CyclingTips Digest: A Guide to Air Compressors, 3D Printed Carbon Shoes, Motor Doping & More

Aug 2, 2021
by Sarah Moore  


What's going on in the curly bar world? CyclingTips Digest showcases articles from our sister site, CyclingTips. In each installment, you might find endurance coverage, power-to-weight ratios, gravel bike tech and, of course, lycra.




A GUIDE TO AIR COMPRESSORS FOR BICYCLES
By: DAVE ROME

Look to almost any professional workshop or race mechanic setup and you’ll likely see, or at least hear, an air compressor in use. The job of an air compressor is simple – compress air for pressurised release – and it does so with a motor (or motors) that forces air into a constrained space (a tank).

When it comes to working on bicycles, air compressors are most commonly used for two key tasks. Firstly and perhaps most beneficially, they’re the perfect tool for drying things off after they’ve been washed, or for blowing grit out of tight crevices (such as derailleurs and brakes). I hate being without one for this task.

(Read more.)




REVIEW: THE BEST BICYCLE TYRE INFLATORS TO USE WITH AN AIR COMPRESSOR
By: DAVE ROME

If you’ve landed on this article then you probably have an air compressor already (or are at least considering one) and you’re looking for a dedicated bicycle tyre inflator to suit it.

Don’t have an air compressor? Check out our guide to air compressors for bicycle use.

When it comes to inflating tyres with an air compressor there are plenty of options. This article covers DIY options and dedicated bicycle-specific inflators across a broad price range. All the inflators covered below will work with any air compressor – it’s just a matter of fitting the appropriate couplers (covered in the guide to air compressors).

(Read more.)





THIS IS THE BIKE THAT RICHARD BRANSON DIDN’T RIDE TO HIS SPACE LAUNCH
By: IAIN TRELOAR

The new Space Race – between billionaires, not Cold War-era superpowers – reached a milestone on Sunday. Richard Branson, the founder of the Virgin Group, took off from New Mexico’s Spaceport America as a passenger in his Virgin Galactic Unity VS22 spacecraft. The craft and its crew soared to the limits of space, to a height of 86 km above Earth, and then glided back down having experienced a brief but tantalising few moments of weightlessness.

Was it into space? Nah, not really. That marker is commonly defined as the Kármán Line – 100 km above Earth – but Branson’s flight was a shot across the bows of the other obscenely wealthy men who are done plundering Earth and now want to conquer space.

(Read more.)





TECH GALLERY: 2021 ENVE BUILDER ROUNDUP, PART ONE
By: JAMES HUANG

Enve recently held its third Builder Roundup, a sort of mini handmade show that’s starting to become not-so-mini.

Enve is one of the most prolific suppliers to the handmade community, and while the event is ostensibly designed to be a showcase of the company’s wares, it’s evolved into a reputable event in its own right, with builders from around the world descending upon Ogden, Utah, with their best and brightest.


(Read more.)





WHAT’S GOING ON WITH JOLANDA NEFF’S DOWN TUBE?
By: DAVE ROME

Those who just watched the women’s cross country mountain bike event may have noticed something weird on the down tube of Jolanda Neff’s Trek Supercaliber.

With the women anticipating muddy conditions, the eventual gold medal winner seemingly took a page from the book of fellow Swiss rider Nino Schurter who had used a similar trick at the most recent mudfest of a World Cup round at Les Gets.

Simply, it’s just duct tape (gaffer tape) stuck along the frame in a way that makes a wavy and floppy shape.

(Read more.)





THE LOREONE IS THE WORLD’S FIRST CUSTOM 3D-PRINTED CARBON CYCLING SHOE
By: DAVE ROME

First teased earlier this year and now open for pre-order, Lore Cycle is a start-up from Silicon Valley looking to shake up the cycling shoe market with a novel design produced with new-age tech. The space-age, sandal-like kicks combine a 3D-printed carbon exterior skeleton with a soft foam liner for a custom road shoe like no other.

And because they’re space-age, you’d better believe they’ve got a price that’s out of this world.

(Read more.)





LACHLAN MORTON HAS BEATEN THE TOUR DE FRANCE TO PARIS BY FIVE DAYS
By: IAIN TRELOAR

As the Tour de France enters its final act after the second rest day, one EF Education-Nippo rider can put his feet up, content with a job well done. That rider – Lachlan Morton – has just completed his Alt Tour, riding the entire Tour de France route, including all transfers, unsupported.

That meant 5,510 km, instead of the Tour route’s 3,383 km. 65,500 metres of vertical gain rather than the Tour’s 42,200 m. 18 days of riding without a day’s rest, versus the peloton’s 21 and two rest days. And all while sleeping under the stars, fixing his own punctures, taking care of his own mechanicals, and keeping himself fed and watered.

The Australian rider, who has approached the sport from his own unique perspective throughout his career, set off from Brittany just after the Tour began and quickly built a lead over the race, cycling longer days and banking distance to give him enough of a buffer over the peloton for the final 700 km+ transfer north to Paris.

(Read more.)





A PHOTOGRAPHER’S LOVE LETTER TO THE 2021 TOUR DE FRANCE
By: IAIN TRELOAR

The 2021 Tour de France has been run and won. Over three weeks, across the breadth of the nation, there have been crashes and controversy, fairytale returns and failures to launch. It has been – as it always is – cycling’s finest spectacle.

For all of those 21 stages – plus a few rest days along the way – husband and wife photographer team Jered and Ashley Gruber have been snapping away, their photography blurring the lines between cycling and art.

We’ve gone through and cherrypicked a few favourites from each stage. Some that tell the story of the race, some that tell the story of what it is to be waiting for the race on the side of a road, and some that tell the story of France.

(Read more.)





HERE ARE THE MOTOR DOPING METHODS POGAČAR ISN’T USING AND WHY
By: RONAN MCLAUGHLIN

Given the sport’s troubled past, it is hardly surprising that dominant performances attract more than just raised eyebrows. Doping questions and accusations seem almost par for the course for the modern Tour de France leader.

Tadej Pogačar bulldozed the competition on route to his second Tour title last week. At times the young Slovenian looked like he was on a ride to the shops, while his closest contenders clambered for his back wheel.

(Read more.)





REVEL BIKES RELEASES RECYCLABLE CARBON RW23 GRAVEL RIMS
By: DAVE ROME

Revel Bikes recently made a splash in the mountain bike market with carbon rims it claims are stronger, lighter, more cost-effective, and 100% recyclable. The technology used is dubbed “Fusion-Fiber” and it does away with the industry norm of using epoxy to hold together the individual carbon fibers.

Now the mountain bike company has broadened its scope and used the novel technology to produce a gravel-friendly 23 mm-wide rim. The idea of a less brittle, smoother-riding, more cost-effective, and recyclable gravel wheelset sure is appealing.

(Read more.)





REVIEW: THE NEW SPECIALIZED S-WORKS RECON LACE OFF-ROAD SHOE
By: IAIN TRELOAR

Cycling shoes continue to get increasingly high-tech, sprouting sophisticated dials and directional textiles, sole stiffness that is dialled up to 11 (and then a couple more), and ever-more feathery weight.

But even amongst all of that, there’s still something to be said for a simple, reliable laced closure.

Laces have been undergoing something of a renaissance since Giro (re-)popularised lace-ups back in 2012, and over the years since, most mainstream brands have dipped their toe in.

(Read more.)





SHIMANO EXPANDS CONSUMER-DIRECT OPTIONS, BUT NOT FOR COMPONENTS
By: IAIN TRELOAR

Regardless of the industry, there’s no denying that traditional sales channels are changing. Once-faceless brands are now more directly in touch with their end consumers than ever before and recent world events have only accelerated such change.

When it comes to sales channels within the bicycle industry, Shimano has long stood as one of the more traditional operators. Depending on the region, the Japanese company imports and wholesales goods through a variety of direct subsidiaries and specialist distributors – and in almost all cases the customers are bicycle shops. But that looks to be changing, at least for some of Shimano’s products.

(Read more.)





2022 SCOTT ADDICT GRAVEL GOES LONGER AND LOWER WITH A SLICK NEW SHAPE
By: JAMES HUANG

It seems Scott is no longer hedging its bets when it comes to gravel.

Long content to use the same frame for gravel and cyclocross, Scott has finally developed a purpose-built Addict Gravel model with its own dedicated geometry and feature set. The longer and lower design, more generous tire clearance, additional carrying capacity, and more plentiful mounts all point toward a more versatile machine than before, but it also now boasts aero, lightweight, and integration features borrowed from the company’s road racing range for an extra dose of speed.

Combine that all together, and it makes for a pretty enticing-sounding package for gravel riders who want to go faster and farther on rougher terrain.

(Read more.)






59 Comments

  • 46 2
 Is anyone aware that compressed air contains a small quantity of oil (depending on the compressor type)? Doesn’t sound like good practice to dry your brakes with it, unless you have a multistage filter on the compressor outlet.
  • 3 0
 An air filter and dryer setup is a good addition with any setup. Can be had at a reasonable price tag also. I do a lot of spray gun painting and coating activities so both are a must for me… it’s so nice having clean and dry air readily available for bike maintenance.
  • 1 0
 I admit the photo used isn't a great example and isn't something I'd typically recommend doing. However, the compressor used in the image is oil-free.
  • 31 3
 Imagine rating an article telling you that you can blow things with your air compressor a "top story"
  • 9 1
 Some things won't blow themselves tho.
  • 6 0
 Don't worry, soon all these top stories will be behind a a pay wall!
  • 2 0
 @mtb-jon: That's really gonna blow.
  • 2 6
flag endoplasmicreticulum (Aug 2, 2021 at 9:54) (Below Threshold)
 @mtb-jon: Lets hope the mexicans wont pay for it hur hur
  • 21 0
 It's always surprising to me how many people love mountain biking and then just straight hate road cycling. I suppose some of us fell in love with bikes and some just fell in love with MTB.
  • 6 0
 I've tried road cycling several times over the decades (you see, I didn't just write it off) and have never gotten past the "thing is mind numbingly boring" stage. So it's not an "us vs them" thing, or a "never given it a try" thing, and these days it's not even an age thing, and it's certainly not a "hate" thing, it's quite simply that I find it very very boring. Therefore watching it, following it or generally being excited about it is not something that makes much sense, just like I don't watch football nor tennis. I do watch cliff diving and BMX Freestyle though. Perhaps it's a risk thing?
  • 1 0
 I bought a road bike about 10 years ago when I moved to an area that is pretty urban. It basically forced me to find trails I could ride so I wasn’t spending all my bike time on the road. It’s so boring, unless you’re descended switch backs at 80kph, otherwise peadling with your head down on a blistering hot tarmac exposed to the wind and all other environmental factors, while jack-asses in F-teenthousands or jacked up diesel trucks road rage around you, provides very little enjoyment to me. I honestly don’t get road biking. And I have several friends who road bike almost exclusively, but whenever they offer me the opportunity to tag along, I decline and find some trails to hit.
  • 3 0
 Regarding Jolandas / Ninos down tube mudflaps....probably worth a try, depending on the consistency of the mud.
Back when I was around the WC we used to somtimes just absolutely coat everything in WD-40 before big mud fests like Les Gets or Champery. The idea being that the watery mud wont stick to the oily spray and with a lighter bike you'll be better off.

I know certain WC winners who even employed this tactic on their tires before really, really bad conditions, knowing that an oily tire thats not absolutely clogged, is still better than a totally clogged one.
  • 2 8
flag mattg95 (Aug 2, 2021 at 3:23) (Below Threshold)
 Why don't they just use front mudguards attached to the fork crown?
  • 9 8
 Great solution for the environment we all hold dear to coat your gear in oil?
  • 11 0
 @mi-bike: Please note this was all written in the past tense, as in formerly, not currently.

Have you ever done anything that wasn't perfect?
  • 7 0
 Cooking oil works as well and is biodegradable
  • 3 0
 @mi-bike: I'm surprised they don't have wax coatings for this type of application. Maybe ill trying waxing my downtube and get back to you. And you all know what downtube I'm referring to Wink
  • 9 0
 PAM cooking spray. We used it in very muddy conditions during 24 Hours of Adrenaline races in Canmore, Alberta.

Just don’t use the garlic flavour one. It might attract the bears and cougars Wink
  • 3 0
 @mi-bike: I'm more concerned about your rain forest.
  • 4 0
 @mattg95: Wait until you hear that your skin is covered in it too!
  • 8 0
 @sylvainvanier: Use coconut oil - that'll definitely appeal to cougars...or so I'm told.
  • 2 0
 Wait...according to all the YouTube videos, ceramic coating paint won't let mud and dirt and garden soil stick to anything. Are we not ceramic coat polishing World Cup race rigs?

Heh...
  • 1 0
 @noapathy: Better than Mr. Zogs?
  • 1 0
 I know cooking spray is used to keep mud off wheels on CX bikes. Probably work on your frame too.
  • 4 0
 SHIMANO EXPANDS CONSUMER-DIRECT OPTIONS....

Yeeessss!!!

...BUT NOT FOR COMPONENTS

Oh Frown
  • 11 0
 stickers only
  • 4 0
 @inonyme: I like stickers!
-me, age 8
  • 1 0
 For what it’s worth, I have a Prestacyle tire inflator and it’s the same inflator as one I got from Harbor Freight for my car later at about $10, it just has a different hose. You can tell it was from the same mold. The hose on my prestacycle started leaking at a joint, so now I have the prestacycle presta head in the Harbor Freight inflator. Both of my inflators have analog not digital pressure gauges. Next time I’m in Harbor Freight I’ll see if they have a digital version.
  • 3 1
 Ok I take it back cos I went there. Just a thought....the site is rather good and shows a level of professionalism that the PB crew could work to. Cough.
  • 2 0
 I kept looking at Neff's downtube thinking that she need to wipe the mud because it was probably adding some serious weight to her bike.
  • 1 0
 "SHIMANO EXPANDS CONSUMER-DIRECT OPTIONS, BUT NOT FOR COMPONENTS" c'mon Shimano just commit already. It's not like bike shops make any meaningful profit off of the components anyhow. All the money is in shop time.
  • 2 0
 Where are the tips for motor doping that are advertised in the title? I need to know how... for a friend.
  • 2 1
 "Combine that all together," as opposed to "divide all that together?" Or, "combine all that separately?"
  • 11 10
 Nice "H"ayfest content on PB! Targeting more paywall potentials?
  • 8 4
 Smells like Outside....
  • 1 0
 Aswell as the Enve building playoffs, doesn't Ogden have a monorail too?
  • 2 0
 You're thinking of Ogdenville.
  • 3 0
 And North Haverbrook, and by gum, it put them on the map. @barp:
  • 5 4
 Why do the links all take me to another website?
  • 2 3
 WTF??? Goodbye MTB
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