sweet // bikes

cool bike shit for the discerning cyclist


// Muc-Off Dry Shower              

We used to call it a scally shower when after gym class you swapped washing your body and just hosed yourself down in Lynx. Africa was our musk of choice.

And this from Muc-Off is basically that but with actual anti-bacterial qualities rather than just a full on pungent aroma you could smell at 100 paces.

Derived from that famous cleaning product, the coconut (no idea) it is formulated to kill the odour causing germs and is ph nuetral. Perfect if after a race you want to actually make it into the bar with out needing a cordon and there is no wash room. Ot its cold. Or you can’t be bothered etc. It comes in handy 50ml size or if you are the size of a house it also comes in a 200ml vat.

Spray it on, leave it to dry, then wipe it off and you will have members of the opposite sex swarming all over you. Oh hang on thats Lynx.

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// Knog - Milkman              

The Milkman always knocks twice. Or at least he did before supermarkets started squeezing dairies and put them out of business. Now the only thing they knock is whiskey. Straight back mixed with nothing but resentment and tears. And some semi skimmed.

Which is total bollocks, but they are still back now though in the form of a cafe lock from the Australian Light/Lock Lotharios Knog. I’m not overly sure Knog are actual lotharios but I was stuck in an alliteration splurge.

Its compact enough to fit in a pocket on a ride. Its not the worlds safest lock as you’d guess but it will stop people just deciding that your bike would make a nice addition to their lives and making off with it with security features such as 6.5mm stainless steel locking shield and a braided steel/fibre core crush cable that will frustrate bolt cutters. For a bit.

The 90cm cable retracts in to the main housing so should go round a few bikes and your head and you can get the Milkman in 4 different colours.

Unfortunately one of the colours isn’t semi skimmed.

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// Vanhawks - Valour              

We all had a bike that we wanted as a kid, but didn’t get. In my case it was a Raleigh Street Wolf. It had sound effects (or FX as we call it in the trade) and an awesome red LED.

Never got it. And now I’m an adult not only is it a bit wrong for me to get one from ebay its also far too small. So this is a great fillip, until I can get someone to build me a street hawk in a massive size that is.

The Valour is the first “connected” bike and has a number of ways that it’s actually smarter than you, meat sack.

It has blind spot detection technology so it vibrates if you are about to turn into traffic. It has an inbuilt GPS that you programme using a dedicated app to work out the best cycle route. You then follow the green lights on the handlebars left or right to get your destination.

It also logs everything you do – time, calories burnt pedal strokes, what brand of lynx you are wearing (Africa in case you were wondering) distance etc.

Someone steals it? Sorted cause you can detonate it remotely using the Vanhawk network. Which is also how you can locate it if you didn’t want to do the first bit ……cough

It’s super light and strong with a carbon frame, it looks ace and has a single speed carbon belt drive.

Pre-orders are in now for a march 2015 delivery and although it’s not cheap you get a lot of bike for your money that can do an awful lot of next level stuff.

So all that is well and good and ‘game changing’ and stuff but nowhere does it say that it has a handlebar operated machine gun FX like the Street Wolf. Maybe they can add that and I’m in.

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// Lizard Skins - Dry-Fiant Insulated Shoe Covers              

Lizards are bastards. I mean look at those monitors. Sitting outside all day in the sun, not bothering to get a job and having loads of kids which they then probably claim welfare for.

So it pleases me to hear of anything that involves their skins. Not that these shoe covers are made from actual lizard skins as it’s just the brand name, but then Toad in the Hole isn’t made with reptiles so what’s your point. And no, of course I don’t know what my point actually is either.

The Dry-Fiants are well constructed, wind & water resistant covers for your disco slippers that are also insulated for days when those little doggies can get super cold.

They have a reflective logo for extra safety and I admit it took me about 3 hours to work out what the hell “Fiant” was and what made it something I needed in my life. I am that thick.

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// Vulpine - Short Merino City Sock              

As Edwin Star once famously said…. Socks. What are they good for? Absolutely nothing.

Oh and keeping your feet warm, providing a barrier between foot and shoe and also hiding your ankles from lascivious Victorian men. So really they are good for loads of things. Nice one Edwin.

These city socks from the always excellent Vulpine use technical merino that is both super soft and kills odours. Great if you are cycling to a date. Or eat with your feet.

They have a traditional British herringbone design and come in 4 colour ways – red, navy, green and fuscia.

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// Rapha - Kings of Pain Essentials Case              

“Rapha, it’s just over priced tat for toss pots who like to pose in coffee shops more than they actually like riding their bikes and have great hair even after taking off their helmets”

The above statement is true. Doesn’t mean I don’t want to own every item Rapha make, including that weird parachute material coat thing that was approximately 5 billion pounds or something.

What you get here for dropping your pants and taking one in the bank account is a high quality leather essentials case with bound seams and a satin zip lining. And satin is the material that high flying womanising business men use for their sheets. Learnt that from Pretty Woman.

It’s not waterproof but it is embossed with some logos that denote the suffering of some of the most famous cyclists in history, and that’s much more useful than keeping stuff dry. It’s big enough to take spare inner tube; tyre levers; gas cylinder; reasonably sized multi-tool or mobile phone and also has a credit card slip pocket.

Now admittedly its £45 ($65) and a bread bag is free but then my mate recently lost 2 £20 notes out of his pocket on a ride. If he’d had one of these he’s only needed to have lost 5 more pounds to have made it worth while, ish.

The irony of not having any money left after buying this is not lost on me. Actually it is.

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// Horse Cycles x KM City Cruiser              

Horse Cycles of Brooklyn are builders of sweet city bicycles all presided over by the bearded god like figure of KING HORSE. Which is a name I just made up cause actually it’s Thomas Callahan.

The City Cruiser is a collaboration with Kauffman Mercantile – a very upmarket shop that seems to sell upmarket things to upmarket people. Almost exactly like Sweet Bikes then.

The bike is a single speed affair made from light but strong 4130 steel True Temper tubing (also once found in Tour de France and Giro d’Italia racers) It comes with Brookes leather seat and TIG welded joints for that super streamlined look.

You get a choice of dark green or cream, a personalised copper badge and also the advantage of a much lighter wallet as this fine looking steed will set you back well over a grand sterling.

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// Rizoma - Metropolitan Bike              

MCP, or Master Control Programme as his mother calls him, was a bit of a bastard in the original Tron. Digitising people just cause they were trying to hack your network, making programmes fight each other in badly animated massive loss causing early 80’s films and the like. Saying that though he had a marvellous eye for style.

And if Tron had needed to get about the game space and he had run out of whatever it was that powered the light cycles, (possibly light?) then this is the bike he’d get around on.

With a monocoque carbon frame and aluminium parts this bad boy isn’t on the cheap side, in fact its hideously expensive but just look at it! Come on, you aren’t looking hard enough…. that’s better. Lets all pop a tent in unison.

The Metropolitan comes in either black or white frame colours with orange or black rims, has a flip flop hub for either single speed or fixed riding and is powered by a belt drive rather than a chain. It also only comes in 1 size. It does come with brakes but they aren’t fitted.

Now if your day isn’t complete without some majestically nebulous design statements then this is what Rizoma say about the Metropolitan bike……

““Elegance and harmony make the metropolitan bike more than just a means of travel, but rather a work of design and a declaration of an aesthetic and existential philosophy.”

Whatever. Now someone lend me €4200 please.

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// Patchnride              

Punctures are like haemorrhoids. They are both an unavoidable byproduct of riding a bike as well as being a massive pain in the ass. Zing.

So it was only a matter of time till someone came up with a way of dealing with them that didn’t involve busted fingers, 7 tyre levers and every swearword you know. The Patchnride is a fairly ingenious invention that makes all that a thing of the past, that admittedly took me about 10 minutes to fully understand how it works. Not that this makes it complicated, just proves my boneheadedness.

The simple explanation is that when tyre armageddon happens and you get that deflating feeling, then you jab the tool into the hole (having located it using the leak detector – basically a wet cloth you wipe onto the tyre, the bubbling area is the puncture) rotate it, slide the slider and lo, fixed is the inner tube and after some righteous pumping you are back on your way.

The more complicated explanation is here – https://patchnride.com/how-it-works/

The Patchnride will fix all tyres from road tubulars and clinchers (in fact its best application as it means you don’t have to rip them apart and re-glue every time you flat) to MTBs and even pram wheels. Basically anything with an inner tube.

Currently on pre-order but ready to ship pretty soon and it’s small enough that you can sling it in a back pocket or bike bag.

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// Le Coq Sportiff - Arac Jersey              

Now it is often the case that wearing official replica shirts can make you look like a knob. What would you think if someone cycled past you in a full on yellow skinsuit? I think though that if there is a shirt that is inspired by the official gear then that’s ok. Unfortunately my sartorial CV is littered with times where I’ve worn stuff that I think is ok and in fact I look like a Coq.

With the Tour de France breathing down our necks I thought if I can’t feature something like this when can I? Its part of the Le Coq Sportiff Arac jersey range – there are 5 colour ways, including this one which is of course inspired by the polka dot jersey awarded to the King of the Mountains but with triangles instead of spots. Cheeky. Being 16 stone and an avowed enemy of that bastard ‘gravity’ I therefore am a perfect match to this jersey.

Usual Le coq detailing, great construction and comes with silicone strips to keep in place as well as 3 decent sized pockets on the back. It also has flat seams to prevent chafing, because remember – a bleeding nipple is not a happy nipple.

Oh and it’s also on sale – 40% off. Get your Coqs out.

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