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TECH NEWS

Would you spend £2k on custom aerobars? Plus Ekoï's NASA-approved jerseys, TRIANGULAR bike wheels, new Fizik kicks, Ass Savers and Brompton ltd editions, yet another "smart helmet" + loads more

We've got a bumper, astronaut-backed edition of Tech of the Week for you featuring high fashion, high prices and everything in between!

As we were gazing into the future by digging out yet more details on Campagnolo's yet-to-be-released wireless Super Record groupset earlier this week, we thought it was only right to continue the theme by delving into Ekoi's futuristic, temperature-regulating clothing featuring NASA tech to kick off our latest edition of Tech of the Week! And that's just to warm you up (not the gear, that's supposed to cool you down of course) because there are some rather special custom aerobars and some very much un-round wheels further down the page... 

Ekoï launches new clothing collection featuring NASA temperature-regulating tech

Ekoi nasa outlast 2

We see 'aerospace-grade' and many variations on that boast appear quite regularly in the bike industry when it comes to bike frames, high-end wheels and components, but less so with clothing and accessories. Well, the innovative folks at Ekoï, behind other curiosities such as 100% customisable shoes, one-size bib shorts and jerseys that promise "no more tan marks", are claiming a first by introducing three new men’s clothing collections equipped with Outlast - a technology developed for NASA to cope with extreme temperature variations in space. 

The Outlast collections allow “proactive temperature regulation guaranteeing maximum comfort during exercise, a massive reduction in temperature and an increase in performance”, and Ekoï says it's been tested by Israel-Premier Tech riders. Some of the practical performance gains promised include a 30 to 50 per cent reduction in your sweating, and lowering your body temperature by two degrees.

Ekoi nasa outlast

The Outlast technology has been around since 1990, and though it was originally developed for NASA astronauts, its thermoregulation properties have since been utilised in various fields, but never before in the cycling world, according to Ekoï.

The three new collections - which are only available in men’s versions at the moment - feature jerseys and baselayers in various designs. The jerseys cost £156.49 and the baselayers are £52.16.

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Brompton celebrates its millionth folding bike with special edition bikes

Brompton_Archive_Edition_3

Brompton, the classic British folding bike brand, has made its millionth bike. To celebrate, the brand has launched a limited run of special ‘Brompton Archive Edition’ bikes in special colourways. 

Brompton_Archive_Edition_12

The new colours are Apple Green, Baby Pink and Arctic Blue, and the bikes are designed around Brompton's Mk1 spec. The OG spec means a steel frame, three hub gears, dynamo lights and a silver rear rack. When you’re whizzing about on your special edition Brompton, the seat of choice is of course the classic Brooks C17. 

The Brompton Archive Edition is available from 24th May at www.brompton.com.

Scicon launches new Aeroscope sunglasses 

Scicon Aeroscope

While Scicon is probably still best know for bike bags and boxes, it now has a growing range of shades with the Aeroscope launching just this week. These shades "extend beyond the expected and deliver tailored precision for the ultimate sports experience", boasts Scicon, and the lenght of the arms are also customisable as is the height of your nosepiece.

Holding the showy gold lenses together is a handcrafted frame that is bio-based, an industry first according to Scicon, and it's also claimed to be lightweight and super strong.

If you fancy them and want to buy direct, they're £195 and Scicon assures British customers that all fees and duty is included in its handy 'Brexit Alert' pop-up. Refreshingly more honest than the side of that bus! 

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Ass Savers collaborates with artists, brands and teams for special edition Win Wings

asssavers win wing custom

Another special edition product this week! The Swedish brand Ass Savers has announced it’s collaborating with brands such as Rapha RCC, Paul Smith, Team Amani, Open Cycles and a number of others in creating special edition designs on its praised lightweight mudguard, Win Wing. 

asssavers win wing rcc

The Win Wing fared very well in our testing, and despite the overall look of it dividing opinions, the customizability of the blade is for sure going to appeal to a lot of folks. You can make your very own designs, as well, if you’re prepared to order a minimum of 30 pieces - perhaps one for all of your Sunday ride pals? 

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UNIT 1 claims its Aura smart helmet "sets a new standard in cycling safety"... and it's smashed its Kickstarter target

Yep, another one... another cycling product with lots of blinking lights, indicators and various other gadgets adorning it we mean, as this smart helmet has raised a huge £129,000 in just a few days since it launched on Kickstarter. 

> Where cycling products go to die: bright bike tech that has failed to catch on

"Aurua can make you visible to drivers" and "Aura can make you prevent accidents" boasts UNIT 1, referring (we think) to the powerful front and rear lights on its futuristic-looking lid. There's also an app (of course) which has a crash protection feature, and there are also accessories to make the helmet suitable for training, racing or urban use. 

Will this helmet buck the trend and finally prove to be a success story in the broad yet largely unsuccessful 'cycling safety products featuring lots of lights and bonus safety things' category? You can watch the video or read more on the Kickstarter page to decide for yourself... 

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Cafe du Cycliste partners up with fashion brand agnés b for new collection

cafe du cycliste

Cafe du Cycliste, the French cycling apparel brand, has partnered with another French brand - agnés b - for its newest collection that “explores the possibilities of functional and responsible fashion, focused through a lens of bicycle culture and further adventures”. 

cafe du cycliste

Launching this summer, the collection includes items for both men and women and focuses on both everyday outdoor wear and performance cycling. Think zipped cardigans, cargo shorts, t-shirts and the like, complemented with a silk scarf and musette for a very street-credible look, and a road jersey and bibs with the print designed by Agnés. 

Sizes range from XS to XXL and prices from £20 to £245. The collection is available at agnès b. Boutiques and Café du Cycliste stores and stockists, as well as online. 

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You've seen the half-wheeled bike... now get ready for triangular wheels 

You might remember the Ukrainian YouTube engineer Sergii Gordieiev, also know as The Q, from last year, when he created a bizarre mutant bike with the rear wheel sliced in two, yet still trundling along happily. Read more below for Jamie's engineering analysis... 

> How does this work!? Crazy half-wheeled bike concept goes viral

Well now Gordieiev is back with some triangular bike wheels, that look just as cumbersome and impractical, but still hats off to him for making the contraption rideable at all... 

Whatever next... hexagonal bike wheels, an octagonal frame?? You can check out more on The Q YouTube channel (and yep, he's already done square wheels too). 

Fizik launches new mid-range Omna road shoe

fizik_vento-omna_8 (2)

Fizik has dropped a brand new, unisex road shoe model, the Omna, saying it is a “pure road cycling shoe developed for competitive riders seeking race-ready technology”. 

The shoes’ exterior is made of lightweight PU, and a bi-directional, single BOA dial provides a secure fit. 

The outsole is made of R5 nylon, which should give a moderate level of stiffness (stiffness index 6), but remain comfortable even on long days. The cleat positioning on the Omna is slightly further back compared to most road shoes to “better optimise efficiency and reduce knee compression”, according to Fizik. 

fizik

Fizik has also added a wide vent to the shoe to provide cooling airflow and aid temperature regulation.

The weight of the Omna is 238g, and it’s available in sizes 36-48 (37 to 47 also in half sizes) and multiple colours. The retail price is £169.99.

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Speeco launches €2,000 aerobars that get you within 0.5mm of UCI limits

Screenshot 2023-05-26 at 09.17.34

Speeco says its latest 3D-printed, custom aerobars reinvent the previous iteration with an “even better fit, more customisation options and a faster process”. 

The new bars are an update to the Dutch brand’s TTX and TriX aerobars which Speeco launched in 2020, and are made with a one-piece printed construction. The TTX is a fully UCI legal bar - and very close to the governing body’s limits - and the TriX is targeted towards triathletes. 

Speeco TriX bars

In making these bars, Speeco uses SLM (selective laser melting), a process in which a high-power laser melts and fuses a special aluminium/magnesium alloy powder together. 

The overall improvements to the bars have led to a faster lead time when ordering (6-8 weeks) and well, a rather unique price, too. The TTX Base will sets you back €1,800 (and you'll be paying for any additions on top of that), and the TriX pricing starts at €2,000. 

With some custom 3D-printed cockpits made for pro time trial specialists, track riders and triathletes rumours to have cost five figures in the past, Speeco's offering is perhaps a little more obtainable to very dedicated amateurs who demand the best. Will this launch open the door for even more accessible custom bike tech in the future? 

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Vielo moves to consumer direct with significant price drops

2023 Vielo R+1 Road - riding 3.jpg

Vielo, the British brand behind high-quality road and gravel bikes exclusively built around a 1x drivetrain, has announced its moving to consumer direct business format to offer savings to customers. 

> Review: Vielo R+1 Alto Classified

The company will retain a select number of dealers, but the change means that for example, the Vielo V+1 Strato gravel bike with GRX groupset is now £1,600 cheaper at £2,999, and the Vielo R+1 Alto road bike with SRAM Force e-Tap AXS that was £6,999 now costs £5,999. 

2023 Vielo R+1 Road - seat tube detail.jpg

lan Hughes, Managing Director of Vielo, explains: "For the past 6 months, we have seen a build-up and now total gridlock of bikes from the major brands clogging up the supply lines from manufacturers to distribution hubs, to dealers. Most expect this to take 18-24 months before it will clear through.

"While dealers work with their individual stock and cashflow pressures, it makes the instore experience challenging for customers looking for a specific product. This became more apparent as more and more Vielo cycling fans have been coming to us directly.

“We’ve come up with a package that allows us to pass on the savings of a leaner supply chain to our customers, while still maintaining an option to retain a select number of dealers."

A range of the current range of 1x Vielo road and gravel bikes will be available through selected dealers, and the bikes delivered to these UK dealers are fully assembled with custom build options. These dealers will also act as a service and demo centre for Vielo customers.

Vielo will also be offering no-interest finance options in the coming weeks, with customers able to book their build slots now. 

Read more


In case you missed our other tech news and features of the week, make sure to give them a read, too: 

Suvi joined F-At in 2022, first writing for off-road.cc. She's since joined the tech hub, and contributes to all of the sites covering tech news, features, reviews and women's cycling content. Lover of long-distance cycling, Suvi is easily convinced to join any rides and events that cover over 100km, and ideally, plenty of cake and coffee stops. 

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1 comments

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eburtthebike | 1 year ago
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Will this helmet buck the trend and finally prove to be a success story in the broad yet largely unsuccessful 'cycling safety products featuring lots of lights and bonus safety things' category?

No.

As every fule knows, the problem is drivers not looking, and no matter how many big, bright, flashing lights you have, it won't make them look.  Given how many similar products have failed, I'm at a loss to understand who is investing in yet another one.

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