What happens when we skip the Week in Review for two straight weeks? We end up with the biggest Week in Review yet! This week we have updates from the mailroom as well as the latest news on the products we’re currently testing. We also have a new addition to our readers’ ride gallery, an update from Recon, something very curious from Swiss Side, and finally a quick note on being wary of counterfeit components. But before we get to all of that, let’s start with a big Happy Father’s Day to all of our readers celebrating!
This Week’s Posts
Thursday 6/4 – HR Sportswear Custom Kit – Review
Tuesday – Profile Design FC25 – Review
Wednesday – Zipp Vuka Aero – First Look
If you’re a regular follower of AG, you know that Readers’ Rides is one of our favorite ways to showcase our readers’ amazing race steeds. This week we have Morten’s Swift Carbon Ultravox-Ti with an Ultegra 6800 Di2 groupset, Planet X Ultra light brakes, American Classic 420 Aero 3 wheelset, and Look Keo Blade 2 Pedals.
You can check out our complete Readers’ Rides gallery at http://on.fb.me/12jEqE3. To have your bike featured in our album, tweet us at @AeroGeeks, Facebook message us, or email us at info@AeroGeeks.com.
A Recon Jet Update
Recon has provided us with multiple updates regarding the company itself and the Recon Jet product we have been so excited about. Let’s start with the big one first – last week Recon was acquired by Intel.
While we don’t know the exact terms of the sale, we do know this means that Recon’s technology is being paired with a company that has a great deal of practice in taking new ideas and making them a reality. We have been following the development of the Recon Jet for almost two years now and have waited with bated breath to see this product become fully available. This type of acquisition can go a long way to helping that process along!
The second bit of news about the Recon Jet is the addition of ANT+ power meter support. Current Recon Jet owners can start syncing their power meter following a free software update for the Jet. With the update, the Jet can now display power data in six different modes including Instant, 3 second, 10 second, 30 second, Max, and Average.
Finally, Recon has introduced a new smart nutrition app designed to notify athlete’s when to consume food or water during a cycling or running activity in order to maximize potential and help reduce muscle catabolization and dehydration. Called “Refuel,” the app is designed specifically for the Recon Jet and considers age, weight, height, gender, altitude, distance traveled, heart rate, and either pace or speed to make individualized nutritional suggestions. It was developed collaboratively between Recon and former ultra-distance athlete and author, Brendan Brazier. Launched on June 3 from the Recon Instruments App, Refuel is free of charge for Jet users.
Swiss Side Teases a new Cycling Aerodynamics Project
Unfortunately we don’t know exactly what Swiss Side has up their sleeves, but judging by the images (and the brief text that accompanied them), they are working on a new way to take aero testing out of the tunnel and on to the road – preferably the roads that are used as part of the Ironman bike courses. Stay tuned for a full reveal in mid July!
Helping Spot a Counterfeit
A friend of the AeroGeeks came to us a few weeks ago with a question we get on a pretty regular basis. They had found a set of Zipp 808s (a wheel set we just happen to be testing) on Craigslist for less than $1,000 and wanted to know if we thought this was a good deal. Considering that this wheel set usually retails for close to $3,000 brand new, we were obviously a bit skeptical. Since the last thing we want is a friend (or anyone, for that matter) to be riding on a product they don’t know everything about, we did some research. And as you may have guessed, this turned out to be an example of the old adage; when something seems to be too good to be true – it probably is.
What we found were that the wheels being sold as Zipp 808s were in fact non-genuine (counterfeit) Zipp products. While they wore Zipp badging, they didn’t have a single Zipp (or SRAM, which owns Zipp) component. What tipped us off was Zipp’s Counterfeit Product Information Page, which just happened to have an image of the exact wheels our friend considered buying. Following up on this, we reached out to SRAM to see what they had been doing to crack down on counterfeit products.
Since 2012, counterfeit SRAM products have increased 2-3% per year. In Asia, customs seized 2,500 fake VID G3CS brake rotors, and in Europe, 17 fake Zipp wheels were seized. SRAM has managed to have 6,081 online listings of counterfeit branded Zipp and TRUVATIV components removed (though they know of at least another 5,043 that still remain).
Taking all of this into account, the best thing you can do when buying a new or used product from a seller you are not familiar with is to reach out to the manufacturer to determine how you can identify whether the product is legit. Not every counterfeit is sold at such a deep discount that you can immediately call into question the legitimacy of the deal. Though if the deal is too good to be true … well, you know the rest.
The Mail Room
The mail room tends to slow down from June to October even though product news speeds up. This is mostly due to the fact that all of those big releases at the Tour de France and the Ironman World Championships are for products that won’t ship for another few months. But even so, we received a few new products this month that we are excited to share with you. First up is the ENVE SES 4.5 wheel set. While this wheel set is a bit shallower than what we normally test, this is a great introduction to ENVE’s range of wheel products, as well as a perfect way to see how they scale up to the 8.9.
Kitbrix sent us two of their Kitbrix bags. For those not familiar with the UK-based company, what makes Kitbrix unique is that the individual bags can be combined to let you go from a single-sport shoulder bag to a multi-sport transition bag with just a zipper. While we haven’t started testing the bags yet, we can tell just how serious these bags are already. We are very excited to get a chance to spend some time with them.
From Pedros, we received a variety of bike maintenance products. But we have to admit that the most exciting of them all was their new beverage wrench. Designed to work with both domestic and imported beer, it is ergonomically designed for maximum leverage. On a slightly more serious note, we are planning to start a new series of posts to help new athletes properly prep and maintain their bikes. To that end, Pedros sent us samples of their entire clean and lube line, as well as a ChainPig for cleaning up your chain. They also through in a Start Tool Kit to help get our new series off the ground.
TYR sent us an assortment of products to help any swimmer advance from back of the pack to the front. We received an Ultralite snorkel, ankle float, and CrossBlade swim fins. They also sent us a pair of Special Ops 2.0 transition goggles, and to hold it all, their Triathlon Backpack.
TriRig Omega X
We installed the Omega X on our Shiv this week, and while we only got a single ride in so far, we already have our first comment in the test log: “these brakes are fantastic”. It’s a bold statement to start a review, but something tells us that won’t be the last bold line we find in the log.
With the Tour de France fast approaching, we are making sure all of the products we expect to see in Paris have made it through our review process. The Synthe has been atop or reviewers’ heads for the past few months, and the most common phrase we see in the log book is that it’s so light and ventilated that you forget it’s even there. Considering that Giro says that it’s faster than the Air Attack in most situations, that is some very significant praise indeed.
Cycliq Fly 6
While out for a ride this past week, we realized that Cycliq needs to create a jersey to remind motorists that they should smile more often – the camera is watching. Needless to say, having someone watch your six is a very good feeling.
Bontrager Hilo XXX Carbon Saddle
While we tend to prefer noseless saddles, the Hilo shape works for us. What’s more, the weight of this Carbon saddle is one of the lightest we have ever tested.
Sugoi RS Ice Tri Suit
When we spoke to Sugoi at Interbike last fall, one of the technologies they were promoting was their new IceFil technology for helping cool you on the bike and the run. After a single ride with the RS tri suit, they are already making believers out of us.