Taipei Cycle is home to a vast number of bikes and cycle-related products, some of them fantastic, some of them... not so good. Here’s our pick of some of the smartest innovations we’ve spotted so far...
The InterLock is a seatpost that incorporates a bike lock with the cable being stored away inside your bike. You have all that empty space in there doing very little, so Adrian Solgaard of Vancouver, Canada, figured you might as well use it to store a lock. The lock cannot be removed from the seatpost so you can’t forget to take it with you, and it’s easy to carry in this way.
The cable is 90cm long so you can thread it through your frame and rear wheel and around a suitable anchor point. It pushes down inside the seatpost and into your bike frame when not in use, and it locks in place. The lock is currently available in 25.4mm, 27.2mm and 31.6mm seatpost diameters.
InterLock launched last year via Kickstarter and now it’s in production. They’re talking to a potential UK distributor this week.
2. Super Molasses quick release skewers
People have been using quick-release skewers as makeshift tyre levers for years; these ones from Gold Ti Enterprise are actually designed with that in mind, hence the hook on the end of each tightening handle.
The Super Molasses skewers, which screw tight rather than using cams, weigh just 36g the pair.
3. Upon bike tent
This single-person tent uses your bike as part of the structure, and you blow up an air pillar for the other end. The upper shell is fast-drying nylon and the ground sheet is ripstop waterproof nylon. The whole thing weighs 1,050g. Topeak already do a bike tent but that is an even more minimalist affair which uses the front fork as part of the support for the tent - so you have to take the wheel out. The up-side of the Topeak tent is that there is little chance of you night's sleep being disturbed by your bike landing on top of you in windy conditions. We're not totally convinced that couldn't happen here.
4. TranzX 90° Quick Park stem
This is pretty neat. The new 90° Quick Park Stem allows you to turn your handlebars parallel to the frame while keeping the front wheel straight for easy storage in a confined space.
You just release the safety lock, flip the lever up, and you can pivot the stem to the side. It saves you undoing the steerer clamp bolts – not the most arduous of jobs, but a pain if you have to do it regularly.
5. Wireless brake warning light
Do you reckon your bike needs brake warning lights? We’re not so sure, to be honest, but this is still a pretty clever innovation. Essentially, sensors in the brake shoes can tell when the brake pad hits the aluminium braking surface. This triggers a wireless signal that can be picked up by a rear light – or multiple rear lights, if you like.
This is the V-brake version (above), obviously, but rim calliper and disc (below) models are available too.
Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over the past 20 years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for seven years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.