Can't See the Hammer for the Trees

OK, enough hammer, back on the horse:

Tree Bike Co are the legendary little guys of bmx. They only make new shit when it's better than the old shit, they don't advertise much so just rely on the quality of their stuff to sell itself, they don't do gimmicks, and they should be the heros of anyone that rides bmx and has ever laid hands on any lathe or some kind of rudimentary milling set up.

Their most recent bit of machinemanship is to be a stem they've done with the help of Super Rat Machine Works. At the risk of waving a red flag to the nothing-is-new-that-was-done-in-84 crowd, I'm saying that this stem features a new clamping system.

I can't tell you exactly how it works, but I can try to tell you exactly how I think it works. Will that do? I'd say the collar that goes around your fork steerer is slightly larger than the cavity that it sits in, so as the top and bottom pieces of the stem are tightened, the collar finds space by contracting in on itself and clamps your steerer in the process. Of course your bars are also clamped by the two bits of the stem body.

That was a shit description, but it's all I've got. Hopefully you get what I'm talking about, and hopefully what I'm talking about is what actually happens. Do you ever feel like you're wasting your time reading this? You could always go back and watch that MC Hammer clip in my last post.

Anyway, here's some pictures of the Stem With No Name and some captions from Sam Tree himself:

One stem. Three pieces. Four bolts. High Five!

He had some other captions for here, but the first one was better

I once had a hand in designing a stem.
It was shit.

Well... I didn't actually design one, I just made an almost entirely unresolved sketch. And although it may well have turned out to be shit if it was ever made, the shittiness that I'm refering to is that it attempts to solve a problem that I don't really even think really is a problem. You see, I had a friend who had an idea to design a stem that slotted onto your steerer so that your bars were all nice and straight. Of course people have been putting handlebars onto bikes for years and you don't often hear someone complaining that they just can't get their bars straight, but working on the principal that my hunches are very often wrong and just being generally keen to draw some bike stuff, I had a go and came up with this:

It's based around Superstar's Neutral fork which has an internally fluted steerer tube, but is probably too complicate to bother even trying to manufacture, especially when you consider that even 0.1mm slop in any of the fits would probably be amplified to a really noticeable amount of movement in the bars. My friend didn't like it and so together we came up with this:

That one might have been a little more realistic, and could have been done by machining a really slight groove down the sides of the steerer rather than the fluting that I sketched. But really you're probably just complicating things without really adding much other than the possibility that due to some slight error in jig set up or whatever, you'd end up making bars that locked on crooked to the steerer. That said one of the advantages of this idea is that the stem could come with two sets of wedges - with or without tabs - so it would also work without the slotted fork.

Anyway, whay am I posting all this? Well, apart from trying to make things a little more interesting, I'd been thinking that the Shola stem which was around at InterBike might be trying for something similar with what looks like little grub screws on the clamping collar:

And while we're talking stems, I may as well try to make up for some recent slackness by posting up the current incarnation of T1's Cyclops stem that was also around at InterBike. But that's it, I'm all outta stem news:

Here Come the Hammer...

Hey, long time no blog. How you been?

I admit that a week between blogs is pathetic, but I've been busy man. Take for example the fact that I recently formed a band named Hammer that are poised to set eyebrows on fire all over the globe. Said forming also included the development of a marketing strategy for the band involving popularising new slang uses of the word "hammer" such as "Mirra is all hammer on that special flip", or "Sergio's new tyre looks the hammer":

Truth be told, that whole Hammer thing only required a couple of mis-spent saturday evening hours and that the infrequent blogging thing is probably more about the fact that on this side of the world clocks have gone forward, we get an extra hour of light and after work sessions are back. Anyway tune in to see how that goes, but in the mean time, here come the Hammer:

The Odyssey

Odyssey have written a novel.

Odyssey actually haven't written a novel, but they have put together an encyclopedic product catalogue with a word count unprecedented by any bmx publication to date. I wonder who they think is going to read all those words? The BMX acedemia? I have a fairly high tolerance for that kind of stuff, but I've got to say, lost heart pretty quickly. That said, it's probably not so suited to an online experience. In hardcopy it'd be sure to be a thing of beauty - there's lots of nice photos and artwork, little tech diagrams and cut-away sections... and words, lots of words.

As said, amongst the words there are some photos of their new stuff:

This is their Chainwheel sprocket. I saw this from the InterBike coverage of their stand, but didn't really know what to say about it. It just kind of looked unfinished and I didn't really understand why they wanted to add a bad looking sprocket that kind of has a milled-in-your-grandads-back-shed feel to it, to their range of really dope sprockets. But the answer to all question are to be found within the pages of the Odyssey encyclopedia. If you make it through the 500 word intro, you'll find that it's actually supposed to look bad. At least it's supposed to look like a chainwheel / spider set up of yesteryear. Fair enough.

Anyway let's offset these negative vibes with some afore mentioned "dope" sprocket imagery:

Awwwww - that's more like it! They've updated the Vermont sprocket and are calling it the Burlington. And that's a 25 tooth, in gold and looking rad. Apparently they've changed the tooth profile on this and the Chainwheel sprockets to something they're calling an Incisor tooth profile. And that's pretty much how it looks.

Pedals. While we're talking pedals it should be noted that you actually would need an encyclopedia to keep up with the number of colourways that you can get Odyssey's PC pedals in. This may, or may not be the newest edition added to that list:

That's also gold in case you didn't catch it. I have no idea how many colour variation these pedals have seen in the couple of years since they've become the pedal of choice for just about everyone, but my guess would be 23. Just sounds about right. I'd also guess that somewhere out there is a Ody PC freaker who has a cupboard full of bagged up mint editions of every colour ever released. Definitely. In fact, if you are that guy, could you please fill me in on the official total?

I suppose you can't count these as straight PCs, but you can definitely count me in for a pair. And of course they're set to open up a whole new world of pedal mixin'n'matchin:

JC PC's. That's a lot of little piec-es.

But Jim, while I've got you here: What's with the crappy 3rd wave tube photos in this flip book? You've managed to focus on just about everything but the fucking tubes!

Anyway, I don't want to get on Jim's bad side, so I'll leave that. But you think there would be a few 3rd wave frames lying around the Sunday offices and it might be worth actually snapping a decent photo - I mean Adam managed alright.

Anyway, in amongst the shoes, tyres, promotional displays and whatnot in focus was what looked like... wait for it... a new PC pedal colourway. Camo, it seems. That is new isn't it? So at least some good came from it.

I think that's more than enough.

Gold Soundz

It's Saturday.

And I just heard that Pavement are re-forming.
And doing shows in Melbourne.

I know you don't care but...

So drunk in the August sun
And you're the kind of girl I like
Because you're empty
And I'm empty...

Gold soundz.

American Metal

If you're a machine head, or even just somewhat mechanically inclined, you'll appreciate this:

There's a flipbook up on FBM with all the detail of their new Steadfast trails frame. The frame looks damn nice and has the added bonus of coming with a cast pewter headtube badge. But really I just wanted an excuse to lift that photo and put it here. There's just something about it isn't there? Precision metal, ready for some precision weldsmanship, and just a few hours away from being someone's object of desire. Nice.

And here's another nice one for the mechanically inclined - the making of a Fit DLR stem. Along with the precision metal, this even has the added nicety of couple of bad-asses doing there thing.There's Van Homan disregarding his personal safety and flicking the bars 6 feet up, as well as some anodiser doing the dip and filling his lungs with hydrogen and sulfuric acid fumes all in a self-less quest to feed the colour machine. Enjoy:

Van Homan will save... Fit?

So Van Homan put out a statement with his word on the whole Fit situation. It was pretty long and he said some things. But what really comes through is that the guy is not only a hard ass, but humble, loyal and smart - that's a combo that you really can't fault and a reminder how the word "pro" is short for professional - not promotional tool.

Anyway, you've got the option for the Defgrip or TheComeUp flavoured version, but it's only the comments that taste different.

Just sticking with the drama for a moment. Then came the news that Sean McKinney, who's been at S&M for ten years, had quit. Apparently to pursue a career being photographed wearing Cult shirts... or something:

Turned out that was bullshit.

Really it's a great little soap opera isn't it - like a little daytime bmx drama. Of course there's more, and there'll be more, and more.
And more.

But what about this guy with the OG Cult set up? It was a good name - he knew it was. So he went ahead and registered and has been socially-networking like a man possessed. Now finally all that hard work is paying off and the AdSense chickens are coming home to roost.

But really, you can get some valuable information about "BMX bikes" over there at Apparently they have the have "exact steering mechanisms to be able to perform tricks and stunts specifically and precisely" - Nice. But beware "they can be adventurous, dangerous and loads of fun as long as the individual uses the proper safety measures". Disclaimer right there.

Anyway, do the dude a favour and click a bunch of ads while you're over there - he might just have a little legal battle on the horizon.

Angry Space Invaders

100 posts in 6+ months. Blog slackness.

Anyway, no slacking at Odyssey. They've got a new site up. I still can't find anything, but at least I'm getting lost more quickly - if you get what I mean. Death to Flash I say... or whatever god forsaken program created that old site.

So they've also put up some more info on their Quadrant rim and have been good enough to including a good old fashioned section pic:

The Quadrant: 420g of cheapness and cheer

As you can see the Quadrant rim is an innocent and optimistic character just doing his best to keep everyone happy. At 420 grams he's light and being a simple pin jointed fellow, he doesn't have the ego that some of those welded rims have. I mean, just have a look at 'em, giving everyone attitude like a couple of angry space invaders:

The Hazard Lite: 500g, hazardous, light, with a chip on his shoulder

The 7-KA: 453g... 7 and K with an A

If you'd like to read something about these rims that makes sense, you're probably best off going here.


I'm in Australia. Most of you are on the other side of the world. You probably have no idea, and possibly no interest, about what's happening down here. If you have absolutely no interest, now is the time to change the channel, cause I'm going to drop a little Australiana on ya!

First up there's a company that you might, or might not know, called Tempered Bikes. They've got a small but perfectly formed product catalogue at the moment - frames, bars, forks, seats - but there's also a load of 2010 stuff about to turn up and I'll be posting it up when it does.

Then there's Focal Point which is a Melbourne based website, but pretty much covering the whole Australian scene. If you were a somewhat regular reader of TCU you'd probably have come across links to the Focal Point mag that they put out quaterly, as well as edits and trailers for their DVDs .

My mind is continually blown with the amount of work that the dude who runs it puts in. The mag, the site, videos, interviews, reviews - relentless. In the past it was pretty much just a zine that you could pick up for free in bike shops. You can still get it in hardcopy, and still reads like a no-bullshit zine, but the quality of the photos and layout just gets more and more pro all the time. These days they've even gone all Issuu on your ass:

Amongst the truck load of stuff on Focal Point there's a recent Top Fives type-thing with Jimmy Rostlund from who designs for Simple Bikes. It's at the bottom of the page here. If you missed the BMXtec interview that I did with Jimmy, you can check that here.

While we are talking flipbooks and work loads, James Wade out of Adelaide in South Australia is a busy man looking after a forum called Ugzine, a blog by the name of Stay Fresh Yo!, and clothing brand called Dishonour. And he puts out rad photo flips.

A little Dishonourable goodness

To round it off there is Nightfall Bike Co out of Northern Queensland - which if you don't know it, is just about the most Australian part of Australia. If you wanted proof of that you'd only have to check their blog to see them spinning the bars on some weird object that looks like it's in the middle of nowhere, or actually spinning them in the middle of nowhere. Or you could check this post. That's Australiana.

Nightfall's Level frame - hit up their eBay shop

Nightfall's Killuminati sprocket

PC or not PC?

David at Fly has posted up some more info about the plastic Ruben pedals, so if you've been wondering if Fly were going to bring something new to the PC pedal table, have a listen to what he's got to say:
"We wanted to make a plastic pedal with the same thin shape as the Ruben aluminum ones so we searched for a harder material to achieve that. After some testing we found a new compound out of nylon and fiber glass that we call “graphite” which is harder than the material currently used on other plastic pedals. These new pedals are only 1mm. thicker than the aluminum ones on each side so the feeling is the same as the alumium ones.

Other detail on these pedals are how grippy they are. We used coned 3 x 3mm. Squared pins that are grippier than rounded ones. And since this material is harder, the knurling on the whole pedal surface is sharper. Of course still the aluminum ones are grippier but the difference is not much…The low profile makes them really light as well with a a weight of 360grs. / 12.6 oz. per pair."
How new is that? They're not PC. That is, they're not molded in poly carbonate, they're graphite. Well... they're not actually graphite either, they're glass filled nylon. So what the hell is that? Here's a little something, lifted from somewhere:
"Nylon ® is significantly strengthened by the addition of glass-fibers. The added glass provides stability & rigidity, but reduces the non-lubricated wear properties. 30% glass filled nylon has 200% better strength than general purpose nylon but it is highly abrasive and will abraid or gall mating surfaces."
"Abraid or gall mating surfaces" - Careful, that's your shoe man!

Though if you're counting grams, they will have the additional pull of being the lightest (don't quote me) freestyle pedals on the market and regardless of possible abraiding or galling to the soles of my Orchids, I'll be tossing up between a pair of these and Odyssey's JC PCs. It's that recurring dilema: "superior grip v.s possible shin carnage". It's hard isn't it? Life. Just one big decision after another. Fortunately these wont be dropping till December, so all fretting and obsessing can be postpone till then.

Edit: OK, they're not the lightest. These probably are, but really? As for the titanium thing, can you count pedals with ti spindles as freestyle pedals?

Holy Fit!

So to not have heard this news already you would have to be living in a non-wi-fi enabled cave or something. That is, the super-team is no more – Fit have split.

Tunney is well and truly on the ball and has already posted up a Fit obituary. Yeah OK, so it’s not really an obituary, since Fit ain’t dead and they’ve still got a legendary team, but it's pretty obvious that it's the new breed riders that keep the new breed dollars rolling in and it seems like all that is going to change. Moeller is going to have to pull a big, gold plated rabbit out of somewhere to keep Fit’s momentum going.

And then there's the rumours of a cult… at least of a new brand headed by Robbie called “Cult”. Really, if that is the name, you’ve got to give it to him for piss-take value, especially since the irony of it would be lost on the majority of kids that flock straight to it. And born-agains are usually pretty quick to renounce their bad old ways, so you gotta wonder what the hell is going to happen to all that old Fit stuff once the kids start worshipping the new Cult? Ebay glut.

Alright, so that was a bit of bullshit, but now for some semi, halfway, tenuously, somewhat related news. Lotek have a look at some new pair of samples up on their page:

Yep, looking nice, and you can also check Rich and Hoder talking the talk on some of the new Lotek stuff here.

BUT, while we're talking shoes, here's a little something from InterBike:

There is a new BMX specific brand of footwear called Almond that's about to drop. It was launched at Interbike and apparently the money behind it is from a "German brand of BMX frames" and the designers behind it are FBDesign who do work for Etnies, Es, Emerica, IPATH and Burton. So the credentials are there, looks like the colourways are there, hopefully there's some quality to match.

Zen Minimalism, Metal and Death

Well InterBike's out of the way and I managed to get through about 1/100th of stuff that was on show, but you can bet your titanium Ratchet axle that there'll be a flood of re-caps and reviews, reminders and re-launches coming up - so it ain't over yet.

I never did get round to saying anything about the morsels on offer at the Fly booth at InterBike and they've already posted up their re-cap. So you could check that here, or bear with me while I pick out the tasty bits:

So that's basically how it all looked - flat colours on white, simple graphics. Translated, the names of the frames and forks are Moon, Lakes, Mountains, Earth and Water. All very minimal and zen. But then, of course, there's the Pantera, which is more metal and death, but hey, you gotta stick with the classics.

That said, the Pantera forks are no more. And neither are the Tierras. Instead Fly'll only be making the Agua forks - the ones with the investment cast dropouts. And speaking of discontinued models, there was no sign of the Campillo frame on their stand either. I'm not sure whether or not this means my current ride is now officially an antique, but since it was one of the lighter frames going around (4.3 lbs) it'd be interesting in that it would be another manufacturer joining WeThePeople in moving away from lighter weight frames. Yeah, sounds doubtful.

Another fairly doubtful scenario is the mass re-emergence of brakes and that's just not going to happen until Fit's street kids put 'em back on. Regardless, Fly just keep pumping out brake related stuff - which is admirably untrendy:

Just a bunch of brake pads? Yeah, I suppose so, but apparently they're a different compound and are a bit fatter so you've got more rubber on rim, and they use a female bolt system to keep them looking tidy. Also the curved adjustment surfaces are integrated into the bolt and the pad so you've got a couple of less washers to faff about with. Incidentally Odyssey have just posted up some new pads and cables and are saying that the clear pads work the best for painted rims. So there you go.

Rigid straddle cable = less flex and easier set up.

Possibly the most boring photo I have ever posted, but anyway, it's a close up of their Spanish removable mount set up that Sergio explained in a web vid not long ago.

They dropped a new sprocket at InterBike as well - The Circulo. What did I tell you ... Zen.

The red stem pictured is a new topload stem. And like superstar they seem to be suggesting that you should run it upside down. Bottom load stems are officially hot right now.

And lastly, but definitely not least, a chance to have a decent look at the PC Ruben pedals. Fly are pretty much the last to jump on board with PCs, but at least they're not just hijacking a Wellgo and calling it Sliced Bread.

So in homage to the pedal, to the man, to the middle name of my first born, to no-footer to flatty wall rides (@1:11) and to Built to Spill:

That's Low Bro!

A few days ago Obama became the first US president to chair the UN security council and try to ban the bomb, then Stay Fit premiered and just blew that news out of the water (ahem). Now Diamondback in a selfish attempt to take out the controversial Low Top Tube 2010 award have dropped their own bombshell. They are now mass-producing bmx frames with co-linear top tube / seat stay geometry. That's right, a straight line between the head tube and rear drop out! Do I need to spell out the gravity of this? It's like we're standing on the edge of cliff - one more step and we'll all be riding trials bikes.

So this little rocker is Nicholi Rogatkin, he's 13, he's sponsored by Diamondback and that's his bike. And bro... it's low.

I've got to say that I had never heard of this guy, but something tells me that you're going to have to learn to pronounce his name properly, cause in a few years time he'll be everywhere and you'll have to see stuff like this. If you don't know what I'm talking about, here's where he was at when he was 12 (warning: mute it)

Ahh, kids these days and their 360 backflips. I remember when I was a boy we were just happy to hop a curb. Progress eh? I suppose if it's going to help him with his 360 flip-whips he can keep his co-linear, 180 degree, straight line, as-low-as-you-can-go geometry (what would you call that?), just as long as he doesn't start hopping around on stuff.

Edit: This just got posted up today. The kid is definitely not hopping around!

Odyssey / GSport: Get Frugal

Yeah, yeah fire engine red everything, but did you see that little flash of the new Odyssey Quadrant rim in there? There is a little more information out about this rim now. Specifically that it's pinned rather than welded, making it an economical alternative to the other Odyssey / GSport models. But, it's a pinned rim with a difference. The name Quadrant comes from the fact that it uses 4 pins rather than the standard 2 that hold most cheap rims together. This means that you wont get that annoying little step in the braking surface caused by the mis-alignment of the outer most edge of the rim wall. Simple ideas are often the best + everyone loves a bargain = winner.

There's also a new Ratchet hubguard that is forged rather than machined, so it's also going to save you some cash as well. It looks like this:

And apparently Odyssey have a new sprocket. They may or not save you money:

S&M WTF... what the fuck?

I'm sorry to do this to you, but I'm going to embed this. You have my sincere apologies for any skating or skaters that you might see, but this is something:

The S&M WTF. Being over here on the other side of the world I don't have that patriotic little piece of DNA that genetically pre-disposes me to loving everything that S&M do. But I like this. Sure all these ideas aren't going to work. Maybe even none of them will end up as practical, but it's a whole lot of radically different ideas packed into one bike. It'd be cool to ride the thing and see how it feels.

In case you didn't watch the video, here's the run down: The S&M WTF is a complete bike that weighs in at 20lbs without a piece of titanium in sight (and at a guess I'd say without any post-weld heat treatment either). The fork legs are shorter by 1/2". Wtf? To save weight. And the head tube is 5/8" shorter than a standard frame. That's got to really change the geometry of the frame - have they adjusted the BB height and head angle to compensate? Don't know.

Then there's the shorter pitch chain and the sprocket with little miniature teeth to fit the chain! Wtf? Apparently this allows for even smaller drive trains than what's around now. Read: 7 tooth rear driver. It's an interesting idea, but it's going to have to do some serious self-promotion before everyone rushes out for new sprockets, drivers and chains.

Next: The Black hole dropouts on fork and frame. Clearly it'll work on the fork, though I think people will need a little convincing as to the point of it, but on the back end? Wtf? How's that going to work? Really small drive trains with no chain adjustment sounds like chain slap hell to me.

And just for the record, not only does the hub have brass bushings replacing the driver bearings, but there are also little holes drilled in each of the driver teeth. It's all getting very cute.

Sunday @ InterBike

A closer look at some more of the Sunday stuff with Jim C videos shot by BMX feed.

This one's got the 3rd wave tubing, new removable mounts and cable guide system:

This one takes a pretty good look at the new completes that are looking damn nice:

This is kind of a Sunday product. It's Kink's rip of Sundays hollow drop outs and who better to introduce them than Jim himself with some words taken from his Facebook:

"Here it is! Bootleg hollow dropouts by my own distributor and former sponsor Kink! Wow!"

Animal @ InterBike 09

Animal were keeping it in the gutter at Interbike with a bit of a street stall:

Though the hardcore would be questioning whether a plastic peg was keeping it street, but really steel pegs? You're living in 2007. Who goes to InterBike in 2009 and drops a steel peg. Not Animal. The new Butcher peg has an aluminium inner and plastic outer sleeve, similar to the Demolition numbers. It's light and it slides good. Oh, and it has approximately 1/100th the lifespan of a steel peg. But don't be too hard on 'em, they've still got the OG 2.0's and Light 2.0's if you like steel. Check 'em here.

They were showing a multi-tool as well:

Go deaf watching the video here.

NOT InterBike 09

Just so your brain doesn't blow on product news. Clip. Watch it big:

New Profile Hubs

New hubs from Profile is big news. So here's the big news:

At this stage they're being called "Elite" hubs, which apparently isn't their final name and although these look to be racing specific, there is a 14mm version with a 9t driver. I don't have any details on what's actually inside these hubs, but they do bring up a few questions. The name "Elite" would suggest that these are a step up from Profile Mini cassettes - could bmx hubs really get any more elite / expensive than the Mini? It's either that or Profile are getting all marketing-speak on your ass and calling a cheaper model a more expensive name, but since Madera is locked in as being their affordable product line that seems unlikely. So the question remains - what makes these hubs the elite of the elite?

Anyway, they're looking nice and clean and there is definitely a saving in machine time on the hub shell that might allow them to put in a few more internal features - Different bearings? More pawls? New materials? According to Profile all will be revealed officially some time after InterBike. But for now, that matte green anodising is looking the goods and is definitely a step away from the techni-colour of the current Profile range.

Edit: Check the comments for official news from Christian at Profile.

They've got a new spline drive sprocket (Demolition have actually also gone that road - if you take a good hard look here) that looks interesting:

And they've I suppose you'd say it makes sense for them to do an 7075 aluminium peg. So they have:

InterBike Incidentals

Just a few Interbike bits and pieces:

Klaus from WTP / Eclat has a vid up on Ride where he talks you through their stuff. You get a look at the Eclat complex seat and post combo that's looking slick in clear with an anodized gold inner sleeve. Vid here (corporate milk warning!). You also get a good look at the fork prototype below that uses investment cast dropouts. :

Demolition have come up with something new in pegs - though I suppose it had to happen sooner or later. Now for the first time the grind friendliness of a plastic sleeve has been combined with the strength of 7075 aluminium. Or is that the softness of plastic combined with the softness of aluminium. Judgement reserved: the proof is in the ledge. You can either squint at the picture below or check this vid.

MacNeil have a 22.2mm pivotal post out. The theory being that everyone runs their seat slammed so why bother with a 1 inch post when you can save weight with a 7/8". Kind of makes sense, but really is it worth it? Jay himself doesn't seem too sure in this vid. Anyway, the rest of the MacNeil range is looking really nice and you can definitely see Harrison's hand in the colourways and textures etc. Apparently there's a couple of new stems. A front and top load of similar design:

Thomas Goring from KHE talks you through some of the Shola stuff in this vid (Milk warning). Including a nice looking new stem that looks to use a similar clamp to the KHE Anchor bar / stem combo and he also goes over one of new KHE Shola street completes that seems to have a very slim set of Shola pedals on the bike that the camera is trying to check out, but Thomas doesn't touch.

WeThePeople 2010 Parts

Yep another flippin' WeThePeople book. This time it's the 2010 parts catalogue:

Probably the most noteworthy bit would be the new cassette - the Supreme Switch. It uses the Q-lite like the old Supreme, but you can switch the pawls around in driver so that like the Ratchet you can run it left or right drive. That's pretty much a win for the shops and distros, but the win for the kid who's going to ride it comes with the fact that there is a total of six bearings in there and 4 in the driver alone and that's got to equal longer bearing life. Doesn't it?. Despite the fact that there's a lot of bearings in a little driver, the weight is still down to a very respectable 16oz.

The Supreme Switch: Six pawls, six bearings, two drive sides, 16 ounces.

So they've got five frames all up and not a single mandatory sub 4.5 lb trend whore in sight. In fact non of them are even sub 4.8 which is admirably modest, but the Elektro has gone full born-again-virgin and covered up with an extra ounce or two. That said all bar the Elektro have a 13.22 rear end - and that is kind of slutty.

There are plenty of investment cast parts welded into the various frames and forks in the form of drop outs, bridges and seat clamps. But with the Mike Brennan / Max Gaertig Warriors frame not only do you get two pros for the price of one, but you get all the tricky bits including those dropouts which you would have seen already:

I'm loving the way the back end of this frame looks. The smooth curve made by the inside of the dropout and the curved bridges gives it a kind of old school looptail look, while at the same time using a technology which is new to bmx and an innovation in frame design.

If you were to say to me:

"This ain't no innovation, just a useless bit of fashion!"

I would probably say to you:

"But bro, they're creating 3D forms that are inherently stronger than a 2D cnc'd or lasercut design and moving the weld away from the stress point at the tip of the rear triangle. What's more they allow for tighter fit between the dropout and stay tubing that allows for a neater and stronger weld. If you'd pull your head out of your ass and you might smell the innovation!"

Then we'd have a punch up.

Klaus from WTP / Eclat actually has different things to say about them and you can listen to them here. But first you'll have to drink a warm glass of corporate milk.

According to a couple of little guys that I've had words with the set up costs for investment casting makes it an option only for the big guys, which is a shame, cause it would be interesting to see what other variations on shape and form would come up. There is definitely a lot of potentially to subtly change the look of a bmx frame by adding in some more interesting "designed" shapes or logo details for people to hate on. But remember... hate is great.

Sunday's Booth and the 3rd Wave

Sunday have up a flip of their InterBike booth:

Notables include some rad looking completes and a look at their 3rd wave tubing:

Some pics of the 3rd wave were up on TCU a while back and got loads of people commenting, including Jim C. As well as letting everyone know that Adam is a naughty boy, he had some words to say about the the 3rd wave tubing:

"As always Adam is good at leaking info that he shouldn’t. As most of you know, Sunday is always trying new and inventive ways to improve a BMX bike’s performance. Which is why other companies are heat treating frames, copying our hollow dropouts, doing angled brake mounts and using Black Magic rustproof coating on their parts. There’s stuff we do that we can’t even say because it will get copied. We made a few samples of Funday’s and Wave’s with the waved top tube because the wave downtube has been proven so strong. Why not improve the strength of the whole front end by using a stronger top tube? The current Second Wave and Funday frames are easily the toughest frame we’ve done so far. Jake has only been on this frame for a few days now, so there’s many more months of testing to be done with it. The earliest you might see this would be late spring of 2010. As always Sunday will continue to design and make products that will fit the rider’s needs."
There you go straight from the J.C's mouth.


Just an update on Chad DeGroot's Deco brand. He's got a nice little interview up on ESPN where he talks about his motivation for getting Deco going. And he's also done the old InterBike video booth check here.

Odyssey @ Interbike

Interbike is off and running and what better way to kick it off than with an Odyssey booth check:

As colourful as you'd expect. There is a pic of their new quadrant rim in there too. Here's a closer look:

Looks like a rim, but the cross section is where it's at so keen to check that.

There's also a vid with Jim Bauer going through their shit here.

Chad DeGroot is Raw!

Does it seem to you that bmx gets more and more fragmented all the time? Lots of little boxes to
Either way, bear with me a second: You’ve got your low top tube trendies v. staunch high tt geometry enforcers. There’s your light weight digi-scale obsessors v. back-in-my-day heavy weight protectors or the roasted brakeless street slackers v. the protein shaking gyro gymnasts.

It’s getting harder and harder to choice the hard and soft goods and piece together a fitting bmx persona for yourself. That is what you're doing isn't it? Anyway it’s almost enough to make you want to put your seat post to a comfortable level, put on a front brake, Chicago your bars and do one-footed, x-up kickturns in your driveway.

My point here is acutually that there is a clear new division emerging. The Raw v. The Colour kids. Raw is definitely the mode preferred at my local park and has even been taken to new levels of rawness with the spray bottle of salt water used to create a very even layer of rust over a frame. Sounds dumb, looks good. Probably not great if you value your warranty, but at least you're hard. Here are some of the contenders in this new sub-sub-cultural divide:

Fly are definitely in the colour camp and their 2010 stuff will allow you to match your pedals to your cables, to your brakes, to your brake pads. You may now view a shitty quality image of said stuff right here.

Failure have a new Jerimiah Smith frame called the Flying Lion that is r-r-r-raw:

More shots here.

Mutiny have a new frame called the Lucky Strike that cleverly combines paint job and decals to mess with your eyes:

Bright. Looks like they've also got some new forks on the way.

The graphics on Colony’s Gnarkill frame are obscenely colourful:

But for the pinnacle of rawness. Chad DeGroot’s “brand” Deco Bmx which kind of looks legitimate, despite his website being the least legitimate company website imaginable – it’s an odd mix of porn (how are those two kids in the background not curious as to what's going down on the mini ramp?), new born babies and general freakiness.

But there is even a selection of bmx parts on show that may just be a product line… or they might be some stickered up things he found in someone’s garden shed. Actually the frame is complete with bullet tipped stays and a logo’d lasercut seat-stay bridge and seems very unlikely to be a hoax.

Upon further examination of this rawness, it appears there is a pair of forks with removable 990 mounts that will do their part to create harmony between the front brake and brakeless sub-sets. Despite this gesture, the level of raw product combined with a website unmatched in bmx for it’s raw female content, you've got to say that Chad DeGroot is raw!
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