Japanese Steel: A New Beginning
Tokyo School of Cycle Design-01

I always enjoy seeing articles and photos like this, and I’m sure you feel the same. Kinoko Cycles visited the Tokyo School of Cycle Design and the article looks great:

“During my last trip to Japan I was invited by Shin Ichi Konno of Cherubim Cycles to visit the Tokyo School of Cycle Design where he teaches twice weekly. You would assume with something as common as a bicycle, a object which exists in every village and town across the globe and requires very specific skills to design and manufacture, that colleges teaching cycle design would be common. But this is not the case.”

Continue reading at Kinoko’s blog and see more at the Kinoko Flickr.

Aug 27, 2014 No comments yet
Giro Announces Partnership with Multidirectional Impact Protection System – MIPS Technology
Giro_COVER-MIPS

This is a game-changer for sure. MIPS’ slip plane technology is backed by science and is changing the helmet market. Giro noted this early on and began working with MIPS on new helmets for late fall 2014…

“Giro Sport Design has announced a new partnership with MIPS Technologies. After years of collaboration researching and validating new technologies to further reduce impact energy, Giro will introduce new helmets in three key categories (Road, Mountain and Urban) that employ Multidirectional Impact Protection System (MIPS) slip plane technology. The Sutton MIPS, Feature MIPS, Feather MIPS, Savant MIPS and Sonnet MIPS will be available worldwide in late fall 2014.”

Check out the full press release, including pricing and model breakdown below.


“Giro has long been an industry leader of helmet safety research, design, and testing,” said Giro Executive Vice President Greg Shapleigh. “For several years we have collaborated with MIPS to validate and explore ways to further reduce rotational impact energy. We feel that this slip-plane technology can offer reduced rotational impact energy transmission in certain impacts. That’s why we’re pleased to introduce MIPS-equipped versions of helmets for the urban, mountain bike, and road markets.”

“With their extensive experience and depth of resources, Giro brings a unique understanding of our technology,” said MIPS founder and CEO Johan Thiel. “MIPS grew directly out of research and the possibility of partnering with a manufacturer that uses active research to drive their helmet design is a great opportunity.”

All Giro helmets are designed to reduce as much energy as possible while meeting and exceeding stringent safety standards. The goal of Giro’s MIPS-equipped helmets is to further reduce rotational forces. There are three main components to a MIPS-equipped helmet: the EPS liner, the Low Friction Liner and an elastomeric attachment system between them. In an impact, the elastomeric attachment system stretches to allow the EPS liner to rotate independently around the rider’s head. Although the system only moves a few millimeters, Giro believes that helmets equipped with this technology can reduce the amount of rotational force that may be transferred to rider’s brain in certain impacts.

Giro has selected five new models to debut MIPS:


Giro Sutton

Sutton MIPS MSRP $100/€100 The Sutton™ is a low-profile design loaded with clever features like a detachable/integrated light clip, a soft leather visor, and reinforced vents that double as Lock Ports to help urban riders and commuters get more out of their ride.


Giro Feature


Giro Feather

Feature/ Feather MIPS MSRP $95/€95 The Feature™ delivers a low-profile shape with more coverage than traditional XC helmets, plus channeled vents that radiate heat up and out when you’re climbing at lower speeds. A single-piece In-Mold shell enhances durability, yet keeps weight to a minimum, and our rugged In-Form fit system offers one-handed fit and stability adjustment. The Feather™ offers delivers the same functionality as part of our Women’s Series Collection.


Giro Savant


Giro Sonnet

Savant/ Sonnet MIPS MSRP $110/€110 The Savant™ offers a slim design that combines impressive ventilation from 25 Wind Tunnel™ vents. This helmet benefits from the secure feel and convenience of the adjustable Roc Loc® 5 fit and stability system, and the lightweight and durability of In-Mold™ construction. The Sonnet™ offers delivers the same functionality as part of our Women’s Series Collection.

Giro helmets featuring MIPS will be available worldwide in late Fall 2014.

Aug 26, 2014 13 comments
Cielo Introduces the Sportif Road
Screen Shot 2014-08-26 at 10.15.25 AM

Cielo is really striving to make better bicycles, not only in craft, but in their use:

“The Sportif is a refined combination of our Sportif Classic and Sportif Racer. With the introduction of our Road Racer we felt that there was too much of an overlap between the Road Racer and Sportif Racer. This overlap gave us the opportunity to redesign our Sportif models to create a bike that combines the best aspects of our Sportif Classic and Sportif Racer into one bike that personifies the Sportif ideal.”

See more of the Sportif at Cielo.

Aug 26, 2014 6 comments
Finally Heading Back to Austin
Pacific_Coast

Man, it’s been a busy, busy August. Lauren and I took a much-needed vacation. We had been apart this year more than ever before. With her working in Myanmar and me jet-setting all over the globe, we both needed a change of scenery.

Tonight I get back to Austin and I hit the ground running. Portland, Chico, Los Angeles and Vegas… Lots of projects are in the works and if it all goes as planned, it’ll be a great month on the Radavist.

I know I haven’t posted much this month, but I appreciate the support. From both the readers and the sponsors of the site.

See you at Interbike?

Aug 25, 2014 3 comments
The Radavist Shirts in Stock at Kinoko Cycles
Screen Shot 2014-08-25 at 3.57.57 PM

In an effort to make the Radavist’s shirts more available to UK customers, I’ve teamed up with Kinoko Cycles to sell them at their online store. Now, there’s no guarantee these will stay in stock any longer than they do over here, so head to Kinoko while they’re in stock!

Aug 25, 2014 6 comments
Merckx Mondays
Shifter-Bikes-Merckx-Mondays-4

I keep going through my hard drive and finding little gems like this. If you’ve ever seen the old Eddy Merckx Professional catalog photos, then you’ve seen this frame before. These gold-plated Merckx frames are extremely rare. So rare that this is the only one I’ve seen and it was sitting on the counter at Shifter Bikes when I visited Dan last month.

The original finish is still intact, save for where the precious owner’s sweat caused the plating to chip off. This patina tells a story and I can only hope that it’ll never have a respray.

Check out a few more photos below.

Seriously… I’m speechless!

Aug 25, 2014 1 comment
Itchy and Her Dosnoventa Track Bike
Itchy_Dosnoventa-2

After the Mavic 125ANS photoshoot and press weekend, I kicked around Los Angeles for a few days, where I met Itchy, who was visiting town for a few days. She was riding this neon pink Dosnoventa track machine, which Kyle had just photographed for Tracko.

Well, who knows when Kyle is going to post those photos, so maybe me posting this will motivate him to.

Check out a few more below and it was a pleasure to meet you Itchy!

Aug 25, 2014 15 comments
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
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Cielo Introduces the Sportif Road
Screen Shot 2014-08-26 at 10.15.25 AM

Cielo is really striving to make better bicycles, not only in craft, but in their use:

“The Sportif is a refined combination of our Sportif Classic and Sportif Racer. With the introduction of our Road Racer we felt that there was too much of an overlap between the Road Racer and Sportif Racer. This overlap gave us the opportunity to redesign our Sportif models to create a bike that combines the best aspects of our Sportif Classic and Sportif Racer into one bike that personifies the Sportif ideal.”

See more of the Sportif at Cielo.

Aug 26, 2014 6 comments
Finally Heading Back to Austin
Pacific_Coast

Man, it’s been a busy, busy August. Lauren and I took a much-needed vacation. We had been apart this year more than ever before. With her working in Myanmar and me jet-setting all over the globe, we both needed a change of scenery.

Tonight I get back to Austin and I hit the ground running. Portland, Chico, Los Angeles and Vegas… Lots of projects are in the works and if it all goes as planned, it’ll be a great month on the Radavist.

I know I haven’t posted much this month, but I appreciate the support. From both the readers and the sponsors of the site.

See you at Interbike?

Aug 25, 2014 3 comments
The Radavist Shirts in Stock at Kinoko Cycles
Screen Shot 2014-08-25 at 3.57.57 PM

In an effort to make the Radavist’s shirts more available to UK customers, I’ve teamed up with Kinoko Cycles to sell them at their online store. Now, there’s no guarantee these will stay in stock any longer than they do over here, so head to Kinoko while they’re in stock!

Aug 25, 2014 6 comments
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Merckx Mondays
Shifter-Bikes-Merckx-Mondays-4

I keep going through my hard drive and finding little gems like this. If you’ve ever seen the old Eddy Merckx Professional catalog photos, then you’ve seen this frame before. These gold-plated Merckx frames are extremely rare. So rare that this is the only one I’ve seen and it was sitting on the counter at Shifter Bikes when I visited Dan last month.

The original finish is still intact, save for where the precious owner’s sweat caused the plating to chip off. This patina tells a story and I can only hope that it’ll never have a respray.

Check out a few more photos below.

Seriously… I’m speechless!

Aug 25, 2014 1 comment
Itchy and Her Dosnoventa Track Bike
Itchy_Dosnoventa-2

After the Mavic 125ANS photoshoot and press weekend, I kicked around Los Angeles for a few days, where I met Itchy, who was visiting town for a few days. She was riding this neon pink Dosnoventa track machine, which Kyle had just photographed for Tracko.

Well, who knows when Kyle is going to post those photos, so maybe me posting this will motivate him to.

Check out a few more below and it was a pleasure to meet you Itchy!

Aug 25, 2014 15 comments
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
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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
2014-08-18-07bbb-Large

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
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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
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