What's new

Good stuff of 2022

Chuck

Maximum Pace
Feb 7, 2011
1,533
1,770
Wondering what purchases you made (bike, tires, accessories, bags, lights, etc.) that you were especially happy with in 2022.

A couple things I got this year were:

1) stretchy bands that are great for keeping pants from getting in the chain, for holding the front wheel when working on the bike, etc. etc. etc. These have a bit of rubbery stuff on one side that keeps them from slipping around. Cheap too.
Screenshot 2023-01-09 at 15.44.14.png
2) Ortlieb Fork Pack - just the size I want for the front fork. Small enough not to make steering feel sluggish, big enough to hold extra clothes or other light items. The mounting system is secure and makes it easy to take them on and off. Because they are slimmer than other front fork bags, they aren't as difficult to get through the many gates on some cycle paths.
Screenshot 2023-01-09 at 15.43.05.png

3) Workman rainsuit - cheap, durable, effective.
 

OreoCookie

Maximum Pace
Dec 2, 2017
2,426
2,063
I didn't buy too much in 2022.
  1. I will give Ortlieb some love, too, I bought their 1.6 saddle bag. It is significantly larger than common saddle bags, but still is a saddle bag rather than a saddle bag if that makes any sense. It is the only saddle bag that my Lezyne pump will fit into. I love that I can roll it out and put in a small item of clothing or gloves or snacks. This is a really nice piece of kit. I'm currently eying for opportunities to get some more Ortlieb gear. I could replace my Fizik saddle bag with a smaller Ortlieb saddle bag on my road bike. But I'd do that for no particular reason. My Fizik saddle bag works just fine, even though it is stuffed to the gills.
  2. My new Bont Riot+ MTB shoes. I have wide, weirdly shaped feet, and the Bonts are not just great, but were quite cheap for what they are, I think I paid $190 for them.
  3. My Shimano carbon flat bars on my mountain bike: they are exactly what they should be, and they were not too expensive, all things considered.
  4. XT brakes: the mountain bike I bought at the end of 2021 had suboptimal brakes on it. After some deliberation, I made the decision to stick to XT brakes. While I slightly prefer my old XT brakes, I cannot say whether this was me being accustomed to the old ones or whether the new ones are just slightly different. Overall, these are a solid piece of kit, and if they also last 10 years like the previous ones with no single malfunction or weirdness, then they are worth it.
 
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BeerTengoku

Maximum Pace
Mar 14, 2021
201
303
I cycled around Biwako over two days - one of my dream rides and loved the majority of it. Would happily do it again this year if I have the time though I’d ride it in Autumn again. It was a trip that I had been thinking about for a long time but never committed to it as I thought that I could always do it some day, but in reality, that day could never come.

Also, I had some good group cycling trips with friends across various surfaces and speeds to parts of Kanto that I wouldn’t do necessarily by myself as there was no reason to go there. Sometimes the ride is better than the destination.
 

andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
3,296
3,550
Nice idea, I looked at my 2022 Amazon purchases. All of these are recommended. Speed Sensors and Cadence sensors need a bit more time to test as they drop out a few times, but that's not uncommon on the rollers.

Shimano arm warmers and leg warmers are the best I've ever used.

Santic cycling shorts are a great deal for 4,000 yen. Leg length is a bit short but I like that.

Zefal fender is cheap, easy to take on and off, effective.

IRC tyres are my go to tyres these days.

Panaracer pump is very cheap and a mini stand pump so you can inflate tyres quickly. I keep it on the gravel bike.

Titanium bolts are a cheap and rustproof upgrade. Also add some bling if you care about that sort of thing.

NeilMed synus rinse is a game changer. Haven't been sick in 4 years and great after rides during hayfever season.

Andy
 

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kiwisimon

Maximum Pace
Dec 14, 2006
4,079
2,294
good thread idea Chuck.
I spent bugger all.
Like Andy IRC tires are my go to. These IRC Boken Plus tires on the gravel/everyday bike.
Freezing times like now, Continental Top Contact, excellent grip on icy slushy roads. not good at shedding mud.
I got a Bontrager Flare RT on the rear that is an excellent daytime or night time light,
Knog light on the front was a warranty free replacement sent from Australia. It goes well on the front as a daylight flasher and back up for the main headlight after dark.
Bought no clothing as I'm loaded with stuff I need to slim down into.
 
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andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
3,296
3,550
good thread idea Chuck.
I spent bugger all.
Like Andy IRC Boken Plus tires on the gravel/everyday bike.
Freezing times like now, Continental Top Contact, excellent grip on icy slushy roads. not good at shedding mud.
I got a Bontrager Flare RT on the rear that is an excellent daytime or night time light,
Knog light on the front was a warranty free replacement sent from Australia. It goes well on the front as a daylight flasher and back up for the main headlight after dark.
Bought no clothing as I'm loaded with stuff I need to slim down into.
Those IRC are road tyres. The Boken DoubleCross on the gravel bike must be surviving since 2021, which is pretty impressive. They are fantastic tyres, fast on asphalt, grippy offroad, great puncture protection. Highly recommend!

Andy
 

bloaker

Sincerely A Dick
Nov 14, 2011
3,528
5,500
2022 Purchases....

Why Bicycles R+ = 1x Ti gravel bike picked up from Why direct on a mega sale. Longer wheelbase than my Sage with a 27.2 Carbon seat post, GRX810 components, only thing I need to change are the bars. I prefer wider bars for off road where I intend to use this bike most.

Ibis Ripley v4 = X01 build. Out of the box, this bike is the closest to perfect of any MTB I have ever bought. Climbs amazing, pedals on flats amazing, is good on descents. This is the perfect compliment to my Ripmo that climbs good, pedals good, and is amazing on descents. Between these two bikes,. there is no trail I have ridden that I don't feel well equipped to enjoy. (also, last years bike, so 30% off)

Pirelli Cinturato Gravel M - 700x40. I am super happy with these on the Why. Knobby enough to be fun on the MTB single track, but with a good enough centerline, to not give up much speed on the road. I am super stoked on these tires.

Fox Defend Pants - For MTB I bought both the Regular Defend and the lined Defend. Both are rugged and can protect you in a crash. The lined pants are warm enough to ride in the Kanagawa winter time without any base layers. I was expecting to only use these for downhill type applications, however they are comfy enough to pedal up some as well. I would not were them in an XC race, however they are a great option of gravity and general playing around.

Leatt Pants - For MTB - these are lighter weight than the fox pants and a little more roomy. They work well, however are not as good on cold days.
 

Chuck

Maximum Pace
Feb 7, 2011
1,533
1,770
Pirelli Cinturato Gravel M - 700x40. I am super happy with these on the Why. Knobby enough to be fun on the MTB single track, but with a good enough centerline, to not give up much speed on the road. I am super stoked on these tires.
I just recently saw two reviews of these tires and both reviews were very good. Was thinking of picking up a couple for some things I have planned in the mountains. Good to know you liked them too.
 

bloaker

Sincerely A Dick
Nov 14, 2011
3,528
5,500
I just recently saw two reviews of these tires and both reviews were very good. Was thinking of picking up a couple for some things I have planned in the mountains. Good to know you liked them too.
The only thing that the jury is still out of for me is wear. I do not have enough miles on them to have an opinion yet.
But they are no slower than my Gravel King tires in 38mm, but WAYYYYY better in loose stuff.
 

mr tim

Speeding Up
Mar 11, 2022
70
41
Nice thread... it may prove expensive for me :)

I upgraded all my lighting. It doesn't seem so long ago that my front light was powered by two D sized batteries and a light bulb. Ever Ready I think.

Rear light: I cycle from Enoshima to Kamakura at the weekends and there are a couple of tunnels so I picked up a Enfitnix Cubelight ii smart light. It has brake sensing, auto day and night modes, ambient light sensing, movement detection, auto shut down, aluminium case, and will run a couple of days for me. I just turn it on when I leave the house, and recharge it when I get home as it turns itself off and on as required. Clips onto my under seat bag.

Front light - to see
: If I cycle home from work I have a 1km section with trees either side and no street lights, so I picked up a TOWILD CL1200. Up with car flood lights for brightness. Probably. Made the mistake of looking at the thing front on to see how bright it was. Don't do that. It has a wireless remote for full beam, so I can mount the unit under the handlebars as I don't need to touch it. It has a real nice 4000mh battery with a USB-C out so I can use it to charge my iphone if need be. Really reassuring to have if I'm out for the day.

Front light - to be seen: Gorix GX-FL15798 headlight. Again an aluminium case. This thing flashes for hours - 3 modes of flashing depending on how bright I want it to be.

All the above are in aluminium cases and water proof so I'm hoping they will last a while. The technology has certainly moved on since the Ever Ready days that's for sure.
 

bloaker

Sincerely A Dick
Nov 14, 2011
3,528
5,500
I remember that Jeff Kendall-Weed also really likes the bike. It really sounds like a do-it-all bike, and your build seems spot-on. I think the only changes I'd make is tires (I'm a Schwalbe guy), perhaps a 32-tooth chainring rather than the 30 and a power meter.
He raves just a little too much and sponsored by Ibis... so while I did see his reviews... I watered them down in my head. Climbs great is the consistent thing I read in reviews everywhere. I also have a ripmo that climbs good... so I was skeptical on how much better the Ripley could be.
The trails here almost never let me get into my top gear, so moving up to a 32 for me would have me using even less of the cassette. If it were more XC and less chunky flats with drops on descents and loose punchy climbs, I can see the appeal for gearing up. But on days I am gassed... the 30x50 is amazing. I never believed I would use such a gear, but now I take rolling breaks to relax vs actually stopping for my breath.

I hate the term Quiver Killer because it simply doesn't exist - but this bike does everything the Ripmo does just as well with exception of hauling ass through rough stuff. Rock Gardens/High Roots/big jumps/drops - The Ripmo is king and no other bike I have owned matches it. It does everything else good, but not great.
The Ripley is great in everything except what I just mentioned. I can finesse my way through things, and still survive, but I am significantly more beat up.
 

OreoCookie

Maximum Pace
Dec 2, 2017
2,426
2,063
He raves just a little too much and sponsored by Ibis... so while I did see his reviews... I watered them down in my head. Climbs great is the consistent thing I read in reviews everywhere. I also have a ripmo that climbs good... so I was skeptical on how much better the Ripley could be.
Personally, I mostly watch his videos for the bits of him whizzing through forests and doing things effortlessly that I'll likely never learn. I also found he pushes his sponsors quite hard, others do this better than him.

I have only ridden a competitor to the Ibis, the Pivot 429, and I loved that bike. If I were allowed only one MTB and had oodles of money growing from a tree in my backyard, that's surely one of the bikes I'd consider. The idea of these two bikes seems to be the same: a bike that marries the best qualities of a trail bike and an XC bike.
The trails here almost never let me get into my top gear, so moving up to a 32 for me would have me using even less of the cassette. If it were more XC and less chunky flats with drops on descents and loose punchy climbs, I can see the appeal for gearing up. But on days I am gassed... the 30x50 is amazing. I never believed I would use such a gear, but now I take rolling breaks to relax vs actually stopping for my breath.
Yeah, most of my dream rides are leaning more towards XC. And I commute with my mountain bike. But I really love the freedom chainring options afford you — and the 10–52 cassette.

By the way, a question about XT brakes: when I compare my new M8100-series XT brakes to my old ones, my old ones still feel better to me. Apart from the patterning on the grip, which seems a bit too sharp to be pleasant to my fingers, what I really miss is a dead spot just before the brakes would bite. What I mean is that with my old XT brakes, just before the brakes start biting, the force needed to keep the brake lever where it was decreased. So if I wanted to get ready to brake at a moments notice, all I’d need to do is find this “pocket” where the brake lever retention force is minimal. (I hope my explanations make sense, it is hard to put into words without a graph.) Overall, the retention force seems to be slightly higher on the new brakes, too. Am I imagining things here? Or is that real?

I originally thought this was just a matter of me breaking in the brakes (no pun intended) and getting used to it. But I no longer think it is all in my head.
 

bloaker

Sincerely A Dick
Nov 14, 2011
3,528
5,500
By the way, a question about XT brakes: when I compare my new M8100-series XT brakes to my old ones, my old ones still feel better to me. Apart from the patterning on the grip, which seems a bit too sharp to be pleasant to my fingers, what I really miss is a dead spot just before the brakes would bite. What I mean is that with my old XT brakes, just before the brakes start biting, the force needed to keep the brake lever where it was decreased. So if I wanted to get ready to brake at a moments notice, all I’d need to do is find this “pocket” where the brake lever retention force is minimal. (I hope my explanations make sense, it is hard to put into words without a graph.) Overall, the retention force seems to be slightly higher on the new brakes, too. Am I imagining things here? Or is that real?

I originally thought this was just a matter of me breaking in the brakes (no pun intended) and getting used to it. But I no longer think it is all in my head.
I have had the XT M785, M8000, M8100.
Right now, the M8100 are my favorite. You should be able to adjust the free stroke on the new one if you like that (I don't).



I do not have any M785 brakes left... and I don't miss them. (never had a problem with them either)
 

OreoCookie

Maximum Pace
Dec 2, 2017
2,426
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The issue I was talking about isn’t about the free stroke (I did pay the extra few ¥ to get the XT brakes with those adjustments), but the force curves. The curves I drew are exaggerations, of course:

Shimano brake lever force curve comparison.jpg

The local force minimum of the M785s is the “pocket” I was talking about, it allowed me to prime my brakes with very little strain on my fingers. But because the force ramped up, lever reset was quick.

With the M8100, the lever reset force seems smaller, but constant. It feels a bit uneven, but I didn’t include that in my drawing. But there is no “pocket” that allows me to prime my brakes, and since the lever reset force is smaller, levers reset way more slowly once I let go of the brake levers.

Does that make more sense? Or do I have duds on my bike?
 

bloaker

Sincerely A Dick
Nov 14, 2011
3,528
5,500
You are referencing the "servo wave" I think?
If I remember correctly, there are 2 hydraulic circuits and the first makes the pads travel faster. When they contact the rotor, the fluid is re-routed to the other chamber giving you more modulation.
Non-shimano users hate it because it gives shimano the feel of more initial bite on the brakes. Shimano users call it positive feedback. :D
I do pull the lever to the point of contact when my pads wear down so I have instant brake when needed.

I think depending on your freestroke, you will notice the servo wave more/less.
I like instant engagement, so when I bleed my brakes, I set them up SUPER tight so I have almost no travel in my lever before engagement - this limits the servo wave. This also forces me to keep my rotors straight as any wobble and I have rub.

You may not have an issue with the difference between models, but that your current setup may have less play? A brake bleed, pad cchange, or maybe evn pad wear may make your issue disappear? When I switched to the new model XT, I found the divots in the lever to be the most drastic feel change for me.
 

OreoCookie

Maximum Pace
Dec 2, 2017
2,426
2,063
You are referencing the "servo wave" I think?
If I remember correctly, there are 2 hydraulic circuits and the first makes the pads travel faster. When they contact the rotor, the fluid is re-routed to the other chamber giving you more modulation.
Oh, that's what servo wave was? If so, I really liked that feature/got used to it.
Non-shimano users hate it because it gives shimano the feel of more initial bite on the brakes. Shimano users call it positive feedback. :D
I do remember that there is this SRAM vs. Shimano MTB brake disagreement on modulation vs. “positive feedback” going on, but having never owned SRAM mountain bike brakes, I cannot contribute. (I did own Hayes FX9 and Magura Julies in the past, I liked both, too, especially the Julies.)

I guess I just got super used to how my old brakes felt, not surprising after spending almost 10 years with them. Still, I thought that was a great thing about my old XT brakes.
I think depending on your freestroke, you will notice the servo wave more/less.
I like instant engagement, so when I bleed my brakes, I set them up SUPER tight so I have almost no travel in my lever before engagement - this limits the servo wave. This also forces me to keep my rotors straight as any wobble and I have rub.
I will try that. I did after all willingly paid the XT tax in order to get the additional adjustment knobs. (That was already a thing 10 years ago, my brother has the SLX equivalent of the M785 XT brakes, and even then Shimano simply did not drill a few holes and put screws in …)

The brakes now work just fine, but it looks like I could play a little with the setup. When I first got the brakes, I simply tried to replicate my old setup. Part of me wishes to have gotten brakes for another manufacturer just to try something new, though. But it wasn’t worth waiting for months.
You may not have an issue with the difference between models, but that your current setup may have less play? A brake bleed, pad cchange, or maybe evn pad wear may make your issue disappear?
The other thing that I'll definitely do is change my brake pads from organic to metallic, it definitely changed the feel of the brakes, too. I have ridden metallic pads for years and simply prefer the feel. But I want to be frugal and simply wait until they need replacing.

Afterwards I noticed that Shimano wants people to pay extra for metallic brake pads when you buy new brakes and I did not specify a preference at my LBS. They could have asked, but I can understand why they haven’t.
When I switched to the new model XT, I found the divots in the lever to be the most drastic feel change for me.
I find the divots too sharp which makes them comfortable for me. I understand the idea, but honestly, I never found my old, smooth XT brake levers were slippery. And even if I did, I think applying grip tape or so would have been a more flexible solution.

Overall, these are still very good brakes, and a lot of my complaining is probably more “old man complaints”.
 

joewein

Maximum Pace
Oct 25, 2011
3,409
3,383
3) Workman rainsuit - cheap, durable, effective.
I didn't buy a lot of new stuff last year (mostly consumables such as brake pads, disk rotors, shifter cables) but this was also one of my most useful acquisitions. I bought it at a local Workman Pro shop for the Flèche ride from Aichi to Tokyo where fortunately the weather was much better than the year before, but it has saved me a number of times since then. When I didn't need it for rain protection, it often came in handy as an extra thermal layer in the early morning or after sunset in the winter. When it's warm enough at daytime for shorts but too cold at night then wearing the rain pants on top of the shorts has worked well as a cycling hack for me. Much more effective than leg warmers but just as easy to put on or take off.

Around the same time I also upgraded from my Wahoo Elemnt Bolt to the v2 colour version. It also necessitated upgrading the L-shaped charging cable from micro-USB to the equivalent USB-C cable. I'm very happy with those bits. The Bolt is still very reliable and its software is actively maintained and upgraded. Battery life seems even better on the colour version than the v1 monochrome screen.
 

OreoCookie

Maximum Pace
Dec 2, 2017
2,426
2,063
Around the same time I also upgraded from my Wahoo Elemnt Bolt to the v2 colour version. It also necessitated upgrading the L-shaped charging cable from micro-USB to the equivalent USB-C cable. I'm very happy with those bits. The Bolt is still very reliable and its software is actively maintained and upgraded. Battery life seems even better on the colour version than the v1 monochrome screen.
What's the battery life compared to v1?
 

Chuck

Maximum Pace
Feb 7, 2011
1,533
1,770
It's a bit early to say since I just bought my Kicker Core in late 2022, but I like it much more than my dumb trainer. Probably best feature is that it is very quiet and no vibration. Much better for doing workouts, especially on ERG mode. Combined with Zwift, it is great for training. Shaping up to be my best purchase of 2022.

(Only wish the Zwift Hub was available in Japan. About the same thing as the Core but about $600.)
 
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