Pinkbike Product Picks

Apr 13, 2012
by Mike Levy  
Production Privee 548 Classic stem

Andorran company, Production Privee are designing some interesting products, including the smart looking 548 Classic direct mount stem tested here. It certainly feels as if there are countless direct mount stem options to choose from, of which not many actually stand out from the crowd, but the curvy 548 stem has an individual look to it that appeals to us. Developed with the help of Cedric Gracia, the 124 gram stem uses a burly looking design that places stiffness high on the priority list. One of the first things that most will notice is the 548's distinctive shape, especially the curved back that doesn't resemble the majority of chunky stems out there. Those same lines, shaped by a 4-axis CNC machine, carry on over the rest of the stem as well, with the result being an eye catching finished product. The 548 comes in a single, non adjustable length of 50mm with 19mm of rise, and weighs 124 grams. Production Privee does not have a US distributor at this point, but the 119.00€ stem (roughly $156 USD) is available for purchase on their website. www.production-privee.com

Production Privee 548 Classic stem
We are big fans of the 548's appearance, especially when paired with Production Privee's LG bar, but it's also stiff and proved to be trouble free.


Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesThe 548 stem garnered quite a few compliments on its great looks, giving us hope that a component need not be anodized some garish color in order to get attention. The stem's stealthy black anodized and laser etched finish has also held up well to shuttle runs and other abuse, but aesthetics aside the 548 is also very well thought out. There are no over hanging edges to catch a knee on, and the stem features a 19mm rise that puts function before fashion - incredibly low bars don't make sense on the majority of trails, even if many think that they do. The two piece design (body and faceplate) offer no perceptible flex, just as you'd expect given its sturdy appearance, and we never once heard a creak or groan. Production Privee has incorporated both centering and angle gradients on the stem body that match up to similar markings on their LG bars, a nice detail that makes setup easy if you box your bike to travel to races or resorts, although they aren't of much use if you don't use Production Privee's bar. At 119 Euro (roughly $156 USD) the 548 stem retails for a bit more than some other options out there, but riders who are looking for something a bit different should check out the Production Privee lineup. - Mike Levy



Niterider Pro 1500 LED Race light

Niterider has been in the lighting business since 1989, having gone through the evolution of halogen, HID, and now LED lighting technology. They offer six different rechargeable models, with the Pro 1500 LED Race tested here sitting one level down from their big daddy, the Pro 3000 LED. Powered by a four cell (7.4v/5200mAh) Li-Ion battery, the three Cree LED's offer a claimed 1500 lumens at full power that is said to last an hour and thirty minutes. Two other settings are available by pushing the button on the lamp head: a 900 lumen/three hour option, or the 450 lumen/six hour option. There is also a flashing setting that could be useful in traffic. Total charge time is a quick five hours. The light comes with both helmet and bar mounts, as well as an extension cable that is long enough to allow you to place the battery just about anywhere. System weight sits at 435 grams. MSRP $349.99 USD. www.niterider.com


Niterider light
The Pro 1500 LED Race light offers a consistent, white beam pattern that brings the trail to life. It may not be the brightest, but light quality is very high.


Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesWe used the Pro 1500 LED Race mainly as a helmet light, choosing to stow the relatively lightweight four cell battery in our pack. The diminutive light head's three Cree LEDs put out enough light for even the fastest of trails (we routinely used it for downhilling as well) in a bright white hue that offered great depth perception on the trail. While it throws enough light for any occasion, we don't quite believe Niterider's claim of 1500 lumens at full power - it was slightly dimmer than multiple other lights that are supposedly less powerful. Regardless, the pattern is wide enough to make sense, and you won't find any dark spots in the beam that would create weird shadows and distractions. The system's three power options make a lot of sense given that that medium, 900 lumen setting can run for up to three hours, enough for a good sized night ride. We often ran it at its highest, 1500 lumen setting when shuttling. Battery run time seems to come close to matching Niterider's claims, although cold weather seemed to lower its longevity slightly. We liked the Pro 1500 LED Race light, but it isn't without fault. The ratcheting helmet mount that allows for angle adjustments refused to hold the light head stationary after only a few rides, letting it shift until the light was pointing too far down to be useful. We've used many different Niterider lights over the last few years, all with the same mount, and this was our first time seeing this issue. The other point that must be brought up is the system's price in comparison to other setups that are available online for much less money, many of which claim to be brighter. There is more to a lighting system than outright power, though, with the Pro 1500 LED Race's quality being much higher than any of these less expensive systems that we've used in the past - barring its faulty helmet mount. - Mike Levy



Dakine White Knuckle gloves

The White Knuckle gloves are designed for chilly riding weather, with Dakine stating that they are good for temps down to 32F/0C. What sets them apart is their relatively thin construction that is far less bulky than many other Winter glove choices that are closer to oven mitts than anything we'd actually want to use on the trail. Their single layer palm is made from synthetic suede, and a small pad is located at the lower outside corner for when you lay it down. The top of the hand is constructed from a windproof combination of nylon and fleece, along with a mid-weight fleece liner to further fight the chills. Both the index and pointer fingers feature silicone strips at the brake lever contact points, and pull tab and Velcro enclosure makes pulling them on or off easy. The White Knuckle gloves come in black only, and are available in sizes XS to XL. MSRP $38.00 USD. www.dakine.com


Dakine Whiteknuckle glove
Our hands were toasty warm while wearing the White Knuckle gloves during all but the wettest of riding days.


Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesThe White Knuckle gloves saw a lot of action throughout this Fall and Winter season, fending off everything from monsoon rain, heavy snow, to incredibly cold and dry days. Their thin palms gave us the impression of wearing Summer gloves, especially after using some of the thick and cumbersome offerings from the competition, while the windproof top did wonders to block the chilly sting of Winter air. The slightly roomy fit felt spot on given their intentions - tight clothing can limit circulation, making it hard to stay warm. Runny noses are common while working hard during a Winter ride, so we were thankful for the large wiper panel at the base of each thumb. The only downside to the White Knuckle gloves would have to be their single layer palm that, while making them very comfortable, isn't as waterproof as we'd like to see it be. If you're going to be out for hours on end in the cold rain and snow you'll likely want to step up to a thicker pair of gloves. - Mike Levy





35 Comments

  • + 12
 Been looking for a good bike light. I keep seeing all of Tippie's posts about night rides. Gotta jump on the bandwagon.
  • + 3
 I have the Niterider Pro 1500 DIY. 3 hours at 1500 lumes and fully customisable.. It's one brilliant pice of kit.!
  • + 1
 Niterider Lights! Silvia edit with Matt Hunter revealed what is descent light.
  • + 1
 Ya Tippie's night posts are great! Smile some serious steeps in daylight
  • + 1
 Yeah, I've had two expensive lights fail on me in the last ten years so I've switched to these cheap $60 bastards. They're fantastic for the price.
  • + 1
 i was just posting a link for the 900 lumen version above and saw your post. I whole heartedly concur. Mine's been awesome for trail riding and skiing in pitch dark. Batteries last several hours on high as well.
  • + 1
 You can't beat the magic shine for the price. I have soloed multiple 24 hour races and I have never had a problem with these lights or batteries.
  • + 1
 I can vouch for the light from those things and the price, however... Friends of mine have had serious reliability issues with MagicShines. Personally, I go for a local company that imports them, tests them, puts more heat paste in the light, modifies the battery, and they come with an Australian approved charger. These have been much more reliable. A little more expensive, but it has been worth it compared to friends who bought the MagicShines cheap. Most are good, some are bad. I've even just won a set of the twin-light version and they blow the single one out of the water. With twins on the bars and a single on my helmet - my race times are as fast at night as they are during the day on XC race courses.
  • + 1
 I would like to try riding in the dark as it looks like a blast but the lights are pricey for a few time a year (maybe) plus u need a buddy or two to have lights to go with you = hard sell
  • + 1
 Niterider customer service is terrible. if at least their lights would be as good and cheap as the MagicShine I could live with it.. but they're not.
  • + 1
 No lights will ever compare to ay up's for me. I'd like to see pinkbike check them out because they truly are amazing.
www.ayup-lights.com
  • + 1
 Ay-Ups aren't bad for helmets because of their light weight but I think that is where their superiority ends. I have three different lights and all of them blow the latest Ay-Ups out of the water when it comes to light - my Light and Motion HIDs are better. Ay-Ups also used to be reasonably priced, but you can't compete with the MagicShine/Nitelights for price and power.
  • + 1
 If you go with the narrow beam for helmet use and the intermediate for bars then it's an unbeatable combination. It's kinda funny, my mate has motion HIDs and the ay ups won hands down. As for the price, it is a little high, but for what you get in return it's well worth it.
  • + 1
 I need those gloves ! April 13th and it was snowing here 20 minutes ago... looks like they're well made too
  • + 3
 We've just had a metric f**k ton of hail... April showers...
I'll also take a pair of those gloves!
  • + 2
 Lol i got caught in last weeks snow ay 8am on my bike
  • + 2
 That was in Brum?!
  • + 3
 They only work to temps down to 0C, thats no good in Scotland! Frown
  • + 1
 yeh down in cannock chase
  • + 1
 I'm at Staffs Uni and I still didn't get over to the Chase when its snowed yet Frown
  • + 3
 it was not fun, i thought i was cycling along a river it was that full after an hour i was cold my shoes where full of water and i thought fuck this im off to the pub lol
  • + 3
 $$$$$$$$
  • + 1
 Privee stem and bar combo looks sharp
  • + 1
 The Privee stem all the way !
  • + 1
 yeah but for nearly $160 I think I will pass on it.
  • + 0
 The Dakine gloves would be a handy thing to have around here in the winter. Could definitely use a pair of those
  • + 2
 Perhaps a little late in the season to review winter gloves though?
  • + 1
 True, but you can never know living where I live. You can basically have sun, rain, snow, and clouds all in one day, and the temperature will change so much
  • + 1
 The white knuckle gloves have black knuckles :/
  • + 1
 That stem is sexy.
  • + 1
 Cool but pricey...
  • + 1
 biking is pricey.
  • + 1
 Naturally... But alot of the things dont exactly weigh evenly in the price to importance ratio. Not that I dont spend money on unnecessary shit...

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