I have spent the last two days at the London bike show talking to people about my Kinesis Tripster ATR that I rode on my Cycling East adventure, it has been
fun meeting so many blog readers and lots of Tripster owners current or soon to be! The Apidura bags were also proving incredibly popular with the fast and light bike packing concept clearly gaining traction in inspiring a new generation of cycle tourers.
I have also been exploring the other stands at the London Bike Show and here’s a selection of things that caught my eye:
Firstly the star of the show was definitely my Tripster ATR (me biased?) which was drawing a lot of attention as the dirtiest bike in the show, as well as winning the prize for best sharks teeth on a worn out transmission!
Kinesis had a London focused line up with the new fun looking commuting Tripster ACE and their soon to be released revamped TFive CX which has a tapered head tube, discs like everything has now and few other upgrades. Their odd looking ISM saddles stood out too, apparently super comfortable and ‘soft tissue’ friendly. They’re amazingly popular with Triathletes but don’t let that put you off!
I met my Intense Carbine’s big wheeled brethren which were beautiful, but if I wasn’t on my Intense I would probably choose to be riding this Bronson from Santa Cruz which shares the VPP and looks stunning:
If you’re considering an EBike then why not this custom electric propelled beast for nipping to the shops on:
There were, as you might expect, many electric bikes for lazy people…. OK they serve a purpose and might be good for Enduro training and old people and injured people but mainly lazy people, this lightweight Cube was good looking:
While walking around I was distracted by Josh Bryceland giving an entertaining account of last years World Cup and his epic crash in the champs! In the Q&A session there were some tech questions about 27.5 he said there was a small difference, a nice sponsor friendly response but Josh was unexpectedly enthusiastic about how big a difference his carbon rims have made.
Over in the Outdoor show I also stumbled upon Kenton Cool, quite possibly the coolest named mountaineer and mountain guide around at the moment. He was talking about his ridiculously impressive exploits up Everest, Lhotse and Nuptse!
Canyon had lots of bikes on display and with them not being in shops it was a good chance to see all their bikes.
The 160mm enduro focused Canyon Strive bike looked superb:
The down side for me was hidden under the rocker link is a mini sock thing called Shape Shifter technology, a remote geometry adjust feature that adjusts 1.5° of head angle and 160 to 130mm of travel on the fly, it seems like another thing to clog with mud and break like worn out bushings. It made me think of the Kona magic link that adjusts during the stroke a clever logic but never felt seamlessly smooth in practice.
Canyon’s German neighbours in the competition for value: Rose Bikes were also next door at the show and the bikes seem to reflect the lower budget more with some unappealing designs:
There were an assortment of interesting smaller bike companies two caught my eye. Nerve bikes and Shand.
I think Shand’s stylish green 29er was providing a lot of interest in its great digital camo and lime. The Stoaters were also looking good all rounders as ever, with the super adaptable drop outs including belt the belt drive option.
I was interested in the belt drive option after meeting some Dutch guys using belts successfully in the remote Pamirs, a landscape of dust and sand that ruins chains faster than a Scottish winter.
This frame proudly shows the weld quality.
They were sharing the stand and forming a Scottish enclave with Scottish clothing maker Findra who had some nice looking Merino kit.
The Nerve stand had the first UK made carbon frame I have ever seen! It’s fully custom designed and looked really tidy weighing about 750gm but the price tag was heavy as you might expect.
They had some nice Ti bikes on the Nerve stand too.
Enigma win marks for stand out flashiest bling bikes with some gold gilt detailing, shocking pink or classy red anodising on Ti. This pink 27.5 wheeled beauty was tempting but I would always go the extra yard for a 29er hardtail.
Another Enigma beauty maybe a little inspired by my Tripster?
Fat bikes were everywhere appearing quicker than you can ride one uphill, like a plague of obesity. The rebranded uninspiring aluminium Rocky Mountain Blizzard looked a travesty to it’s steel hardtail heritage.
The Surly’s seemed to be even fatter than I remembered and kitted out with the Apidura bags I’m sure they must have inspired an adventuristic spirit in Londoners!
The Sarma sub 24lb carbon framed and wheeled fat bike was light but looked to be priced ambitiously at £5,000 considering its Chinese heritage.
After wandering about the show, this Pegorreti Duende won the funkiest design for me:
This Fat bike from Scott came with a well made super clever ski rack so ideal for my friends in Fernie, BC or any other funky snowy town!
Empire had their unusual bikes on display which I have never seen in the flesh, with the MX6 evo imposing with its iron girder’esque design but dialled geometry.
Overall for me personak it really was great to meet so many enthusiastic Tripster owners or followers of my blog in person at the Kinesis stand. So big thanks to Kinesis for inviting me to attend!
I also enjoyed hoovering up free energy and protein bar samples and drinking free beer with (seperate) shots of energy gel while watching to see if the precarious looking giant temporary swimming pool burst with overweight triathletes testing wetsuits inside!