Category Archives: Product Review

Cermanic Speed is the future of road bike drive trains….WTF??

Dear Rouleurs,

MMT is still grappling with time poverty and sleep deprivation. With Bubba Mark 2, only 3 months away, MMT is beginning to think this will be a tough year. As harbinger of things to come, MMT watched Richmond’s AFL premiership hopes for 2019 nose dive last week. Alex Rance hobbled off the MCG with a season ending ACL injury. So AFL may not be a source of solace for the coming winter either. MMT digresses.

When MMT feels this out of sorts, thinking about buying a new bike always cheers MMT up. In the deep contemplation of road vs commuter vs gravel bikes as alternate replacements for MMT’s Venerable Wilier Laverdo, He re-discovered last years announcement from Ceramic Speed, a Danish bike components company.

Sometime in September 2017, ceramic Speed released a prototype road bike that contained a radical new drive train. This drive train based on a drive shaft rather than a chain meant that its power efficiency could reach 99%. That’s damn impressive and could give a rider a very significant speed advantage over his chain equipped competitors.  According to Ceramic Speed, a standard chain based drive train, like Shimano Durace has a maximum efficiency of 97%.

All of this is achieved by a pinion style drive shaft system. A total of 21 bearings play a crucial role in the functionality and efficiency of Driven. The bearings transfer torque from the front ring through the drive shaft, then onto the 13-speed rear cog.

Engineering aside, it looks amazing, like something out of a science fiction movie. MMT …sooooo… wants a bike that has this. No doubt this will cost big bucks when its eventually productionised and available to mug punters like MMT.

MMT could imagine Dave Brailsford, Manager of the team formerly known as Sky, signing up for this. One wonders how Shimano, Campagnolo and SRAM will respond to this incredible looking piece of engineering. All of this speculation cheered up MMT no end.

Until Next time, Ride safe

MARV

Post-holiday angry rant part 3 – coffee cup thievery

Dear Rouleurs,

This blog will be the 3rd and final instalment of MMT’s angry rant series.  MMT can’t possibly maintain the rage for longer than a week, well not without really hurting someone 😉  So this angry rant is dedicated to the dickhead who nicked my Sttoke reusable coffee cup at work. For those of you that are unfamiliar with this astonishingly good and seemingly unbreakable cup, this is what they look like.

 

To the thief who heisted MMT’s cup – May you, your children and their children be cursed to drink appalling US-style coffee for the rest of their lives. 

MMT, replaced his black Sttoke with white one and wrote his fucking name and mobile phone number on it.  May be that will discourage further thievery.

Until next time, ride safe

MMT

Oh no, oh no, oh no….my Zonda rims are cracked

Dear Rouleurs,

MMT had a dreadful trip to his friendly neighbourhood bike shop, Good Bikes’ last week.  MMT’s venerable Wilier was making a few awful noises from the vicinity of the bottom bracket.  May be it needed replacing as it had been ridden on for nearly six years.  Similarly the left pedal was behaving very weirdly under power.  All in all, it seemed high time for a service.

So MMT rode his Wilier to work and dropped the bike off.  A few minutes of explanation ensured.  The mechanic, Nathan, was advised to ring me if the price of repairs was exceeding $300.  Nathan called MMT a few hours later and his news left MMT aghast.  Apparently the rear rim was showing signs of cracking and needed replacing…..crap….Keep in mind that these were the $800 Campagnolo Zondas, bought just over 2 and half years ago.

Fortunately, MMT had kept the original Fulcrum rims.  MMT had spent a frustrating Saturday afternoon, a few weeks ago, fitting spoke reflectors and had intended to use these as his winter wheels.  So the Wilier stayed at the shop, until the old rims were retrieved and fitted. Nathan showed MMT the cracks and MMT was horrified at what he saw.

MMT reckons he’s done about 15,000km on these rims and can’t believe how these stress fractures have occurred. For starters, they are all on non-cassette side of the rim. One of them has cracked clean through, with clear daylight visible. MMT can only shudder at the thought of what may have happened had the spokes given way entirely.

MMT is not a happy camper…

Until next time, ride safe.

MMT

Product Review: Bontrager Velocis Helmet

Dear Roulers,

Its been awhile since MMT has put together a product review. MMT has bought literally hundreds if not thousands of dollars of new kit for his cycling addiction since his last review. Lazy, lazy, lazy…however, one of the pieces he did buy, that really stood out was his new helmet.

First spied on the heads of the Trek-Segafredo racers in the 2017 Tour de France, it obvious that the Bontrager Velocis MIPs helmet looks very different from the previous model. The new model has received something of an aerodynamic facelift – and in MMT’s opinion, it looks awesome.

     
 Back View  Side View  Front View

According to some reviews that MTT read, the new version Bontrager Velocis MIPS now:

  • looks rounder than previous ones but has kept the same teardrop shape at the rear, and
  • the cluttered venting of the previous model has been replaced with a more sophisticated and uniform pattern of vents.

Three sizeable channels help push airflow through and out the back help keep the rider cool when riding. In fact, when the helmet is on the rider’s head the space for air is visibly large.  It is impressive to see an aero helmet that doesn’t compromise heat management. In fact, MMT wonders if he’ll need to wear a woollen cap under this helmet in winter given the effectiveness of the vents.  MMT digresses..

The fit of the helmet has also been reworked, and the Velocis now comes with a two-way Boa Dial, for a greater degree of fit flexibility. It brings the same minute adjustment as it does on shoes and minimises pressure points – although these do vary depending on the shape of your head.

MMT has read reviews that the fit may be an issue for smaller heads or those that split the sizing gaps (54cm, 56cm, 58cm). Fortunately, MMT’s ‘moon’-sized head didn’t suffer from this issue.  He has found the length of the straps a bit irritating, with the ‘leftover’ chin strapping requiring  a careful pre-ride tucking in.

MMT’s biggest gripe… and honestly its pretty minor in the scheme of things…, with the helmet, is that given its price, $AUD 265, its  weight of 284g, is really heavy.  There are much cheaper and lighter helmets on the market.

That aside MMT luurrvvves his new helmet. Now that winter is coming and daylight savings has ended, he’s a bit annoyed that it really dark on his evening commute.  He’ll have to swap back to his old Specialized helmet that has a 650  lumen spotlight fitted.  MMT give this helmet 4 and half Marvs.

Until next time, ride safely.

Marv