Coil sprung forks, crisp pedals, wooly jumpers, aural buddies, gripping 'shrooms, holy saddles and ting
Hot stuff: what we’re excited about this month: coil sprung forks, crisp pedals, wooly jumpers, aural buddies, gripping ‘shrooms, holy saddles and ting.
Marzocchi Z1 Coil, £779
Two years ago, Marzocchi launched its comeback fork with the Z1 — a fork that relied heavily on Fox technology and that proved solid and dependable, if uninspiring. This year there’s a new coil-sprung version of the Z1, something we reckon is a smart move from Marzocchi and could expand its fan base.
The Z1 appealed to riders who want a fit-and-forget fork, something dependable enough to ride at bike parks, their local woods and maybe a week in the Alps. Throwing a coil into the mix makes a whole lot of sense then, adding weight but crucially comfort too when you’re lapping the bike park. The fork comes with the GRIP damper, which uses a gold sweeping dial to adjust both the high speed and low speed compression damping.
Marzocchi has made the Z1 Coil rider friendly too, with the spring assembly available separately after-market. That means if you bought the Z1 you can convert it for £205 for the spring and plunger kit, with the damper side remaining unchanged. Anyone with a Fox 36 Rhythm series fork that came stock on their bike can also slide the coil spring into the chassis, making it a pretty potent upgrade for much less than the cost of a new fork.
The Z1 Coil sits in a 36mm chassis, and comes in a range of travel options in 10mm increments from 150mm (29er only) up to 180mm (27.5in only). Naturally there’s a preload for the sping on the top cap, meaning you can compress the fork into its travel slightly and make it plusher off the top. And the weight penalty? The whole fork weighs 2,525g, Marzocchi says, making it 250-350g heavier than the air-sprung Z1. Is it better than the MRP Ribbon, Cane Creek Helm and Ohlins RXF coil forks? Time, and this magazine, will tell – look out for a review.
Carder TwoTwelve Pedal, £94.99
Carder is an engineering firm from Exmoor that’s been making medical equipment for decades, but with a passion for bikes from the founding brothers there are now plans to take its expertise to the mountain bike world. Its first product is the TwoTwelve pedal — CNC’d from a solid aluminium billet of aluminium, and with a cr-mo heat-treated and coated axle they look and feel incredibly well made. The edges are crisp and perfectly finished, the axles spin with just the right amount of resistance, and there’s even a little etched L and R to help you put them on the correct side.
Carder has used 6082 T6 aluminium where most of the competition uses 6061 T6, meaning it should be marginally stronger and more resistant to corrosion. Flat pedals work best when they’re designed to form a cradle for your foot, and thankfully this pedal has a nice concave shape, with 12 pins per side for grip. Inside there are two Igus bushings and two bearings per pedal for durability. There are six colours to choose from and a pair weighs 425g.
The TwoTwelve is impressive start for Carder, here’s hoping their next new product is as scalpel sharp as the first.
Koo Edge goggles, £129.99
Roadie eyewear brand Koo has launchd its first MTB product, the Edge goggle – it’s built around a Zeiss Optics lens that’s easily replaceable without any smudging, Koo says. Three lens options, two frame colours and a clear lens featuring D:fog technology too.
The World Stage 3, £17.00
The World Stage 3 is a filmic rundown of the 2019 Enduro World Series season, including the Trophy of Nations race. Just like mbr, it’s an essential coffee table reading for anyone with an interest in mountain biking.
Ride Concepts Powerline, £134.95
The Powerline is Ride Concepts’ top end flat pedal shoe, clad in the brand’s softest DST 4.0 rubber it promises superlative grip. There’s a welded microfiber upper for weather proofing, and you get D30 impact protection with the insole and around the collar.
Smith Session, £139.99
Smith’s Session helmet has new colours for 2020, eight in total, and still boasts light and POV camera compatibility both Koroyd and MIPS protection, and a three-position visor. it sits mid-pack in the Smith helmet range, so gets plenty of the safety tech without the premium price-tag.
FunGuy Grip, £16.99
The FunGuy Grip from Fabric uses two texture, mushroom and micro-hex to optimise comfort and drip. There’s a single lock-on clamping each grip, a close end, and like most Fabric grips they measure up at 31mm diameter.
Deity Speedtrap, £54.99
Deity has partnered with SDG (makers of the excellent Bel Air) to craft its new Speedtrap saddle. It’s big and wide at 280x140mm, Deity makes the foam mould, it comes with cro-mo or Ti rails and features Kevlar sides to the synthetic covers. Nine colour options.
Skullcandy Vert Clip-Anywhere Wireless Earbuds, £69.99
Skullcandy’s new Vert Clip-Anywhere Wireless Earbuds are designed to be sweat and water resistant so you can listen to your music while you ride. It uses Bluetooth to connect to your phone, lasts up to 10 hours on a charge and the buttons work with gloves too.
Endura BaaBaa baselayer, £44.99
Enduro reckons the BaaBaa Blend baselayer offers the best of both Merino wool and synthetic fibres to keep you odour-free, warm and dry. Machine washable, made from 80 per cent Lyocell, 20 per cent non-mulesed merino.
Muc-Off Ultimate Tubeless Setup Kit, £40.00
If you’re going tubeless this year then all you need to convert your tubeless-ready rims is contained in the Muc-Off Ultimate Tubeless Setup Kit — tim tape, seal patches for punctures, two valves and two pouches what we reckon is the best sealant.