Nick Legan ferrets out some innovations in Germany
De Rosa has many flashy carbon bikes, but the styling of the Corum is simply beautiful. The TIG welded frame has an integrated headset and is offered in 30 sizes, both tradtional and sloping. Trialtir is the U.S. importer. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews
FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, Germany (VN) — The big brands can wait (there isn’t much new in that department anyway).
Today I focused on finding some sweet Italian steel bikes and stayed on the lookout for new products that captured my fancy.
Steel is in no way dead in the cycling industry. (Nor is aluminum for that matter, but I digress.)
It seems that the Italians have more nostalgia for it than any other cycling country. Maybe it’s because they hope consumers will pull out their checkbook when they get all misty-eyed about the good ol’ days of cycling. In any case, there were some beautiful examples on display in Friedrichshafen. Some are available in the U.S. and some aren’t.
Aluminum cranks for square taper bottom brackets seem to be holding strong as well. A lot of this must be due to the urban fixed gear craze and most of these cranks are made for single-chainring application. FSA honors Felice Gimondi with its take on a single-speed track crank. Phil Wood also has a beautifully polished aluminum crank for 2012.
Selle Italia’s Monolink system (which
Caley Fretz reviewed last year) has found supporters in the industry. Ritchey, FSA and Deda all have posts for the saddles now. Unfortunately, the backing of the system by manufacturers doesn’t mean that consumers will buy in. But lower cost options will certainly make it easier for them to do so.
Many items are worth showing, but without proper testing don’t merit their own post. So I’ve included a few of them in this gallery.
FSA is producing this retro aluminum track crank named after Felice Gimondi. The lines are classic Campagnolo and should be popular with urban fixed gear riders. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Phil Wood, after so many years producing bottom brackets, now has a track crank. Pricing is yet to be determined, but expect it to be expensive and worth every penny. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Ritchey has gotten in the Monolink game with a WCS post. Its system seems a bit simpler than Selle Italia’s. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Selle Italia’s Monolink saddle system has found supporters. FSA has a K-Force Light version that has less setback than Selle Italia’s version. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews
Campionissimo is a fitting name for Casati’s lugged steel beauty. Even the steel fork uses a lovely chromed cast crown. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Casati’s Inox T99 is a great looking steel bike kept that way by nicely executed internal cable routing and a hidden seat post clamp (it’s on the other side of the top tube). Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Scapin isn’t known well in the U.S. and with bikes like the Style (that’s the model name) it’s a shame. The steel and carbon bike is visually striking and uses some interesting technology. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews The carbon inset on the steel head tube of Scapin’s Style looks great, even if the benefits are only cosmetic. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews
De Rosa has many flashy carbon bikes, but the styling of the Corum is simply beautiful. The TIG welded frame has an integrated headset and is offered in 30 sizes, both tradtional and sloping. Trialtir is the U.S. importer. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews In limited quantities. For those of you with a sense of history, Cinelli has relaunched its iconic Laser track frame. They’ve even stuck with the same pale blue for this edition. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Integrated stems and handlebars seem to be making a comeback, made apparent by Ritchey throwing its hat in the ring. In typical Ritchey fashion the design is both aesthetically clean and ergonomically sound (many others seem to get the angle of the handlebar wrong). Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Eurobike is also a meeting place for industry insiders. One booth was dedicated entirely to decals and head tube badges produced for those manufacturers who want to farm out the work. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews
De Rosa offers a number of urban bicycles like the Milanino which features a Gates belt drive on a Sturmey Archer fixed-gear 3-speed hub. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews BiciSupport has a really cool bike wash station for bike shops. Large containers of soap, water and degreaser are housed below and pressurized for fast cleaning. The only downside is that the station is quite large. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews 3T showed off what is essentially a fancy stem faceplate that houses CycleOps’ newest GPS-enabled Joule computer. 3T is also offering its new Mercurio wheels with PowerTap hubs.Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Acros (German makers of a spendy hydraulic mountain bike shifting system) is known in Europe for its quality headsets. The BlockLock headset helps protect frames by limiting headset rotation. The $105 upper headset is offered for 1.125 and 44mm head tubes and uses small elastomers to stop the bars from cracking your top tube. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews
Spanish manufacturer BH showed off its newest model, the Ultralight. At 747 grams for a 56cm with paint and decals, the frame lives up to its name. A tapered head tube and the BH co-developed BB 386 system are incorporated into BH’s lightest and stiffest frame to date. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Edvald Boassen Hagen left his mark at the Deda booth. The Italian brand is pushing its 35mm bars and stems in a big (pun intended) way. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Fast Forward Wheels showed off the front wheel that Jonny Hoogerland rode during his spectacular Tour de France crash (caused by a French television car). Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews Dutch brand Segal only produces magnesium bicycles, one of very few in the cycling industry using the material. What makes them special is that they not only weld up custom frames but also mine the material and extrude tubes from it in Israel. This assures quality control from start to finish. Frames weigh as little as 1080 grams, cost 1,600 Euros and include custom geometry, paint and decals. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews
Another new power measuring device is on the market and will hit the U.S. next year if all goes well. Power 2 Max is a German company offering its device with several different crankarms. Prices with chainrings start at 1,230 Euros. Accuracy is +/- 2%. Photo: Nick Legan © VeloNews