Autumn Bicycle Quarterly

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We seem to be at the apex of Summer: Jan and Theo and other randonneurs experienced Paris-Brest-Paris, and we see many of you on great cycling outings. Yet, we all notice how the sun sets a bit earlier, and Labor Day is not too far away if we look at our calendars…

… which means the Autumn issue of Bicycle Quarterly is at the printers’ and will be mailed soon.

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We tested the Specialized Diverge Carbon Di2. It’s an exciting machine: A top of the line carbon bike with room for wide tires, optional fenders and lights, and you even can mount a low-rider rack!

We took this bike on a multitude of adventures, from a midnight climb of Mount Constitution in the San Juan Islands to a fast overnight camping trip up the Carbon River on Mount Rainier (above). Is it possible to combine the feel of a modern carbon road bike with the versatility of wide tires, fenders and even a touring load? And is this really the fastest bike we’ve tested? We rode the bike over 1000 km (650 miles) to find out!

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The Diverge was equipped with Shimano’s latest hydraulic “road” disc brakes. We tested these brakes and assessed the state of “road” disc brakes in general. Are they mature technology?

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From the latest technology to a more classic approach: We visit the legendary constructeur C. S. Hirose in Tokyo and take you on a tour of his workshop. Marvel at the incredible variety of bikes he builds, and learn why he makes his own front and rear derailleurs with desmodromic actuation.

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Not only did we visit C. S. Hirose, but we rode one of his very special machines on a wonderful day trip in the Japanese mountains. Fall colors, great camaraderie and an amazing bike combined to one of our best “First Ride” features.

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We also bring you a portrait of a more conventional Hirose bike, except that it’s made for a small rider. Natsuko Hirose (no relation to the builder) explains how she chose her bike and what makes it special.

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Jobst Brandt inspired several generations of cyclists, and his technical insights changed how bicycle wheels are built. We look back on a full life dedicated to the enjoyment of cycling off the beaten path.

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With cyclocross season around the corner, we discovered a “New Old Stock” Alan cyclocross bike in its original packaging. Join us as we unwrap this treasure. In our “Skills” column, we explain how to remount your bike cyclocross-style while running, and why this technique, executed in slow-motion, is useful for all riders. (Hint: It allows you to get moving quickly and without wobbling.)

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After the U.S. and Japan, we take you to France. Daniel and Madeleine Provot were cyclotourists and randonneurs during the Golden Age of French cycling in the 1950s. In the first part of a series, they share images from their photo albums that take us back to a time when cycling was more than a simple pastime – it was a way of life.

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As always, there is much more – product tests like this Rivet saddle, letters, our “Icon” column…

Click here to start or renew your subscription, so you get your Autumn issue of Bicycle Quarterly without delay. Our website now provides customer accounts that you can access to check your subscription, renew, and also give gift subscriptions.

About Jan Heine, Editor, Bicycle Quarterly

I love cycling and bicycles, especially those that take us off the beaten path. I edit Bicycle Quarterly magazine, and occasionally write for other publications. Bicycle Quarterly's sister company, Compass Bicycles Ltd., turns the results of our research into high-quality bicycle components for real-world riders.
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13 Responses to Autumn Bicycle Quarterly

  1. Wilson says:

    I bet what makes Natsuko Hirose’s bike special is that it looks like a real bike. No silly slope top tube. Plus, a head tube that’s had length over the normal gap for must buttoning the top and down tubes together. I like that bike tons.

  2. Paul Knopp says:

    Once again, your travels, reviews, and special features make this another “can’t miss” issue! Great work!

  3. Pondero says:

    Always looking forward to the next issue. Regarding that…any information you can provide on the pants you are wearing in the last photo (in this blog post) of you? And while we’re at it…any updates on the Rat Trap Pass tires?

  4. Nice. That Rivet Saddle looks solid.

  5. MikeDimmock says:

    . Nice to see that you have Jobst Brandt in this edition. In my book he is up there with Sheldon Brown and yourself in promoting the technical aspects as well as the joy of cycling. Mike Dimmock

  6. Peter Vanderlinden says:

    As others have said I to can’t wait for this issue, or any other issue for that matter. The only bad thing is I read through it so quickly I have a few months to wait for the next issue. I have an article idea for you, you may have already covered this but if not it would be interesting to see the change in bike handling when a heavier rider takes the helm. I weigh 215 lbs but consider myself to be in good shape. I wonder if bikes “plane” or handle differently for a heavier riders.

  7. jeffoyb says:

    The Japanese workshop profiles — TOEI and now Hirose — are awesome. To me they represent the pinnacle of craft and soul. Profoundly uplifting and encouraging.

    • jeffoyb says:

      (…And by “they” I mean both the shops and the articles! “BQ” connects us here to those remarkable shops over there. “BQ” gives continuity to bike culture in its respect for these masters and what that mature generation still offers us today. It’s an important service, done with such a nice attitude. “BQ” also keeps alive the best of what has gone before, holding it as a standard. Thanks so much!)

  8. Michael says:

    Congrats on another PBP achievement!
    Looking forward to the ride report.

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