Sunday, September 5, 2010

Eurobike 2010

I have been looking forward to Eurobike all year. Four days away, staying in Arbon, commuting across Lake Konstance to Friedrichshafen and the show. AMBA-Marketing our suppliers of Busch and Muller and Puky amongst others, gather a small group of friends/retailers and scoot off to enjoy a very pleasant bus man's holiday.

Meeting up at Heathrow, Swissair looked after us very well with none of last years BA faff. I know I should support a home carrier but when you can't rely on them you go elsewhere. Zurich airport is a breeze, five minute walk to the railway and then you are in the uber efficient Swiss public transport system. We stayed at our now regular haunt, the Romerhof Hotel. If you've ever been to a sales conference and tried to have time to think at the end of the day without fighting the rest of the conference for food and drink then you'll understand why we give ourselves a commute.

The Show. It seemed quiet this year by comparison with previous visits. Its' 13 halls were still stuffed, the Zeppelin hanger still had hundreds of bikes to try, but it didn't seem so mobbed. My primary interest was appraising rider measuring systems so we can offer a tailored approach to bike purchasing for customers. This was easier than I thought although it took me over a day to speak to one manufacturer. More of this another day.

In previous years I have been overwhelmed by the new kit on display. However, recessions bite at all levels and there seemed not as much new kit to take the breath away this time. Maybe I'm just getting picky in my old age. I am however, quite taken by the Supernova Airstream light.

I have commuted with my Busch and Muller Ixon IQ very happy for three fault free winters now and am supremely happy with it. The only thing I ever thought was, it would be great in a metal shell. The Supernova seems to fit the bill, I suspect I will have to buy one to compare them. It is light enough to use as a helmet light if a little heavier than helmet specific lights but you do get more light for your money.

Gilles Berthoud is still a fairly unknown name in the UK but if you are in the market for a beautiful handbuilt leather saddle he's your man. I have had an Aspin on the Pompino for over a year now and I am deeply happy with it. This will move in time to the Cheviot, The Rolls San Marco is okay but I don't want okay as my prime contact point so a Soulor will go on the Pompino. My 20 year old Brooks will stay on the Tifosi we have been to a lot of places together and will continue to do so for many years. Gilles' luggage is a little more individual but no less well made. It is a Marmite product, you will either like it or not with nothing in between.

3T were a big name in the past, the name sank and resurfaced with a line of top end carbon kit very pleasing to the eye and scales. The 3T Zeffiro TT bar and adjustable stem took a Eurobike award this year. Adjustable stems are usually fairly utilitarian affairs but this one pleaseth mine eyes. (Image to follow tech faff!!)

While we are on handlebars here is the Deda Elementi addition to the fray.

(Image to follow tech faff!!)

As usual Italian flair is to the fore but despite reading the blurb the overwhelming reaction to another handlebar standard is why? Yes they are 35mm if you have small hands forget it.

Busch and Mullers new Lyt took an award and in my mind at this point should consign halogen lights to history. The Lumotec Halogens have been worthy workhorses for a long time but these are a similar price point, three times as bright and unless you are very unlucky the LED will not fail in your lifetime.

More from Eurobike in the week. Time to get my head around going to work tomorrow and trying to get the blog pictures in between the paragraphs not in a line at the top of the page!

Neil

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