Another GPS Option:
|The Trimm "one lite" GPS computer (Image courtesy of Trimm|
Recently a reader of the blog here tipped me off to another interesting GPS based cycling computer option. The company is a Korean based company called Trimm and the model they sell which I figure is analogous to most Garmin, Wahoo, and Hammerhead users is the "One Lite"
It has a similar "smart-phone" type format and uses a Gorilla Glass screen which puts this in a similar class as many of the top-flite GPS units offered by the companies I mentioned above. This One Lite model weighs in at sub-60 grams though, and is supposedly thinner than an iPhone. And it costs less than $200.00USD.
The unit has a feature which many might find interesting- A solar powered attachment that can keep the computer charged all the time. (You can see a bit of the cord to the solar panel in the image here) There is a short, sub-12 minute review of the unit here on YouTube.
Comments: If you look at the YouTube review, it seems as though this thing has a leg up on Garmin's extremely expensive solar powered unit. Even without the solar panel, the runtime is 50 hours if you use their speed sensor on your bike. Pretty impressive. Oh, and for an extra $50.00 you can go with the Trimm One and get an aluminum case in 8 different colors, and color screen with the solar charge feature at only a slight weight penalty of a claimed 62 grams.
I assume it does turn-by-turn navigation, but the YouTube reviewer doesn't specifically call this out. I think it does or what's the point of importing route files, right? Anyway... That's a reasonable price and if it works as advertised, it could be a big disrupter in this field.
|"One-eyed" Zeke Shepherd.|
Kansas City Bike Mechanic Gets Hit:
Apparently in the early morning hours of Saturday October 22nd, Kansas City bicycle mechanic, Zeke Shepherd was involved in a hit and run while riding his bicycle. The person who hit him has not been found at this point, as far as I know.
Zeke, known as "One-Eyed Zeke' to many of us here in Iowa, is a good guy. I had a tiny slice of time spent with him during a Gent's Race deal once upon a time. Anyway, Zeke is pretty banged up, will require a long recovery, and his employer, "velogaragekc", has set up a GoFundme page to help defray his recovery expenses.
The bicycle community has been really very supportive of me, and I know Zeke will get a big boost from his cycling brothers and sisters out there. Please, consider donating to his cause, if you are so led.
|Image courtesy of Canyon Bikes|
Will "KIS" Be Coming To Your Bike Soon?
Steering stabilization ideas for bicycles are nothing new. You can see them often on cargo bikes, where they are more for self-centering the wheel while the bike is parked. Hopey's steering damper or Cane Creek's Viscoset may also come to mind here. But whatever the level of technology, the idea is to overcome wheel flop in certain situations.
I've followed along with some interest in this because of my affinity for riding my fat bike in deeper snowy conditions. Mike Curiak, being a big influencer in that regard. However; there are other instances where a steering damper, or self-centering steering device, would be welcomed. Canyon apparently thinks so too, and so they are offering this proprietary system they call "KIS". That stands for "Keep It Stable".
It works internally, inside the top tube of their 29"er enduro model only- for now. It is a coil sprung self-centering device that is adjustable at the "anchor" in the top tube via a 4mm hex head bolt. The other end is attached to the cam which itself is clamped over the steer tube and that attached to the coil springs by a synthetic material in the form of two bands.
|Image courtesy of Canyon Bikes|
The effect of the KIS system is that of more stability on loose, off-camber to flat turns and a more stable front wheel during slow speed climbs, according to accounts I have read. So, for those times when your body has to make sudden corrections either at the bars or through the pedals, this KIS thing helps calm that down and therefore saves the rider energy.
Comments: So, to answer my header for this, the answer? No- This won't be coming to your gravel bike anytime soon, and probably not to most mountain bikes either, although, it may make sense for some of you. In which case, the Cane Creek Viscoset would be the likely choice. Anytime you see something like Canyon's KIS system, you have to figure that most companies wouldn't be interested in the licensing fee to use the technology. That's going to limit how much you see of this as well.
To my mind, as I look at this, it seems like an over-thought self-centering spring the likes of which I have seen on cargo bikes. This KIS thing is far more elegantly done, and no doubt works well. I could see this as standard issue technology for cargo bikes in the future.
But for most bikes? No. I don't see this as being a thing. You have no idea how much friction in a headset/steering causes weird handling until you've ridden a bike with a severely indexed headset race, or a bike with a head set adjusted too tightly. I have done all of that, and it isn't my cup of tea. Not for regular riding.
But maybe for the fat bike......
|The GR3 Image courtesy of Argonaut Cycles|
Argonaut Cycles Launches GR3 Bike:
Argonaut Cycles announced a new bicycle today for gravel racing, the GR3 model. This bike is touted as the custom made, hand-laid carbon answer for specific customer physiology and terrain needs. Claiming that "professional gravel racing is the ultimate testing grounds", Argonaut has focused on high-performance, extreme "GravelFirst" geometry, and their marketing focuses heavily on what they think makes for a great racing bike on gravel with a side of mountain biking to spice things up even more. Although that last bit is inferred, not specifically called out. Just looking at their chosen imagery and descriptions points me in that direction immediately.
Sporting a very short 415mm chain stay length, a 75mm bottom bracket drop, and a very slack (for gravel) 68.5° head angle probably nudged me to thinking "long, slack, and low", like current enduro bike geometry. The marketing also points to their professional athlete that they sponsor having an experience on the GR3 that "... also enhanced her descending abilities to the point where she has seen multiple podiums atop her GR3 and racked up numerous QOM’s for downhill segments!"
Comments: I received a press release for this bike that made it sound as though that they were eager to send over a review bike. I gotta say, first off- I am honored anytime I get an offer like this. Secondly, I hesitate to review a bike that is super-pigeonholed as a "racing bike" with the force of hype that this release has in it. Thirdly, I hesitate to accept an offer to review a bike that I understand is expensive, but one that most of my audience wouldn't ever be able to afford. I mean, sixty five hundred for a frame set? That's $6500.00 for those who may have missed that.
Look, I get it- Racing at the top levels is spectacular and maybe a lot of us wish we were "those folks" and a bike like this maybe can make you feel like a super-hero at times. Maybe.... But my contention is that this is exactly what we do not need for the majority of the riding public. This bike doesn't put "more butts on bikes", as the saying goes. It caters to Pro racers, Pro racer-wannabees, and people with a LOT of disposable income. That's not many people. And.....that's not me.
Oh yeah, and Evil Bikes Chamois Hagar would like to have a word with you.....We've seen this before already. Anyway....
That's a wrap for today! Have a great weekend and don't eat all the Halloween candy!