Tech Briefing: A Gearbox Bike, Super Soft Grips, Drop Bars for MTBs, & More - August 2021

Aug 12, 2021
by Sarah Moore  

Tech Briefing is a feature for new stuff that we spot every month, but haven't gotten our hands on yet. An eclectic serving of tech, from revolutionary products to traditional novel gear, with some wacky stuff thrown in for good measure.

Chromag Minor Threat Full-Suspension Kid's Bike
$3950 CAD

Hold your horses grown-ups. Before you get too excited, this one is for the groms. (Learn more.)

Burgtec Bartender Pro Super Soft Greg Minnaar Signature Grip

The new compound was prototyped through the 2020 season and based on the pattern of the Bartender Pro as used by Greg, Nina Hoffman, Danny Hart and Angel Suarez. (Learn more.)

Dyedbro's Robert Rodriguez Redondo Artist Series Frame Protectors
39,99€ - 43,99€

Dyedbro teams up with the artist Roberto Rodriguez Redondo for some creative frame protectors.(Learn more.)

Norco's 3 New eMTBs - Batteries Sold Separately
From $4,799

The 130mm Fluid, the 150mm Sight, and the 170mm Range are all new for 2022. (Learn more.)

Signature Guerrilla Gravity 'Rally Like Barelli' Gnarvana

If only you could buy Yoann's skills on the bike along with the handpicked build. (Learn more.)

100% Launches the Aircraft2 Helmet
$400 USD

100% has released an updated version of its Aircraft full-face helmet. (Learn more.)

3 New Cascade Components Links
$206 - $366 USD

Another batch of freshly machined links has been released, this time for the Evil Offering, Ibis Ripmo, and Giant Reign. (Learn more.)

MET Helmets & Bluegrass to be Distributed by QBP in North America

Quality Bicycle Products is now the official distributor for MET Helmets in North America with availability expected in fall 2021. (Learn more.)
Picture Maxime Rambaud

Propain Updated Rage CF Downhill Bike
From € 3,999

Now in its sixth generation, the new Rage has more travel, greater adjustability, and a lighter weight. (Learn more.)

Guerrilla Gravity Mixed Wheel 'MX Rally Build' on Megatrail & Shred Dogg
From $5295

The limited edition MX Rally build is a new mixed-wheel option available on the Megatrail and Shred Dogg. (Learn more.)

2022 Trek Roscoe Hardtail
$1,700 - $2,700 USD

The Roscoe now rolls on 29" wheels and has a 140mm fork. (Learn more.)

Hunt's Prototype Carbon XC Wheels

The spokes are held mechanically, rather than bonded to the rim, so they're replaceable just like standard steel spokes. (Learn more.)

Surly Drop Bars Designed for Mountain Bikes
$100 USD

The Corner Bar makes it possible for mountain bikers to experiment with drop bars without too many hassles. (Learn more.)

Starling Effigear Equipped Spur
From £3,330 GBP

The 170mm Spur has an Effigear gearbox that uses a trigger shifter. (Learn more.)

2022 Orange Alpine Evo

For 2022 Orange has launched the Alpine EVO with a slacker head angle, longer reach and 10mm less travel than the Alpine 6. (Learn more.)

Bontrager's New XC and Aggressive Trail Tires
$74.99 USD

Bontrager has updated and expanded their cross-country and trail tire offerings. (Learn more.)

Kitsbow Made-to-Order Haskell Shorts, Sewn in North Carolina
$195 USD

Kitsbow is prioritizing sustainability and adaptability in its business model. (Learn more.)

Manitou's New Dorado
€1,499.99 / $1,799.99 USD

Two decades on, Manitou's inverted icon is still going strong. (Learn more.)
Manitou Dorado Photo Ga tan Rey Shaperideshoot

PNW Components Range Handlebar & Stem
$69 USD

Handlebars are in stock now and stems are expected to ship in August. (Learn more.)

Muc Off Plastic-Free Punk Powder Bike Cleaner
$19.99 for 2 x 30g sachets

Using Punk Powder results in a 92% decrease in packaging over 2 liters of standard bike cleaner. (Learn more.)

Bontrager RSL Integrated Bar & Stem
$350 USD

Two new super-lightweight bar/stem combos from Bontrager. (Learn more.)


  • 57 9
 Guy Martin already doing the concentrated cleaners idea.

Also, Guy is not a c*nt, so buy from him instead of Muc-Off.
  • 48 15
 Yep, not touching Muc-Off with a yard stick ever again after their little pretentious drama
  • 11 1
 @Arierep: What happened with Muc-Off?
  • 1 0
 There are a ton of brands doing concentrated cleaner. I've been using ONR long before people were talking about MTB muc-off.
  • 47 13
 @evanlitt: They decided to stop sponsoring a DH team after bad behaviour from a pro pilot (made a race related stupid joke). Fact is that they promoted for YEARS their products with girls in bikini... Stupid hypocrites
  • 3 0
 @jackyboy: Was that the whole Amaury Pierron thing?
  • 50 8
 @evanlitt: Basically they went full retard and showed the world that they will do/say whatever sells products. Super-sexist one year, hyper-woke and condescending the year after.
  • 33 10
 @Jaib06: yes, they decided to publically humiliate and make an example of Peirron for making a joke, even though by their own woke standards, they are just as guilty of virtue crimes.
  • 19 13
 Same here, done with Muc-off too much virtue signaling/bullying a lad that had no clue he was being raciste while simple displaying his appreciation for Rap and black culture.
  • 27 6
 @Balgaroth: Muc-off can Fuc-off
  • 1 0
 @excavator666: when was that campaign running?
  • 35 13
 I just googled it. 2011.

10 yrs ago.

Times change. And seemingly. Muc off changed with them. Which, surely, is the right thing to do?
  • 23 24
 @lister11: I don't think they should. I like hot babes making suggestive faces, and I dislike woke posturing. Seems like change in this case is an example of what not to do.
  • 23 8
 @lister11: yeah this thread feels a bit group think-y

Also ignorance is not an excuse for bad decisions when you are an international level athlete. The blowback is a demonstration of that on it's own
  • 14 6
 @lister11: also should add that this thread is the epitome of cancel culture
  • 11 4
 @Dogl0rd: maybe I should point out that the difference between this thread and cancel culture is that the later tends to involve people demanding cancellations on behalf of others or limiting access to platforms and whatnot.
What we see here is just a bunch of consumers stating their own individual choices. Nobody here is demanding others not to buy from Muck Off, nor their removal from social media etc
  • 8 1
 @jackyboy: you forgot to mention thar they stopped sponsoring not Pierron's team, but a different team that shares frame sponsor with Pierron's, HA!

p.s.: is stupid and potentially dangerous to make toxic products smell like candy Wink
  • 13 7
 @lister11: Peirron made a sincere apology, but it wasn't good enough for Muc-Off though. Did they get dragged over the coals for their virtue crimes before they started doing it to others? If they themselves haven't been on sensitivity courses for their virtue crimes, what gives them the right to condemn others in this way?

@Dogl0rd: I disagree. Pierron recognised his mistake and apologised for it. Example made, lesson learned and thankfully no one's riding around on MTB's dressed like ghosts and racism has been defeated forever..

Muc-Off's actions were completely unnecessary and dispraportionate to the situation. If they're gonna try and shill their products by humiliating a rider who #1 IS NOT A RACIST, #2 has already atoned for his mistake and made an example for all to see, then all we're doing is calling Muc-Off on their hypocrisy and making an informed decision to send them a message that we the consumers, recognise and won't tolerate their bullshit. And the only way they will take any notice is if their sales are affected, because they sure as shit don't actually give a crap about anything else!

Not cancel culture.
  • 6 5
 @Arierep: you literally cancelled mucoff in your first comment
  • 8 3
 @Dogl0rd, @Arierep making an informed decision about the products he wants to buy and why he wants to buy them is hardly cancel culture.
  • 2 5
 @excavator666: you're entitled to your opinion
  • 3 0
 @Dogl0rd: to be fair, that’s exactly how society functions. A group makes a decision and moves forward based upon those decisions. If enough people within that society agree with those decisions you’ve got the new normal.
  • 2 2
 @DHhack: I agree, but what you just described is not cancel culture on its own. You need to add in groupthink and snap judgments based on scant information on social media platforms
  • 1 1
 @Dogl0rd: which is why most of it doesn’t last long term. It’s also not some new phenomenon unique to social media.
  • 1 0
 @DHhack: lol dude don't know if you're trying to say this isn't cancel culture of if cancel culture doesn't matter. It's just pathetic mob rule based on weak information and it's not fair to the people it attacks whether it's mucoff or Amaury or anyone else.
  • 1 0
 @lister11: Google muc off girls. It wasn't exactly a one-time thing for them...
  • 1 1
 @excavator666: what gives them the right?

It's their money to spend as they see fit.
Just as it is yours to do the same.

You are doing the same thing. Choosing to spend money based on your individual values / perception.
  • 5 1
 @lister11: It is true that they can spend their money however they wish, however it is not true that they can act however they want and not expect to be held to account for it.

By partnering with the Commencal DH team, they made a commitment to support them and become part of the face of the racing program, and in turn they get the opportunity to market to consumers like us.

However they acting like their shit don't stink and expecting ohters to abide by standards that they themselves do not. They sell expensive, gimmicky cleaning products and apparel. they should stick to this instead of throwing stones in their glass house.

Not only that, but their real motivation for keel hauling Amaury (and the rest of the team) was to shill products.

f*ck them.
  • 5 0
 @evanlitt: Some French rider was sharing lyrics from his favourite rap artist, and then Muc-Off and others went mental on him because lyrics contained forbidden words.
  • 16 1
 That muc off bike cleaner says plastic free. It’s made of plastic.
  • 3 0
 The refill packs are not made of plastic. the idea is you buy the powder refill pack instead of a whole new premade package.
  • 6 0
 Yup. Technically a metal bottle; but with an extra massive green plastic base. For no apparent purpose. I wonder what the powder is packaged in? Oh yeah…
  • 7 2
 @dominic54: adding the fact that to offset the CO2 impact of that metal bottle vs plastic you will be way dead before this happens. But hey saying you are reducing plastic and using metal instead is much more woke than simply offering a decent quality plastic bottle that will last as long as a metal option considering the application. #virtuesignaling
  • 2 3
 @Balgaroth: Wow you are just the worst person.
  • 7 3
 @HGAB: do you know how many single use plastic bags or paper bags are necessary to equal the CO2 emission of a single cotton or plastics tote bag which are so in vogue those days ? Basically a lifetime of bags for a single one. Considering that people will loose, destroy and forget/but another several times over a year, let alone their lives, single use bags are actually better for the planet especially once you consider you won't buy garbage bags anymore but will use the single use bag like we used to do in my household. Problem is, many dickheads can't stop themselves from throwing those bags in nature which is causing an ecological disaster. It doesn't change the fact that a tote bag is a worse option for global warming wise but yeah it's unpopular especially among the virtue signaling muppets that only see as far as their nose. Same goes for the metal vs plastic bottle but having a metal bottle sure sound more green than having a plastic bottle. Truth is, what will lower your impact is to refill whatever functional bottle you can find, no buy a fancy, over priced, unecessary bottle.
  • 1 0
 @kylethehobo: Soap sellers shitty green marketing : you keep on selling the same crap, BUT with an "eco" packaging.
I always use rain water and a soft brush to clean my bikes and it works perfectly so far.
  • 3 0
 @Balgaroth: lifetime? It's 50 bags per one study. Close! We have a few good cotton bags that we've had for a decade. We go grocery shipping at least 3 times a week. Need a calculator? Better luck next time. That's just carbon footprint. That ignores the fact the things end up in streams, rivers, etc.

Single use plastic is a joke. Reduce, reuse.
  • 2 0
 @jwa9681: Danish government study found out that an organic cotton bag is worth 20,000 single use bags. I doubt that bag will be able to last the equivalent use of 20,000 bags which is roughly 20 years of use for your familly, less for me and my partner. And that's for a single tote bag vs enough bags for 20 years of your groceries. If you take non organic cotton tote bags then you will get back on your CO2 investment in roughly 7 years but I doubt you only need 1 bag, also shit loads of water wasted, and shit loads of pesticides released in the environment. The 50 bags you are refering to are plastic based and bring the exact same issue that single use bags, ie dickhead littering everywhere with no second thoughts. Having them pay for the bag sure helps reducing it a bit but doesn't solve the problem of poor education. Additionnally, how many single use plastic bags do you buy for your bin ? We used to never buy any and now have to buy some regularly, explain to me what is the difference ? Reusing your single use plastic bag as a bin bag is also reusing isn't it ?
  • 1 0
 @Balgaroth: First off, apologize for my aggressiveness. I will agree with a few points there. First, if you reuse every plastic bag in your bin and don't use any other plastic for that, I can't argue. And every household is different. One of my issues with plastic reuse bags is for every full fabric bag i fill up, they give me about 5-10 plastic bags; doubling them up, 3 cans of food only, etc. I would end up with about 20-30 bags a week with that and would never be close to producing that much trash. That 20,000 number seems high compared to other studies, link? One thing I will 100% agree on is the education. And that is why I support reusable bags. That educates people indirectly. It makes them aware of an issue of carbon foot prints and trash. Sounds like you are educated already and probably do what is right in your situation.
  • 2 0
 @jwa9681: I believe the research article that is being quoted on different websites is the following:

One research article doesn't make a scientific truth mind you but it surely shows that this isn't as easy as some make it out to be.

Every country is different but when I was a kid we were filling the single use bags so only taking what was necessary to pack up stuff. Pre recycling era this was about the right amount of bags for our household. Now it probably would be too much but in terms of carbon footprint it might still win over cotton options.

This is a similar topic to banning plastic bags for garment products. While it is great to brag about, it also means throwing away more products due to damage in over sea transportation. Recyclable plastic bags having a much lower impact than destroyed highly transformed products it doesn't always make sense to ban them from a carbon footprint perspective. This topic is so multi-factor it is near impossible to find out what's best unless you are researching in this field.
  • 12 2
 4k for a kids bike? Specialized better not be taking notes. They'll prolly try to make a carbon E version
  • 3 0
 Not saying it's a great deal, but it's 4K CAD, which is $3200 USD.
  • 4 3
 Pike, G2 R brakes, 12spd GX drivetrain full Chromag cockpit / parts. How is that not a good deal?
  • 1 2
 @CRANKWORX101: Yeah, it's decent for sure. No dropper and a very simple rear shock, but not a horrible price tag considering the rest of the spec.
  • 4 1
 @CRANKWORX101: Because it's a baby bike for children, which they are going to grow out of. That's a number a lot of people want to spend on their own bike. This is the bike for the dentist
  • 3 0
 @nickfranko: Chromag is in Whistler, and if you've been there, you'd know that there are plenty of kids who's parents buy these bikes for them. The number of kids out here on nice bikes might just blow your mind, and I'm not sure why you think that small bikes with nice parts need to be worth a fraction the price of a larger bike with the same parts.
  • 3 1
 @CRANKWORX101: It is a really great spec bike, and it is a good deal for that spec, but all I'm saying is that I wouldn't buy that for my kid. I'll get him a cheap bike he can learn on till he's old enough to get a job so he can save up for a nicer ride.
  • 1 0
 @CRANKWORX101: nx shifters and cassette and in the launch pics shows nx cranks.
13.6 -14kg not exactly light for a kid's bike.
  • 8 2
 Highlight is the Starling for me... Not sure how a Roscoe ended up in the news...
  • 4 11
flag DHhack (Aug 12, 2021 at 8:21) (Below Threshold)
 Blah blah dentist bikes blah blah blah?

27.5+ is almost dead, long live 29?
  • 1 0
 @DHhack: hard to argue with 29x 2.4 and up for a trail hardtail. I have a Salsa Timberjack with two sets of wheels/tires: 27.5x3.0 and 29x2.3. For general trail riding the 29" setup is definitely faster and more efficient.
  • 2 4
 I think you mean the Trek Honzo-Chameleon
  • 3 0
 @DHhack: depends...from a XC perspective...i've got a 27.5 primary hardtail (running 2.35) and a 29 primary FS (running 2.35)...the 27.5 HT smokes the 29 on the tight technical trails (ones with no straights and you are always either going into a corner or coming out of) and the 29 excels at the flow trails and rockier trails (and downs). 27.5 definitely has its place depending on what you are riding.
  • 1 0
 @DHhack: didn't catch comments was referring to 27.5+ and not 27.5 (yes, i agree)
  • 7 0
 I never thought I say this until I bought a 27.5+ hardtail.

27.5+ are just at lot of fun. Hope they it doesn't completely die.
  • 2 0
 @Arepiscopo: Trek was making aggressive hardtails before Santa Cruz transformed the Chameleon into one, just saying.
  • 2 0
 @vRidge: My full susp is 27.5+. Would not have it any other way.
  • 6 0
 Heroin is starting to look cheap in comparison to post pandemic MTB
  • 5 0
 Heroin was always cheap. It is the prescription drugs that are expensive.
  • 1 0
 Anyone know if that cascade link will fit a ibis ripmo v1? My Fox X2 is stuffed to the gills with volume spacers and I still bottom fairly regularly at 195lbs Frown
No need to buy a v2 if this works as it’s almost the same frame. Reduce/reuse right?
I saw an mtbr thread about it but nobody with a v1 pulled the trigger yet.
  • 1 0
 Get a tune
  • 1 0
Just get your shock retuned.
  • 5 0
 Drop bars on a MTB, so Tomac way back in the day.
  • 4 0
 Not enough asterisks on the "From $4,799" for the Norcos with no batteries
  • 7 3
 $195 for shorts, on a mtb. Haahahah!
  • 4 5
 They're the best of the best from my experience. If you try a pair on you will see what I mean.
  • 7 6
 Expensive for sure but made in the United States. Welcome to the actual cost of products not made in third world countries. The real test will be if the Kitsbow last longer than the competition.
  • 5 4
 Stitch quality and fit are better. Buying made in America means something.
  • 3 1
 @jmhills: Bias aside......
  • 3 2
 @jmhills @highfivenwhiteguy @nebulousNate "Buying made in America..." when you can get shorts fully made in Germany for 87 euro, or shorts 100% from the UK for 90 pounds... I call it "Made-in-America-Tax"
  • 3 0
 people spend that much on one night out drinking (let alone if it involves a strip club)
  • 1 0
 @theoskar57: and those are all awesome products. All I am saying is my Kitsbow shorts are a clear step up in fit, quality, and comfort from any of the others I have tried in my personal experience. Which for the price they should be.
  • 3 0
 They are custom tailored for your measurements. People continue to miss this fact. Not mass produced shorts that will fit just okay in some places and not others. Every pair will fit perfectly to you specifications, because they are made to order, for you.
  • 1 0
 @theoskar57: Well, considering I live in America, it is not really a 'tax" for me.
  • 1 0
 @bigdawgmike: Yup, ,maybe
  • 3 0
 Shouldn't GG's Barelli build come with the levers flat? Gotta tuck that third nut.
  • 4 2
 Only thing not overpriced is the PNW bars and stem. 4k for a kids bike. Get outta here.
  • 1 0
 you guys forgot to mention Niner's full susp gravel bike,now that's news worthy lol
  • 2 1
 Concentrated cleaner, strip your bearings of all grease lubricant - but hey my bike sparkles.....then put the power hose on it Jeeze pleeze
  • 1 0
 Agree. All these degreasers and concentrated cleaners are terrible for all your moving bits. Seals and bearings die so much quicker with these products being constantly used.
  • 3 1
 Drop bars on a MTB? What’s next, full spandex kits?
  • 1 0
 Hey Cascade how about a link to turn my Nukeproof Mega 29 in to a mullet. Pretty please
  • 1 0
 That Chromag Minor Threat looks hardcore
  • 1 0
 I'm really glad I got out of this industry when I did. What a sham.
  • 1 0
 Geometry engineers punching the air rn after seeing drop bars put on mtbs
  • 1 1
 The handlebars are the only interesting thing

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