Friday, December 02, 2022

Friday News And Views

The Horsethief Carbon XT for 2023 Image courtesy of Salsa Cycles
 Salsa Cycles Shows Updates To Horsethief FS Bikes:

Salsa Cycles released the new colors and spec on the range of Horsethief full suspension bikes that they offer. 

Salsa has resisted the current theme many MTB companies use for their designs which make for a bent toward "gravity" oriented styles of riding. 

I like that Salsa hasn't gone all-in on that. Yes- these are not honed for Mid-West single track specifically, but they won't suck if you ride them here either. That's a nice nod to those many off-road bicyclists that do not live in mountainous areas. 

There is a lot more news if you are curious, and I'm sure many sites are covering this, or you could go to Salsa Cycles site and learn more. 

A snippet from the Trek Travel site

Used Bikes For Sale Direct?

It is no secret that Direct To Consumer sales are being done, or 'sort-of' being done, by most bigger bicycle companies nowadays. New bikes typically are sold nearly built, or in many cases direct to the local bike shop, where customers can then collect them, but avoid working through the local shop for payment. 

But recently I came across Trek Travel's site selling used bicycles at big discounts. I would assume that these were the same bikes used for Trek Travel's tours over the past year, and now they are liquidating them via D2C over the internet. 

Comments: I am 100% speculating here, but HPC/eBikes in the upper echelon of price range are not an easy sell for a local bike shop. Think about how a dealer might feel if they had an 8K HPC road bike like that Domane+ sitting on the floor and a customer came in and told them that they bought one "just like that", (disregarding that it was used, of course!), from Trek Travel for 40% off of the asking price. 

I'm sure that gives dealers a warm fuzzy feeling. But I could be wrong...... 

Tumbleweed Stargazer Ti. Image courtesy of Tumbleweed Bikes

Tumbleweed Bikes Announces Ti Stargazer:

Last year I posted about the then new Tumbleweed Stargazer and said it was a "modernized Fargo Gen I" bike. That bike is a steel bike, and the next logical step for the Stargazer was to have it made in titanium.

Well, Tumbleweed has taken that 'next step', and the new Stargazer Ti is on pre-order

Tumbleweed copy on that linked page makes it sound as if this is a one-time deal, so if that Stargazer in steel was tempting you, but you needed it to be titanium, don't miss your chance, I guess.... Although things can always change, and I imagine that if enough orders went unfulfilled you'd have to think Tumbleweed would find a way to accommodate those potential sales. 

One thing I missed, I think, about the Stargazer was that it has a crazy "stack height" figure, which means that the handle bar would end up a lot higher in space than on many of my other bikes. Not sure I'd be about that. Otherwise, this seems like a solid choice for an adventure/bike packing rig. 

The Gravel Earth Series appears to be a European affair.

Gravel Earth Series Announced:

A new, a mostly European based, seven event series, dubbed "Gravel Earth Series", has been announced for 2023. 

With a promise that the organization behind the Gravel Earth Series is "..ready to change the rules", the series seems to draw at least some of its inspiration from Lincoln, Nebraska's Gravel Worlds. The event organizers claim a vision to: ".... make a dream come true, uniting some of the most impressive events in the world. The Gravel Earth Series was born with the aim of driving Gravel to the highest standards."

The first six events will set up the finale, (location is to be determined) and will be based off a points system set up by the organizers. Dates and more event information are on the site. Also, interested parties can sign up for their newsletter to keep abreast of the developments. 

Comments: Their site has a very annoying "dot" that follows your cursor around like an unwanted horsefly. Man! I generally don't comment on site formatting, but that's a new one on me that drove me crazy.Anyway.....

Their rules, which are......ah.....vague? Yeah.... The rules are more vision casting than actual rules. The points system seemed a bit complex to me, but okay. That's probably just me. Three categories, no mention of age groups, claims for lots of socializing (parties), and the like. Sounds like the venues are super cool. I look forward to hearing more about this. 

Grip Grab Overshoes: Image courtesy of Grip Grab
Grip Grab Gravel Overshoes:

The European based company, Grip Grab, has a new "Explorer" overshoe for gravel riding which is pretty interesting. It is waterproof, highly stretchable (probably a good thing) and has reinforcements in important places to enhance durability.

The Explorer overshoe is not distributed in the US yet, but you could order this direct from Grip Grab for about $95.00 plus shipping.

Comments:  First off, I have a few bad experiences with overshoe type covers and therefore I may be a bit more inclined to have a negative view of anything like these Explorer overshoes. That said, can you imagine pulling these on and off without a zipper of any kind? Or not having any other opening at all besides the leg opening?

I think the idea is sound, but the execution of the idea puts me off. The last thing I'd want to do after a muddy, wet, cold ride is to wrestle with a long overshoe, trying to peel it off over my shoes. No thank you! 

Especially when things like this or this exist which have no possibility of letting the elements in, and come off your feet far easier. (I know- There are other examples as well) Comparing those examples to this Grip Grab product, there is no cleat hole to accumulate and cause ingress of cold, wet mud, snow, or ice to allow those elements to suck the heat out from the bottom of your feet. There is no possibility that the cleat screw mounting hole of you cycling shoes allowing water to find its way to your foot. Basically, there are none of those overshoe's shortcomings. 

Hey, maybe it works as an idea for you, so don't let me yuck on your yum, (as N.Y. Roll is fond of saying). But I just have a hard time seeing how this would be any fun to use for my type of riding.

Thank you for reading Guitar Ted Productions! Have a fantastic weekend.

No comments: