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#75 of 2277 Top 100 Gear Guru 27 points

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  • 12 Reviews 8 Helpful
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Here's what others have to say...

5 5

This is no-frills, even though they made it more colorful a couple years ago. The smallest, lightest chuck, it leaves room in your minimal pack for other critical items. (Like an extra cartridge.) This little part is all-business and highly reliable.

Operation couldn't be easier: crank it down onto a threaded cartridge, then turn the cartridge to the left to release flow of CO2 into the tube. Tighten to the right to stop.

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5 5

This is a great addition to your winter arsenal. If you don't already have a powermeter, get one with a trainer tire and a regular trainer, and skip this. If you already have a powermeter hub, this device helps out by not requring you to change out your powermeter wheel to a trainer tire to ride the trainer. You leave your trainer tire on a trainer wheel, and then you can switch bikes onto the trainer while leaving your regular training wheelset ready to go on that odd warm day. This is especially helpful if more than one person in your house wants to train with power in the winter, or if your friends want to mooch a powermeter. (Don't worry, they'll only ask once, because it's crushingly demoralizing having a computer telling them how bad they suck in the winter.)

ANT+ ensures compatibility with whatever computer you already like, so it's very convenient.

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5 5

Yes, it's absurdly expensive. No, it doesn't need to be carbon fiber. Yes, the Tao Tacx will cost 80% less and weigh only 26 grams more for 2 cages. But if you spent a certain amount on your carbon fiber frame, you'll getting these. They are exceptionally well designed--they work wonderfully and hold up well. They do not get all scratched up or look grimy if you take care of them. They clean up well. They look amazing, the design is elegant, minimal and timeless. There are many finishes to match what you have. If you went all-in on your bike, just do this.

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5 5

This asymmetric chain is the best chain for Di2 bikes, and the best chain Shimano ever made. It is incredibly quick and sharp, with no drama. It's durable, much more durable than past Shimano chains. I have tried the Ultegra and Wipperman 10S1 chains on DA 7970 Di2 and Ultegra 6770 Di2, and this DA chain is noticably better than the others.

Do yourself a favor and buy a Connex quick link and use it with this chain so you can remove it for cleaning. (It will last a lot longer, and if you can run it through an ultrasonic parts washer you will be greatly rewarded.) Both the Connex link and the Shimano chain are directional, so pay attention when you are installing it. (Shimano name plates facing out on the chain. Point the longer, more elegant curve on the Connex link toward the gear teeth.)

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Good all-around chain with limitations
3 5

The 6701 is a reasonably-priced chain that works well on Shimano 10 speed configurations, but there are some drawbacks that come with the savings. It shifts reasonably well with both Di2 and mechanical configurations, but I think it's more abrupt than the Wipperman 10S1 or the DA chain, espcially if you are a frequent shifter or tend to shift under torque. The Shimano attachment link is a pain, do yourself a favor and buy a Connex link to use on this chain and other Shimano and Wipperman chains too.

Also I have had to replace 2 of these chains due to cracking a plate during sprints. It presents itself with a "TING!" sound, and while it will almost certainly make it back home, you'll want to lay off the sprints until you get home and replace it. The picture attached is a piece of a DA-7900 chain broken the same way, as an example of what to look for.

I say that I have used it several times because I was given 2 of these free, and broke each of them within 1,000 miles.

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3 5

The logo on the forehead is plastic and about the size of an m&m. If it rests under your helmet in just the right place, no problem. Otherwise, it's exactly like having an m&m stuck to your forehead right where your helmet touches your forehead. This is considered torture in some countries.

If it's so cold that you'll get numb anyway, you'll get over it.

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3 5

I won't really give any other brand a chance, but the Sidi 5 is great as long as it fits. All the other high-star reviews here are correct as far as they go, I completely agree. The catch with Sidi is that the production variance is pretty high, so a Narrow might be the same as a Regular. I felt like I had to return this shoe too often before I finally found one that fit, even though they were all the exact same size. Once I find one that fits, it's great.

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4 5

This garment has a 2-ply front face that is very effective at stopping wind. It's a base layer designed for skin contact, and works best that way. (Pile layers on top of this for colder weather.) It works well with your heart rate monitor and will not disrupt the signal in wind, unlike some jerseys and base layers.

Although I love it and use it all the time, it gets 4 stars for shrinking a bit and having frustratingly short sleeves. I still keep buying it and would miss it if it was gone, so 4 stars is good enough!

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5 5

These are expensive enough that I set them aside for especially long rides, and they are especially rewarding for that purpose. Although Assos says that these will not last especially long, I have never found any Assos product to be flimsy and still have Assos shorts that I got in 2007: you'll want to follow their directions for putting them on, washing, etc., for best results and real longevity. Watch it though--they wear out in the seat first, and I have seen Assos shorts out on the road with big patches of bare ass. Check the mirror every now and then!

The turquoise pad is controverisal, and I think it is marginally better than the old orange pad. It seems softer, but doesn't seem to be going "flat" or wearing any faster. If you prefer the orange pad, it is made by Cytech and can be found on Rapha and Search and State shorts, both are excellent alternatives. I prefer the Assos Mille shorts to both of those.

The shoulder straps are the best in the business, about 2.5" wide and very comfortable. The legs fit well, and while there have been complaints about the band fitting "loose," it tightens up well when you are actually on the bike.

The only thing I don't like about them is that there is a panel on the front made out of different material that points right at your junk and suggests a triangle of pubic hair. When your friends make fun of you (and believe me, they will), respond in a German accent that Americans are prude in these matters.

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5 5

Let's compare to the Arundel Mandible. The Tacx is 42 grams versus 29 grams for the Arundel, but the Tacx is 1/4 the price. You carry 12 more grams with the Tacx, plus the weight of the cash you saved.

It is very important that your frame's water bottle bosses are threaded holes to accept a bolt going through the bottle cage. This cage absolutely will NOT work on a frame where the bottle bosses have threaded screws coming out of the frame and expect a nut from the bottle cage side. This is why I have to use Arundels on my Parlee, even thought the trusty Tacx is just as good.

2 Comments