This article originally appeared on BikeRadar
Innovation is alive and well at e*thirteen. At this year’s Sea Otter Classic, e*thirteenshowed off a new line of carbon fiber cranks, a radical EXP extended-range cassette and even some clever new chain guides.
New EXP cassette offers massive 9-42t range
Most buzzworthy was the new EXP cassette, which fits on the same XD driver body as a SRAM XX1 cluster but offers an even greater 9-42t gear ratio spread. Key to the expanded range is the novel cassette configuration. At least on the prototype shown, e*thirteen machines the largest three cogs from a single block of aluminum, which is then affixed to the driver body with a cylinder-like lockring.
The new e*thirteen EXP cassette will be made in both 10-speed and 11-speed configurations, both with a massive 9-42t range
From there, the additional six (or seven) steel cogs are attached directly to the machined aluminum spider via a rather clever twist-and-lock interface – not unlike how a lens is attached to an SLR-style camera.
The new EXP cassette is still in prototype form and there are lots of answered questions, such as how well it’ll shift, how much it weighs, and how well it’ll wear. The idea of a truly wide-range cassette option for existing 10-speed drivetrains is very enticing, though, and we certainly wouldn’t mind another option for 1x11 users, either. Stay tuned.
The new cassette features some rather clever engineering. Unfortunately, we weren't allowed to show you the really juicy bits
Carbon cranks on the way
E*thirteen also showed off two new cranksets: the trail/enduro-oriented TRSr and the downhill-approved LG1r, both of which use the same hollow carbon fiber crankarms but with different-length 30mm-diameter aluminum spindles.
The new carbon cranks from e*thirteen are supposedly quite light but very tough
E*thirteen has yet to finalize either model’s claimed weight but says they’ll fall roughly in between the latest Shimano XTR and Race Face Next SL cranks, which would put them at around 500g or so. Likewise, retail prices are yet to be determined. E*thirteen says both cranksets will be available some time this winter.
Accompanying the new crankarms are update Guidering direct-mount chainrings, which now use forged-and-machined construction for better durability plus a sleeker all-black finish to replace the previous version’s partially raw look.
The Guidering direct-mount chainrings get updated with an all-black look and forged-and-machined construction that should wear better than the original
New chain guides
Finally, there are also a couple of new chain guides on the way.
The updated TRS+ model features a dual-density upper guide and a polycarbonate mini-bashguard while the downhill-targeted LG1+ tacks on an additional lower roller guide and a markedly beefier bash plate.
The new chain guides are built around aluminum backplates with extra-long ISCG05 slots to accommodate a wide range of frame and drivetrain setups
Both are built around thick aluminum backplates with extra-long ISCG05 slots to accommodate a wide range of frame and drivetrain configurations. According to e*thirteen, the new dual-density sliders and rollers run quieter than before while the new plastics used throughout are also more resistant to the aggressive solvents often found in dry chain lubes so they won’t get brittle over time.
Another particularly neat feature on both is the quick-release upper guide, which opens up with the flick of a finger for easier chainring swaps and maintenance.
The upper guides flip open for easier maintenance
Both of the new guides should arrive in stores in about a month. Retail price for the TRS+ is US$90; the LG1+ will cost US$150.