Check Out: Riding Jeans, Torque Wrenches, Lights, & More

Oct 11, 2023 at 12:50
by Mike Kazimer  


A lot of gear comes across our desks here at Pinkbike. Check Out is an occasional round up of everything our tech editors have gotten their hands on. Sometimes it's products we're doing long-term tests on, other times it's stuff we're stoked on but don't have time to fully review. And, sometimes it's crazy shit someone sent us unsolicited and we're having a laugh.



Ripton Bike Pant

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• Articulated knee darts for pads
• 13.5% nylon, 66% cotton, 19.3% poly, 1.2% Lycra
• 35% stretch
• Zippered side pockets
• Sizes: XS - XXL
• $120 USD
riptonco.com




bigquotesThese jeans actually showed up a few months ago, but they languished in the corner of my closet, mainly because the right opportunity to channel my inner Denim Destroyer never really presented itself. I finally donned them for some late-season laps in the bike park, figuring that was the ideal setting for wearing performance-oriented cotton (and there were fewer people around to tease me).

The jeans are comfortable – the fabric has some stretch to it, and there's plenty of room for knee pads underneath – but they aren't nearly as light or breathable as a pair of synthetic riding pants. There's also the fact that they're not really wearable off the bike, because when you're not wearing pads the extra room around the knee looks really strange, and the lack of pockets on the butt doesn't really help the overall look either.

Ripton's lineup has grown extensively from their initial start as 'the company that makes jorts,' and they do have plenty of options to satisfy all the denim fans out there. Personally, I'm still not convinced that jeans and biking go together, at least not if the ride involves more than some dirt jump laps and cruising around town. 



Tifosi Swick Sunglasses

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Features

• Hydrophilic nose pads
• Polycarbonate lens
• Grilamid TR-90 nylon frame
• Includes microfiber cleaning bag
• $25 USD
tifosioptics.com




bigquotesWhere I live glasses are more about protecting eyeballs from flying mud rather than the sun, so I'm constantly on the hunt for reasonably priced glasses with clear lenses. I've gone down the hardware store route, but in most cases the optics on those options leave something to be desired.

Tifosi's Swick glasses fulfill most of the items on my wishlist. They're comfortable, the lens doesn't make me feel like I'm looking through the bottom of a mason jar, and the 1960's science teacher aesthetic works for me.

The one downside is that they fog relatively easily. They work fine for descending, but they'll get steamed up pretty quickly when climbing on a humid day - there's not a ton of room between the top of the frame and my face. I'll likely try treating them with an anti-fog spray and see if that helps at all. 



Feeback Sports Range Click Torque Wrench

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Features

• Standard length hex bits: 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8mm.
• Standard length Torx bits: T10, T25, T30.
• Extended length (50mm) bits: 4, 5mm hex; T25 Torx
• Accurate within +/- 4% for 4,000 cycles
• $120 USD
feebacksports.comt




bigquotesGoing by feel isn't a good idea when it comes to tightening things like stem bolts, especially if a carbon handlebar is involved. I'll admit, I used to be convinced that my wrists were calibrated well enough to forgo using a torque wrench, but I've since changed my ways. Feedback's new Range Click torque wrench is a great option for home shop use, and it's small and portable enough to bring along on road trips.

The head and handle are all metal, and the tool has a reassuringly solid feel. The click when the desired torque (between 2-14 Nm) is reached is nice and positive, and the double-sided window means there's an indicator for each whole number in that range - the odd values are on one side, the evens on the other. The selection of included bits covers all the essentials, and there are three longer bits that come in handy for those harder-to-reach spots. 




Pearl Izumi Elevate Knee Pads

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Features

• D3O viscoelastic padding
• CE level 1 certified
• Cordura fabric over removable insert
• TPU skid plate
• $125 USD
pearlizumi.com




bigquotesPearl Izumi recently updated their Elevate knee pads, adding a velcro strap to the back of the calf for a more secure fit, and a thin TPU layer over the front of the knee to help keep the fabric from ripping during a crash. The bulk of the protection is provided by a removable D3O insert, and there are also smaller foam inserts at the sides of each knee for a little extra impact resistance.

The Elevate pads have a fairly low profile (perfect for fitting under fancy jeans...), and the taller upper cuff helps keep them from slipping down. I do think that the cuff could actually be a little shorter if the upper elastic / silicone portion was extended – the design of Rapha's knee pads is a good example of this. That's a minor gripe, and as it is the Elevate pads are comfortable enough to wear on longer rides while still providing actual protection for those moments when things don't go as planned.





Knog Blinder 1300

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Features

• 1300 lumens
• 6 different light modes
• LED battery level indicator
• Machined 6061 aluminium body
• USB-C rechargeable
• 100% waterproof, IP67 rated
• $99.95 USD
knog.com




bigquotesKnog is probably best known for their commuter-oriented options, things like bells and blinky lights to alert others of your presence. The new Blinder 1300 is billed as being for road and gravel cyclists, but it's a good little option for mountain bikers too. I've been tossing it in my pack as a just-in-case light, since the sun keeps going down earlier and earlier, and the woods get dark in a hurry. The light will run for 1.5 hours on the full power 1300 lumen mode, and 3 hours in the 650 lumen mode, which is still pretty bright. It's fully waterproof, another good feature for those wet winter rides.

Two mounts are included, one for running it on a handlebar, and the other for mounting it on a helmet with a GoPro style attachment. For riders looking for a full-on night riding setup, I'd suggest using the Blinder 1300 on a helmet and pairing it with an even brighter light with a wider beam pattern on the handlebar. 




Author Info:
mikekazimer avatar

Member since Feb 1, 2009
1,743 articles

65 Comments
  • 87 7
 Those jeans look TERRIBLE!
From the front so so, but the no pockets on the back leave them looking like women's jeans.
And Mike, you don't got the booty for it!

Not to mention, who, what, when and where are these better than actual riding pants?
  • 44 0
 LOL, Mike looks like he's got mom butt in those jeans.
  • 9 0
 It’s crazy how skanky jeans look without butt pockets!! Ha ha ha!
  • 2 4
 £100 pound riding jeans, lol. Like for casual rides you can’t beat £10 Asda jeans. They’ve got elastic in them so they’re super stretchy and don’t hold water and if you crash and rip them then who cares. Just get some more.
  • 1 0
 @Jordansemailaddress: you really don't want to hang your pockets up on the saddle nose when mounting the bike, especially with clipless pedals. Ask me how I know...
  • 2 1
 Sorry Kaz, it’s time to do some squats.
  • 2 0
 I don't want them but they would be appropriate at a loft access bike park when it's cool out or the local jump spot. Lots of guys wear jeans. They need pockets though. Wtf
  • 1 0
 Maybe if stone washed black or not 60s looking hippy blue.
  • 1 0
 @Muckal: how the hell are you getting on your bike where that happens? Man I wish you had video LOL
That must have been at least a LITTLE funny... baahahahha
  • 1 0
 @thenotoriousmic: the environment cares
  • 2 0
 @tacoma73: well, it happened when I had to stop briefly and got back on the bike without dismounting completely. Like when you lift your bottom on the saddle with the bike between your legs. I can't imagine how to get back to pedalling any other way? I didn't fall over once, but it was close. Unfortunately for you I've stopped taking videos of my riding long ago since I realized they look like shit and nobody cares. That's something 95% of MTB youtubers should give a quick thought.
  • 1 2
 @Sethimus: what’s the environment got to do with anything?
  • 1 0
 @thenotoriousmic: you buying 10 quid jeans en bulk that need to be shipped around the world instead of something that lasts
  • 2 0
 @Muckal: Strange,
My favourite riding shorts all have standard 5 pocket layout, like youd find on a standard pair of Levis. Its what I look for, as Im not into the mtb uniform that most cycling specific clothes seem to go for
  • 1 0
 @onawalk: I've been riding in E.S. shorts for years now, the same pair, minus the rear pockets.
  • 3 0
 @Sethimus: I’m not buying them in bulk they last as long if not as long as regular jeans hence why I wouldn’t spend £120 on a pair that aren’t as good as a £10 pair.
  • 39 1
 Sweet mom jeans for riding !
  • 28 1
 If you want to channel your inner denim destroyer, you should at least get your riding jeans from him: www.destroyerbrand.it
  • 14 4
 Damn I accidentally down voted. Pinkbike please let us change our votes
  • 19 0
 Finally, some glasses that don't make you look like an ass, just a programmer instead.
  • 4 0
 I really like Knog's stuff, but I haven't found their "waterproof" claim to be true. I've gone through three rear Knog "waterproof" lights due to water intrusion in the PNW. I'd be looking for a long-ish term review on that light because the size and output is very intriguing.
  • 1 0
 I concur, had two rear lights replaced under warranty. Super good light, but riding on a wet night does make me nervous.
  • 1 0
 Blinder is false advertising. That should be the name of the new magic shine 12000
  • 6 0
 For me those glasses look less like a 60s science teacher more Michael Douglas in Falling Down
  • 5 1
 Those jeans are f*cking terrible. No pockets on the back looks like bad 90s women’s jeans. Wtf were they thinking
  • 4 1
 That torque wrench is well-priced and would probably fit in a bike storage compartment.
  • 18 2
 People have a desire to bring torque wrenches on the trail now?
  • 4 2
 @husstler: If it's the same size as my regular tool set and priced well, why not?
  • 8 3
 I would not call 6x the price of a generic torque wrench a “good price”
  • 7 0
 @nickfranko: I would definitely be interested in a generic torque wrench for 1/6 the cost. What did you find?
  • 4 1
 @nickfranko: good torque wrenches aren’t cheap.
  • 4 0
 Lezyne Torque Drive is half the price and even more portable. Calibrated and has every bit you need. Only goes to 10nm though
  • 1 0
 If you’re interested in tifosi, I’ve found the swank actually make better mtb glasses. You don’t get as much wrap around but for that reason they fog less. Also the bent arm works better for my helmets’ liner stuffs
  • 1 0
 All about the tifosi sledge. Especially with the fototec lens.
  • 2 0
 If you want some riding jeans why not try to find some 90s Carrera team shorts. For overalls you could try a full Castorama team kit.
  • 2 0
 been looking for a light weight compact helmet light replacement....just bought this Knog Blinder. Looks like a solid option
  • 2 0
 I got the glasses last week and they work great. The clear lenses even have the UVA/UVB protection.
  • 1 0
 could probably get some prescription lenses for those glasses. I really like the look of them and would be willing to replace my normal set of prescription frames.
  • 2 0
 Tifosi actually makes prescription-compatible riding glasses at a fraction of the price of the big dogs (and not wreck your day to day glasses), I think you can get them on their website.
  • 1 0
 @fewdfreak: just checked their site, $175 for frames + prescription, that is ~25% less than jsut my most recent set of frames (not including lenses which are usaully 150% more than the frames), which isn't too surprising give the cost of glasses of Canada
  • 1 0
 At $125 those Pearl pads are the same price as the Raphas which offer level 2 protection in a similarly lightweight and low profile design?
  • 1 0
 Interesting. Didn’t know that. But have to say, the PI are super comfy, most comfortable I’ve worn. Better than Fox, dainese, shred and probably others.
  • 1 0
 Hey @mikekazimer what's that Garmin mount on the first Knog Blinder photo, please? Thanks.
  • 1 0
 I have a few pair of Tifosi Swicks with clear and yellow lenses. They work well, look fine and are the right price.
  • 1 0
 If I ever see someone with those jeans on the trails I'm straight up calling the police
  • 1 0
 Will my pipe vapors fit in the zippered pocket?
  • 1 1
 Ripton stuff fits well but the durability isn’t very good. “Bike” jeans should be built for bike use
  • 1 0
 Tifosi Swanks are the fucking shit. Good value, look fine.
  • 1 0
 Way way better light. And cheaper. www.olightstore.com/bfl1800
  • 1 0
 Those glasses look like my knock off Oakley
  • 1 0
 Not seen nhs spex for a few decades.
  • 3 4
 1300 Lumens...?

Can you even ride at night with that thing???
  • 17 0
 If there a drunk pig damn lyin there in the dirt anybody dang well know all you get to do's flip that sumbitch upside roll her down hill shit the bed all might god dang
  • 1 0
 wouldn't trust it at full blast for the claimed 1.5 hours on the trails. There's not enough light at 650 lumens and especially if the battery runs out! It'll be good as a hand flashlight for the attic or finding things in an old shed.
  • 1 0
 @browner: I think that's what you call "deliverance"! Big Grin
  • 1 1
 The sunglasses lol
  • 5 0
 They are not sunglasses.
Also, with all the humongous, idiotic, over the top cycling glasses out there THESE are the ones you find laughable?
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