Although October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (meaning you can expect some giveaways of pink products), it’s also when we start sharing all the cool stuff we saw at Interbike. In theory, Alex tried to cover road cycling and commuting, while I went looking for mountain biking gear, more items of interest to commuters, plus clothing and accessories. But this was Interbike, and we were like two kids in a giant candy store, so most of our plans went out the window. Anyway, here’s a few of the things I saw that I should be writing about in the near future.
Gas prices are not coming down, and bicycle commuting is once again on the rise. So in addition to all the usual brands that have been covered in every major publication and website, I also spent some extra time speaking the folks at Tern about their folding bikes. They’ve got everything from basic folders for short distances and smaller budgets to some lightweight models built for serious speed. I reconnected with Dynamic Bicycles and checked out their shaft-driven bikes, which are looking better and better with each new iteration. Chainless is getting sexy. Sole and Pure Fix both offer fixed gear bikes at prices that won’t break the bank, while Brooklyn Cruiser showed off their modern interpretations of vintage-inspired cruisers that are a good mix of fashion and performance in a city bike. In the “something different” department, I found Arc Bikes, which cannot be explained without photos. Really. Be patient. The Recycle is from a company that aims to produce bikes in the United States using as many recycled materials as possible. Great concept, and intriguing designs. MiiR provided a hot cup of coffee while showing me around their bikes and water bottles. They’re another great company with a mission that I can only hope inspires others to copy. I even took a Zumaround electric scooter for a test ride. Fun stuff from all them and more.
More athletes are discovering the benefits of compression technology, and there are plenty of companies willing to oblige with garments to improve your game. Skins, ec3d, Swiftwick, and 2XU offer everything from socks to tights for both sport and recovery. I met with Optic Nerve about their sunglasses that are stylish, high quality, and surprisingly affordable. Apparently, they prefer to sell their wares at fair prices, rather than build in a bunch of markup to cover endorsements. Not a bad business model at all. Stuffitts has their portable drying solutions for your shoes, gloves and helmets. I’ve been using their products for five years now, and it’s great to see the line expanding. It’s the only product I am aware of that can extend the life of your gear. Zoic and Capo are two other clothing brands we’ll be covering in more detail later as well.
Maxxis offers tubeless tires for road bikes, WTB has an ever-expanding line, and Duro displayed a full line of colorful tires for the fixed gear fans, along with a wide variety of different sized MTB tires. What really caught my eye was their “Ride Your Cause” custom tire program for charity rides. More on that soon.
Gates Carbon Drive continues to refine the belt drive for bicycles. Mad Fiber makes crazy light carbon fiber wheelsets. Blackburn offers racks, pumps, and more. POC and Bern showed us the latest lids, while Chrome and Timbuk2 did the same with bags. Finally got to see the RideKick electric trailer up close. SKS continues to innovate with fenders (or mudguards) and pumps as well as tools and bags. 2TOMs will keep you from blistering, stinking, or a combination of the two. Abus wants to keep your bike from getting stolen. Tetrax makes a couple of unique handlebar phone mounts, including one specifically for the iPhone, but they haven’t left out everyone else. Bump up your safety (and fun) at night with Fiks:Reflective and RydeSafe reflective bike decals. Dumonde Tech and Yelo Velo offer great lubricants, perfect for the No Drip Chain Luber, and Cat’s Tongue Towels make cleaning up a snap. Velo Bling Designs offers re-purposed bike parts as jewelry and art. Finally, more cowbell. Yes, we’ve got some news from the folks at Cowbell.com.
There’s probably at least another dozen companies I totally forgot to mention, so keep checking back for more in-depth articles.