I just read a pretty interesting post on this topic over at Off The Beaten Path. Things get interesting (and a bit heated) in the comments section. I’m a huge fan of Compass tires (made by Panaracer in Japan) and definitely appreciate what those guys are doing. Anyway, the article is definitely worth a read.
Not sure how but I only ended up with two pics from the White Industries booth at NAHBS, cause it was huge and right in the middle of the show. They have a new version of their ultra cool crankset with a 30mm spindle (not pictured, sorry). But how about these cool pink and purple hubs?
The first bike part I ever broke was a seatpost. I was 15 and probably weighed 120 pounds. The post in question was an Ofmega on my Bianchi Nuovo Racing (this was probably around 1984). I replaced the Ofmega with a Campagnolo Record post. The Campy post was beautiful but it was a bit tricky to fine tune your position with the one-bolt design. A few years later I got a Suntour XC post with a great two-bolt design (and I still have it-great seatpost). A few years after that I got a Syncros post, with another two-bolt design. But the Syncos cracked, becoming only the second bike part I had ever broken.
Thomson entered the bike scene in the mid-90s, having already established themselves as a top notch machine shop back in the late 1960s. They produce everything in their facility in Macon, Georgia. The first time I tried a Thomson Elite I knew I had I winner. Super solid, super easy to adjust. And after many years and miles, I still haven’t managed to break one. I now have them on most of my bikes–I have them in 26.8 for the Bontragers and 28.6 for the Ibises and 27.2 for everyone else. I have them in straight and laid-back, silver and black. They somehow manage to look modern and classic at the same time.
As I’ve gotten older (and no longer racing) I’ve decided I don’t really need a 53 tooth big ring. 50 works great, looks great, so I’ve been adding them to a bunch of my bikes. And I really like these pinned and ramped Vuelta SE Plus Chainrings, which are designed and made in the USA. You can get them direct from Vuelta or from Amazon.
Without a doubt the best water bottle cages money can buy are made in Durango, Colorado by Ron Andrews of King Cage. He started building bottle cages out of titanium back in 1991 while working for One Off Titanium. He introduced the stainless steel cages in 1996 and I run them on most of my bikes (pictured on my Ritchey and Soulcraft in the pics below). Get a King cage next time you need bottle cages–they are $18 for stainless and $60 if you want to splurge for ti–shipped right from Ron’s garage, where he welds about 100 per day. They look great, won’t mark up your bottles and they last forever.
It’s really cool to see someone still making a square taper, low Q factor crankset. These also have a super innovative chain ring design that replaces the traditional bolt circle. More at whiteind.com
Remember these? They were introduced in 1995 for close to $300. As Paul Price says in this interview with Dirt Rag, the derailleurs helped put him on the map, but they almost sank his company. Then XTR came along, demand dropped off, and Paul turned his focus to the growing singlespeed scene. One more pic after the jump!