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February isn’t a great time of year to launch new product. Manufacturers tend to announce their new items in the fall so customers will see them on the next model year’s bikes. But there were a few noteworthy items that vendors launched at the Quality Bicycle Products’s Frostbike show in Bloomington, Minnesota.
All-City Macho Man
If you’re a wrestling fan, the name of All-City’s new geared, steel, cyclocross bike will give you an idea of just how tough a bike it is. Using the Nature Boy’s popular tubeset, fork and geometry, All City’s lead engineer, Anna Schwinn, developed an all-new dropout for the bike. Based loosely on the Space Horse’s semi-horizontal dropout, the Macho Man has a racier vertical dropout.
A seat tube-mounted barrel adjuster is a nice feature on the frame, which is spec’d with Shimano’s new top-pull CX70 front derailleur. A complete Macho Man with Shimano 105 will cost $1,595 and framesets will run $595.
Clement’s MSO gravel and LXV 29er tires
Clement names all of its tires after airport codes and its two newest offerings are no exception. The MSO (Missoula, Montana) is a 40mm tire that will be offered in two versions. A 60 tpi with a puncture-resistant belt will sell for $50. A 120 tpi, dual compound, Kevlar bead-bead protected tire will go for $70. The fast rolling MSO tire is a compliment to Clement’s USH tire, offering better off-road handling while a little slower rolling than the USH.
The LXV (Leadville, Colorado) is Clement’s first 29er tire. It borrows tread depth and knob profiles from the popular PDX cyclocross tire. The 2.1” carcass uses a 2.3” tread layer for increased knob wrap on the side of the tire.
Both tires were hot off the molds in Asia and flown directly to Frostbike. Clement’s Donn Kellogg hadn’t even had a chance to weigh them yet. Stay tuned.
Jagwire bleed kits and hydro tools
Cable maker Jagwire is now offering two universal bleed kits, one for DOT fluid, the other for mineral oil brake systems. Shops and industrious customers will be able to buy the $50 retail kits and rest assured that they can bleed any system with the included syringes, hoses and fittings. Kits will also include oil from Finish Line making it a one-stop shop.
Jagwire also has a couple revised or new tools to help with cutting hydraulic lines and brake services. The $35 Needle Driver assures proper alignment of hydraulic hose needles after cutting lines. Instead of breaking out the hammer to install soft brass pieces, the Needle Driver gently presses the needle into the line.
The Disk Brake Multi-tool has a brake block for bleeding, a piston press, pad spacer and rotor truer. For $35 it’s a handy tool for shops and consumers.
Lastly, Jagwire has revised its cable housing silencers. Short rubber grommets are available in translucent and black and a pack of six sells for $9.
SRAM’s 10-speed GripShift
The Chicago-based company is bringing back its popular twist grip in 10-speed versions. XX and XO versions will be offered, both of them turning on a series of bearings. SRAM is including integrated grips with the shifters as well as a locking outer ring in case you want to use an aftermarket grip. Both are lighter than their respective trigger shifter.
The carbon XX shifter set will cost you $295 and comes with Gore’s fully-sealed Ride On cables. XX is only offered as a 2×10 set.
XO gets an aluminum construction and comes in both 2×10 ad 3×10. It will run $225, but will not include sealed cables.
Front shifters are different from past GripShift, with only one click for 2×10 and two clicks for 3×10. There is no trim built into them.
Both XX and XO shifters should hit shops in late April or May.
Salsa’s Mukluk Dualie prototype
Keep dreaming, for now. Salsa showed off one of its prototype dual suspension fat bikes at Frostbike. It used a Maverick fork that barely gave enough clearance for the massive 4” Surly Nate front tire. Rumor had it that a Cannondale Lefty fork had also been altered for use on a second fat bike prototype.
With the tight clearances on the Horsethief-inspired design, the prototype is less snow bike than it is all-around, all-terrain vehicle. Many testers at Salsa are riding fat bikes more and more, whether snow is on the ground or not. The enormous float and traction of the large tires make riding any terrain more fun.
Problem Solvers thru-axle truing adapters
Truing a wheel with a thru-axle hub is about to get much easier. Problem Solvers will soon offer a set of adapters that will fit 15 and 20mm front thru axles and 10 and 12mm rear thru axles. Rubber o-rings will keep them in place while handling the wheel out of the stand. The handy tool will retail for approximately $17.