Interbike 2013: FaceTime

LAS VEGAS, Nev. (MDM) — Before FaceTime, there was face time, and now that I no longer help cover Interbike for Bicycle Retailer and Industry News, that’s generally what I spend my first day of the show collecting.

Tuesday evening was the traditional pre-show meal with the BRAIN trust; on Wednesday, I was doing some light trolling for toys with editor Mike Deme of Adventure Cyclist and his trusty sidekicks Josh Tack and Rick Bruner. Tech editor John Schubert joined us later for dinner and drinks.

Mike and I also appeared briefly on Diane Lees’ Outspoken Cyclist radio show, to be aired later this month. You’l be pleased to hear that I successfully avoided the accidental deployment of my favorite monosyllabic Anglo-Saxonisms.

The change in venue from the Sands to Mandalay Bay proved something of a shock to everyone’s navigational systems, and so we spent an inordinate amount of time playing Where The Hell Are We Going And Where The Fuck Are We Now? As a consequence, I didn’t take any pix, an oversight I’ll correct today.

But be on the lookout for some new do-it-all steel bikes, among them the Klatch from Co-Motion (someone decided they wanted to do a gravel race and needed a bike) and the Straggler from Surly (don’t call it a gravel bike or they’ll hurt you).

More later from the show floor, or slightly above it.

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44 Responses to “Interbike 2013: FaceTime”

  1. James Says:

    Oh…gravel bikes…..I saw somewhere else (CX Mag) that one is rising from the bowels of Santa Cruz County created by the local mad scientist not named for wheels, tires, and other bits from the folks in Waterloo, WI.

    Not that I can afford a Calfee but it would be interesting to see what “the man in the street” thinks of it. Is it a “Super cross” bike? A gravel bike? A Roubaix bike? A Moots YBB in natural fibers??

  2. khal spencer Says:

    I guess the last big marketing gimmick, whatever it was, was has petered out, hence the “gravel bike”.

    Back fifty years ago, we rode our heavy, steel Sears bikes (with their signature “gas tank”) on freshly deposited chipseal out in Alden, NY, slaloming up and down on the loose material. It sucked then and I suspect it would suck now.

    Spare me more bad memories.

  3. Joe Says:

    Patrick, give me regards to Schubley when you see him tomorrow. Thanks!
    Joe

  4. Patrick O'Brien Says:

    Did you get to watch the crit or cross races?

  5. Larry T. Says:

    Well, another year and again no face time, POG. My two days in Bugsy Seigel’s funhouse went from dull to hectic and back again. Highlights were of course seeing our Italian friends. Lowlights, besides Lost Wages itself, were the new venue which was confusing as hell to navigate after so many years at the other spot and where one was seriously hosed for food and drinks. $5 for a 20 oz bottle of water at Fourbucks inside the Mandalay Bay convention center? And we thought the other place was a rip-off? Final low point – who didn’t have a silly fat-bike at this thing? Those were cute and original what, about 5 years ago?
    One improvement was the outside “Paddock” venue, watching the crit races was fun, especially as our Albabici friends had a hospitality tent on the course, stocked with snackage and adult beverages.
    I’ll be running posts about my times in Sin City here – http://cycleitalia.blogspot.com/

  6. psobrien Says:

    Mike at my LBS was able to get a long cage 105 rear derailleur to smoothly shift an 11-34 SLX cassette. He said it was magic, but I think some careful adjustment of the B screw and chain length did the trick. We found out that STI shifters will not work with the new SLX rear derailleur. So, he went with a long cage 105. It is a standard 105 34/50 compact crank set. Seems to be a nice range of gears. I will test it tomorrow climbing up Ramsey Canyon road.

    • Larry T. Says:

      34 X 34 or a 1-1 low gear should be pretty good. I’ve cobbled together a 30 X 29 low gear with Campagnolo’s 10 speed triple and a 12-29 cogset for my personal bike in Italy. But the damn Mortirolo is still an SOB! I’m currently begging the Campy boyz to fix me up with a new Athena 11-speed triple setup with 30-39-50 chainrings and 11-27 cassette to try out. If/when I take that bike to Italy the cogset will be swapped out for 12 – 29…I think 50 X 12 is enough on the top end, at that point I’m tucked in and not pedaling anyway!

    • John in GJ Says:

      Hi, psobrien. Cool trick with the 105 r/der working an 11-34. I’ve managed to get one to work with a 12-32 by reversing the B screw, thereby getting more distance between the pulley wheel and the cassette. I couldn’t get it to work a 34 though, good job. I’ve considered going to the hardware store and getting a longer screw.

      We put a 12-36 on my better half’s Ultegra equipped road bike by using an XT Shadow 9 speed rear derailleur. Mountain 10 speed rear derailleurs don’t work with 10 speed road shifters, as you’ve found out, but the 9 speed rear derailleurs do work with 10 speed road shifters. Which is cool.

      Good luck on Ramsey Canyon Road, wherever that is.

      • Patrick O'Brien Says:

        Thanks John. If I find out how Mike did it, I will pass it on. Maybe he went to the hardware store too. I am a little concerned on shifting performance and any accidental cross chaining. Time will tell. You give me some good alternatives, and I would probably just go 11 or 12/32 as a first step. Those damn STI sifters are expensive!

        Ramsey Canyon road (Sierra Vista, AZ) is close by and gains 600 feet in 3 miles. Should be enough to test the low gear, at least for me near the top! I ride my mountain bike up there often since it links with one of the nicer local trails, Brown Canyon trail, about 1/2 mile before Ramsey ends.

    • Khal Spencer Says:

      I’ve been meaning to try an old XT rear derailleur on my old “Frankenstein” gruppo Cannondale to see if it shifts with the 9 speed Dura Ace STIs. That way I could easily spin on a 12-32 or 11-32 cogset for those days in the mountains.

      Right now we are running a 12-36 9 speed cassette on the tandem with a Shadow rear derailleur and 9 speed bar-cons. That was far cheaper than finding a 110/74 BCD tandem crankset in order to drop the overall gear ratios to something suitable to two old coots in the mountains. I don’t know why, but it seems the tandem manufacturers think everyone is the Lon Haldeman/Susan Notorangelo couple. Sheesh. I think tandems should have stayed with the 110/74 BCD standard, as it is incredibly versatile.

      • John in GJ Says:

        “I’ve been meaning to try an old XT rear derailleur on my old “Frankenstein” gruppo Cannondale to see if it shifts with the 9 speed Dura Ace STIs.”

        As long as it’s a 9 spd XT and not a 10 speed, it should work just fine. I’ve seen it done many times.

      • CRJ2 Says:

        have been using a 9 speed XT on my Wife’s bike for about 9 years with 105 STI shifters and works fine with DA crankset and 105 front derailleur. 11-32 rear cogs….. I am about to that stage also…too damn old and fat to push a 23 tooth in the hills any more.

  7. John in GJ Says:

    Off topic, and a sad topic, we’re trying to make sense of this around here: http://www.gjsentinel.com/news/articles/crash-driver-was-late-for-dui-hearing/

    This sucks. We’ve already put up a ghost bike.

    • Khal Spencer Says:

      God damn. I generally think the right wing is fulla schitt, but sometimes I think we really need to vacuum out the shallow end of the gene pool.

    • psobrien Says:

      Shit. No responsibility from one demanded the ultimate price from the another. There is no sense to it. She might not even remember it. I just hope she doesn’t drive for a long time.

    • John in GJ Says:

      What I don’t get is that she got busted in June for driving under the influence of illegal prescription drugs, so then they just sent her on her way driver’s license in hand and asked her to come back in a couple months? What the hell? They just let a dangerous driver just drive away so she gets stoned again and drive over one of us. This is bullshit.

      A question for anyone in the know: can they take away someone’s driver’s license at the time of arrest for DUI? Or is driving such a “right” that they get to keep on driving till they’ve had their day in court?

    • Larry T. Says:

      Sad, to say the least. I believe cars are second only to guns when it comes to the “sacred right” crowd. Mowing down other innocent road users, whether they’re in another car, on a bike, moto or simply walking is just unavoidable carnage….just like the mass shootings by deranged individuals. Taking away someone’s license to drive is just like trying to pry a gun out of their hands – somehow this has become one of those “God given right” issues.

      Note on cross-chaining: my advice is to NEVER set up a drivetrain that won’t allow it. I’ve seen far too many snapped off rear derailleurs from folks who set ’em up without enough chain, thinking “Oh, I’d NEVER cross-chain it” and then they get to the top of a steep climb and are so tired they shift the wrong way….

      • Patrick O'Brien Says:

        I agree! I will try it in the repair stand first. But Mike, my trusted LBS tech, said it would not be a problem, and he hasn’t steered me wrong yet. But, being the careful type……

      • Khal Spencer Says:

        What Larry said on cross chaining. I try to always double check and make sure I’ve got enough chain to barely handle the large-large combination. When one is on the last climb at the end of the long day, one will not remember to avoid the cross chain gear.

        As far as cars, I suppose the only thing stopping a bad guy with a car is enough good guys with cars. Right? I just wish that we could convince some of these politicians to hold motorists to the same standards they would like to hold gun nuts. The last person killed at a school here in bomb town was run down by a guy in a pickup truck–in a crosswalk, in a school zone.

      • Larry T. Says:

        Bike shop guys know this – the issues I’ve seen are usually DIY’ers who set themselves up with what we used to call a “vanity triple” – a double chainring setup with a huge rear cog. I used a compact setup for two seasons in Italy, but when my personal bike developed an issue I couldn’t resolve in time for the next tour I grabbed one of our rental bikes instead. Riding a triple setup again, with the smaller gaps between gears, had me wondering why I’d switched in the first place? The next season my personal ride was back to the triple setup and I was overjoyed to see Campagnolo continuing with the idea even in the 11-speed, oversized crank spindle era!

      • Khal Spencer Says:

        When my compact wears out, I’ll probably be ready to go to a triple, as I will be worn out too.

      • Larry T. Says:

        Funny thing that, Khal – the lowest gears were pretty much the same, with 30 X 26 on the triple and 34 X 29 on the compact double. I just like more choices and more even spacing..but I’m a guy who always hated 53/39 chainrings too…the gap is just too much, requiring all kinds of shifting around in the rear to get decent progression. I had the same issues with the 50/34 on the compact setup. Now I have 52/42/30 up front and 12-29 in back…though I could probably WALK up the damn Mortirolo faster than I can ride in that gear!

      • Patrick O'Brien Says:

        Rode the ES today after checking cross chaining clearances in the repair stand. Smooth shifting and no issues. 34/34 is plenty low for me. Damn Shimano screwed up my plans by not allowing STI shifters to work with mountain bike derailleurs. Anyway, Larry, you are right that vanity had a little to do with my choice. But, the major concern was simplicity. Again, if the makers would allow it, I would have 32 and 46 chainrings up front, and a closer ratio rear cassette. But they simply don’t make them. I rarely used the large ring in all the Shimano triple crankset bikes I owned. But many times I wished for a couple lower gears when climbing. I like to spin up hills instead of hammering or mashing large gears which is hard on my knees. I should have taken Patrick’s advice on cranksets and forgot Shimano. I just had to have that groupo thingy going. But, later, who knows. Anyway guys, thanks for your hints and advice. And John, he didn’t replace the B screw with a longer one. Maybe Mike is a magician???

      • Patrick O'Brien Says:

        I should add that I don’t mind triples with bar end shifters. But with STI they are a pain. Clunky and it seemed constant adjustment to get chain rub out. My LX trekking triple with bar end shifter on my 9 speed Saga works just dandy.

      • Larry T. Says:

        POB, I must confess to knowing pretty much zip about Shimano triples, though the shifting issues you describe might explain why triples are rare – since the Big S so dominates the bike market. I’ll admit to not being a big fan of the Campagnolo “Powershift” front shifter, which I think is like Shimano’s in that it has three distinct positions and not much trimming potential? But the wife has no issues with Powershift on her personal bike in Italy and I have no problem with keeping it in adjustment to her satisfaction.
        I prefer Campy’s “Ultrashift” as found on the higher-end groups – no distinct positions allows one to put the front derailleur right where one wants it.
        I don’t quite understand a simplicity argument in favor of double cranks vs triples…having a third chainring doesn’t add much complexity, at least in a Campy setup – but DOES offer more ratios to choose from and smaller gaps between gears -making finding that “just-right” gear easier for me.

      • John in GJ Says:

        For Patrick O’Brien: You probably already know this, but the Shimano Triple STI front shifters have a “half click” to trim the front derailleur. The 9 speed generation shifters had this just for the middle ring, except for the Dura Ace triple front shifter which had a trim for the middle and big chain rings. I believe the 10 speed generation triples have that “half click” trim for both the middle and big rings also. This applies to the better quality Shimano stuff, beats me if the Sora shifters have this feature also.

        The “half click” allows you to bring the front derailleur inward just a couple millimeters, but it allows for use of all the cassettes without chain rub. It makes it so you can adjust the front shifting to make upshifting quicker and easier. I’ve had to point out this half click trim feature to quite a few customers and one significant other, after which most seemed to find the Shimano triple STIs fairly easy to use. Not “bar end” easy, but hey, what is? (I have bar ends on two bikes!)

        Now you want to talk PIA front shifting, try pre-2014 SRAM double click. No trimming the front derailleur in the small ring at all! Makes setting up the front derailleur a bit touchy; I make it easier on myself by using a K-Edge chain watcher. The new SRAM shifter now have trimming I understand… BFT (’bout fucking time).

      • Patrick O'Brien Says:

        I didn’t know that John. Thanks! That gives me another option. I am going to try the current set up out for a few months and see how it works. Will let you know. I asked Mike if he did anything special. He said no. It was a new long cage 105 r/der, and he decided to try it. Adjusted the B screw and was careful on the chain length. I will ask him again if he used a different screw.

      • John in GJ Says:

        Hey POB! It could be that your derailleur hanger is “fortuitously shaped” in that the part of the hanger that the B screw pushes against is just that little but further rearward. I’ve noticed over the years that derailleur hanger shape varies a fair bit among (and within) manufacturers so that some frames are easier than others to play this game with. I suspect the derailleur hanger isn’t a part of the bike that manufacturers spend a lot of time thinking about.

        For that half click on a Shimano STI triple: shift from the granny up to the middle ring, this puts the front derailleur in the outer position for the middle ring. Now go to shift like you’re going back to the granny but apply only a very light amount of pressure. You should feel the shifter give a subtle “click” and the derailleur will move inboard a couple millimeters. If the front shifting is adjusted anywhere near correctly the “half click” won’t shift you into the granny gear, it’ll just make it so you can use the lower cassettes without the chain rubbing on the front derailleur. This shift seems to be most touchy on new shifters (or a shifter that on which the “half click” hasn’t been used), but it gets easier and more distinct with use. If you have a 9 speed Dura Ace or most any 10 speed it works the same way for the big ring.

        You say you’re in Arizona, eh? Hmmm. I can feel the early chill of winter already in this part of Colorado. Hmmmmm.

  8. Larry T. Says:

    Where the hell is POG? How much longer can we amuse ourselves with advice/complaints about the Big S’ triple shifting? 🙂
    Hope he didn’t get waylaid in Lost Wages.

  9. Patrick O'Brien Says:

    I bet he got a new gig, and a new set of deadlines, while doing the “face time” thingy in Vegas. Either that or he went from Vegas to New York to narrate the next episode of “Nature” on PBS. Or maybe he is just messing with us to see if we would notice his absence. Larry, maybe you won a prize for the first of us asking where the hell the Mad Dog is. Wonder what you will get?

    Whatever is keeping him, I hope it is all good.

  10. John in GJ Says:

    Hey, some relatively good news for a change!: http://www.dailycamera.com/boulder-county-news/ci_24159477/dale-stetina-former-pro-cyclist-injured-craig-hospital-rehab?source=rss

    Be far better if Dale Stetina hadn’t gotten hit at all, but at least it’s a positive development.

    And as for the missing POG, my guess is that somewhere around Las Vegas he saw a “Free Beer” sign, and that was that.

  11. Duke Godfrey Says:

    The most important thing for me at bike shows was meeting hot race girls- not race car girls- I mean hawt body that can grind and push out the huge gear girls – the only thing more dreamy than that is USMC girls of course – sadly I dated neither but I did talk with both- though never worked with either being in a comabt mos Marine- I guess that could change in the future if 1 thet put gils in comabt and 2 on bikes ala swiss… chhers

  12. Interbike 2013: Shopping list | Mad Blog Media Says:

    […] introduction, allow me to present my top three bikes from Interbike 2013: the Co-Motion Klatch (mentioned previously); the Cinelli Bootleg Hobo; and the Chris King Cielo Tanner Goods […]

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