Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Downhill Mountain Biking With a 360-Degree Camera

There is tons of mountain bike footage out there, some more creative than others and captured at almost every angle imaginable. What if you did not have to worry about getting the right camera angle? Yes that is right, a 360-degree POV Camera. I have watched a lot of different mountain bike films and clips but the Redbull 360 clip they recorded is one of the most unique clips I have ever seen. I think this will soon be the must have POV camera for all action sports in the near future.

A Norwegian company Making View
has developed these “full spherical 360” videos with their ViewCam 360 system, which allows you to control the angles using the arrow keys on your keyboard (or your mouse). Not only can you check out the traditional POV to see what’s happening ahead, but you can also look to the sides and even directly behind to get a better, more in the moment experience. Check it out below.

Red Bull Mountain Bike 360° Video

For this clip, Making View hooked up with Red Bull Rampage competitor Brendan Fairclough and his Scott11 teammates Florian Pugin and Noel Niederberger at the UCI World Cup Downhill event in Hafjell, Norway.

Monday, November 19, 2012

PricePoint's End Of The Year Blowout

End Of The Year Blowout
End Of The Year Blowout
If it’s November, it must be that time of year again.  That special time you’ve been waiting for all year.  No, we’re not talking about Thanksgiving…we mean Price Point is having our huge End Of The Year Blowout Event.

With amazing prices on over 800 items and extra savings on over 250 clearance products, you are sure to save some serious cash.

Make sure to get all your bike parts and riding gear now during this huge event. Get your bike ready for the next riding season while saving big. You have to check out the SRAM PC991 Chain for only $32 and also the Shimano XT Shifters only $95, perfect for any drive-train upgrade. Need some fresh new looks? Jerseys and riding shorts are more than half off, $28 for a Fox Attack Jersey and only $39 for Fox Baseline Shorts.

Because you are a loyal reader of our blog (or you may have just stumbled upon this one), here is a secret tip – be sure to visit starting this Friday for incredible Black Friday deals available all weekend.  You’ll find special Door Buster Deals on hot gear, once-a-year savings on Park Tools and more.  And, check back on Monday for our first ever Cyber Monday event.

Hurry, while supplies last.  With prices this low, our great gear will not last long!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Manitou Giveaway At PricePoint

Price Point is now the exclusive online dealer for all Manitou forks and accessories. We carry the full line of Manitou forks and rear shocks so you are sure to find the correct suspension for any type of riding. Already own a Manitou fork? That's OK, we carry all the small parts to service your fork. Tools, Oils, and replacement parts we have you covered to get that Manitou fork like new again.
As your looking at the full line up of Manitou Forks and shocks do not forget to sign up for PricePoint's exclusive Dorado Expert Fork Giveaway. Yup that's right....You have a chance to win a Free 2013 Manitou Doroado Expert Fork, that is a $1200 dollar value. There is no purchase necessary just fill your name, phone and email out and Boom! Your in the drawing. Make sure your checking back frequently at, it is that time of year for great savings and sale events. Hint, Hint.
Good luck with the Giveaway!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Mountain Bike Ride Packing List / Survival Kit

Whats In Your Hydration Bag?

No matter how much you prepare you will always need that one thing you forgot to pack in your bag. This posting will help you be a little more prepared the next time you find yourself in a bind. A great bike ride checklist or survival kit will vary depending on where you're riding and how far you plan to ride. Many factors need to be considered; weather, location, and distance, but we have put together a good general checklist for your average road cyclist and mountain biker.

The road cyclists checklist is shorter. As a general rule of thumb for an average road cyclist or commuter, these items should be carried.

Sette Air 2 Way Pump

Road/Commuter Ride Checklist

Absolutely need to have:
Water (hydration bag or water bottle)
ID and Insurance Card

Additional recommended items to carry:
Tire Lever (having two levers makes the tire change easier)
Tube Patch Kit
Multi-Tool w/Chain Tool (Topeak Alien II, Crank Bros, or Park Tool offer nice ones)
Adventure Medical Kit .3

Optional items to be carried:
Video Camera
Energy Bar or Food
Zip Ties
Leatherman or Gerber
Flashlight (or light mounted on your bike)
Basic First Aid Kit
Spare Links, Connector Pins,  Power Links

Let us know what we left off the list - we're sure that the committed road cyclist or commuter has one or two unique items they wouldn't ride without. As most road cyclists will have a seat bag to put all the gear into, a hydration pack may not be needed but very convenient to store items in and stay hydrated.

Camelbak Charge 100oz. Hydration Pack
I will do my best not to leave anything major out but like the Road checklist, the Mountain checklist will vary depending on weather, location, distance and how many riders are in the group. I know that if I go on a ride with a few buddies, (3 or more) without telling them I tend to leave the most common stuff (pump, multi-tool and light) as I know they will be carrying them and I will try to bring some oddball items and spare parts. Again as a general rule of thumb, I believe this is a good guide to follow for your basic mountain bike ride checklist.

Mountain / Trail Ride Checklist.

Absolutely need to have:
Water (hydration pack 50 oz. minimum)
ID and Insurance Card
Tube or Tubes
Multi-Tool w/Chain Tool (Topeak Alien II, Crank Bros, or Park Tool offer nice ones)
Tire Lever
Lighter or Fire Starter

SOL Core Lite Tool
Additional recommended items to carry:
Energy Bar or Food
Zip Ties
Leatherman or Gerber
Flashlight (or light mounted on your bike)
Basic First Aid Kit
Spare Links, Connector Pins, Power Links (for your chain)
Zip Ties
Toilet Paper (Never know when nature calls)
Cloth or Towel (for sweat, eye wear or cleaning your hands)
Map of Trails.
Tube Patch Kit

Optional items to be carried:
A couple feet of Duct Tape (just fold it around itself for a nice compact package)
Power Link for Chain
Video Camera
Windproof Jacket
Rear Derailleur Hanger
I can keep going and going depending on the trail and conditions but I will stop here.

Most of all these items will fit into a 70oz. or 100oz. hydration pack without being too heavy for the ride. Of course a full days ride checklist will be bigger than a 2 or 3 hour ride would be but that's where you need to decide the "what if situations." A saying I like to follow, "The person you should rely on most for your rescue is YOU!" So I hope this general checklist guide for road and mountain bikers helps out a bit. It took me a few rides to figure out exactly what I needed to carry and what I didn't as there is no right or wrong answer just some more prepared than others. I am also assuming you are riding with the basics: helmet, eye protection, gloves and riding shorts. One last thing to add if your state permits it, pack that heat, Springfield Armory XD 9mm 16+1 rounds of self defense ammo strapped and ready to go. I guess an extra clip wouldn't hurt, (well hurt me anyway).

So what is in my bag? Check it out below, I go over what I bring in my hydration pack and why. Tell me whats in your pack that is not in mine.

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Best Portable Speaker On The Trail

There are tons of new portable speakers coming out on the market for our iPhones, Androids, and Mp3 players. Lately the quality is getting better and better as well as more affordable. I know most iPhone users will stick with their garden of accessories (anything with an "I" in front of it) and not stray too far away. Well there are some pretty good speakers out on the market today with Bluetooth connectivity, rechargeable batteries and they will come in all shapes and sizes. What is the best speaker for out on the trail? What is the loudest? What batteries last the longest? Well, I have not tried all of them but I have been through a few and also have heard a couple in action from friends comparing speakers. I will talk about some different portable speakers and what may be the best application for listening to some tunes out on the trail. I will start with the best value and go from there.
X-Mini II Capsule

X-Mini II
In my opinion for the price the X-Mini II is a great value. This little ball can throw out some serious sound for around 20 bucks. A 40mm driver, rechargeable batteries and able to chain up multiple speakers makes this a great buy. It's rated an 11 hour run time but I would say 7-8 hours on full volume. As most portable speakers this will require some custom installation (it's worth it) to get this to mount somewhere on your mountain bike. This would be a great speaker for a XC or trail riding unless you can come up with a tank proof mounting setup then I would say all mountain riding as well maybe some light DH?

Goal 0
Goal 0 Portable Speaker
My Green Goal 0
Now my personal favorite is the Goal 0 portable speaker box. This is one loud durable portable speaker setup and can be picked up for around $25 - $35 dollars. It's covered with a rugged weather-resistant material. The material  surrounding this wooden speaker box holds 2 full range speakers. The Goal 0 has a zippered opening to store your phone or music player and to protect it against any damage. This also has a convenient cinch-able shock cord for strapping it down to your bars, frame, or gear bag. Me personally I like to keep my goal zero in my hydration packs cinch-able pocket. This as well is rechargeable and can chain multiple speakers to it. It has USB charging and rated 11 hours of playback on full volume. This is the all-around performer in my opinion. How loud is it? Well... it got the cops called to my apartment because the neighbors complained of loud music blasting from my patio. Yup...I showed the officers where the music was coming from and they laughed...then made me turn it down. These speakers Rock! Goal 0 also makes a fold-able solar panel that recharges all your USB gadgets and a car charger port so you will never be without tunes on the trail.

Cycling Sport Speaker (MB-S100)
Cycling Sport Speaker (MB-S100)
Now there are tons more I have not mentioned as I have not had a chance to use them but one that caught my eye that reminds me of the Ihome type water bottle speaker is the Cycling Sport Speaker (MB-S100) yes this is the only name I have found this by. I do not even think you can get this retail yet in the US as I only see it coming from China wholesale sites, but I want to check it out. The Cycling Sport speaker is in the shape of a water bottle and comes is a few various colors to accent your bike style. I don't recommend this setup for an aggressive rider unless you can tie or strap down the bottle to the cage then it should be good to go for some heavier trails. This water bottle of course has a rechargeable battery (charged via USB). It is able to function with phones, mp3 players, microSD cards, and yes FM radio. The speaker looks big, it can be held in a water bottle cage, and has a carry bag. I have not heard this speaker yet but the reviews I have read are all saying this can produce some clean sound from MP3 and WMA files. Like I said earlier I have not found anyone selling this speaker yet. I am very interested in hearing what this speaker can do as well as how long the battery will last and how clear the FM radio comes in. It will sell for around 50 bucks but I hope this can out blast the competition as they are not the first to come out with a water bottle shaped speaker. I do think a first by incorporating a FM radio.

I'm sure there are some portable speakers I should have mentioned but for what I have seen and used these two speakers stand out very nicely among the rest for mountain biking. Obviously there are a few ways to get tunes on the trail; ear buds, headphones, and portable speakers. I prefer speakers for safety reasons and the fact that your riding buddy (or buddies) get to jam out to the same tunes while still aware of outside noises and dangers. Besides how cool is it to be charging down the mountain with some Slayer blasting out in the trails. Awesome! I wonder when the Cycling Sport Speaker will be available for the US?

Feel free to leave a comment and let us know how your listen to your tunes on the trail.

Friday, October 05, 2012

Buying Your First Bike on a Budget.

While buying your first bike is fun and exciting, it is also something you need to do research on and know what you're getting into. If you are just getting into the sport it would be good to go to your local bike shop and test ride some bikes. You need to know your size and what type of bike will best suit your needs. Getting the correct size bike is one of the most important aspects of buying a bike. Below are some tips on buying your first bike.

1. What type of bike?
You need to know what type of bike will fit the conditions your going to ride through. Kind of simple if I generalize it. If you're planning only to ride on pavement a road bike is for you. If you like the road bike feel but will do light off-roading a cycle cross bike is right up your path. All dirt but like distance, there are several cross country bikes from hardtail to full suspension to choose from. Like tearing up mountains and dropping gaps, a full suspension bike with 4 inches of travel and up will take you there.

2. How do I know the correct size?
Image courtesy of Specialized
It's all about the fit! If the bike is too big or too small it will take all the joy out of biking for you. I could also make this whole posting about sizing but I will give the best generalization I can. For most riders, the first step in getting the right size bike is to stand over the frame with both feet flat on the ground. A properly-sized road bike frame will give at least an inch or two clearance between the top tube of the frame and your crotch. Not too much, not too little. A mountain bike should have more space - maybe the width of your hand across your fingers. If you are still uneasy about sizing up your own bike, run by your local bike shop and get fitted for the correct size bike. It is also nice because you can test out a couple of bikes and get a good "feel" for what type of bike you're going to be getting. On women's bikes that do not have the high top tube going between the seat and the handlebars, you can skip this step.

3.How Much, Where, and When?
Assuming you have your type of bike picked out. You know the exact size frame you need and what you're comfortable with because you got to test ride a similar bike in your correct size. You will now be ready to purchase the correct size bike. Where do I buy it, how much do I spend? I would first set a budget on how much you can comfortably spend on a new bike. You will also need a budget for your cycling accessories, (helmet, seat bag, tubes, pump, or patch kit), so include this as well. So now you can look at new, used, online, or a local bike shop. Most expensive will be a bike shop but you will hopefully get customer service, the correct size, and free small tunings and repair for life in some cases. If you know your exact fit and size and you also know the exact bike your heart is set on, online will most likely be your best way to get the best deal. There is so little difference from brand to brand at similar prices until you are well over $1000 that the bike hardly matters. You are mainly going to be shopping for bike components if spending under $1000. Shopping for used bikes will definitely save you the most money in the long run but is the hardest to shop for if you're a beginner. You do not want to buy a frame that has been crashed or blemished. Buying used is best done with an experienced rider as they have knowledge of old or new components, faulty parts, and can help judge if this is the best fit for you and not a money pit.

As this is very general and I can go into tons of detail in every aspect, this is a good rule of thumb when purchasing your first bike.

Good luck on your purchase and happy riding!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Inside Interbike 2012

InterBike 2012 is here, the largest annual gathering of the bike industry in North America. With over 750 companies showing off over 1,200 brands, it is a mountain biker and road cyclist heaven.

TRP’s Parabox Hydraulic Disc Brake System for Cyclocross.

TRP's Parabox Hydraulic Disc  Brake System @ InterBike 2012
TRP has an adapter that clamps on the steer tube that converts brake cable pull to hydraulic brake hose.... allowing you to use hydraulic disc brakes with regular road shifter/brake levers. The Parabox is designed to work with any road brake lever, SRAM DoubleTap, Shimano STI, Di2 or even TRP's own RRI single speed levers.  
TRP's Parabox Upclose @ Interbike 2012
The Parabox features a steerer-mounted master cylinder that converts brake cable pull into hydraulic braking power. The unit does this through two small levers, that when pulled by each brake cable, pushes a plunger in the master cylinder to actuate the fork-mounted front brake hydraulic caliper and the chainstay-mounted rear hydraulic caliper or rear frame mounted caliper Through altering the length of the lever the brake cable pulls, TRP is able to modify and optimize the stopping power of the brake.

Thomson dropper seat post with talks of Thomson Carbon bars (mountain & road)

The New Thomson Dropper "Elite Dropper" @ Interbike 2012
Yes, its here the Thomson dropper, dubbed "Elite Dropper". Late to the game but better then the rest? We don't know for sure yet but I think KS and Gravity Dropper will have some new competition on the field. Thomsons' main goal is to outlast everyone else in longevity, as most adjustable seat posts today are not very reliable.

What we know:
• Telescoping seat post 
• 5''/127mm drop (internally adj. to 4'')
• Infinitely adjustable travel
• Hydraulic internals 
• Nitrogen return spring (not adjustable)

• Lever-adjustable return speed

• Weight: 450g (prototype)
• Availability: March/April 2013
• Projected MSRP $380 

Two activation options will be available, allowing riders to pick from either a remote or under-the-seat lever. Awesome!