Tech & Wearables

Week in Tech: Niner’s trail bikes get a makeover, Bianchi’s new disc rig

This week's roundup of tech news includes Niner's colorful bikes, a race-ready, disc-brake bike from Bianchi, and some nifty accessories.

Here’s your Week in Tech: All the gear news you need and none of the marketing gibberish you don’t want.

Niner’s trail bikes get colorful

Niner’s Jet 9 RDO and RIP 9 RDO trail bikes have not only received a color upgrade, but also now utilize Niner’s internal guide routing system for easy cable and housing installation. The Jet 9 has a new camouflage paint scheme, while the RIP 9 gets a flashy orange and blue makeover. The upgrade announcement comes on the heels of Niner’s acquisition by UWHK Ltd., a Hong Kong investment firm that also owns Huffy. The Fort Collins, Colorado-based Niner had filed for bankruptcy several months ago.


Bianchi debuts race-ready disc-brake bike

LottoNL-Jumbo is the only WorldTour team racing Bianchi bikes this season, and the Italian company just released the details on a rig that looks ready for the cobbles of northern Europe. The Oltre XR3 Disc is, as the name suggests, disc brake-equipped. The aero frame uses characteristics from Bianchi’s aero Oltre XR4, which is raced by LottoNL-Jumbo, but the frame and fork were designed specifically for disc brakes. The frame also accommodates wider tires. The bike will come stock with Shimano Ultegra R8000 with hydraulic brakes, and it features 160-millimeter rotors and Fulcrum Racing 418 disc brake wheels. The wheels come with 28c Vittoria Rubino Pro tires.


Silca makes a hard case for storage

Silca’s hard-case bag, the Seat Capsule Premio, uses the same Boa closure technology found on its soft bags. The Seat Capsule Premio has a thermoformed shell that can hold up to a 29×2.35 tube or two 700x30mm inner tubes, according to Silca. The capsule also features two internal pocket dividers, which can be used for tire levers, a multi-tool, a CO2 regulator, and CO2 cartridges. The BOA system is used to attach the case to the seat rails. The bag costs $46.


A mount specifically for your thru-axle wheels

New Mexico-based Lindarets has designed a wheel mount specifically for thru-axle wheels. The mount accommodates all standard road and mountain front hubs. The axle is mounted at a slight angle to allow some overlap with narrower tires, but also keeps larger tires (as big as a 27.5×3.0 in) from contacting the mounting surface. The base plate mounts to a wall or post via bolts at each of the four corners. It was originally designed for use in the Lindarets Sprinter campervan. The mount is not designed for outdoor or exterior vehicle use. It costs $39.95.


Extend the range of your Shimano rear derailleurs

Wolf Tooth’s RoadLink DM (Direct Mount) is compatible with Shimano’s current generation R8000 Ultegra and R91000 Dura-Ace rear derailleurs. Like the mountain bike version, Wolf Tooth’s product replaces Shimano’s direct mount and allows the use of a larger-than-stock range cassette. The RoadLink DM is compatible with standard derailleur hangers only and is optimized for use with 11-36t, 11-40t, and 11-42t 11-speed cassettes. It will increase the weight of a stock rear derailleur by eight grams. The RoadLink DM is CNC-machined from 6061-T6 aluminum with stainless steel hardware. It costs $27.95.


Was Graeme Obree an athlete or genius?

Graeme Obree broke the Hour Record twice with unconventional time trial positions. Over the years, questions have swirled whether Obree was an exceptional athlete, or if his unique positions were just incredibly aerodynamic. Endura partnered with Obree to put his positions to the test using a modern wind tunnel, Obree’s original bikes, and some new bike technology.