2013 Interbike, Part 5


Mavic is back in the pedal game. Yes, I know it looks like a Time pedal. They make it under contract for Mavic. Unlike previous Mavic pedals, this one weighs less than a bunch of grapes and has more cornering clearance than a little boy’s hips.


Guru has introduced a new frame, the Photon HL. While a great many manufacturers lead with frame weight, Guru has something a bit different. The Photon HL comes in custom geometry. Only custom geometry.


The layup work belongs to an emerging cohort of carbon builders—it’s an exceedingly short list; the only other ones I’ve seen so far are Alchemy and Argonaut. The frame is bejeweled with tiny pieces of carbon that speak to layup work that isn’t just deliberate, it’s artful.


For me, this frame was the single biggest revelation of the show.


Enve introduced some new budget-oriented builds for the 25s, 45s and 65s. They sourced different spokes and hubs without changing the rims in order to bring the cost down.


Enve also introduced a new set of disc brake hubs that are now an option for the SES series wheels.


Currently, there aren’t that many options for aerodynamic carbon wheels with disc brakes, but then maybe that’s because the demand for them isn’t quite what it is for carbon fiber frames.


Moots introduced a new model, the rather aptly named Vamoots Disc Road. It’s a gravel grinder that was gifted great tire clearance and disc brakes.


It’s spec’d with an Enve fork with a steerer that tapers from 1 1/8″ to 1 1/2″ for great strength and precise steering.


The folks at Moots made a battery holder for the Di2 battery to place it inside the seatpost. The build used a Dura-Ace Di2 group combined with Shimano’s new road disc brakes. One of my favorite bikes of the show.


If all you ever do is write about road bikes, you miss out on stuff like this cruiser from Electra. It’s as much a fashion statement as it is transportation, but it’s a fun chance to point out that we, as dedicated cyclists, can incorporate a city bike into our lives for running errands and it can make a fun and entertaining statement at the same time.


When I was a kid I wanted to replace the grips on my Raleigh Chopper with some cool ones that sparkled. These orange ones from Electra would have been ideal. They speak to the many accessories that Electra produces that not only look good but often trade on a bit of nostalgia, and while I’m not a big fan of nostalgia, this is one time when it’s not just harmless, it’s fun.


The Electra electric Townie goes for less than many road bikes. At $2200, it’s not cheap, but this bike, and others of its ilk, is probably our best shot at recruiting more people into cycling. As the roads become ever more clogged with cars, we need all the sympathy and allies we can find. Electric bikes may be our best shot at making more friends.

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The Townie comes with a dynamo front hub that powers a headlight. Nifty feature.


Focus unleashed a new road bike, the Izalco Max. This new bike is less a revision of the Izalco than a whole new bike. They’ve trimmed the tube shapes to just the structural essentials. It’s interesting that as bike engineers become more knowledgeable about bike design certain elements become more and more consistent, such as tiny seatstays, round top and down tubes and tapered forks.


This bike may look a bit familiar. Gone are any unusual tube shapes and the seatstays have been shrunken to not much more than the thickness of a pinky for good reason; those tiny stays do make the ride more comfortable.


What did surprise me about the new Izalco Max was just how tiny the fork blades were. My first guess would be that this fork would be comfortable but not handle well, but I’m told it has the precise steering we’ve come to expect from bikes ridden at the WorldTour level.

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  1. Matt

    Is there any reason to get excited about the Mavic pedals? It doesn’t seem to make the market any more diverse if the only thing different about them (vs. Time pedals) is the logos.

    1. Author

      Matt: Fair question. One to which I do not yet have an answer. The presentation I got was brief. If we get a set for review, that will give me the opportunity to consider them against Time’s own work.

  2. brndll

    You really forgot about Crumpton Cycles already? Nick does custom layup, and custom geometry and has done so for longer than anyone you mentioned… including the Guru you noted as “the single biggest revelation of the show”.

    1. Author

      Brndll: No, I did not forget about Crumpton. There are a few significant differences between what Guru is doing and what Crumpton is doing. Guru builds on a scale that Crumpton can’t approach and last I knew Nick was still working with tubes he purchases elsewhere, whereas Guru does all of their own layup work. I like and respect Nick, but it’s hard to report on his work in an Interbike post if he isn’t there. So yes, the Guru was the single biggest revelation of the show. They were actually at the show and the only other bike in that class at the show was an Argonaut in the ENVE booth, and I just recently did a post on Argonaut, so that work wasn’t exactly a revelation.

  3. brndll

    Nick is making his own tubes now… you should drop him a line and see what he is up to. Scale is one difference I can see. I don’t know if Interbike is his kind of show but with that said, he did have a couple of bikes at Interbike on display for Fair Wheel Bikes. Ok, carry on.

  4. jim

    Guru should focus on their frame breakage rate; I know that anecdotes don’t rise to the level of data, but I’ve heard of more than a few…

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