Interbike’s indoor show is truly overwhelming; getting lost and being late and forgetting to eat are par for the course, as is the feeling that you can’t possibly cover everything. Here we bring you the most interesting things our editors saw from each day of the indoor show.
These tools have been teased for awhile, but the wait seems to have been worth it. The T-handle hex set is lovely to look at and feels great your hand. The set is a cool $130 but for most home mechanics these are the last hex wrenches you’ll ever need to buy.
The ride Prep tool kit is also $130. It looks small, but some of the dual-purpose tools really pack a lot of function into this small TPU case.
The big boy tool kit is the Team Edition. Other than a set of hex keys/T-handles, this is a incredibly complete set of tools packed into a small space. It also mounts to a work stand and is held very solidly in place with a few straps. This set might be the one the gets me to get rid of my collection of old, random tools and start over.
New to the U.S. is Thule’s ProRide roof rack (it’s “big in Europe” like that band you’ve never heard of). This rack has tool-free attachment, a down tube clamp that makes securing bikes of all wheel sizes very easy, a torque indicator to prevent over tightening the padded clamps on the frame, and rear wheel trays to accommodate bikes of all persuasions. Thule says this model is more secure than those with an arm clamping down on the front wheel.
Also on display at the show is Thule’s new Double Track Pro, a less-expensive hitch rack ($349) with trickle-down technology from the company’s high-end models. It fits both 1.25 and 2-inch receivers and includes a bolt that actually locks the rack to your hitch. The padded claw-like clamps swivel and slide to adjust for easy positioning on your bike’s frame, no matter if it has a weird shape or not. You’ll notice that adjustment and tightening levers resemble things you’d see on a bike, like quick-release skewers. That’s on purpose–Thule wants to make securing your bike a familiar operation. Weight is 35 pounds.
Thule also updated its Chasm duffel bags, which will interest those of you who travel with your smelly, dirty riding gear. They are waterproof and include backpack straps. There are snaps on the sides of the bag that hold down the handles for when you check it with an airline. Those snaps also keep the handles out of the way when you’re using the backpack straps. The bags come in four sizes (40-130 liters) and multiple colors.
There seem to be a lot of tools at the show this year, including a few from Wheels Manufacturing. The bottom bracket tools are $22 a piece and come in sizes to fit all of Wheels’ extensive range of bottom brackets. The universal bottom bracket bearing press comes in home and shop versions for $35 or $75.
Zoic is expanding its mountain shoe line. It had one model last year that more closely resembled a skate shoe than a flat pedal bike shoe. Zoic works with Osiris, which is a skate company, on the soles. Osiris adapts the rubber to have more grip for pedals. Zoic added three new models ranging from $80-$90. Each model gets a successively nicer upper material. Pictured above is the middle-o-the-line Prophet; the Prophet is the top model good for “shredding.” Padding is slimmer than Zoic’s older model shoe but still feels nice. Ventilation and toe protection are minimal. These feel more like dirt jumping shoes or casual riding shoes than serious trail or all-mountain kicks.
Zoic is offering its Roam in a women’s-specific model in three colors. The Roam is the $85 middle model for all kinds of riding–largely geared toward commuters and beginner riders. The size run is fairly small (women’s 5-10) but the shoe is no different than the men’s Roam, so women with larger feet can jump to the men’s model. Also of note, Zoic’s men’s shoes only go down to a men’s size 8, so women with average to small feet are out of luck if they want the higher-end mountain shoe.
Zoic also significantly expanded its line of mountain bike clothing, most notably on the women’s side. The shorts, in particular, look great, with multiple lengths, colors and fits (for example, the longest shorts have wider knee openings to accommodate pads).
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