Here's our second lot of pics from the Core Bike show (with more to follow) this lot feature some high end road bikes and kit, a new brand of leather saddle and a clever re-working of the commuter LED.
The new Time RXR couldn't fail to catch our eye, it really is a beautiful piece of work. The lugged carbon frame boasts more aggressive geometry than the VXRS which it supplants, the integrated seat tube is 80mm shorter (there is some adjustability in there too) and it drops a few grams 35 to be precise, the asymmetric stays shave another 15g off well, every little counts…although, given that Time themselves say that stated frame weights vary by + /- five per cent, how can you tell?
Other upgrades include the new Safe +2 forks claimed to have 30 per cent more “compression resistance” and to be 15 per cent stiffer. It's yours for £3124.99.
If there's some Colnagos about we're going to look at them. The fancy paint-work of the Colnago Ferrari frame caught our eye – not sure about that racing car though…
UK Colnago distributor, Windwave is also now offering two frames, the CRX and the CX1 with Colnago Centaur build kits: shifters, brakes and rear mech matched up with FSA chainset and wheels.
Another bike to catch our eye was the Quintana Roo prototype tri bike – honed in the wind tunnel. Just look at that top tube! That's not the only novel feature it also has an asymmetric down tube, wider on one side than the other – the idea being that it helps channel the air flow through the rider's legs rather than avoiding the turbulence normally caused when the air flowing across the bike encounters a pair of churning legs.
Yesterday's gallery featured pics of the new Argon 18 frames, but we didn't tell you much about them. We've got some more pictures today and some details too. Distributor, Jim Walker will be bringing in six frames to the UK three triathlon/TT frames and three road frames. Top TT frame is the E-114, with won a design award at Eurobike 2008, this baby features all the latest aero thinking including an integrated steerer (like the BMC Time Machine) and a sculpted seat tube that wraps around the rear wheel like a faring. All the other usual refinements are in place including a reversible seat clamp and internal cable routing. The frameset is yours for £2199.99 and that includes seatpost, bars (+ replaceable inserts for the tri bars), brakes and brake levers.
The E-112 costs £1299 for the frameset and is 5606 high modulus carbon as opposed to the 6606 of its big brother and it has a standard steerer rather than the integrated one.
At £799 the E-80 is the entry level Tri/TT bike and this one features a carbon back end matched up to an aluminium main triangle.
Of the road bikes the Krypton at £849 for the frameset – is probably slightly more targeted at the sportif rider than the racer (though the guys from Jim Walker were at pains to point out the the geometry on the three would work for either race or distance work). Then there is the slightly more race oriented Gallium and Gallium Pro. The Gallium is a very pretty looking machine, we liked those curved rear stays which are a counterpoint to the traditional looking level top tube. The other point of note on the Gallium is Argon 18's use of integrated spacers – with these the bearings go into the spacer so that the load from 'bars is spread across the bearings at this point rather than the spacer taking all the load at the front – which is what usually happens according to Argon 18. Whether that solves a major problem or is just a quirky touch only time will tell. The Gallium frameset is £1199 and the Gallium Pro £1499.
The Selle An-Atomica leather saddle is an American saddle designed by a doctor from Wisconcin who couldn't find a comfortable saddle. Subtle shaping (including two barely perceptible dimples – that are there for your sit bones we presume), a complex tanning process, and a cut out (there's a cheaper solid version too) combine to make for a saddle that is like a broken in Brooks from the get-go.
It comes with detailed set-up instructions so that you get your position just right. It's aimed more at sportif, touring, and commuting cyclists and is suitable for men or women. And you don't need to feed the leather either – the solid one sells for £99 and I would tell you what the cut-out version costs £117 and there are a vast number of colours to choose from. If you like your saddle hairy they also do an ostrich hide version. We'll be testing one soon too.
A British gizmo next: the Fibre Flare – basically it's a long bendy red LED with a mount. You can wear it on your jacket or helmet or attach it to your bike, keep it straight or wrap it around something. Not only is it very bright, but it gives all-round visibility. simple idea that works really well. It's waterproof two, the guys from UK distributor, Extra reckoned they kept one in a bucket of water for a day with no ill effects. Two AA batteries will give you 75 hours run time in flashing mode. It will hit the shops in May and costs £29.99 for a single light or £56.99 for the pair.
We also really liked these LAS helmets from Spain. Pick of the bunch for us was the Squalo. It's got a highly adjustable fitting system and simple to use retention system, insect mesh at the front, removable, washable winter and summer liners, insect mesh. You can also get spare parts and fit reflectors on to the back – what's not to like? It'll set you back £99 and for the weight conscious there's a lighter version, the Victory for £115.
Oh, and a mention for the Halo Aerotrack rims (above) – coming to a fixed bike near you soon, the yellow ones have sold out in London already, but we were really taken with the purple version …
Tony has been editing cycling magazines and websites since 1997 starting out as production editor and then deputy editor of Total Bike, acting editor of Total Mountain Bike and then seven years as editor of Cycling Plus. He launched his first cycling website - the Cycling Plus Forum at the turn of the century. In 2006 he left C+ to head up the launch team for Bike Radar which he edited until 2008, when he co-launched the multi-award winning road.cc - which he continues to edit today. His favourite ride is his ‘commute’ - which he does most days inc weekends and he’s been cycle-commuting since 1994. His favourite bikes are titanium and have disc brakes.