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2011 Eurobike: Component highlights from Ritchey, Hope

By:
James Huang
Published:
September 12, 2011, 17:12 BST,
Updated:
September 12, 2011, 18:10 BST
Hope is still working on its integrated freehub body and cassette concept but says six-speed downhill-specific models should be available next spring.

Hope is still working on its integrated freehub body and cassette concept but says six-speed downhill-specific models should be available next spring.

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Heaps of new products from Ritchey for 2012

Ritchey's elves have been hard at work with scores of new products for the 2012 model year.

We'd already shown you the clever new C260 stem but one related surprise was the new MonoCurve integrated cockpit based on that design. Ritchey has essentially taken one of its Carbon WCS Logic Curve bar and joined it to a C260, wrapping it all in carbon fiber for a 353g final package that may be heavier than the two individual bits on their own but is supposedly stiffer thanks to the more robust joint.

The new Ritchey MonoCurve integrated road bar and stem uses the company's EvoCurve bend

The new Ritchey MonoCurve integrated road bar and stem uses the company's EvoCurve bend

Ritchey has also thrown its support behind Selle Italia's Monolink saddle rail interface with two new compatible seatposts – one in alloy, the other in carbon fiber. The upper-end WCS Carbon Link FlexLogic model is also designed with extra flex as compared to the company's other carbon posts for extra ride comfort and both seatposts can be adapted for use with standard saddle rails as needed.

Most of the rest of Ritchey's cockpit components carry over into 2012 unchanged except with the addition of a fetching Wet Red finish for several models.

Ritchey has greatly expanded its collection of complete road and mountain bike wheelsets for 2012, though.

Ritchey's new WCS Apex carbon clinchers use Reynolds-built rims laced to cartridge-bearing hubs

Ritchey's new WCS Apex carbon clinchers use Reynolds-built rims laced to cartridge-bearing hubs

Highlighting the road range is the new WCS Apex carbon clincher with Reynolds-made 46mm-deep rims and forged alloy hubs fitted with German SKF bearings. Ritchey joins the two with a mix of Sapim CX and CX-Ray spokes with the rear utilizing a crow's-foot pattern for extra lateral stiffness. Claimed weight is 1,537g for the pair.

Ritchey also caters to the 29er crowd with the new WCS Vantage II Carbon 29" wheelset, complete with tubeless-ready, 21mm-wide (internal) carbon rims and Center Lock compatible forged alloy hubs fitted again fitted with German SKF cartridge bearings. Claimed weight is 1,537g a set.

Ritchey's WCS Vantage II Carbon 29er hubs are fitted with German SKF bearings

Ritchey's WCS Vantage II Carbon 29er hubs are fitted with German SKF bearings

New lightweight XC hoops and other bits from Hope

Hope moves further into the lightweight realm with its new 1,295g mountain bike wheelset built with Stan's NoTubes Crest rims, Sapim Super spokes and the company's own Pro3 XC6 hubs. Hope says it will produce these wheels in limited numbers and in just two colors: blue and red. Also coming is a comprehensive range of 29" wheels.

Hope also previewed the latest development of its 1x10 drivetrain concept, which centers around its clever integrated freehub and cassette system that's not only lighter but also allows for a tiny 9T cog that still retains a usably wide gearing range. Hope still complete systems are still a ways off but a six-speed downhill-specific unit is expected to be ready by spring.

Hope are also continuing development of their mountain bike crankset, as well as working on some low-profile aluminum flat pedals that are machined from billet.

Hope's aluminum flat pedals are still in prototype form but they're looking good

Hope's aluminum flat pedals are still in prototype form but they're looking good

Hydraulic brake systems get an overhaul, too, with revised pivot placement in the master cylinders that are said to improve power by 15% while boosting feel, too.

Hope says the new pivot placement on its hydraulic brake levers yields better feel and more power

Hope says the new pivot placement on its hydraulic brake levers yields better feel and more power

Deda adds lower-cost 35mm bar options, Monolink-compatible seatposts

Deda certainly stirred the pot with the introduction of its 35mm-diameter handlebar clamp standard last year but it's sticking to its guns, even adding a lower-cost M35 alloy bar option for 2012. Weight creeps up to 278g as compared to the M35 Carbon's 210g but the shape is nearly identical.

As has Ritchey and others, Deda has also developed its own Selle Italia Monolink-compatible seatpost to work with the increasingly popular narrow-format saddle fitment standard. Deda's Mnlink head is nearly identical to the original Selle Italia design with a cylindrical cradle and separate bolts for fore-aft and rotational adjustments. Claimed weight is 188g for a 31.6x350mm size.

Deda is adding fuel to the Selle Italia Monolink flame with its own compatible seatpost for 2012

Deda is adding fuel to the Selle Italia Monolink flame with its own compatible seatpost for 2012

It's not often that a company proudly flaunts one of its product as not conforming to UCI technical guidelines but that's just what Deda has done with its most interesting piece at Eurobike, the Bandito integrated aerobar. Though decidedly impractical – the straight extensions aren't adjustable in any way and there are no proper armrests – it certainly is striking with its sleek shape and very broad base bar depth that's upswept at the rear like wings on a Formula 1 car.

Curiously, Deda has also left the giant stem's face open to the wind instead of adopting a presumably more aero shape. Where is that incoming air supposed to go? Apparently out the ports located on the side of the stem – what benefit that might serve is a mystery to us but it's certainly intriguing.

Deda showed off this Bandito aerobar concept - which they readily admitted was very much non-UCI-legal

Deda showed off this Bandito aerobar concept - which they readily admitted was very much non-UCI-legal

Syncros adds carbon mountain bike wheels in both 26" and 29" diameters

Ritchey sister brand Syncros digs deeper into the carbon bin with two new FL Carbon mountain bike wheelsets, both using tubeless-ready, 19.5mm-wide (internal) rims and dual-row Enduro cartridge bearings in the company's own six-bolt hubs with 9mm quick-release or 15mm thru-axle front fitment options. Claimed weight is 1,492g for the 26" set and 1,558g for the 29ers.

Joining those new wheels are the new Flavor tires, which feature an angular, low profile knob design reminiscent of the Tetris video game. Tubeless-ready beads promise easy conversions and dual density rubber suggests good traction mixed with reasonable durability in hardpacked conditions. Claimed weights are 570g for the 26x2.1" size and 620g for the 29x2.25" version.

The Syncros Flavor tires feature a fast-rolling low-profile tread and are available in both 26x2.1in and 29x2.25in sizes

The Syncros Flavor tires feature a fast-rolling low-profile tread and are available in both 26x2.1in and 29x2.25in sizes

More carbon fiber is found in Syncros's new FL Carbon 15mm seatpost, built with (surprise) 15mm of offset in the twin-bolt head. The extra-long aluminum lower cradle can be flipped around for better rail support depending on saddle position. Syncros will offer the FL Carbon in three diameters and two lengths with the lightest option hitting the scales at a claimed 199g.

Finally, there's the new FL Carbon saddle, which reportedly weighs just 180g with its carbon-reinforced nylon shell and carbon fiber rails but is still fully padded with a microfiber cover for all-day comfort.

The new Syncros FL Carbon saddle uses carbon rails on its way to a 180g claimed weight

The new Syncros FL Carbon saddle uses carbon rails on its way to a 180g claimed weight

Tune continues to push the weight envelope

As usual, Tune's Eurobike booth was jam packed with shiny lightweight bits – and lots of people.

Highlighting the range for 2012 are a number of new wheels, including the 40mm-deep Schwarzbrenner carbon fiber road clinchers at 1,618g per pair, the incredibly light Tune AX carbon tubulars at an otherworldly 886g a set, and the 1,185g Tune Skyline RR aluminum tubulars.

Also new for 2012 are Schwarzbrenner MTB carbon tubulars weighing just 1,163 per pair and the redder-than-red Fire Brigade 29er aluminum clinchers at just 1,409g.

Tune had new seating products on display as well, including a 79g carbon fiber seatpost with Alcantara edging and a 110g seatpost built with a carbon shaft and lower cradle matched with aluminum upper clamps and titanium hardware.

Tune's KOMM-VOR+ saddle reportedly weighs just 79g with its bare carbon fiber shell and rails plus Alcantara applied to the rear edge

Tune's KOMM-VOR+ saddle reportedly weighs just 79g with its bare carbon fiber shell and rails plus Alcantara applied to the rear edge

New frame and second-tier component line from AX Lightness

AX Lightness showed off a brand-new carbon fiber road frame at this year's Eurobike show. Naturally, it was very light – 785g (claimed) for a 57cm size – but supposedly also very rigid, particularly up front, owing to the extra-wide BB386 Evo bottom bracket shell, the giant multi-sided down tube, and the tapered head tube.

AX Lightness also built the new frame with asymmetrical stays throughout while 3T provides the matching tapered carbon fiber fork.

Though AX Lightness is best known for its German-made ultralight carbon fiber bits, it has now launched a sub-brand called Engage that features Asian-made carbon fiber components plus other machined aluminum bits milled off-site but still in Germany.

The new Engage Pelton alloy mountain bike crankarms are built with an interchangeable 30mm-diameter alloy spindle that will work with either BB30 or BB386 Evo bottom brackets

The new Engage Pelton alloy mountain bike crankarms are built with an interchangeable 30mm-diameter alloy spindle that will work with either BB30 or BB386 Evo bottom brackets

The new Engage Pelton crankset features milled aluminum arms shaped in an I-beam profile and interchangeable spindle and spider configurations that will work for two-ring or three-ring road or mountain bike drivetrains along with a wide range of bottom bracket standards. Claimed weight for the arms, spindle, and bottom bracket is 430g.

The Gavial carbon fiber brakes are single pivot front and rear but specific geometry lends more power to the front stopper for shorter braking distances and a more balanced lever feel. Despite the ultralight 145g claimed weight (without pads), the deep-profile cross-sections and symmetrical loading design (akin to Campagnolo's old Monoplanar calipers) promise reasonable stopping power.

Rounding out the Engage collection are two road drop bars, a mountain flat and riser bar, and a two-bolt setback seatpost – all in carbon fiber.

AX Lightness's new Gavial carbon fiber road brakes – part of their new Engage line – feature front/rear-specific molded arms arranged in a single-pivot setup

AX Lightness's new Gavial carbon fiber road brakes – part of their new Engage line – feature front/rear-specific molded arms arranged in a single-pivot setup

KCNC's stunning cassette and intriguing clipless road pedals

Taiwanese component maker KCNC is always looking to push the envelope in terms of CNC machining and 2012 looks to continue the trend with some interesting cassette offerings that includes – of all things – an 11-speed mountain bike option and a 12-speed road variant.

Gearing options are very wide – up to 11-38T for the mountain bike cassette – using titanium cogs all attached to a star-shaped aluminum carrier milled to within microns of its life.

The back of KCNC's new cassette shows off the intricate machine work

The back of KCNC's new cassette shows off the intricate machine work

But about that 11-speed and 12-speed spacing?

KCNC didn't have any of the bits available at Eurobike to see but its 2012 catalog has rendering of the company's own shifter and derailleur designs that may presumably see the light of day sometime in 2012.

KCNC did show its new aluminum road bike clipless pedal system, however, which uses a Speedplay-like single-sided retention spring and a matching machined aluminum cleat. A novel three-sided mountain bike pedal is in development as well.

KCNC unveiled these CNC-machined road pedals (and cleats!) at this year's Eurobike show. Claimed weight is 73.5g per pedal

KCNC unveiled these CNC-machined road pedals (and cleats!) at this year's Eurobike show. Claimed weight is 73.5g per pedal

This article originally appeared on BikeRadar

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