Panaracer GravelKing SS/SS+

 

Panaracer has 16 gravel tires listed on their website. Fourteen of those have the GravelKing moniker, with different tread patterns and different colors. The most recent addition to the category is the GravelKing SS/SS+ tires, and they seem designed just for me.

If I broke down the type of riding I do on the Open U.P.P.E.R., I’d venture a guess that 70% is on pavement, and the remaining 30% on hard pack dirt. So, for me, a tire with knobbies is out of the question. I like a stable and solid connection to the road when I’m descending the canyons of Los Angeles, and knobs on the sidewalls do not provide that. Throw in a splash of water, and the likelihood of kissing the pavement increases tenfold. This is where the new GravelKing SS excels. Instead of knobs, the tire has continuous “aggressive lugs” that are in constant contact with the pavement or dirt. This allows for stable traction in any conditions, and predictable handling on the bike. (more…)



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Gazelle Ultimate T10+

Once in a great while, I receive a bike to test that blows my mind. That is the case with the new Gazelle Ultimate T10+. What sets this bike apart from the myriad e-bike choices? Well, first things first.

Gazelle is a Dutch brand that has been in the bicycle business for over 128 years. Being Dutch, city bikes are their thing, and for the North American market, they offer eleven different models. All eleven models are e-bikes, and the Ultimate T10+ is their top of the line offering. The Plus designation is purely for its 28mph assist level.

Before going further, I want to point out some things I’ve learned from riding several e-bikes. (more…)



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Bookman Urban Visibility

 

 

 

Based in Stockholm, Sweden, Bookman Urban Visibility specializes in visibility products for cyclists, runners and pedestrians. Their design aesthetic is clean, modern, and highly functional. The Curve, pictured above and below, has an output of 220 lumens, and a run time of up to 70 hours in power saving and flashing modes. It is easily attached and removed for safe stowage in a backpack when not in use. The glass lens design allows the light to be seen from the sides as well as the front, and the unit is completely weather resistant. The lights are available in three colors, and can be ordered directly from their website. In addition to lights, Bookman also has reflector stickers that can be worn, or attached to a bicycle. This is another simple, yet highly effective product that helps improve one’s visibility. Bookman Urban Visibility has a singular mission, making being seen their guiding ethos.

 

 



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OPEN MIN.D

 

My latest obsession from OPEN, the new MIN.D. A pure road bike through and through. Set for release in the next month. Given the genius of the OPEN U.P.P.E.R., this new release is bound to be amazing.



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ZiZZO Liberté

 

The ZiZZO Liberté folding bike isn’t the usual fare for this blog, but I developed a soft spot for folding bikes after my first visit to Tokyo when I saw the amazing folders available there. Ever since, I have been fascinated with these compact offerings.

ZiZZO is a young company based in Union City, California offering a line-up of seven folding bikes. The Liberté is the lightest offering, weighing in at a mere 23 lbs. It is also their top offering, currently selling for $429.99 on their website. The price is well below that of comparable folding bikes, and the weight is at the top of the class. The component spec is quite decent, and the build quality is first-rate. (more…)



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Bezzera BZ-13 _ Pasquini


First things first. This will be a biased review. I say this because I’ve been using espresso machines from Pasquini for years, and have a fondness for this LA based company. When given the opportunity to try their Bezzera BZ-13 machine, I jumped at the chance. But, before I get into that, let me say I’ve been happily using the Pasquini Livia G4 espresso machine for over 10 years. It’s a beauty to look at, and a pleasure to use. And the coffee is, of course, excellent. (more…)



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Factor O2 – Version 2

 

 

An updated version of the Factor O2 was recently released, improving on the first generation by incorporating manufacturing processes used on the flagship O2 VAM. These techniques combine to make version 2 stronger, lighter and faster. One other item of note is the additional clearance for tires up to 30mm, a welcome bit of news for those of us relying on the “bigger is better” maxim.  Available in both rim and disc brake versions, and for both electronic or mechanical shifting, the O2 is available now starting at $2700.00. (more…)



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Isadore Apparel

 

Winter in LA has been exceptionally cool. That isn’t to say we don’t have it easy with our weather, but for lifelong Angelenos, it is always a test when the temperatures drop into the 40s. The sun may be shining, but the wind combined with the cool air make for a daunting combination. To deal with this varying climate, I chose to test Isadore Apparel almost exclusively for the last two months. The results are in. (more…)



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California Bike Plate

 

 

 

 

The California Department of Motor Vehicles is gauging interest in a specialty plate created to support cycling programs within the State. In order to launch the program, 7500 people need to pre-order the plate. If that magic number is reached, the DMV will issue the plates, and funding for bike skill development and nutrition education at the elementary school level will be established. Additionally, grants will be provided to bicycle coalitions throughout the State. A cycling themed plate proudly displayed on your car seems like an especially brilliant way to support cycling. More info can be found here.



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