Tech Week 2023: Handguards, Expensive Winter Shoes, Luxurious Printed Saddles

Oct 28, 2022
by Henry Quinney  
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Sendhit Nock V2 Handguards

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While slightly divisive for aesthetic reasons, there are some that diligently swear by hand guards. Whether it's to make the tree-punch slightly less painful, to help you when riding through thick bracken, or just to stop your hands from looking like baked potatoes after the winter's chill has had its way, they do arguably have their place.

Sendhit recently released the Nock V2 guards. The new versions are just 168 grams per pair and feature an aluminum bracket. The guard itself is made of impact-proof plastic, with foam on the inner edge to soften the blow being passed onto your hands.

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The guards aim to offer compatibility, regardless of brake or shifter configuration.

They feature two lateral and two front adjustments for the right fit. Nock say they're compatible with all brake and shifter models, and won't interfere with any other controls as they use just 10mm of bar space. The bracket itself features a 28mm screw and is articulated to make installation and removal easier.

The plastic guard itself uses two zones to offer the right level of big-hit-resistance and the ability to glance off impacts. The central zone aims to offer a decent level of stiffness. It does this by its curvature and thickness. The side zone is made to deform, not only to brush off impacts, but to avoid overloading the clamp and having it snap under impact.

The new Nock handguards are available for €74.99. Please visit sendhit.net.



Selle Italia SLR Boost 3D

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In the Venn diagram between Brian and Levy's desires, there is a small sliver of cross-over where gravel-oriented 3d-printed products exist.

Although more suited to the rigors of road cycling, it's not entirely uncommon for mountain, or dare I say in the strange eventuality that any happen to be reading, gravel bicyclists, to run lightweight road saddles on XC bikes, especially those that aim to offer a degree of relief or comfort. The SLR Boost 3D could well be that style of saddle.

The saddle has already got Brian Park slightly hot under the collar with its 3D-printed pattern that will try and take the sting and vibration out of the road surface. The saddle claims to have progressive absorption and is available in two sizes - the 130 mm width S3 and the 145mm L3.

A low-claimed weight of 170 g is impressive - but so it should be, with prices starting at $399.90 for the titanium railed version.

The saddle is also available with titanium or carbon rails. For more information please visit selleitalia.com



Fizik Terra Artica GTX

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Fizik also release a new winter shoe, which sees updates compared to the model we reviewed last year. The Gore-Tex insulated model hopes to be the ultimate wet-weather clipless shoe. The shoe features a fleece lined inner, which should help wick moisture away and keep your feet comfortable and dry.

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The Grape colourway is definitely the louder of the two options, but I quite like it.

It uses a BOA ratchet for security on a ripstop upper, as well as a velcro strap around the ankle for added security. It also features a new X5 nylon sole for better grip off the bike. Sizes: 36-48 are available, with 37 to 47 also in half sizes. The shoes have a claimed weight of 432 g.

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Cleat placement is everything.

The shoes are available in a loud purple and brown Grape colorway, as well as a more subdued black. They have a price of $260 USD. For more information please visit fizik.com




Industry Nine
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Industry 9 have released a special edition to their 305 wheels - The None More Black enduro wheels, complete with end caps that go all the way to eleven, are a limited run that involves a different anodization process to create a two-tone effect that renders the laser etching to a shadow.

The wheel uses Industry 9's own straight pull spokes and the 305 rims are proprietary 6000 series alloy. At the heart of the wheels is their Hydra rear hub, which offers 690 points of engagement and a distinctive buzz. As the name suggests, the rims use a 30.5 mm rim width.

There are only 100 sets of this limited run available and will sell for $1455 USD. Please visit industrynine.com for more information.

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POC Sports
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POC's new Air indoor cycling range are there to keep you comfortable and dry during your winter turbo-sweat-session. Cut with a looser fit, the vest hangs away from the body without clinging for increased comfort. The vest aims to be exceptionally lightweight and the shorts come without shoulder straps in a bid to cut down on excess material. The vest, in either men's or women's fit, retails for $60 USD. The shorts are $140.

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There are also new lightweight mesh bib liners. The MTB Air Layer Bib shorts feature a similarly thin fabric to the indoor range, as well as shoulder straps and pockets on the back and thigh. They sell for $130 USD.

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POC also have a new kids range of jerseys, helmets and glasses.




Tech Week 2023 is a chance to get up to speed on the latest mountain bike components, apparel, and accessories. Click here to view all of the related content.



Author Info:
henryquinney avatar

Member since Jun 3, 2014
311 articles

97 Comments
  • 129 1
 indoor cycling apparel lmao.
  • 30 25
 honestly, training mtb races and what not, these speak to me. Full time job, responsibilities, prepping food for the family, funk yeah i'd like an indoor kit to use on the trainer to wear out instead of normal bibs and such.
  • 77 0
 @ceolmhar: yeah maybe for the bib but the top ? If you are warm go shirtless, you're home ffs.
  • 26 5
 @Balgaroth: My neighbors fear the sweaty sasquatch when they look into our house.
  • 10 1
 @Balgaroth: This is what I do. Bibs no shirt.
  • 26 0
 @ceolmhar: Their fault for lookin.
  • 8 0
 I wear my retired shorts (cause they are ripped or see through) and no shirt.

Cost: $0

Or, can I just say I am protecting the environment? Less landfill space?

Given that I live in SoCal and don't have responsibilities that make me a "time crunched rider", not something I worry about much.
  • 5 0
 @JSTootell: Bibs only...im in my house for god sake...lol
  • 5 1
 @ceolmhar: Going to jump up onto your gallows and get hung with you, indoor cycling is a real thing with unique problems. However I'm not sure POC has nailed it here. Biggest problem with indoor is the stream of sweat with nowhere to go except to destroy your bike. My favorite "indoor" stuff has been halo headbands to keep sweat out of my eyes. If you're going to really make something indoor specific, give it a waterproof front pocket for the absurd electronics shuffle, vent it knowing that no one has a fan pointed at their back and has a barn fan pointed at their front, and think about sweat piping like Halo. This just looks like "we gave you less to charge you more"
  • 1 0
 This set of products aside, there is actually quite a market for "indoor cycling" e.g. SoulCycle, WheelHouse, CycleBar, or any other group cycling class.
  • 3 0
 @Mtmw:

A fan and top tube / bar towel do the trick for me.
  • 2 0
 @Mtmw: I kinda cheat. The only time I use a trainer is at work during. Since I am in the maintenance department (HVACR tech), I have a nice mechanical (chiller) room to call all mine and acquired a giant PortaCool (stands about 5' tall). Proper cooling and airflow is not a problem. Well, except when it is 120* in there, but then it is just heat training.
  • 2 0
 @Ironchefjon: I have two salvage blowers and a bike shield, but somehow I'm still behind on corrosion even with wipedowns after every use. Have you ever opened up your headset on your trainer?
  • 1 0
 @Ironchefjon:

I'm all shitt, no bibs.
  • 27 0
 Those i9's are gorgeous
  • 19 1
 They go all the way to eleven!
  • 12 0
 They're too dark to see, but I'll take your word for it
  • 5 0
 @WaterBear: None blacker, really.
  • 5 1
 Maybe, but for the same price you can get WAO carbon wheels laced to Hydra's and a lifetime warranty...
  • 1 0
 @jsnfschr: there is one wheelset from I9 that WAO literally makes for them
  • 11 0
 Yeah but $1455 USD for an alloy wheelset is complete bullshit
  • 3 0
 @WaterBear: I was thinking about complaining about the uber dark photos of the shoes until I scrolled down to find the under exposed photo of all black wheels against an all black background...
  • 1 0
 @jsnfschr: Yes, but not with their aluminum spokies.
  • 1 0
 @ratedgg13: on top of that.. you know those bearings are going to roast themselves in under a year.
  • 25 0
 Hats off to @henryquinney for managing to take a shot at both Brian and Levy in a single photo caption. Bravo, sir.
  • 12 2
 The captions are amazing. "Cleat placement is everything" hahaha. Those crooked-ass cleats are so funny. A company trying to sell you $260 shoes can't even put the cleats on straight.
  • 3 0
 @bonkmasterflex: Maybe they have chainstay/heel clearance issues Big Grin
  • 8 1
 @bonkmasterflex: Proper bike fit includes properly angled cleats. 0* of angle isn't always ideal for everyone. I actually applaud the idea of a shoe company showing a properly setup cleat for a rider, rather than the 100% perpendicular shot to help people's ocd.
  • 1 0
 @bonkmasterflex: yeah, those just make my knees hurt looking at them!
  • 2 0
 The Brian Park and Mike Levy Venn Diagram Smile
  • 20 0
 The 3d printed saddle only makes sense if it's designed around a 3d scan of my butt, and I'm sorry, best I can do is a photocopy
  • 3 0
 Ha. Not sure why anyone would buy this when you can get carbon railed saddles that weigh the same, are arguably more comfortable, for half the price....
  • 13 0
 You haven't seen expensive winter clipless footwear options until you've priced out 45NRTH's top model winter boot.
  • 14 0
 ~$400 for 45 nrth fat bike boots, imho is a good investment if you ride in Maine/Quebec all winter , they are legit warmer than my ski boots. Only complaint is lack of vowels.
  • 10 1
 @Borealwoods: I just use leather hiking boots that I've worn the tread down enough so that they grip like 5.10s. Clipless fatbiking is terrifying anyway... and half the fun is going foot-out and pretending to be Sam Hill.
  • 2 0
 @bonkmasterflex: Definitely plenty of foot out fun in the snow, but I find, especially bushwhacking in fresh snow, being clipped in really helps me keep putting power down even when I slipping and sliding and getting bounced all over.
  • 3 0
 @Borealwoods: You can't put a price on warm feet. However, I find shoes can only do so much....and "winter" cycling shoes are terribly awkward. I just use pocket warmers inside my shoes.
  • 1 0
 My friend has some 45NRTh winter boots, they're not the fat bike boots, but the lighter model aimed at commuting, winter MTB/CX and his opinion of them is miserable. Cold feet that don't stay dry. I use some waterproof Irish Setter moccasin toe boots for my fat biking with flat pedals, warm feet, plenty of grip comfy off the bike.
  • 4 0
 @bonkmasterflex: I'm with you - winter hikers (goretex lined) and a set of deity chester knockoffs with longer studs and I'm stuck to my pedals like glue.

The one time I tried clipless I had nothing but trouble with snow packing into my cleats/soles and no clippy-clippy for me.
  • 2 0
 @Borealwoods: Maine winter rider here: tbh I just use my normal lined winter boots with XL crank brother stamps. Warm as I'll ever need them to be and a quarter of the cost. For groomed winter riding, the use of clips is not essential and can be a hindrance when the cleats and spds are caked with ice and packed snow. It's basically just riding magic white carpet.
  • 1 0
 For flat pedal fatbike riding, I don't think you can beat Ugg Harkley waterproof laceups. They can usually be found for 130ish dollars, they are honest-to-god waterproof, the pin grip is as good as my Five Tens, and the insides are the outside of a sheep. What more do you want? (Style? Class? That'll be 400 dollars!)
  • 7 0
 Does the mesh shirt come with a gold chain? If not, count me out.
  • 4 0
 spin class featuring music from the village people.
  • 3 0
 That's not really expensive for good winter shoes (assuming they're good). Going into winter number 3 on my Louis Garneau Klondike's, they're worth every penny of the $260 I paid for them. My feets are warm!
  • 1 2
 That's not expensive for good cycling shoes, my Sidi Dragons were $400.00. You get what you pay for, and good shoes are definitely worth paying for. Unless you don't care about your feet that is.
  • 1 0
 @danger13: It depends.... I've had a few pairs of $400 shoes that were not to my liking. Some from long term fit issues, others from quality issues. It would be nice if you always got what you pay for, but sometimes you pay up & get F'd.

My long term favorite shoes are mostly from the mid-tier.
  • 2 0
 I like the look of those Fizik boots, but I wonder if they have any kind of waterproof laminate to help keep your feet dry? I guess we'll never know.
  • 1 0
 @krka73: I find that the mid-level Shimano stuff is the best value. Fit me well, long lasting and not too much like slippers or moon boots. I have the AM7s and the GR5s for clip/flat. They fit my high volume foot well, they're comfy, and not terribly expensive.
  • 1 0
 Totally. My Shimano MW5s have been incredible (waterproof not insulated, perfect in vancouver) and a solid investment in my winter riding but they were close to $300. Totally worth it.
  • 5 0
 Can't quite remember the waterproof layer used in those Fizik shoes... anyone?
  • 5 0
 First sentence should be "slightly divisive" not "decisive"
  • 1 0
 Also "a small sliver of crossover" rather than "a small slither" in the saddle caption.
@henryquinney
  • 14 0
 @DPGriffin @mchance Bloody hell, I'm going to have to buy grammerly again, aren't I?
  • 1 0
 Anyone else had absolutely terrible experiences with goretex stuff? I've had 2 jackets fail and 3 pairs of walking boots fail too. One of the walking boot pairs failed within 2 weeks from walking through morning dew on the grass. I now actively avoid goretex stuff which is a shame because it's in a lot of outdoors gear.
  • 4 0
 Winter shoes = summer 5-10's and three layers of socks. Wool for the win.
  • 1 0
 You need some better socks.... I use the same shoes year round as well....
  • 3 0
 Five ten soles on snow are deadly, might as well be wearing a pair of freshly waxed skis.
  • 1 0
 @deiru: Haven't had that experience over the last couple years. It's CT, we've been snow deficient in years gone by.
  • 1 0
 @deiru: I'm a sissy man.... I only ride in the winter several day AFTER it rains in most cases because I don't like to destroy my trails... I'll ride in the sandy trails while it's raining. But I don't deal with snow.

I put a snowboard on my feet when it's snowing.

All you folks that actually ride in REAL winter conditions.... hell yes you need proper foul weather gear.
  • 2 0
 Do hand guards protect your hands from anything other than fresh air? Looks like if you clip a tree they will just fold into your fingers?
  • 2 0
 I’ve certainly ridden a few trails where tall dense foliage has tried to apply my brakes for me when leaning the bike over. I’ve also been sent completely out the front by a hanging vine that grabbed my front lever. If I rode either of those places more frequently I’d be interested in mounting a set.
  • 2 0
 They can also help protect your brake levers in a crash, etc
  • 1 0
 @SimbaandHiggins:

I broke a lever in a crash a few weeks ago. It sucked. Had to ride up and out while my friends rode down to the lake. Ended up working out for them. I went and got the truck and went and picked them up. LOL!

I do have a set of VC Guards. Need to move them onto my other bike. Didn't even consider that they could have stopped me from snapping that lever. Hmmmm.
  • 1 0
 they had saved me a lot of times!! i even use them now also on my DH bike, the Sendhit Handguards are just great and they look real good.
  • 2 0
 Apparently you do not ride anywhere with cactus Wink
  • 1 0
 @Pusher5000: No joke. I can't tell you how many times I've had literally an entire branch of cactus attached to my arm or leg. Man I forgot how much I hated riding through that stuff. LOL!
  • 2 0
 I have another brand's handguards on my fat bike. It's pretty legit snacking something and your hand is fine. The real reason I have them is for winter riding. I hate pogies and being able to keep the windchill off of my hands has been very helpful. It's not like it makes your hands warm, but it keeps them from getting colder due to wind chill.
  • 1 0
 @pgm83: True story. Thumbs get cold first because the tips face forward.
  • 1 0
 @mrpfp: I've developed a proper fear of vines and brambles after being sent out the front door in exactly the same way as you... Three broken ribs to show for it.

I like the idea of those little stubby bar ends for tree protection too but hooking those on anything would be nasty
  • 3 0
 Caution! If you don’t shave and ride bottomless your pubes will get caught in the mesh of that saddle.
  • 2 0
 Why are all insulated bike shoes clipless? When riding in the snow I have my inside foot off the pedals around almost every corner.
  • 3 1
 Industry nine makes invisible wheels!?
  • 8 1
 Well if you can't see them you can at least hear them.
  • 2 0
 They are for John Cena
  • 2 1
 none more black… same title as used for the zakk wylde, black label society boxset.
  • 2 0
 Can anyone comment on if handguards make for warmer hands in the fall?
  • 13 1
 “On if handguards make for warmer hands in the fall?. You’re welcome.
  • 1 0
 Slightly, and they are very effective in knocking snow off of foliage and keeping your hands a bit drier.
  • 2 1
 Sort of. Your hands don't cool down as much. There's effectively no wind chill (and wind chill makes your hands colder, especially if there's any moisture in/on your gloves). That's why I use them on my fat bike.
  • 1 0
 I am now self-identifying as a "gravel bicyclist".
  • 1 0
 They started to charge that high prices for shoes without motor?!
  • 7 8
 ebikers love handguards!
  • 2 0
 Yeah, so? So?!!
  • 9 12
 @Lando406: Don't buy upgrades, ride up grades. Almost every ebiker I've met is more into the actual buying (bike, enduro bro clothing, accessories) than the actual riding. But they talk and eat as if they're doing the 80% of work the motor is. Ever notice why most ebikers are obese and drive the nicest cars? Expendable income and a need for validation and belonging.
  • 3 1
 Are you calling Jesse Melamed an ebiker? Bet you couldn't beat him in Enduro comps in 2022!
  • 4 9
flag bikewriter (Oct 28, 2022 at 6:57) (Below Threshold)
 @Capable: Reading comprehension does a body good. I didn't say "only ebikers run handguards". I said "ebikers love handguards" and my follow-up opinion stated it's because they like buying stuff for the sake of looking the part of belonging.

My dad can beat up your dad.
  • 1 3
 @bikewriter: I am glad to know there is someone around here that hates eBikes more than me. You can take some heat off me.
  • 5 5
 @JSTootell: No hate. Everyone in my family owns them. Some of my elderly friends had to go ebike because decades of racing and crashing + old age meant they couldn't physically ride analog anymore, but they were not ready to hit the rocking chair tour. And we take first timers on ebikes often.
It's the lazy otherwise healthy not-elderly experienced riders who simply gave up and turned into poser ebikers who make excuses instead of personal goals which make me pause. In the end it doesn't matter. But they all do have handguards.
  • 1 0
 mirrors and kickstands too
  • 4 4
 @bikewriter: "It's the lazy otherwise healthy not-elderly experienced riders who simply gave up and turned into poser ebikers who make excuses instead of personal goals which make me pause."

This! 100% on what I see in Co. Don't forget the speaker playing music...
  • 5 0
 Do you compete in slopestyle? I'd imagine you'd be a natural with all the conclusions you're jumping to.
  • 2 0
 @RelapsedMandalorian: Sorry chap you'll have to excuse him but its the "Colorado way" to be a smug dickhead like this--Please understand. I too am from his landscape, our tribe, our brotherhood *unzips troue for WhataboutAutism* love ya my nit-picking know it all broham
  • 1 0
 @bikewriter: Hey, take it easy man... I was just pointing out that the winner of the 2022 EWS runs handguards, and was attempting to do so with a bit of humor. I'm sorry if it came across as too aggressive.

You are free to beat me at biking anytime, with any gear you want, as long as you have fun riding! Ride on man...
  • 1 1
 @Capable: Nope, didn't read into it. You were just stating a fact. No aggression to be found. It's all appreciated.
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