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Posted on May 9, 2015

MIPS HELMET MINI_REVIEW HELMET ROUNDUP By Coach Rick Schultz ( & John Marsh ( The entire RoadBikeRider & BikeTestReviews Test teams jumped at the chance to do a roundup review of the MIPS helmets available to road riders. We all wanted to learn more about MIPS: What is it, how does it work, any difference from a regular helmet in terms of fit/form/function? And, how about cost? First – What is MIPS? Modern (non-MIPS) bike helmets are wonderful pieces of technology in terms of their impact resistance. They are designed – and tested – to help prevent skull fractures and other major blunt-force trauma. They are not, however, designed to mitigate the forces that can cause a concussion. A Swedish company called Multi-directional Impact Protection System — MIPS — patented the slip plane concept (what it calls a low-friction layer), using two layers in the helmet (the MIPS “liner”) to help mitigate the rotational force of an impact, which can result in a concussion or other brain injury. Here’s how the company itself describes the technology: “In a helmet...

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XX2i Optics Sunglasses

Posted on May 1, 2015

LOW COST / HIGH QUALITY SUNGLASSES My eyes are pretty sensitive to light, so for me, a high quality pair of sunglasses is essential. Cheap sunglasses make me squint, which is an attempt to decrease the amount of light entering the eyes that also puts a strain on ones’ face, causing facial muscles to tense. This added stress detracts from the overall positive experience that cycling gives. Therefore, the first thing that I look for in a new pair of sunglasses is to see if they will actually work for me in bright sunlight. Many sunglasses come in a multi-lens kit bundle. Usually either yellow, amber, or clear lenses for low light cycling and one darker set of lenses for mid-day cycling. My favorite lenses, and the ones that work best for me during bright mid-day cycling are dark polarized, which is part of what came in the package! The  XX2i OPTICS  sunglasses in this review came as a kit. Included was a gloss Black frame with red ear & nose pieces along with a kit containing (a) set of blue ear...

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Posted on Apr 29, 2015

WHAT IS A HAPPY LENS™? Several months ago, before one of our local Saturday rides rolled out, two cyclists were talking about their “Happy Lens™.” This was the first time I had heard about this so I asked them what it was. One of the cyclist said “it’s a SPY thing that has something to do with light to make you Happy.” The other cyclist said “I think it’s the color of the lens.” Well, I thought, it looks like I need to do a little of my own research. My initial thought was that this was just some sort of marketing ploy to differentiate themselves from the competition, so I started my own research by going to the SPY OPTIC website. “HAPPY LENS” is its own mini-site and there is actually a lot of good information all about the Happy Lens™ – what it is, what options are available and, most importantly, how it works. If, by chance, you want even more detail, click on the SCIENCE OF HAPPY link that links to the actual articles SPY used...

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Posted on Apr 14, 2015

PUMPERS DELIGHT My old pump of 15 years finally bit the dust. Actually, the pump is still good, its the gauge that rusted from the inside. Every time you push the handle down, a pump compresses the surrounding air, including the humidity/moisture in the air and part of this moisture gets forced into the tube(s) and part of it stays in the pump – mainly the gauge. Finally enough rust built up preventing the gauge from moving. it was stuck at 40 psi. So I priced out a replacement gauge – WOW, $50 and that’s through the EP program! For about the same price, I can probably get a brand new pump. Didn’t make it further than my LBS who carries a dozen different pumps. There were red ones, yellow ones, black ones and one white one. The first thing I discussed with my friend who works there was the size and placement of the gauge. Because, as we age, the old eyesight just isn’t what it used to be. Gauges mounted at the bottom of the pump are...

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Mr Tuffy UltraLite Orange – lightweight tire liner flat protection...

Posted on Mar 20, 2015

    OVERVIEW Several weeks ago, a month ago, I completed a review of Clean Motion’s RhinoDillos™, in which the review also included an overview of all current flat prevention technologies currently on the market. Please read that review prior to reading this one since this review will concentrate only on the UltraLite Mr. Tuffy’s. Although the standard Mr. Tuffy’s compares closer to the RhinoDillos™, I wanted to see if a lighter solution makes a difference in road feel as well as flat prevention. Since both of these flat prevention systems utilize a “urethane polymer alloy” material (since the actual material formulas are a secret), I was interested in seeing how one was made  lighter. During my testing of the UltraLites, I had the pleasure in speaking several times with Mr. Ken Hassen, company president, one of the nicest guys you could ever meet. I was able to get an insiders view of his philosophies and the companies products. Here are a few important takeaways from our conversation, (a) Ken conducts continuous R&D, and (b) a tire liners primary...

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Rudy Project RUSH Helmet – One of the Best!

Posted on Mar 13, 2015

    OVERVIEW Known for their sunglasses and helmets, I have always liked Rudy Project. They make top quality products, but, their higher prices have kept their products out of reach for a lot of us. Until now. At $124.99, this is a real bargain. Everything on this helmet is well thought out. Lightweight, great fit, great look and a lot of adjustability. This helmet competes with those at a price half-again as much. 6 TOP FEATURES 1.Fastex™ Buckle Closure System. The Fastex™ system consists of an ergonomically shaped simple and quick snap-lock buckle for securing the under chin strap. Added pads make for a very comfortable fit. 2.Removable & Adjustable Vertical Sizing. The RUSH helmet allows vertical adjustment on the nape of the neck and can be adjusted up to 3 vertical positions. This allows you to adjust the height of the retention system so that the helmet fits snugly and securely. 3.Adjustable RSR7 Retention System. To ensure that your helmet fits totally secure to your head, the Rudy Project RUSH helmet has an easy-to-adjust retention system which...

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