words/images Judith Ecochard
'No bouncin' round the room-meaning-taking a spin, at this showcase---but clearly- plenty of great rides for everyone ---from tots embracing the ways of the wheels-trail demons on re-invigorated GT bicycles' heart-pound potential, mountain bike rides---everyday, urban warriors' city spokes (also heart-pounding at times)-on up to one of the top of the line race rides for the podium wannabes- by Cannondale.
And accessories...less than $100 per.
|BPA free water bottles/cages|
|Be seen...design matches vintage good looks of Schwinn bikes|
|Cannondale's multi-tool at most bike shops...very handy&compact|
For kids---a lot of fun stylish options that any boy or girl would be happy with. Remember the 80's? GT does with the Performer- a 20"redo of that decades bikes---also in 26" for adults.
For the Chevy in you---this Corvette bicycle----details like an odometer adds to this cruiser's appeal.
Mongoose BMX are sold at Walmart-good looking bikes under $200.
|Schwinn's Petunia bike fo girls $99.99|
Helicopter parents everywhere...a bicycle for you---errrr...meaning your kids but these Schwinn Easy Riders have push/pull steering---and when you get comfortable letting your children get along with their young lives (finally)-the steering handle detaches...but no fear, training wheels are an add-on option too. Grow With Me rides $99.99
Scwinn's Tricycles...that kids can ride on their own---have Roadster cred---pneumatic tires, adjustable saddle, gripped pedals in cool retro style...
|Gripped pedals on Roadster's-nice!|
Other accessories---include colorful bicycle helmets---but we loved this wagon---reminded us of a jaunt to Ocean Beach on Fire Island---where seemingly everyone had one of these in the no car community.
Next up ---we ventured into the adult realm of rides. Cannondale's Quick Line ---got tagged as the 'SUV' of bikes---here the Quick CX is the next level of that series-with front suspension, knobby tires for extra traction over hazards like potholes, disc brakes---and a sloped top tube "a little up" for a comfy ride.
A good urban ride for women---great fit with gals wanting to get fit-"with gears that you can get going in.".
Full suspension mountain bike 29ers are getting a lot of love these days-with stiff frames, techy suspension systems and deft handling for all skill levels.
GT Karakoram---with 29 inch alloy dics hubs -hits that segment of the market for under $700- a hardtail mountain bike with Tektro Aquila linear-pull disc brakes, front suspension for FUN off road adventures, Shimano 27 speed drivetrain ....in a tough/lightish Triple Triangle 6061 aluminum frame with hyrdroformed top tube and downtube, . For the price point "damn good." And nice to see that GT-known in the past for its high-end performance BMX rides-with a new parent company these past two years-is delivering innovative options for consumers-at 'average' price points. (FYI-named after that mountain range Pakistan, India and China).
If the best looking bikes were given their own awards show-Schwinn's Signature Series would be up for Mr/Miss Congeniality.
The City-new for 2012 has the form function/lifestyle design thing down---as part of this iconic American brand 's Heritage signature line.
|Snazzy elegant leather grips-plus internal gears-you can shift while you stop-"adds weight" but not a factor for this cruiser-ideal for flat beach communities.|
|Industrial and graphic- double top tube shape|
|Sold without basket but it's sold as part of a new accessories line for Schwinn-lifts off and attaches on for easy hauling|
Pretty, pretty cool the GT Laguna/$385-terrific price point for a basic ride -21 different speed options, front suspension in an aluminum frame.
Cannondale's urban bike Bad Boy- spawns Bad Girl-3 models/2 sizes ($800-$1670)-in eye-catching matte black frame, with micro-suspension for commuters-and multi-tasking for fitness rides, all in one.
Magura Hydraulic disc brakes. Sweet. And more sweet-can change the inner tube without taking off the wheel.
|Remote lock out suspension-for rigid uphill climbs-or not racing downhill.|
maybe appealing to the same gal-in a different frame of mind-the All American/Nascar ($660)-super deluxe-a fun throwback to the 50's, IMHO-with a beverage and bottle opener---and life made simpler-an easy gear and a hard gear.
|Arched hubs line race car wheels...|
|2 gigantic springs on the saddle for comfy ride|
GT's Zaskar XC bike replaces the Marathon-----"that was good for endurance racing---but is now tailored for the 'average' individual"-wanting a FUN racer type/cruiser bike-with efficiency. Ideal for jaunts on cross country trails for riders who "just want to chill out."
Out since July (Expert/Pro Models $4400-$5500, parts dependent)- with both front and rear shocks, with leg oil damper-like a motorcycle-with rebound adjustment and remote lockout on fork.
The priciest set of wheels at this event belonged to Cannondale's SuperSix EVO Team Bike-all carbon, SRAM components-and with the company's proprietary crank "the lightest and stiffest on the market."
Probably to the horror of the nice PR gal that led us around-we got educated for many minutes- on exactly why BallisTec™ Carbon is the top of the food chain for carbon, so to speak-with strength, resistance and stiffness-in higher modules or lower modules ----depending on specifics. "The key to carbon manufacturing is figuring out the right blend ratio of stretchy/ hardness."
WHAT ELSE-the lightest and stiffest frame "does not have sexy curves"---so the continuous BallisTec™ carbon fibers of the EVO---"takes modules and super charges it." Interesting we thought-it was originally designed for the military---and made in Japan-a country with not much of one. FYI- we were also told Cannondale must sign documents accounting for each ounce bought of this highly controlled substance---that the fibers go into bicycles-not weapons, we guess...as it was originally made for bullets. Impact resistant-we think so.
|A hard wipe out in these carbon spoke wheels and learn to feel 'Sayonara' in a New York minute.|
Switching gears---this retro style Schwinn
|Eco friendly-reviewed here|
More accessories-always welcome....
|Helmet -good for ponytail wearers.|
|Air pump with a gauge-we need to give this to every rider we know. very handy|
GT Performer- the classic 80's BMX ride-with crusier 26 inch wheels -that is skate park to parking lot fun- an affordable freestyle ride in high tensile, straight gauge steel. Here in chrome with gold components- $425---nice.
Another Schwinn Signature looker "411"---an all around the town ride-with built-in racks-$690
|Reminds us of the days when milk was delivered, 5x week- by the milkman|
|Best Selling urban ride-Bad Boy by Cannondale-reviewed here|
Well another reason the world shops Walmart---for the Mongoose bicycles-that come in many variations...including all terrain rides- affordable ways to burn off all those super cheapo, junk food calories.
Pictured here-the men's aluminum frame, 29 inch All-Terrain Deception ($219) ---with 21 speed, Shimano equipped drivetrain with SRAM grip shifters, and disc brakes...FYI-at home-assembly requ
We finished up the bicycle portion of the Dorel Industries owned brands with very value priced versions of vintage style Schwinn bikes-all available at Walmart-and we note-all with cool padded Schwinn saddles.
|Aluminum frmae POINT BEACH with hand/rear pedal brakes-7 speed rear derailleur $179.99 @Walmart. Stainless steel spokes and chrome fenders-built in back storage rack=classic beach cruiser.|
|700 C Solitaire Hybrid Bike-Women's-$199|
|26 inch-steel frame-Sidewinder Mountain Bike $164 for street or off roads-21 speed with SRAM grip shifters|
|Old school Schwinn Breeze Saddle|
|Schwinn Breeze $149-Retro style cruiser with distinctive brick color tires-chrome fenders-women's here-men's available in charcoal.|
|smart flatlock seams-no chaffing.. mesh panels-breathes|
|ergo sleeves that's don't bunch up|
Now that we train on tri bikes a whole lot-the importance of smart functioning apparel makes a difference in how we feel. Though we still can't quite get used to the whole guys in tight spandex thing-we get why...
So when we admired "Jason"-it wasn't so much his lack of body fat-after all he is a mannequin-but we loved his attire-the top of the line Racing System's Elite (RSE) by Sugoi.
|leg grippers don't ride up -but not constricting|
|Bib short-10 panel construction insures perfect fit &no inseam reduces chamois bulk|
Fall 2011 selections include Hot Shot Jersey in flattering princess tapers---nice graphics---and a warm inner fleece.
|no chafe collar|
|Capri-Mid Zero-made from that fabric- proprietary to Sugoi-warm inside-and stretchy with RC Pro Chamois-articulated paneling=great fit.$100|
Arms warmers, wind mitt gloves and skull caps...for colder rides.
|Firewell-mid zipper...base layer or on its own|
|Side pocket zip|
|OUR TOP PICK-the versa jacket---a vest/jacket combo-remove sleeves on the go---they're attached by magnets...can rip off during a ride and stuff in back. $120|
|Hydrolite Jacket -water beads right off it still allows you breath w/perforations-semi-fitted with Scotchguard reflective detail|