Everyone has that one riding buddy who always has to try the newest gear, ever on the hunt for the perfect bike set up. Here’s six options, from clever tools to creative wireless solutions, to help that friend on their quest.
2020 Gift Guide: Innovative tech for gear heads
Archer D1X Trail shifter
Archer D1X Trail mid-install. Review coming soon
Archer D1X Trail wireless shifting.
Want wireless shifting but don’t want to shell out for SRAM’s pricey AXS system? Archer, a small California firm, created the highly flexible D1X Trail wireless system. The D1X will work with any existing mechanical derailleur and any drivetrain, from modern 12-speed to retro 8-speed and 1x, 2x, even 3x front chainrings, so you can make any bike wireless. At $359 for the micro-adjust remote and shifter driver, it is a much more price-conscious entry into the futuristic world of wireless shifting than its electric competitors. ($USD359.00 – archercomponents.com/)
PRO Team digital torque wrench
PRO mini torque wrench, where are the bits?
Bits are stowed safely in the mini torque tool's handle
Pro Tools digital torque wrench and mini torque wrench
If you’re setting up carbon fibre components – or any components, really – setting the proper torque is essential. This is true whether you’re at home or on the trail. Keep you and those fancy new parts safe with the Pro Team digital torque wrench for a precision home set-up. And, for those mid-ride adjustments, Pro Mini torque wrench. They are both part of Pro’s ever-expanding roster of new tools. (Team – $370.00, Mini – $100.00)
Wolf Tooth 8-bit Pack Pliers
Wolf Tooth’s first Ultralight Pack Pliers were a hit when the Minnesota brand released them. This fall, Wolf Tooth added the 8-bit Pack Pliers, with a full set of bits stashed in the handle, along with a master link. All in, there’s 17 functions on the slim new machined aluminum tool.
Tannus Tubeless Armour
As tire inserts are grow in popularity, more options are emerging. Tannus stepped up its game this year with its own version, the Tubeless Armour. After initially weighing in with a system that relied on tubes, the new Armour is light, at 150g, and much easier to install. (USD$50.00/tire – www.tannusamerica.com/)
OneUp Components EDC Lite Tool
Squamish’s OneUp Components kick-started the stowable tools trend with the original steerer tube-stashed EDC. Unlike the original, the EDC Lite Tool doesn’t require any modifications to your fork to fit the 9-function mini tool. The EDC Lite is quick install and makes sure you’ll never be without a tool on the trail again. ($53.00 – oneupcomponents.com)