Friday, March 28, 2014

Friday News And Views

Not Avid
Don't Say The "A" Word: 

Last year there was a big story in "Bicycle Retailer & Industry News" concerning the wrath of independent bicycle dealers  towards Avid's Elixir brakes. Seemed the warranty claims were through the roof. Innergoogle forums were (and still are) rife with Avid brake complaints. "Turkey gobble" has come to mean an entirely different thing since Avid rotors and calipers hit the scene.

Well, obviously SRAM had enough and designed a new brake line dubbed "Guide" and branded as a SRAM component. Apparently a total break with the Avid name was in order to help restore dealer and rider confidence in the new brakes. Interesting to say the least. What will become of the Avid name, if anything, will be seen. One thing is for sure- SRAM is taking a bath in terms of their reputation in the brake component realm. The road hydraulic fiasco really put a exclamation point on all of SRAM's brake troubles. It is hoped that with this move, and branding change, they can leave the dreaded "turkey gobble" and failures behind. We'll see.........

Interbike '13

Death Of A Trade Show?

 I've been saying it all along- The bicycle trade show model is losing its relevance. It would seem that some bigger companies are agreeing with that by deciding not to attend Interbike'14 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Trek has pulled its presence from even the Outdoor Demo, which it used to show at. They haven't shown indoors in years. Nothing new there, and one company doesn't a trend make. However; now comes news that Specialized, Campagnolo, and Shimano are either scaling way back, or simply not coming to the show at all. Shimano, which was always a landmark booth on the show floor due to its huge footprint and gigantic blue banners, will now merely be a kiosk to hand out current model year catalogs at Interbike '14.

Many companies have moved to private, "dealer only" events, but Shimano is planning on opening "Business Centers" for retailers to visit. Two are planned initially but more are hinted at in a recent dealer communique. Shimano is also sending out representatives and tech folk on a more regular basis directly to shops. Other companies have taken to doing consumer demo events at various locations, usually in conjunction with local bicycle shops. All circumvent the need for a centralized trade show held once a year.

With Eurobike commanding a worldwide audience and the Intergoogles delivering content at a moment's notice anywhere a business person may be, actually attending a North American based trade show seems less and less important as the years go by. It will be interesting to see if Interbike can reinvent itself to find new meaning for business people in this new age.

Gettin' ready to lay some tracks down

Renegade Gent's Race Update:

Tomorrow is supposed to be a glorious day here in Iowa, so I am off to do some more solitary suffering in an undisclosed county in Iowa. The plan is to reel off a good, long ride this time, and hopefully that winds won't be super-brutal, like Wednesday and last Saturday!

I think I might throw on the Revelate Designs Tangle Bag this time to see how that plays with the Tamland. I am hoping to really test out a few things, (including my motor!), this time out. Tweaking out the position is pretty much over with now that the Cowbells are on the bike. Those are the best handle bars for a more road-like set up without being obnoxiously unusable in the drops like most road bars are. Saddle height, set back, and saddle to bar drop are all really good now. So with the Tamland it is now all business and getting down some serious miles in the books.

Okay, that's a wrap! Have a great Spring weekend and hopefully some good riding!


john said...

Mark - Check out Mike Johnson's ride on Sat. A lot of hours and gravel miles.

Guitar Ted said...

@john: Saw that and am well aware of CVVRG rides. I'm working on something entirely different than they will be, so thanks but no thanks.

That said, I hope their rides take off and draw a lot of riders. Good on them.