Viewing trouble? Please click the "View Online" link above.
Gotta love the fall and winter around here. Yea, it's been a bit cool but could certainly be worse. Looks like a little more wet stuff going forward but Saturday is looking good for riding at this point.
Big news for 2016, the UCI has approved disc brakes for use in road race events throughout the 2016 season. Early testing went pretty well and it looks like disc brakes will be standard equipment on most mid to high-end bikes going forward.
The downside is that there will likely be some serious crashes and possibly deaths attributed to disc brakes in both professional racing and recreational riding for a couple of years. This is due to the much higher entrance and cornering speeds typically achieved using this superior technology.
No, you don't have to rush out and buy a new bike just yet. Though it certainly will be an advantage to have disc brakes over standard caliper brakes when descending or riding/racing in inclimate weather. However, it is rare to race on courses where the advantage would make or break the race or event. That said, the average descender with disc brakes will certainly increase their descending speeds using the technology.
It's good news for those looking to add a new rig to their stable this coming season. The bad news is that you can't economically upgrade your current bikes or wheels to disc brakes. And, sadly, like all these silly mountain bike wheel sizes, none of your current wheels will work with the coming generation of disc brake equipped bikes. Like mountain bikes, I suspect a few companies will try to make adapters for the millions of standard road bikes out there but I think I'll just wait a couple of years before I jump in. The technology will quickly evolve and improve so it's probably best to just hang in there for a better economy and technology. For those of you who just have to have disc brakes, keep in mind that I can sell complete Jamis bikes and framesets.
The shot here is just up off of Skyland Way in my neck of the woods off Summit Road. Nothing special usually but this view just caught my eye. Nice day!
Sigma Brake Light Review
I did get in and installed this cool little tail-light. It's very easy to install and works quite well. I'll try and remember to get some pictures of it. Right now it's on my cyclocross bike with cantilever brakes but it'll work on just about any cable-oriented brake system.
The only thing I thought they missed the mark on is that it's not a running light, just a brake light. So it's not on until you squeeze the brake. Great for safety in pack riding but I think they missed the mark and should have made it a running light and brake light just like cars and motorcycles. Still, for $10 it's a great little safety device and seems to work well.
Clinchers vs. Tubulars
BikeRadar tries to answer the question as to which one is faster and comes up with clinchers as their choice. Conventional wisdom was always that you trained on clinchers and raced on tubulars. I certainly followed that convention during my racing career. BikeRadar's test results seem to prove, in three different types of riding at least, that clinchers were clearly faster. In fact, over 12-seconds faster in their time trial test.
I always new clinchers were a little faster in terms of sheer speed but I ran them mostly for the traction, feel, and resulting confidence they inspired. BikeRadar's test was obviously more focused on speed so they glossed over the finer points of running tubulars. Still, for most, the cost and complexity of tubulars may now be more trouble than they're worth, given that a modern top-shelf clincher is as fast in most road conditions as the tubular.
Of course this test was all road action and there are definitely off-road applications that demand tubular tires, but it's nice to see that clinchers have caught up with tubulars in many performance aspects of riding and racing. As tubeless clincher tire technology progresses there will be a cross-over point in all areas before too long
The shot above is one of the worst roads in the Santa Cruz mountains (Schulties Road). It's best to go up it from Redwood Lodge Road but going down from Old Santa Cruz Highway is doable. Just watch for pinch flats unless you're running big tires, tubulars, or tubeless. Yea, it's a county road but they spend most of our tax dollars on more important stuff I guess.
Velocity USA is still "wheeling & dealing" thru December 30th with some nice pricing on wheels, rims, and accessories this summer and fall and are now promising to ship custom-built wheels withing two to three days. Very aggressive pricing available to my customers on their Road Standard, A23, Touring Standard, and Standard Disc wheelsets. Oh, and also the Blunt 35 All-Mountain wheelsets.Actually, great deals on any Velocity wheelset, rim, hub, or accessory you need. All Velocity wheels are warranted against defects in material and workmanship for the life of the product. All newer hub systems are upgradeable to 11-Speed.
Velocity-USA has been shipping a new disc-based road wheelset called the Aileron. Yea, I know, it's expensive to go discs since you need a frame and fork that supports it. However, those of you looking to build a new bike or have a disc-ready frame and/or fork, these wheels are the ticket. Priced at under $1K retail ($795 for Comp version) and sporting a stiff and wide 25mm alloy rim with Sapim CX-Ray spokes and alloy nipples.
At just under 1600g for the set, they are a great choice for an all-arounder wheelset with awesome durability even for the monster riders out there.
Of course, your typical discount applies to the retail prices on both models of wheels. I can also build a custom set for you using the Aileron rim or any other rim compatible with the disc hubs. I think my next project just might be a disc-based road rig. Keep in mind, this type of road rig is actually a ready-to go cyclocross or trekking bike by just swapping tires and maybe cassettes.
My Parts Express store is still kinda clunky but please give it a look and let me know what you think. Parts Express Some of you already have accounts on the site so just log in or request a password reset if you don't recall. Your user name is the email address you used to create the account. Doing so will also allow you to update your service profile, contact information, and see your discounted prices.
If you don't see what you want, browse my suppliers below and I'll order it:
Cane Creek | Smartbikeparts.com | BTI/USA | Hawley USA | J&B Importers | Hawk Racing | iBike Sports
Velocity Wheels | Easton Cysing Products | Wahoo Fitness | SeaSucker | IceToolz
I've been selling used and new items on eBay so keep that in mind when you're looking for parts, wheels, bikes, or clothing. Right now I have my track bike and some solid Cane Creek training wheels at bargain prices. I'll be putting up some hardly used racing carbon tubular wheels soon. Check out my eBay collection. Yes, you can avoid eBay shipping and get 10% off by buying directly from me. I'll deliver free!
Wahoo KICKR's seem to be back in stock so lead-time is back to normal, about 7 days. I can't justify spending that much money on a trainer, but they are pretty awesome for those who have real jobs and can't get out to ride. You can go buy one locally or online but buying from me gets you a better price and much better support, of course. MyTeamCar.net is also an authorized Wahoo Fitness dealer. Those of you looking for the latest in indoor trainer technology, the Wahoo KICKR is amazing. I'm placing my usual supplier orders soon. Please let me know if you need anything not currently available via Parts Express. I have many items on-hand and I can deliver very quickly. I tend to carry tubes, tires, chains, cassettes, bar tape, bearings, brake pads, and other common consumable items in my vehicles. So that kind of stuff is always available fast. Just let me know what you need or order on my site and I'll get it to you ASAP.REMINDER: If you ever have any issues with your bike after I service it, please call/text/or email me ASAP. I'll find you and get it fixed as quickly as possible. Stuff happens. Part of the value of my service is that you don't have to return your bike or wheels to a shop. I will come to you, no-charge of course.Again, don't forget about my Spot Tune-up Service. This is a cheap and convenient way to keep your bike rolling smoothly and efficiently. I find you and dial-in brake and shift cables and take care of any minor issues that can be resolved onsite. Only $30 and extremely convenient.PLEASE NOTE: MyTeamCar.net customers enjoy competitive pricing from all my suppliers. The list prices shown on my site are not necessarily what you'll pay. If you know that the price is higher than your local dealer or favorite online retailer, just shoot me the link and/or let me know. I will match any reputable price out there. I can usually get just about anything. If you need things quickly, just mention the specifics. I can get most things in my hands overnight, next-day, or two-day, it just costs more for shipping. And, yes, you will receive tracking info as soon as I receive it. Okay, shut-up and ride!