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Vittoria branches out into wheels – Interbike 2014

Italian tyre powerhouse Vittoria revealed a complete line of road and mountain bike wheels at Interbike that will start arriving in stores as early as next month. We’ve already requested some test samples for review, and Vittoria says racing fans will see some of the new wheels under top teams next season.

High-tech for the road

Vittoria has apparently jumped into wheel development head first, infusing much of its road range with cutting-edge features. The Qurano carbon road tubulars will be offered in 80mm, 60mm and 46/42mm depths, all with 23.5mm-wide rims that are reinforced with graphene – the newest composites w?ndermaterial that Vittoria claims yields lighter and stronger rims than conventional carbon fibre materials.

Vittoria is building its carbon fiber tubular rims with graphene-reinforced carbon fiber composites, which are supposedly stronger and lighter than conventionally built rims. external nipples will make for easier servicing, too:

Vittoria says its graphene-reinforced rims are stronger and lighter than what would otherwise be possible with conventional carbon fibre construction

All of the Qurano wheels are built with straight-pull bladed stainless steel spokes in 14/21h front/rear counts, with the rears featuring a two-to-one lacing pattern and offset spoke beds to balance tensions. Claimed weights for the Qurano 46, 60 and 84 are 1,298g, 1,409g and 1,573g, respectively.

Vittoria says that carbon clinchers are under development but in the meantime, the Fraxion will use an aluminum rim and a carbon fibre fairing and mixed 45/50mm front/rear depths to help balance aerodynamic efficiency and crosswind handling. Both rims have semi-wide 17mm internal widths intended for use with tyres up to 22mm across. Claimed weight for the set is 1,698g.

Rim shapes are fairly wide and blunted for what we anticipate should be manageable handling in crosswinds:

As compared to the all-carbon Qurano (left), the Fraxion (right) will use an aluminum/carbon hybrid rim construction to reduce costs

Riders looking for a premium all-around, all-aluminum wheelset might take interest in the Elusion Nero, which uses the same 17mm internal rim width as the Fraxion but with a shallower 26/28mm front/rear rim depth. More notably, Vittoria has treated the rim with a plasma electrolytic oxidation surface treatment – more commonly known under its trade name, Keronite – plus it’s tubeless-ready, too.

In addition to giving the Elusion Nero its characteristic all-grey look, Keronite – the same treatment Mavic uses for its Exalith rims – lends incredible durability to treated surfaces, unlike standard anodization, which is easily prone to brake pad wear. And just like Mavic, Vittoria claims its Elusion Nero rims will provide better braking performance in both wet and dry conditions.

The new vittoria elusion nero has an eye-catching all-grey finish:

We’re looking forward to riding Vittoria’s new Keronite-coated Elusion Nero clincher wheelset

Accompanying the Elusion Nero is the standard Elusion, which shares identical virtually identical specs save for the Keronite coating. Claimed weight for the Elusion Nero is 1,576g while the standard Elusion tacks on another 15g courtesy of brass spoke nipples.

All of the above wheels will be built around Vittoria’s novel SwitchIT hubs, built with cartridge bearings, oversized rear driveside spoke flanges, and interchangeable aluminum freehub bodies that can easily removed without tools. All of those models will come with wheelbags, brake pads and internal-cam skewers, too (save for the standard Elusion, which doesn’t require special pads).

Freehub bodies on the switchit hubs can be easily removed without tools - meaning that riders can also easily swap out gear ratios if they stock up on extra bodies:

No tools? No problem

For riders on more of a budget, Vittoria’s new road range will round out with two entry-level models. The Alusion will use the same 17mm internal rim width as the other clinchers but with a 33mm depth, brass spoke nipples, and more conventional hubs for a total claimed weight of 1,791g. The shallower Session, meanwhile, gets a 26mm-deep rim but is otherwise identical for a claimed weight of 1,763g.

Full collection of off-road models

Sadly, Vittoria didn’t have on hand at Interbike its flagship XC racing model – simply called Race – which will be built with a 25mm-wide, 30mm-deep graphene-reinforced carbon fibre tubular rim for a claimed weight of 1,552g in the sole 29in diameter.

That said, the more trail/enduro-oriented Deamion looked interesting enough with its 23mm-wide (internal width), 21mm-deep asymmetric and tubeless-compatible alloy rims, all laced with 28 spokes front and rear to cartridge bearing hubs that use Shimano’s Center Lock rotor interface. Claimed weight for the 27.5in version is 1,676g; the 29ers come in at 1,747g.

Vittoria will have several off-road models available, too:

Vittoria will have off-road models, too

The more XC-oriented Reaxcion shares similar specs to the Deamion but with narrower 21mm-wide (internal width) rims. Nevertheless, the switch to brass from alloy nipples keeps the claimed weights of the 27.5in and 29in version nearly identical at 1,706g and 1,787g, respectively.

Finally, there’s the entry-level Creed with 21mm-wide (internal width) rims and heavier hubsets built with steel cassette bodies. Unlike its more expensive brethren, the Creed will be offered in all three common wheel diameters with claimed weights ranging from 1,819g to 1,950g depending on size and axle configuration.

Both the deamion and reaxcion get tubeless-ready rim profiles:

All of Vittoria’s off-road clinchers feature tubeless-ready profiles

Pricing for all of Vittoria’s new wheels has not been announced.

www.vittoria.com








Vittoria branches out into wheels – Interbike 2014

Italian tyre powerhouse Vittoria revealed a complete line of road and mountain bike wheels at Interbike that will start arriving in stores as early as next month. We’ve already requested some test samples for review, and Vittoria says racing fans will see some of the new wheels under top teams next season.

High-tech for the road

Vittoria has apparently jumped into wheel development head first, infusing much of its road range with cutting-edge features. The Qurano carbon road tubulars will be offered in 80mm, 60mm and 46/42mm depths, all with 23.5mm-wide rims that are reinforced with graphene – the newest composites w?ndermaterial that Vittoria claims yields lighter and stronger rims than conventional carbon fibre materials.

Vittoria is building its carbon fiber tubular rims with graphene-reinforced carbon fiber composites, which are supposedly stronger and lighter than conventionally built rims. external nipples will make for easier servicing, too:

Vittoria says its graphene-reinforced rims are stronger and lighter than what would otherwise be possible with conventional carbon fibre construction

All of the Qurano wheels are built with straight-pull bladed stainless steel spokes in 14/21h front/rear counts, with the rears featuring a two-to-one lacing pattern and offset spoke beds to balance tensions. Claimed weights for the Qurano 46, 60 and 84 are 1,298g, 1,409g and 1,573g, respectively.

Vittoria says that carbon clinchers are under development but in the meantime, the Fraxion will use an aluminum rim and a carbon fibre fairing and mixed 45/50mm front/rear depths to help balance aerodynamic efficiency and crosswind handling. Both rims have semi-wide 17mm internal widths intended for use with tyres up to 22mm across. Claimed weight for the set is 1,698g.

Rim shapes are fairly wide and blunted for what we anticipate should be manageable handling in crosswinds:

As compared to the all-carbon Qurano (left), the Fraxion (right) will use an aluminum/carbon hybrid rim construction to reduce costs

Riders looking for a premium all-around, all-aluminum wheelset might take interest in the Elusion Nero, which uses the same 17mm internal rim width as the Fraxion but with a shallower 26/28mm front/rear rim depth. More notably, Vittoria has treated the rim with a plasma electrolytic oxidation surface treatment – more commonly known under its trade name, Keronite – plus it’s tubeless-ready, too.

In addition to giving the Elusion Nero its characteristic all-grey look, Keronite – the same treatment Mavic uses for its Exalith rims – lends incredible durability to treated surfaces, unlike standard anodization, which is easily prone to brake pad wear. And just like Mavic, Vittoria claims its Elusion Nero rims will provide better braking performance in both wet and dry conditions.

The new vittoria elusion nero has an eye-catching all-grey finish:

We’re looking forward to riding Vittoria’s new Keronite-coated Elusion Nero clincher wheelset

Accompanying the Elusion Nero is the standard Elusion, which shares identical virtually identical specs save for the Keronite coating. Claimed weight for the Elusion Nero is 1,576g while the standard Elusion tacks on another 15g courtesy of brass spoke nipples.

All of the above wheels will be built around Vittoria’s novel SwitchIT hubs, built with cartridge bearings, oversized rear driveside spoke flanges, and interchangeable aluminum freehub bodies that can easily removed without tools. All of those models will come with wheelbags, brake pads and internal-cam skewers, too (save for the standard Elusion, which doesn’t require special pads).

Freehub bodies on the switchit hubs can be easily removed without tools - meaning that riders can also easily swap out gear ratios if they stock up on extra bodies:

No tools? No problem

For riders on more of a budget, Vittoria’s new road range will round out with two entry-level models. The Alusion will use the same 17mm internal rim width as the other clinchers but with a 33mm depth, brass spoke nipples, and more conventional hubs for a total claimed weight of 1,791g. The shallower Session, meanwhile, gets a 26mm-deep rim but is otherwise identical for a claimed weight of 1,763g.

Full collection of off-road models

Sadly, Vittoria didn’t have on hand at Interbike its flagship XC racing model – simply called Race – which will be built with a 25mm-wide, 30mm-deep graphene-reinforced carbon fibre tubular rim for a claimed weight of 1,552g in the sole 29in diameter.

That said, the more trail/enduro-oriented Deamion looked interesting enough with its 23mm-wide (internal width), 21mm-deep asymmetric and tubeless-compatible alloy rims, all laced with 28 spokes front and rear to cartridge bearing hubs that use Shimano’s Center Lock rotor interface. Claimed weight for the 27.5in version is 1,676g; the 29ers come in at 1,747g.

Vittoria will have several off-road models available, too:

Vittoria will have off-road models, too

The more XC-oriented Reaxcion shares similar specs to the Deamion but with narrower 21mm-wide (internal width) rims. Nevertheless, the switch to brass from alloy nipples keeps the claimed weights of the 27.5in and 29in version nearly identical at 1,706g and 1,787g, respectively.

Finally, there’s the entry-level Creed with 21mm-wide (internal width) rims and heavier hubsets built with steel cassette bodies. Unlike its more expensive brethren, the Creed will be offered in all three common wheel diameters with claimed weights ranging from 1,819g to 1,950g depending on size and axle configuration.

Both the deamion and reaxcion get tubeless-ready rim profiles:

All of Vittoria’s off-road clinchers feature tubeless-ready profiles

Pricing for all of Vittoria’s new wheels has not been announced.

www.vittoria.com








New Challenge Baby Limus cyclocross tyre ready to hit the mud

Just in time for ‘cross season comes a new Baby Limus tyre from Challenge. Although the name suggests that it’s just a downsized version of the company’s Limus full-mud tyre, the progressive tread design looks to be far more versatile – and faster to boot.

The Baby Limus does indeed borrow the Y-shaped knob concept from the Limus, along with the same 2.2mm-tall, aggressive cornering knobs that make the Limus so predictably grippy in slippery conditions. However, the Baby Limus’ center tread is much more tightly spaced with half-height knobs for a faster roll on harder surfaces.

While the cornering knobs are 2.2mm tall, the center tread is just 1.1mm high with the intermediate knobs falling in between:

Challenge builds the new Baby Limus with a progressive tread design that features shorter knobs down the middle and taller ones on the sides

Meanwhile, the transition tread uses U-shaped knobs that are in between the center and shoulder blocks in terms of knob height, and they’re spaced more evenly on the casing than on the Limus.

According to Challenge’s Morgan Nicol, the Baby Limus should provide similar cornering performance but faster straight-ahead speed than the Limus but a more predictable behavior than the semi-slick Chicane for what should be the most versatile model in the company’s cyclocross lineup for this season.

Challenge's new baby limus tire looks to be an excellent all-rounder with tall and well-supported cornering knobs like the standard limus but a half-height and tightly packed center tread that should roll much faster, especially on harder surfaces:

The lower center knob heights and more densely packed knob spacing should make the Baby Limus much faster rolling than the standard Limus

Challenge has several Baby Limus models already shipping, including the Team Edition tubular with a 320tpi polycotton casing, the Pro tubular with a so-called ‘SuperPoly’ casing, and an open tubular, all with 33mm widths.

Also new from Challenge is the MTB Two tubular mountain bike tyre, which features a much more stoutly reinforced knob pattern than the original MTB One for what we anticipate will be more predictable cornering manners but with similarly low rolling resistance and suppleness.

Also new from challenge is the mtb two tubular mountain bike tire, which features what looks to be a much more useful and versatile tread than the mtb one:

Love mountain bike tubulars? Challenge now has the new MTB Two, which looks to offer substantially improved grip over the original MTB One model








Twin Six launching bike line at Interbike

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (BRAIN) — Apparel brand Twin Six will is getting into the bike business, with four new frames it will debut next week at Interbike.

Cube 2015 range highlights – video

Cube’s 2015 range is headlined by the company’s new C68 carbon, which uses a 68:32 carbon to resin ratio compared to the standard 60:40 split, achieved by changing the lay-up of the fibres to create a lighter frame.

This new material can be seen on the top of the range Stereo 140 C68 SLT full-sus 650b mountain bike as well as across the top four models in the company’s pro-level Litening road bike range.

On the budget side of things, Cube has launched a full Shimano Claris-equipped version of its aluminium Peloton road machine as well as updating its women’s and kid’s ranges, which now includes the 24-inch wheeled, air suspension and disc-brake specced Kid 240 SL.

Check out the full Cube 2015 range in the video below and view all our videos at the BikeRadar YouTube page.

Please install Adobe Flash player to view this content








Cube 2015 range highlights – video

Cube’s 2015 range is headlined by the company’s new C68 carbon, which uses a 68:32 carbon to resin ratio compared to the standard 60:40 split, achieved by changing the lay-up of the fibres to create a lighter frame.

This new material can be seen on the top of the range Stereo 140 C68 SLT full-sus 650b mountain bike as well as across the top four models in the company’s pro-level Litening road bike range.

On the budget side of things, Cube has launched a full Shimano Claris-equipped version of its aluminium Peloton road machine as well as updating its women’s and kid’s ranges, which now includes the 24-inch wheeled, air suspension and disc-brake specced Kid 240 SL.

Check out the full Cube 2015 range in the video below and view all our videos at the BikeRadar YouTube page.

Please install Adobe Flash player to view this content








Specialized releases limited edition McLaren S-Works Tarmac

  MORGAN HILL, Calif. (BRAIN) — Specialized is continuing to work with the legendary auto racing company, McLaren, working with the company to develop a limited edition S-Works McLaren Tarmac bike. Specialized will build 250 of the bikes, which will be sold with a pair of S-Works road shoes and S-Works Prevail helmet, both color matched to the bike.

Effetto offers larger inflator/sealant canister for large volume tires

FT. COLLINS, Colo. (BRAIN) — Effetto Mariposa is now offering a larger size of its inflator/sealant canister, for large volume mountain bike tires. The Doppio Espresso has a 125 ml cartridge, twice the size of the standard Espresso

Buyer’s guide to mountain bike disc brakes

Disc brakes are now the standard on most mountain bikes, but what should you be looking for when it comes to shopping for your ideal stoppers?

This guide explains the basics, and the jargon buster below will help you get to grips with the terminology.

Disc/rotor

Power varies with each calliper and its pad surface/leverage, but the biggest difference is rotor size. The bigger the rotor, the more leverage your brake has on the wheel and the faster it can stop it. Each 20mm increase in size roughly equates to a 13 to 15 percent increase in power.

140mm (5.5in) discs are the smallest and a bare minimum for braking on the back wheel. 160mm (6.3in) discs will slide a rear wheel easily, but only the most powerful brakes will really stand a bike on its nose easily with a 160mm disc up front. That’s why many brakes now use a 180mm disc up front.?

For ultimate downhill stopping power you want 200mm (8in) discs. Big discs heat up less and cool faster than smaller ones, again making them better suited to downhill/heavy duty usage. They do weigh more though, and not all forks and frames are warrantied – or have space – for the largest discs.?

Removing metal from the disc to save weight makes it more likely to warp when hot, which is why some brakes use a pimp-looking alloy spider in the centre of a steel disc. Shimano’s Ice-Tech discs use a three-layer construction that combines an alloy core with steel braking surfaces on the outer edge. Vented discs cool better, and wavy or toothed ones clear muck faster than round ones.

When it comes to fitting the discs to your hubs, there are two different standards?– six-bolt and CenterLock. The former is pretty self explanatory, and uses standard Torx- or Allen-head bolts. The latter uses a splined design, which needs to be tightened with a?cassette tool. There are pros and cons to each of the systems. Adaptors are available to convert from one standard to the other.

Control

The brakes should apply their power smoothly and progressively, or you’ll just launch yourself over the bar or slide your tyres rather than making the most of the available traction.

Life

The brakes need to be easy to live with, easy to set up in the first place and easy to adjust to the feel you want. They also need to be as maintenance-free as possible in the long term, whatever the weather.

Calliper

The business end of the brake houses the cylinders that push the pads onto the rotor. Some callipers are magnesium for minimum weight but most are alloy in a one-piece casting or a two-piece, bolt-together design.

Some brakes use two pistons either side rather than the standard single one, to allow use of a longer pad, but you can’t really tell any performance difference on the trail or dyno. A slotted post mount attachment on the calliper is almost universal now, although you’ll need different spacer mounts for different frames and rotor sizes. Cheaper brakes often have a fixed exit angle on the hose.

Hose

The hose joins the lever to the calliper and needs to be free of air bubbles to keep the brakes working consistently. It needs to resist massive hydraulic pressures without popping, and needs to resist squashing or splitting too.

Most brakes use a simple reinforced plastic hose that’s tough and flexible enough for most purposes. Braided hoses – used on some complete brakes and available aftermarket – use a steel sheath for a tighter, more accurate brake feel and improve crush resistance. Formula have introduced a super-light Kevlar reinforced hose on their R1 Racing. Whatever the hose is made of, make sure it’s long enough for your frame or fork.

Pads

The pads create the friction that provides the stopping power of the brake and are therefore crucial to the overall performance. The basic division is between resin and sintered pads. Most brakes now come with sintered pads, which have metal (normally copper) swarf added into the resin base mix. This increases the wear life and heat tolerance of the pads, particularly in wet conditions.

Softer resin pads bed in faster and give better friction in dry, low-speed conditions but they wear very quickly in wet and gritty conditions, and fade quicker on long descents as more heat stays in the rotor.

Lever/master cylinder

The lever end of the brake is arguably the most important part. The master cylinder (the posh name for the brake lever body) contains the reservoir that automatically adjusts for pad wear and heat expansion of braking fluid. It also has the brake lever at one end and the bar clamp at the other. While it’s not essential, having a hinged or separate clamp plate and a symmetrical either side ‘flip-flop’ design make the brake a lot more versatile.

Lever blade shape, sweep geometry and material govern the feel under your fingers. Levers vary in shape from curved to crooked, narrow to broad, smooth or drilled, one finger, two finger, two-and-a-half and so on. Some of them wobble and some are rock-solid. If you’ve got the money you can save a few grams by opting for a carbon fibre lever blade on most brakes too, although these are rarely noticeably lighter and can be flexy. They are warmer when it’s really cold, though. Make sure the levers fit your hands and preferred bar positions relative to the shifters.

Depending on the design, there are various adjustments you can make to the way the brake feels. Most brakes let you adjust the reach to the levers, but being able to adjust the bite point at which the brakes contact the pads is an increasingly common feature. Some brakes also let you adjust leverage and power. Be aware that the more adjustable mechanisms there are, the more potential problems there are too.

Bleeding basics

Don’t fret about bleeding brakes. If you have to trim the hoses to fit them, you might need to re-bleed the brakes, but most shops will fit them for free. Otherwise, they should be fine if you leave them alone – we can’t remember the last leaky set we had, and we can count the number of unplugged pipes we’ve seen after crashes on one hand. Changing pads is the only regular maintenance needed.

Workshop: How to bleed Hayes Stroker disc brakes

Workshop: Bleeding Avid and other disc brakes

Workshop: Bleeding Hope disc brakes

Jargon buster

  • Angle adjust – The ability to change theangle a hose exits the calliper.
  • Arm pump – Forearm numbness caused by excessive brake pull.
  • Bedding in – The vital process of wearing off surface glaze and contamination on new brake pads and rotors through repeated stop/go cycles to get them up to full power. A few sprints and sharp stops should normally do the trick and achieve maximum stopping power and longevity.
  • Bite adjust – Mechanism that allows the contact point of pad and rotor to be adjusted independently of lever reach. Also known as ‘contact adjust’.?This allows fine-tuning of brake feel but adds cost and complexity, and some systems seem to compromise reliability.
  • Bite point – The point at which the pads make contact with the disc and the brake begins to work.
  • Bleeding – Flushing the brake system through with fresh fluid to remove any air bubbles that can cause softness and under-performance.
  • Boiling – Overheating and expansion of brake fluid that causes the lever to lock up
  • Braided hose – Hydraulic line using a woven metal layer for added protection against crushing and bursting. Using this can improve the response of the brake too.
  • CenterLock – Shimano’s spline and lock ring disc fitting method. Easy to use but only works with specific Shimano and DT Swiss hubs.
  • Cup-and-cone – Convex and concave washers used to allow angular movement between brake calliper and mount.
  • Clip fit - Pads that snap fit to the head.
  • DOT fluid – Synthetic braking fluid. 5.1 is more heat-tolerant than 4.1.
  • Disc or Rotor – The round braking surface of the brake that mounts on to the hub and sits between the brake pads.
  • Fade – Loss of braking power caused by rotor and pads overheating
  • Flip-flop – Ambidextrous lever design.
  • Floating rotor – Rotor with steel braking surface on alloy spider to reduce heat build-up and allow for expansion.
  • Hayes mount – Now almost universal brake mount on forks. Uses two threaded posts running parallel to the disc and a slotted calliper for easy adjustment.
  • Heat fade – Loss of power when a brake overheats on long descents.
  • Heat sink – Draws heat away from the pads.
  • IS mount – ‘International Standard’ brake mounting using two drilled tabs parallel to the disc. Light but needs faffing with washers to get a rub-free brake fit.
  • Lever blade – The bit you pull.
  • Lever body – The block the blade pivots in.
  • Lever reach - The distance between the lever blade and the handlebar.
  • Mineral oil - More eco-friendly hydraulic oil choice than DOT fluids, but less head tolerant.
  • Modulation - The relationship between how hard you pull the lever and how hard the brakes stop.
  • Monoblock - Calliper forged or milled from a single piece of material, rather than two halves bolted together.
  • Organic pads – Softer, quieter but shorter-lived brake pads.
  • Post mount - See Hayes mount.
  • Pots - The pistons or cylinders of the brake. Single-pot brakes have one piston on one side and one fixed pad; twin-pots have a piston on each side; four-pots have two pistons on each side; six-pots have three…
  • Progressive: Power that increases in direct relation to how hard you pull the brake lever.
  • Pump out: Over-extension and eventual lock-out of lever caused by fluid overheating and expansion on long descents.
  • Reach adjust: Mechanism that adjusts the distance between the lever blade and the handlebar to suit different-sized hands.?Some brakes have a tool-free adjustment knob, while others use a recessed Allen key adjuster.
  • Resin pads – See organic pads.
  • Rose – Hose end that can rotate.
  • Servo-Wave – Cam system that increases leverage through the lever pull.
  • Sintered pads – Pads with metal content for longer life. They tend to run hotter and noisier than resin pads.
  • Six bolt - Standard rotor mounting using six bolts threading into the hub.
  • Split clamp – Lever with closed single bolt bar clamp.
  • Squeal – High-pitched noise caused by some brake pads and/or brake vibration.
  • Two-bolt clamp – A lever that has a separate barclamp.








Hollywood Racks’ fat-bike wheel holders

LOS ANGELES (BRAIN) — New wheel holders for fat bikes are now available from Hollywood Racks. Designed to accommodate all bicycle tires up to 5 inches wide, they are sold as a pair (for one bike) and replace the standard wheel/tire holders on all Hollywood Sport Rider and Trail Rider racks (mounts to 1¼-inch tubing). The holders include reinforced extra-long wheel straps.