Blue­sev­enty Ther­mal Skull Cap

Triathlon Magazine Canada - - Front Page -

$49 Up­wards of 30 per cent of your body heat is lost through your head in the wa­ter. Real­iz­ing that, Blue­sev­enty of­fers this 3 mm Ya­mamoto neo­prene sleek cap that is lined with a thin layer of wool to keep in the heat. A broad cen­tral stretch panel dec­o­rated with racy sil­ver stripes in­creases vis­i­bil­ity in dim con­di­tions and also al­lows the cap to fit a broad range of head sizes.– TMC

Front De­railleur The up­dated front de­railleur is slightly smaller than its pre­de­ces­sor main­tain­ing the abil­ity to shift smoothly un­der full load.

Brake Levers Per­haps the big­gest draw of elec­tronic shift­ing for triath­letes is the abil­ity to shift from the brake levers when out of aero, and the new Dura-Ace does not dis­ap­point. The abil­ity to shift while climb­ing, without break­ing rhythm, can gain a rider valu­able time on rolling cour­ses. Even on flat cour­ses, shift­ing at the brake levers is use­ful at turn- around points, as well en­ter­ing and ex­it­ing tran­si­tion.

With a strong re­turn spring, Shi­mano’s Dura-Ace brake levers of­fer ex­cel­lent feel, es­pe­cially when paired with the new Du­raAce brakes. The new levers are an even big­ger ben­e­fit when paired with the pro­pri­etary brakes in­creas­ingly preva­lent on new Tri bikes. Brakes Shi­mano’s Dura-Ace brakes have gained a rep­u­ta­tion as some of the most pow­er­ful brakes avail­able. The new sym­met­ri­cal du­alpivot de­sign lives up to that rep­u­ta­tion and cou­ples the power with ter­rific mod­u­la­tion. The new 9000- se­ries brakes al­ways of­fer pro­gres­sive and pre­dictable brak­ing force, al­low­ing the rider to brake later on both wet or dry de­scents. There is also a new di­rect mount op­tion for frames with com­pat­i­ble posts, of­fer­ing the same ex­cel­lent re­sponse in a lighter and smaller pack­age for im­proved aero­dy­nam­ics. Shifters Shi­mano now of­fers two op­tions when it comes to elec­tronic shifters, sin­gle and dual but­ton setup. The dual but­ton pods (which came with our test group) are sim­i­lar to the pre­vi­ous ver­sion. The left pod con­trols the front de­railleur, right pod con­trols the rear. Or vice versa, since the new Dura-Ace is pro­gram­mable, you can as­sign the func­tion each but­ton per­forms to suit your pref­er­ence.

The new sin­gle but­ton pods are de­signed to shift the rear de­railleur only, left for up shift, right for down shift. De­signed more for time tri­al­ists, the sin­gle but­ton setup would be a good choice for a flat fast course like Ironman Florida, or for strong cy­clists who rarely need to drop into the small ring. In both cases, the new shift pods are slightly smaller than be­fore with more rounded edges, fit­ting nicely in hand at the end of ex­ten­sions. Junc­tion Box and E-tube Wiring The new E-tube wiring is not only lighter and thin­ner, but re­quires no heat shrink­ing of con­nec­tions, mak­ing for easy cus­tomiza­tion. By plug­ging in a di­ag­nos­tic unit from your com­puter and con­nect­ing it to the junc­tion box of your bike, you can pro­gram shift speed from your com­puter. You have the choice of four speeds to suit your pref­er­ences. The junc­tion box also lets you charge the in­ter­nal bat­tery unit without re­mov­ing it from the seat­post. Cas­sette The ob­vi­ous change in the gruppo is the 11-speed cas­sette. For triath­letes want­ing to stay within nar­row power ranges to pre­serve their legs, they no longer have to choose be­tween a closely-spaced cas­sette for op­ti­mal ca­dence or a wide-rang­ing gear ra­tio for ef­fi­ciency. Ti­ta­nium sprock­ets and a car­bon-fi­bre spi­der car­rier for the larger gears al­lowed Shi­mano to cram the ex­tra cog in without adding weight. Shi­mano Dura Ace wheels With the move to 11 speed, Shi­mano took the op­por­tu­nity to re­vamp its en­tire wheel range. The lineup is now di­vided into the Ac­cel­er­ate (C24, C35) se­ries, lower pro­file rims that makes for great all around train­ing wheels; and the Blade se­ries with deeper 50 mm and 75 mm pro­files for aero ad­van­tage.

The new C75 wheels have been in de­vel­op­ment with Shi­mano pros for sev­eral years, and has fi­nally been re­leased. Fea­tur­ing the smooth rolling and durable hubs Shi­mano is famed for, the C75 has a wider, blunter rim pro­file, that puts its aero­dy­namic per­for­mance on par with the lat­est wide rim de­signs from hed and Zipp. We found the new shape vastly im­proved cross­wind han­dling com­pared to pre­vi­ous Shi­mano of­fer­ings, mak­ing the tubu­lar only wheels us­able for all but the windi­est con­di­tions. When used with Shi­mano’s car­bon spe­cific Blue brake pads, the C75 of­fered some of the best brak­ing we’ve ex­pe­ri­enced, with good stop­ping power and mod­u­la­tion. The C50 is use­able as both a train­ing and rac­ing wheel, and is avail­able in both tubu­lar and clincher setup. Put it all to­gether and you have a gruppo that man­ages to im­prove on some­thing that was im­pres­sive enough be­fore. Once again Shi­mano has pro­vided lots of good rea­sons to think se­ri­ously about go­ing elec­tric.

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