Green Oil first introduced the EcoSponge two years ago and for 2014 the company has completely updated the design.
It now has a recycled fabric outer so it’s softer on the bike, and is claimed to provide better foaming abilities to make it a more effective cleaner. The sponge, hidden inside the new outer, is made from a plant-based sponge fibre grown in the Philippines.
“The EcoSponge is perhaps the world’s most ethical bike product - it’s fairly traded, made of plant-based fibre and recycled fabric, and can even be composted at the end of its life,” says Green Oil’s Simon Nash.
It’s machine washable so you can get plenty of use out of it and keep it in tip top condition. It’ll be available on its own for £3.99 or with the Eco Rider Deluxe set for £34.99. In other news, Green Oil has partnered with UK distributor i-Ride.co.uk in recent weeks, so the new sponge, and the rest of the range, will be available in a large number of bike shops soon.
We’ve got one on test and we’ll let you know how it goes once we’ve washed a few bikes with it.
There are plenty of bike cleaner products on the market, but we’ve never come across one designed specifically for cleaning frames. That’s what Red Ant Precision is offering, a brand new company recently launched at Core Bike Show.
The founder created the products after not finding anything on the market suitable to clean a matt finish frame, so set about creating his own. The range comprises two products, a cleaner and a protector. The cleaner is designed specifically for different frame materials, currently they offer carbon fibre, titanium and matt. The idea is the same as the plethora of cleaners you can get for cars and motorbikes, Red Ant decided there was a suitable gap in the high-end road cycling market for something similar.
All of the cleaners are PH Neutral which they claim helps the cleaner cut through road grime and other mud and oily deposits on the frame, especially riding the UK roads at this time of year. It’s safe to use on all carbon fibre frames, chains, plastic and rubber, even wheels. To use, it’s simply a matter of liberally spraying on the frame, leaving for 3-5 minutes, and then rinse thoroughly with fresh water.
The protector has been specially formulated to prevent dirt sticking to the frame between washes. It is claimed to help repel water and keeps the frame protected for up to four weeks.
500ml and 250ml bottles are available, priced from £9.99. We’ll be testing both the cleaner and protector in coming weeks, we’ll let you know how we get on with it.
No new saddles as such from Prologo, but the company has added a couple of new colour options for 2014 to its existing Scratch model. As we all know, bright fluoro colours seem to be trendy in the cycling world right now, we’re seeing clothing and bike manufacturers both adopt brighter hues to various degrees.
These are fairly restrained by some standards. You get matching bar tape as well, you might as well go the whole hog and everything. No word on pricing yet, we’ll let you know as soon as we do.
These brands are distributed in the UK by www.i-ride.co.uk
David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.