A Few Last Hits

A Few Last Hits

Occasional contributor Vic Armijo joined us for the incredible shrinking show this year. His perspective and experience are always a great reminder to try to look at the world with fresh eyes—Padraig. 

#1
RETRO MODERN
To those of us with 30 or more Interbikes under our belt, a glimpse of this bike brought us back to Anaheim or even Long Beach (Interbike venues of the 90’s and 80’s). But no, it’s not an actual vintage Bottechia. But with its Columbus steel frame (with chrome lugs!), Turbo saddle and modern Campagnolo Gruppo, it’s a very fitting tribute to the days of yore.

#2
FRENCH TOAST!
In celebration of their new French Toast flavor, the folks at Gu set up a griddle and chafing dish and were making and serving up actual French toast. We suggest that next year they add a Peach Crepe flavor and follow suit.

#3
THE AGONY OF DA’ FEET
Somewhere in the process of moving Interbike from Las Vegas to Reno, the decision was made to not carpet the aisles. Spend a couple of long days walking around on concrete and your dogs will be howling!

#4
TI YOUR BIKE UP
The very fact that you’re reading this webpage tells us that you like own a bike (or two or three) that cost more than your first car. But do you carry a lock on that wonderbike? If you’re like most of us the answer is no—all that dough means minimum weight and who wants to ruin that with a heavy lock. The folks at TiGr have a pair of lightweight solutions in the form of their titanium locks. The TiGr Mini+ weighs just a pound, and the TiGrMini is even lighter at just .9 pounds. Either can be carried on your bike with a bracket that fits onto a frame’s water bottle bosses. Independent testing shows that these locks are just as effective as others that weigh up to three times as much. No lock is effective if you leave it home. Here are two that you won’t mind hauling along so that you can relax and enjoy your after-ride coffee or brewski instead of spending that time nervously swiveling your head toward your unlocked bike.

#5
HANK THE TANK
This guy was sort of the unofficial ambassador of Interbike. Everyone wants a photo of him or with him, and he seems completely indifferent to all the attention he gets. Hank belongs to Drew Hunter who’s brought this rig into I’bike before with the late Carl in the sidecar. Hank seems to be filling Carl’s paw prints admirably. 

#6
SKRATCH LABS’ SAVORY TREATS
After a long day in the saddle nibbling down fruity bars and blocks and swigging fruity drinks, it’s often nice to have a change of pace. That’s where Skratch Labs new savory flavored bars come in. Their new 200-210 calorie Savory Miso or Parmesan and Black Pepper bars will be a welcome respite from a sweet mouth. We could see these being a favorite backpacking and hiking snack as well. The folks at Skratch Labs were less than enthusiastic at our suggestion of Red Chile Enchilada or Liver N’ Onion flavors.

#7
SPEEDPLAY’S WORLD’S FASTEST PEDAL
Speedplay Pedals Richard Bryne shows off the limited edition “Nano” version of their Zero Aero pedal as used by Denise Mueller-Korenek last month when she set the paced cycling land speed record at Bonneville Salt Flats. The 45-year-old mother of three from Valley Center, California pedaled her specially designed KHS bicycle 183.932 mph.

The Zero Aero has a minimized frontal area, a golf-ball-like dimpled bottom surface, and a streamlined profile.  Speedplay added more alloy parts, a carbon body, and ceramic bearings to create the Nano, which will be released in limited numbers.

#8
BATCH’S CAMPSITE
In a hall full of standard booths with uninspired backdrops and displays, it was refreshing to see this cool, vintage Airstream trailer as the centerpiece at the Batch Bikes booth. It’s been converted to a combination show-inventory transport and booth showcase/meeting room. Well done!

#9
ROLF PRIMA’S BEST GETS BETTER

We were happily surprised to see Rolf Prima’s Ares 6 top-of-the-line TT wheels dressed in a variety of colors with matching graphics and hubs. But there’s more going on with the latest edition of Ares 6 wheels besides color options. The biggest change is that the Ares6 and Ares4 families will feature completely redesigned new, wider and tubeless compatible rims.

Rolf Prima’s latest edition of Ares 6 and Ares 4 wheels are also available with disc specific rims that since there’s no braking surface, are lighter than their rim-brake siblings, thus minimizing the weight penalty of using disc brakes instead of rim brakes.

#10
READY TO KICKBACK?
Who remembers the Bendix 2-Speed Kickback? It came in three styles. The ones with red or yellow painted bands came with a low, climbing gear, and the blue-band model had an overdrive gear. They were the cool thing to have back on your Schwinn Sting-Ray back in the 60’s and 70’s and they continue to be hard-to-find yet sought-after item for town bikes and restoration projects. Good news for those who don’t want to pay the current going rate of $175 for a well-functioning example—they’re being made again in India under a license with the current owners of the design. And no, they’re not being made with 60-year-old tooling. The Eagle Company was provided with the original technical drawings and created an all-new manufacturing line. First articles were shown in Reno and after CPSA testing, will reportedly be available in the US within the next 6 months. 

#11
ULTRA-MINIMALISM
Thirty years after its first iteration, Ritchey is re-introducing their Ultra model. And they did it the most understated way imaginable—with an unstaffed booth featuring just a backdrop, some dirt, and duff for atmosphere and a single, well-ridden example of the new Ultra with a single info placard in front of it. 

As if you needed to ask, yes, this latest Ultra is built out of Ritchey triple-butted, heat-treated steel Logic tubing. The rear hub spacing is 148mm with a 12mm bolt-up axle. For easy maintenance, the cables are all external. This $999 frame is built for versatility; run it with  29-inch or with 27-inch—it’s happy either way. 

#12
RETRO & MODERN
Swedish rack maker Thule had this oh-so-cool Thule-equipped 1950’s vintage Volvo 122s wagon atop their booth to contrast the modern VW wagon that was equipped with their latest roof box. On the cool scale, we think the Volvo far out rates the Veedub.

#13
WOODEN YOU LIKE A CLEAN RIDE?
No, this isn’t a 5-star dinner for a nest of termites. It’s a Felt bike with a wood-grain paint job done by Las Vegas-based Nick Lee. The folks at Smart Bike Washer used this bike as an attention-grabber to call attention to their innovative self-contained bike washing station that they hope will find its way into bike shops across the country. 

#14
TAKE A LOOK INSIDE…
Yes, it’s bike in a box—or more accurately—a tandem bike in a box. Tandems are fun, tandems are cool, but when it comes to traveling, tandems can be a real pain. Santana Tandems, the long-time innovator in tandem bicycles, has created this break-down model that comes with its own carrying case that falls well within the airlines’ baggage requirements. A Santana spokesperson said that most users will be able to transform their tandem from baggage status to riding status in about a half hour, and that some of their well-practiced staffers can achieve that feat in about half the time.

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2 comments

  1. Neil Winkelmann

    Bottechia is to die for.

    On locks: Our local cafe now offers loaner locks so you can enjoy a stress-free visit without having contemplate how you’d chase down a bike thief while wearing cleats.

  2. brooke

    ahhhh, scratch labs could bring out a special edition of Mad Magazine ice cream “flavors” of chickenfat ripple and lasagna chip…yum!

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