Posts in category cyclocross tech

new cyclocross products, reviews, and mechanic tips


Setting up disc brakes correctly is going to be a big new part of cyclocross. Jason Gardner
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Mechanical Mondays: Mechanical Disc Brake Adjustments

There is no denying that disc brakes are gaining in popularity among cyclocross bikes. One look at the ’cross bike photos from the recent Eurobike and Interbike trade shows is enough to show that disc-brake-equipped ’cross bikes are the wave of the future. Their benefits are well known; tire clearance is now only a matter of the frame. They are more powerful with more control and they are not so nearly affected by water and mud. Apart from all these benefits though, the tighter tolerances associated with disc brakes lend themselves more easily to poor adjustment, and improper adjustment on disc brakes can ruin your race more easily than a poorly adjusted cantilever. Too loose and you lose your braking altogether; too tight and your brake drags the whole time. The down side is these poor conditions happen a lot easier to disc brakes than to cantilevers.

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The carbon windows are gone, and the weight is way down. ©Cyclocross Magazine
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Interbike 2011: PowerTap’s Impressive New Lineup

PowerTap has long been a big player in the power meter market, but the distinctive oversized hubs are a relative rarity on the cyclocross course. While there are plenty of ’crossers who train with PowerTaps, most of those who choose to race with power typically opt for one of the crank-based meters like SRMs or Quarqs.

Part of the knock on PowerTaps was their weight. Another factor is the added expense of needing a PowerTap hub in a training wheel and at least one – perhaps several – race wheel. The new G3 PowerTap hubs tackles that first drawback head on. According to Eric Wallace of Saris, PowerTap’s parent company, the new hub is the lightest power meter on the market, adding about 100g to a comparable high-performance rear hub.

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Mercury has new offerings for both clincher and tubular fans. © Cyclocross Magazine
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Interbike 2011: Mercury Cycling’s New Wheel Offerings

Mercury is following the trend of increasing rim width for better stability out on the course. For the glue-sniffing set this means a wider surface to lay the adhesive on, resulting in a firmer connection between tire and rim and, based on your gluing prowess, fewer incidences of rolled tires. The better connection between rubber and metal can also mean better cornering as the tires retain their shape better in the corners.

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The Syzr shields the pedal
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Interbike 2011: New Speedplay Syzr Pedals

Speedplay has offered mountain bike pedals for years with the company’s Frog model. But the Frogs never really made a dent into the ’cross market. That could very well change with the introduction of the new Syzr pedals, which will relegate the Frog largely to touring and commuting duty. Modeled after the very popular Speedplay Zero road pedals, the Syzr offers adjustable float adjustment as well as tension adjustment for release and entry.

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Aaron Schooler on his new Norco Threshold. © Joe Sales
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Pro Bike Profile: Aaron Schooler’s Norco Threshold

Norco is launching their new Carbon Cyclocross bike the Norco Threshold this Fall. To be in stores soon, this beast of a bike boasts an impressive resume already with a top 15 in Cross Vegas, top 10’s at Starcrossed and the Rapha Focus GP and a BC Cup Provincial Win to start off the 2011 season. Aaron Schooler of Team H&R BLOCK and powered by Sri Importing got a couple of these custom painted bad boys just in time for the beginning of the cross season and was highly impressed with the updates that Norco has made to the old Scandium CCX SL revamping it from scratch and moving to the carbon mold. The Norco Threshold is a European race bike with some North American Flare to it.

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Protect those tubulars, they don't come cheap! Kenton Berg
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Mechanical Monday: Protecting Your Tubulars

It’s nearly mid-September and by now a good portion of y’all reading this will have raced already or will be prepping to race this next weekend. If you’ve been to your first race you undoubtably heard the moans of some poor soul who flatted his or her newly glued tubular and can’t believe they have to go through those dreaded steps again. You know, clean, stretch, glue, et cetera! If you’re lucky enough that this poor sap isn’t you, then a little bit more prep work can stave off this scenario.

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Gabby Day's Raleigh RXC Pro
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Pro Bike Profile – Gabby Day’s Raleigh RXC Pro Carbon

With Gabby Day stateside for the start of her normally European-based season, it seemed like a perfect chance to get an up-close and personal look at her new Raleigh RXC Pro Carbon bikes with Ritchey and SRAM Red componentry. Since we’re the same size, it’s been a huge temptation for me, seeing the new carbon Raleigh frames with their stealth matte black appeal. Day is stylish on her own, and the new bikes perfectly compliment to her new team, The Chainstay and RENNER Clothing Team. Day is racing on the East Coast for the next month, from Baltimore to Vermont, and spent some time this week talking with me about her race plans, thoughts on the US, and thoughts on being a woman in racing.

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Meridia showcased their Cyclocross Carbon Team – D bike. Featuring SRAM/Avid disc brakes, the all-carbon rig utilizes internal cable routing and sports a 7.7 kilogram weight. © Jeff Lockwood
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Cyclocross at Eurobike, Part Two: More Disc Brake Bikes, New Tires, Tools and Gear

Here at Eurobike, among the fancy carbon mountain bikes, quirky commuter rigs, sexy road bikes, latest cycling fashions and the most diverse group of bike-nerds in the world, is the newest collection of cyclocross rigs and components. Just about every bicycle manufacturer, large an small, has some sort of cyclocross offering here at the 2011 Eurobike bicycle trade show in Friedrichshafen, Germany.

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Shunning what they refer to as “the flashy-ness of the modern carbon fiber” cyclocross scene…meaning both materials and graphic aesthetic, Hispania (out of Spain) is offering a couple unique options for cyclocross bikes in Europe. The Barrizal is built with Columbus XLR8R Scandium and Zirconium Triple Butted. The more bling-ready Cross is a titanium rig with custom chainstays and seatstays. © Jeff Lockwood
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Eurobike Trade Show Highlights New Cyclocross Gear

A simple stroll through the Eurobike trade show in Friedrichshafen, Germany is impossible. It’s the largest bicycle trade show in the world, and such a distinction means it’s a sensory overload of all things bicycle. Two-wheeled (and three- and four- and one-wheeled) eye candy of all shapes, sizes colors and versions assault the visitor’s senses on several levels.

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Will your cleats survive the season? Kenton Berg
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Mechanical Mondays: When To Repair Your Cleats

OK people, it’s August, races are coming up quick, and ’cross prep is happening around the country. Now that you’ve dialed in the bike parts, shaved some weight off of your frame (bike or otherwise), gotten the tubies set to roll, what’s left? Well, its time to work on the shoes, two of the key contact points with your bike, and remove the opportunity for dirt, sticks, mud, rocks or other debris to get caught up between the shoe sole and your cleat. Face it, you just can’t go as fast or crush your competitors without being clipped in fully.

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