What's Cool In Road Cycling

INTERBIKE 2015 Gear Reviews #5

Interbike Round 5 features Sarto’s custom frames and saddles, Wahoo’s new GPS/Data ELEMNT, Sugoi’s light weight RSE jersey and bibs, and Limar’s new 555 and 007 Helmets.

Italian custom builders Sarto have refined their lineup of frames as well as adding new custom saddles.


These are made in-house and feature a full carbon shell and rails as well as loads of paint options…


The saddles will come with 5, 10 and 15mm padding choices and or painted to specification over solid carbon.


Sarto are working with custom leather workers more used to crafting custom shoes and other accessories, so the leather work can be fairly detailed as well. The prices will start some place near $500 and with multiple finishing options available, the prices will vary according to your requests.

Custom Saddle work wasn’t the only leather detail on Sarto’s new model, simply called Gravel.


The Bar tape and frame guard in matching leather really grabbed attention and the rest of the frame features kept the attention for loads of passers by…


TA stands for Through Axel and Sarto have adopted their in-house made forks to suite on all disc models…


There’s also a newly refined seat clamping detail on most models, giving the shaped seat posts a very clean, integrated look while retaining the adjustability.


The frame and fork for this model are both designed to allow for no excuses LARGE rubber. The tires on the display bike were 42’s and they had plenty of room to breath…


Ah and the chain stay guard is also custom skinned.

The bike that won “Best Campagnolo build” at this year’s NAHBS show was also on hand, The Lampo…


This is fully customized geometry in aero platform with options for Direct mount brakes for both Fork and Frame (BB mount)…


There are several very good graphics packages but the Chrome base color is a great example of some of the outside of the box options available.

Sarto have refined the Energia as well.


The Energia gets the TA treatment both front and rear…


And it gets the refined seat clamp available on a few other models, as does the Lampo…


I really like how clean the look is on their TT/Tri rig, the Velox…


The integration at the front is very good and the fact that this is rolling out in a custom geometry means that this integration and clean look will remain to a much larger degree than virtually all stock bikes that require a host of spacers and bar peculiarities that are required to put the rider in their best position.


Sarto have updated their web site and while the frames are still a rare site their customer base in the US is growing steadily.

You can find out more at SartoAntonio.com


Wahoo fitness have been a game changer for the industry with Cross over software / program compatibility and excellent resistance function of the KICKR trainer and they decided it was high time someone built a GPS, Power and data (loads of data…) handling unit that was a LOT more people friendly. They’ve succeeded with the new ELEMNT.


There are a few uncommon features like tracking your friend’s position on a map (if they’re also using compatible hardware) and probably my favorite, you can set up a screen with exactly the things you want.

Have a look here:

AND… You can zoom in and out of that screen to eliminate data (or enlarge certain things) which is easier than switching screens.

The face of the ELEMNT also features indicator lights that you can tune to things like your threshold info so you know at a glance if you’re getting above or below set zones.


As for functions, the list is insanely long (and getting longer as Wahoo are the guys that basically created the category of what I call “cooperative hardware” that allows so many partners to work with their platform). There are currently 8 speed data fields to choose from, 8 climbing (things like grade, elevation, vert speed), 11 Power fields (power to weight, intensity factor, left and right balance, normalized etc…), a dozen heart rate fields (% max, Average, zones) and there are multiple fields for categories like Calories, Temp, Time, Distance, Map, System (battery/phone battery), as well as the KICKR control… All of this sounds like overkill and it is on most units, except that you can identify and tune all of thee things down to your selected choices…

The ELEMNT is waterproof (to 5’), shock resistant, and a battery life should be @16 hours. They’re ANT+ AND Blue4.0. Ah, and the unit will also operate your Kickr Trainer.

There are a few bar mount options as you would expect and the retail on these is set to be $329 and they should be shipping very shortly (possibly even as you read this).

I don’t ride with so much as a basic bike computer unless I’m running a power meter, but this is so usable and so easily integrated to create KICKR work outs etc that I want one badly.

Until it’s ready, you and I can just slobber on our screen at : WahooFitness.com


Sugoi’s new RSE kit has shed quite a bit of weight…


For 2016, Sugoi pulled 100+ grams from the kit in total and that’s no small number considering the full Kit is 312 grams…

A substantial portion of the weight reduction is in the Tri Gridlite Fabric in the Jersey…


This is a 4 way stretch material that is extremely soft to the touch, and moves and breathes very well.

The bibs feature few materials for the “shell” structure. There is “Ultra Aero” wrap knitted material for compression and abrasion resistance on main leg panels, “Squall” as a light weight material that is very good at moisture transfer in the mid-section and “Tri Force” Material at the back / upper glute area that allows for maximum mobility.


The all new FXE Chamois is well thought out as it’s a bit better at damping vibes and also helps keep weight down.

The main points are shown… There’s a “cradle” shape at the front that should allow your “sensitive skinned parts” to sit slightly more out front rather than being smashed flat against you (and forced to rub against your legs as you pedal).


And the pad is also molded in shape rather than being made from flat layers. They all it 3D molding and it also means that this part of the chamois curves with your body.

The last bit is, I believe, exclusive to Sugoi and it’s the addition of Poron foam to the multiple layer part of the multi-layer part of the Chamois at your sit bones.


Poron is great at vibe damping. I wish I had video taped the display at the show, but the basics for those of you that understand suspension (which is all a pad really is) is that this material has a very slow rebound setting.  That means it doesn’t expand as quickly as it is able to be squished. What that equates to is less bounce and more vibes absorbed before the material returns to the shape it was in before impact.

Not a lot of material is necessary for this to function in the application of a bike chamois, so that makes for a thin piece doing a better job of absorbing bumps than a thicker (and potentially heavier piece) of standard chamois foam. That makes for better function while also being lighter… Neat trick.

The retails are $220 for the Jersey and $240 for the bibs and they should be ready for sale in early 2016.

You can see more at: Sugoi.com


Limar’s new 007 and 555 are a nice step forward for their Aero road game and a great hat for the price point.

The 007 Superlight is very aero-focused road, with 6 minimal exposure vents doing all of the air moving.


The long, thin brow vent and 2 small side/temple vents allow air in… Substantial channels allow the flow over the top and along the sides of your head…


The top channels vet to the single exhaust at the upper rear of the helmet.


The sides vent out of the lower hidden back of the helmet.

This uses an easily adjustable competition+ retention system, a few color choices and the net package weight is 320 grams. The retail will be @239 and they’re available now.

The 555 is also available currently and it has a retail that frankly blows me away… $74.95


The 260 gram helmet (M) has the comfort+ retention system, antibacterial pads, inmolded Bug screen, a monoshell construction and 15 vents…


The detail inside is less intricate than their top line lids, but the channeling is substantial, the pads are well placed and the retention system is very easy to adjust through a wide range.

I’m very happy at what most of the top brands are doing with price points for solid quality helmets right now and the 555 is another very good example of something that would have cost twice this price 4+ years ago.

You can see more at: https://albabici.com/

More to follow from Interbike 15’ in a bit…

Have Fun,

Charles Manantan
[email protected]

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