Category Archives: Components

It’s Not Easy to Be Honest

I used to wonder why manufacturers offer things that are popular, even though they don’t work well. I recently read an interview with a BMW engineer, who complained about the huge wheels that the company now puts on their cars. … Continue reading

Posted in Rene Herse cranks, Testing and Tech | 89 Comments

Tire Width: how much difference do a few millimeters make?

At Compass Bicycles, we often get the question: “I am riding 23 mm tires right now, and I wonder whether a 25 mm-wide tire would make a noticeable difference.” The graph below, taken from the Spring 2013 issue of Bicycle … Continue reading

Posted in Testing and Tech, Tires | 72 Comments

Tire Wipers

Many cyclists are tempted by the performance and comfort of supple tires, but they are afraid that they might get too many flats without puncture-resistant belts and reinforced sidewalls. Tire Wipers improve the flat resistance of your tires without detracting … Continue reading

Posted in Tires | 30 Comments

Berthoud Handlebar Bags without Side Pockets

On my own bikes, I use Gilles Berthoud handlebar bags without side pockets. The side pockets tend to get in the way of my hands when I ride bikes with narrow handlebars. Furthermore, the pockets probably increase the wind resistance … Continue reading

Posted in Racks/Bags | 39 Comments

Spring Bicycle Inspection

The beginning of the season is a good time to check our bikes carefully. The last thing we need the evening before a ride is to find out that our chainrings are too worn to work with a new chain, … Continue reading

Posted in Components, Our Bikes | Tagged , , , , | 34 Comments

SKF Bottom Brackets with French Threads

Many wonderful bikes have been made in France in past decades. Not just the great machines from small constructeurs like René Herse and Alex Singer (above), but also more common bikes like the Peugeot PX-10, the nicer Gitanes and many … Continue reading

Posted in Bottom brackets, Product News | Tagged | 23 Comments

Grand Bois Leather Handlebar Tape

I’ve been on the fence about leather handlebar tape. It’s expensive, and the leather-wrapped handlebars of the 1980s were slippery when wet. However, my friend Hahn has used Brooks leather bar tape and found that he liked it. (Except the … Continue reading

Posted in Handlebars, Product News | 17 Comments