “offsite meetings”.

The Radavist: Do you spend more time designing in the office, or out on the bike?

Robin Sansom: I’m always designing. At my desk, on the bike, surfing, in the shower or shop … for better or worse, my brain’s Solidworks is always running. I know our designers are built the same way. I’m writing this to you on a road trip from the Oregon coast back to my house in Santa Cruz, camping along the way … a great way to free the mind and look at things in anew.


Photo by Spencer J Harding

The Radavist: What was the biggest void you felt needed addressing with the new Blackburn line?

Robin Sansom: I grew up with this brand. Not only installing Blackburn racks for customers as a shop rat, but also using them on long tours in my youthdom. When I had the opportunity to work with the brand again, sure I saw a voids in the product line, but that is always the game. The bigger void was the brand itself, and how it had little resemblance of what I remembered and cherished about it. The first task was to ask seemingly stupid, but very important questions like: Who are we? Why do we exist? How do we go about making things? What people do we serve? We’ve answered these and many other questions about the brand, many of them by simply looking at the past, and now have a very succinct vision that is shared by everyone here. Given the length of time it takes to develop products, you will just only now begin to see the new/old vision of the brand come to life.


Photo by Spencer J Harding

The Radavist: I’ll be pretty straight forward, for me, seeing your Eurobike booth last year piqued my interest in the company. Using Brian Vernor and Chris McNally to help capture the visual essence of the brand was the right move ATMO, how did that come about?

Robin Sansom: I watched the debut of Vernor’s film Where Are You Go at a local theatre several years ago, which is about a cross continental “race” from Cairo to Capetown. The film was adventurous, artful, fun and inspiring. There was no other photographer I wanted to work with for Blackburn. For illustration, we had a particular style in mind that we showed around, and someone eventually pointed us to Chris. When I told Vernor about this great illustrator, he just kinda shrugged as if saying “of course” and mentioned they were good friends. From there we embarked on a photo/illustration bike trip, which resulted in the bonanza of great imagery you saw. We did another trip this year along the lost coast, with similar results . . . I think this will have to be a tradition.

Photo by Spencer J Harding

The Radavist: Let’s be honest, there are tons of pumps, lights, racks and bags out there, what makes Blackburn different from the competition? No cheesy answers!

Robin Sansom: I suppose the biggest difference is that we now have a point of view and aren’t just making widgets. All of our new products strive to meet the standards of people who want to go farther, do more and be ready for anything. Maybe I am in the borderlands of cheesy when I say these principles can apply to blinky lights as easily as bikepacking bags, or opening price point vs. premium products, but I really do believe it.


Photo by Spencer J Harding

The Radavist: PR&D is essential in the design phase, what kind of riding do you like to do to test out your gear?

Robin Sansom: Santa Cruz is a great place for all the riding tribes. A really good day of testing would be the surf and turf: ride my cargo or beater bike to the point and surf early in the morning, then take the dirt dropper up to work on roads and neighborhood trails . . . and rip single track back to town on the mt. bike with a stop down by the river for a tall one. Daily rides like this along with overnight trips by our staff, Rangers and friends are how we field test the gear.

The Radavist: Finally, what’s your favorite competitor’s product? Surely you have one! Don’t be shy…

Robin Sansom: I’m a fan of brands, as they ultimately define the products. There are so many good ones in our business to choose from, but Brooks is one that tops my list. Something like the Cambium saddle deserves a lot of respect.

____

Many thanks to Robin at Blackburn for this Q&A. Follow Blackburn on social media: Facebook, Twitter and @BlackburnDesign.

Aug 24, 2014 9 comments
Manual for Speed at the US Pro Challenge
manualforspeed_usapc14_radavist-10

There’s a lot of weirdness going on over at Manual for Speed’s documentation of the US Pro Challenge in Colorado. I’m talking pro cyclists in their underwear holding podium flowers kinda weirdness. As well as bike racing. Lots of bike racing.

Head on over to Manual for Speed to live vicariously through their exploits!

Aug 23, 2014 No comments yet
CMWC 2014 Mexico City Video Recap

Earlier this summer, the Cycle Messenger World Championship found its way to Mexico City as bike messengers from all over the globe found themselves together competing and let’s be honest, partying. See more in this video recap. There are lots of familiar faces in this one!

Aug 21, 2014 1 comment
Brittlee Bowman’s House Industries Richard Sachs Team Cross Bike
Brittlee-bowman-richard-sachs-cross-bike

With the 2014-15 cyclocross season ramping up and the House Industries / Richard Sachs show at Rapha NYC tomorrow, the guys at House just posted some exceptional photos of Brittlee Bowman’s team cross bike to up the ante.

My favorite part of this project: it’s a damn race bike! Not a showpiece. Well, tomorrow night it will be. Make sure you RSVP for the show at Rapha and see more details below.

OPENING
Friday, August 22, 2014, 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Show runs August 23 to September 21, 2014
Rapha Cycle Club, 64 Gansevoort St, New York, NY

Aug 21, 2014 15 comments
Introducing the Chris King GripLock
3D_GripLock_Mockup

In 1976 Chris King manufactured the first Chris King headset. It was built to medical grade tolerances and set the standard for what a quality bicycle component should be. Since that time bicycles have changed significantly, from 6-speed road bikes and 45-pound fully ridged mountain bikes to sub 10-pound road bikes and 35-pound dowhnill bikes, the design of today’s modern bicycles has kept pace with the development and style of riders. As riders we want our bikes to perform with out hassle so we can get the most out of our riding experience and it was with an eye on the changes in capabilities and material of todays most advanced bicycles that we developed GripLock™ the next generation of our legendary headsets.

GripLock™ has been in use on Chris King’s headsets for quite sometime and has been featured on our InSet family of headsets since their introduction. Also all 1-1/8″ NoThreadSets have been equipped with GripLock™ since 2010. Our press introduction comes about after we were awarded a patent for this advanced system prior to receiving the patent we wanted to keep our messaging about GripLock™ light now that we have patent security we are thrilled to share this feature with the world.

Chris King’s GripLock™ headset retention device uses an isolated wedge system to separate headset bearing adjustment from steerer tube location thus eliminating loose headsets on long travel mountain bikes while simultaneously removing any chance of headset inflicted fatigue on the lightweight carbon steerer tubes found on modern road forks.

GripLock comes stock on all InSets and 1-1/8″ NoThreadSets. GripLock upgrades are available for 1-1/8″ NoThreadSets currently with out a GripLock bearing cap.”

Learn more at Chris King

Aug 21, 2014 7 comments
REPORTAGE
CMWC 2014 Mexico City Video Recap

Earlier this summer, the Cycle Messenger World Championship found its way to Mexico City as bike messengers from all over the globe found themselves together competing and let’s be honest, partying. See more in this video recap. There are lots of familiar faces in this one!

Aug 21, 2014 1 comment
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Brittlee Bowman’s House Industries Richard Sachs Team Cross Bike
Brittlee-bowman-richard-sachs-cross-bike

With the 2014-15 cyclocross season ramping up and the House Industries / Richard Sachs show at Rapha NYC tomorrow, the guys at House just posted some exceptional photos of Brittlee Bowman’s team cross bike to up the ante.

My favorite part of this project: it’s a damn race bike! Not a showpiece. Well, tomorrow night it will be. Make sure you RSVP for the show at Rapha and see more details below.

OPENING
Friday, August 22, 2014, 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Show runs August 23 to September 21, 2014
Rapha Cycle Club, 64 Gansevoort St, New York, NY

Aug 21, 2014 15 comments
Introducing the Chris King GripLock
3D_GripLock_Mockup

In 1976 Chris King manufactured the first Chris King headset. It was built to medical grade tolerances and set the standard for what a quality bicycle component should be. Since that time bicycles have changed significantly, from 6-speed road bikes and 45-pound fully ridged mountain bikes to sub 10-pound road bikes and 35-pound dowhnill bikes, the design of today’s modern bicycles has kept pace with the development and style of riders. As riders we want our bikes to perform with out hassle so we can get the most out of our riding experience and it was with an eye on the changes in capabilities and material of todays most advanced bicycles that we developed GripLock™ the next generation of our legendary headsets.

GripLock™ has been in use on Chris King’s headsets for quite sometime and has been featured on our InSet family of headsets since their introduction. Also all 1-1/8″ NoThreadSets have been equipped with GripLock™ since 2010. Our press introduction comes about after we were awarded a patent for this advanced system prior to receiving the patent we wanted to keep our messaging about GripLock™ light now that we have patent security we are thrilled to share this feature with the world.

Chris King’s GripLock™ headset retention device uses an isolated wedge system to separate headset bearing adjustment from steerer tube location thus eliminating loose headsets on long travel mountain bikes while simultaneously removing any chance of headset inflicted fatigue on the lightweight carbon steerer tubes found on modern road forks.

GripLock comes stock on all InSets and 1-1/8″ NoThreadSets. GripLock upgrades are available for 1-1/8″ NoThreadSets currently with out a GripLock bearing cap.”

Learn more at Chris King

Aug 21, 2014 7 comments
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Yeti Launches New Lightweight AS-Rc Cross Country Mountain Bike
2015_Yeti_ASRC_Side_DS_Turq

Yeti’s newest XC MTB, the AS-Rc, packs a punch on a weight budget of only 4.2 lbs for the frame. Completes with XO1 come in at $5799, putting this race-pedigree frame technology within reach for those looking for one of the lightest XC frames on the market.

Check out more below!


Yeti has introduced the new AS-Rc cross-country bike, expanding its line of ride-driven products. Built for cross-country racers and trail riders, the AS-Rc rolls on size specific wheels and delivers 100mm of optimized rear wheel travel. The AS-Rc will begin shipping immediately as a complete bike with builds starting at $5799.

The super lightweight (4.2lb. frame) and efficient suspension has been optimized for shorter travel with an updated and modified single pivot design. Yeti has worked closely with FOX to refine the suspension rate to give the AS-Rc a predictable feel that holds up while pedaling and retains composure when the trail begins to get rough.

The new AS-R frame is designed using a carbon Dogbone link to add considerable stiffness to the chassis, and sports Yeti’s progressive geometry (69-degree head tube angle, long top tube, low bottom bracket) that has been borrowed from their experience in DH and Enduro. Wheel size on the AS-R is optimized on the AS-R with 27.5” wheels on the Extra Small and Small frames, and 29” wheels on Medium through Extra Large Frames.

“We have been out of the cross-country market for several years, so it was important that we nailed the form, fit, and function of the AS-Rc.” said Yeti President and co-owner Chris Conroy. “The AS-R has been a storied bike in our line and we raced cross-country for nearly twenty years and have produced some greats in the sport. XC racing is in our DNA and we’re excited to reintroduce people to our heritage with a bike that sports Yeti’s progressive geometry.”

The AS-R will be available to ship immediately as a complete bike with SRAM’s X01 Build Kit with an MSRP of $5799, or $8099 with an Enve M50 wheelset. Complete AS- Rc’s will weigh as light as 22.3 lbs. It will also be available with a SRAM XX1 Build Kit with an Enve M50 wheelset for $9999.

See more at Yeti.

Aug 20, 2014 1 comment
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Paul Component: Motolite Brakes
PAUL-motolite

In a world that focuses on “grams” and “actual weights”, Paul Components just focuses on making their products work better-er. Case in point: they’ve merged their two mountain v-brakes into one, clean package. Meet the new Motolite:

“The power, modulation, durability, and ease of service is all there but the pads now have an extended range so a 26″ wheeled frame can be converted to 650b or 700c. Made in our shop to exacting tolerances, there is nothing else out there that even comes close. Yes, disks are here but think about all the beautiful frames made for these in the last 25 years. Keep ‘em shreddin’!”

Amen! Check out more at Paul!

Aug 20, 2014 4 comments
Putting That Yonder Journal Corndoggin’ Shirt to Use
Falls_Kauai-1

Look, I know you signed up for a “bike blog” when you clicked on this link today, but the truth is, everyone needs a break from the constant rotation of crank arms, even me.

Yesterday, Lauren and I descended a web of slippery, muddy, roots to a waterfall in Kauai and then the sun broke out. Back track a bit…

After sleeping in a tent on the beach during the pouring rain and spotty rain all day, I knew it’d be a wash today at the falls, so when the sun broke out, I grabbed whatever I had laying around and ran out the door.

Afterwards, I realized the sunblock-scented shirt I picked off the bathroom floor was the Yonder Journal Corndoggin’ shirt and I couldn’t think of a better tee to be wearing.

Anyway, thanks for the patience, I’m a week from being home, with my bikes and my other camera equipment. Now, get out and enjoy the summer!

Aug 20, 2014 2 comments
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Manual for Speed: Chillering – the Art and Science of Napping & Reading
manualforspeed_mfsm_chillerism-1

Manual for Speed is at the US Pro Challenge in Colorado and they’re already making a splash with Team Garmin-Sharp’s Alex Howes and Phil Gaimon, as they invent yet another word: “Chillering”.

Find out what chillering is at Manual for Speed.

For the record, I am not at the US Pro Challenge. If you see someone that looks like me, with a camera, it is Manual for Speed, not me. Don’t be the 60th person who mistakes Daniel for me!

Aug 19, 2014 No comments yet
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