Although they're still far from being common, 3D-printed metal bicycle frames do now exist. Usually they're made using a sintering process, in which a laser is utilized to selectively melt steel powder, building it up in successive layers. Now, however, a team of students at the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) in the Netherlands has taken another approach – they've created the world's first stainless steel bike made via a welding-based 3D-printing technique.
We've seen bike helmets with wooden shells before, and we've also seen foam made from wood pulp. Now, however, Sweden's KTH Royal Institute of Technology has teamed up with Stockholm-based startup Cellutech to combine the two. The result is a helmet made entirely from wood.
Many mountain bikers swear by the pedalling efficiency of so-called clipless pedals, in which a steel cleat on the bottom of each shoe engages a spring-loaded mechanism in the pedal. Some other riders, however, just don't like the idea of being "snapped in" like that. It was with this in mind that cyclist Dave Williams created MagLOCK pedals. They're non-threatening platform pedals, that keep the user's feet in place using magnets instead of mechanisms. We recently had a chance to try them out, and generally liked what they had to offer.
Stealth makes some of the baddest electric-powered two-wheeled transport around. We can attest to this after having an absolute blast on the Australian company's high-powered flagship, the B-52, but what happens when you take an extreme e-bike and replace the pedals with dirtbike-style pegs? We climbed aboard Stealth's H-52 model to find out.
Some are louder than others, but e-bikes are usually easy to spot. Evidence like a battery pack sticking up off the down tube, a thick, rectangular top tube or a large motor on the wheel is hard to miss. German startup Freygeist believes that the electric bike should look and feel more like the classic pedal bike. Its new Classic pedelec is virtually indistinguishable as an electric thanks to cleanly integrated hardware and a 26.5-lb curb weight. You won't notice the electric drive until it kicks in.
Recumbent bicycles may offer a more comfortable riding position, but they typically also have pretty long chains. After all, power has to be transmitted from the pedals at the front to the drive wheel at the back. Norway-based inventor Marc Le Borgne, however, has created an alternative. His KerVelo recumbent has an 18-speed gearhub transmission built into the front wheel.
There's no denying that good-quality bike locks tend to be heavy, plus they're often awkward to carry. While we have seen efforts to make them lighter and less obtrusive, Latvian startup GreyNut has gone a step farther – its Bindio system simply places the lock at a parking spot at the cyclist's destination, so it's already there waiting for them.
In order to remain sleek and compact, most of today's cycling multitools lack a chain-repair tool. Well, the guys at Philadelphia-based Mineral Design have addressed that limitation, with their two-part Mini Bar and Barstow system. It consists of a pocketable magnetic multi-bit wrench, paired up with a separate chain tool that sits inside the handlebar.
There are already a number of devices that allow cyclists to do things such as tracking their rides. Most of those products, however, must be paired with an accompanying smartphone that's taken along for the ride. By contrast, WI-MM's GPS- and Wi-Fi-equipped BP100 works all on its own, and stays on the bike full-time.
Cyclists already have their pick of several brands of Google Glass-like smart glasses, which display data in riders' peripheral vision – this means that they don't have to look down at a cycling computer or smartphone display, taking their eyes off the road in the process. However, what if they already have a pair of "dumb" glasses that they want to keep using? Well, that's where Garmin's Varia Vision add-on comes in.