Thursday, February 26, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Witness the 2009 Mongoose Maurice HiTen. As in, high tensile steel. It used to be that bikes made of 'high tensile' steel or 'HiTen' were sold at KMart or had streamers on the handlebars. High tensile steel has a lower strength to weight ratio than Chrome-Moly steel, making it a nice intermediate material between sewer pipe and the stuff grown-up bikes should be made of. Performance Bike has apparently got into the department store bike game with this offering. BikeSnobNYC should be gratified that it is an urban style fixie and that its low asking price ($289.99) and upgradeability make it a harbinger of the coming"Fixed Gear Apocalypse". They are offering a Chrome-moly version for about $200 more. However, given today's economic situation, I'm sure they're selling plenty of lower end bikes as basic transportation.
Monday, February 23, 2009
You heard it here first folks. The superlight bike that astounded everyone at the TOC was blogged about on nippleworks on January 17th. Velonews finally got around to it four days later on January 21st.
Velonews was recently soliciting for a new tech editor. Heard they'd hired one. Where are they?
By the way, we here at nippleworks hold down full time engineering jobs in addition to bringing you the best in bike technology blogging ;-)
Saturday, February 21, 2009
Someone long known to nippleworks has brought a new product to the cycling market - StemCaptain. This little part replaces your stem cap and can hold a clock, thermometer or picture frame. They've got some more inserts in the works including an altimeter and compass. Both things of interest to cyclists. It seems kind of aimed at mountain bikers, but should be a hit with road cyclists too. I can imagine that commuters who have to get to work on time or catch a train could really use an easily visible clock. Road cyclists might want to know when those roads are starting to ice up on a winter ride. Figure out your own way to use it and look for cool, useful stuff to keep coming from this company.
Check it out at:
stemcaptain.blogspot.com and www.stemcaptain.com (from whence this photo was swiped)
Check it out here:
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Jamis Dakar XCR Team drive train seen at the Tour Of California expo
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
One piece carbon fiber saddle where the shell wraps around and becomes the rails.
Tiny strand of carbon fiber going from nut to nut on the seat post binder.
Segmented carbon fiber tube used as cable housing.
A kevlar/carbon blend non-oversized (25.8mm) handle bar. The stem looks like a split, hollow aluminum tube.
Carbon fiber with no cam release mechanism.
Carbon crank from a German company named THM Carbones. Carbon fiber chainrings. The guy said they were raced in a criterium. Also, hollow pin chain with machined out side plates. This seems more like a gimmick than a technology. Carbon fiber is basically abrasive plastic that fails catastrophically and probably isn't a fantastic power bearing drive train component. I am open to be proven wrong.
Monday, February 16, 2009
Edge Composites seems to be coming on the scene hot and fast selling all manner of carbon fiber bike components. How many of you knew they were making a 29er mountain bike rim? How many people knew that anyone was making a carbon 29er rim? Scary light, but probably necessary for today's XC and endurance racers to stay competitive. I saw this model (it's the bigger hoop in the picture) at the Edge booth at the Santa Rosa stage finish of the Tour of California.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
I have a knack for taking pictures of people that aren't exactly what you'd hand out as head shots at. Team Columbia pro Mara Abbott is now the victom of two such photos of mine. Back in August I spotted her after her win in the Boulder Roubaix. Today, I saw her at the Tour of California Women's Criterium, suffering in the rain with all the other competitors. Of note are her deep dish wheels. Columbia was pretty much the only women's squad running high profile carbon rims in the crit. Lots more pictures from that event and the surrounding festivities to come.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
The combo of the adjustable hat, white tank top and long beard make this poor fellow look like the Unabomber's homeless brother, Ike. But that's cool, Ike doesn't consider himself homeless, he's "home free". Just like someone who commutes by bike is "car free".
But seriously, who doesn't love Rivendell's practical bikes, luggage and riding gear. Plus the idea of bike camping - very enjoyable. But guys, there have got to be some better looking shades out there.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Way back in October, I wrote about commissioning a custom lugged steel frame. Tonight was its maiden voyage. It's been a long road with a few building delays, some technical challenges and just plain finding the time, but I eventually got it built up with a carbon CX fork and the components off my Surly Pacer frame (which is for sale wink wink). The frame is just clear coated with Rustoleum Painters Touch Clear which I can't recommend because it creates a finish that is far too delicate for use on a bicycle. Sanding and polishing wasn't as easy as I thought it would be and as a result, it doesn't exactly look like a steel gem. There are also tiny spots of corrosion below the finish, the sort of thing you'd never see if it were painted. The inside of the frame is also coated for rust prevention.
There's only two colors for bike components as far as I'm concerned, black and silver. My black Campy Mirage gruppo made that easy. The front derailer was a bit of a challenge to adjust as the seat tube is a 74 deg, which isn't exactly compatible with the angling of the derailer cage. The first ride went pretty smoothly, and there may be a few small things to adjust (up with the handlebar, down with the seat post, rubbing rear brake pad, etc). The combo of the steel frame, carbon fork and 25mm tires made it feel like really smooth. There are also more handlebar spacers on it than I would like. Maybe for my next custom frame I'll go with a slanted top tube. That will probably be a while off though since I've got more bikes than I need right now in the mean time, maybe this one will take me up the hill to watch Stage 2 of the Tour of California this weekend.
Monday, February 9, 2009
Saturday, February 7, 2009
They sell for $12.99 at Niner, but I'll ship it to you for $10 with postage. Email me and we'll work something out. paul (at) nippleworks (dot) com
*This product can not be used to hold the champagne cork from a fine bottle of Belgian beer.
Friday, February 6, 2009
Thursday, February 5, 2009
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Monday, February 2, 2009
- Lock - the "InvisiLock Conscience". This model is so powerful, it cannot even be seen. It commands the moral integrity of all who gaze upon it. "Try to steal the bike," it prods. "Just wait until you sober up and have to live with yourself; Ha!"
- Pump - the "D-flator Retro". This classic throwback was good enough for all of your footballs, basketballs, and soccer balls in the 80's, so why not now? This pump actually decreases the pressure in your tires, so that you'll have the optimum cushy ride for the balls that really matter (You know which ones... Yes, I went there. It's Monday.).
While the accessories were mesmerizing, I was genuinely interested in the bike itself. Over at Worksman Cycles website, I found that they have quite an offering of unique bikes. Their lineup includes cargo bikes, cruisers, penny farthings, surreys, and ice-cream trikes. Although, nothing says "I'm on a bike, damn it!!!" than their 105 db Megahorn, which should be used sparingly in order to prevent hearing loss.