Invented more than a hundred and fifty years ago, the bicycle is still the best sold, most popular and sometimes even the handiest means of transport in the whole world.
Whether it is for leisure, for sport or for work, cycling is such a regular activity that, unsurprisingly, throughout the years many accessories, gadgets and innovations where launched and marketed to make the whole cycling experience more comfortable.
USEFUL BIKES ACCESSORIES
Depending on its use, owing a bike entails possessing adequate apparel, garments or accessories which make the cycling experience safer and more pleasant.
Aside from helmets, which are even compulsory when cycling in countries like Australia, or brackets, necessary to attach the bike to the car, other accessories were invented due the popularity of this vehicle.
One such example is the sophisticated mechanism some type of bike displays to increase their performance.
Ordinary road bicycles have only one gear whose ratio is fixed. However, many other types of bike from mountain bikes to recumbent bikes are provided with a shifting mechanism which allows to select the appropriate gear ratio for a matter of speed, efficiency and comfort, especially when facing a different levels of road climb uphill or while going downhill.
Also, while ordinary bike brakes may be rim brakes, whose friction pads are compressed against the wheel rims, hub brakes, in which the mechanism is contained within the wheel hub, now many types come with disc brakes, where pads act on a rotor attached to the hub. Disc brakes are especially common in mountain bikes, tandems and recumbent bikes compared to ordinary bikes, due to their increased power.
SMART TECHNOLOGIES COME TO THE BIKER’S RESCUE
Throughout the years, the popularity of cycling has never decreased, not just as cycling is a green, means of transport which does not harm the environment with the release of carbon dioxide.
Cycling competitions such as the Giro d’Italia or the Tour de France are popular races which every year bring a lot of followers as well as they provide scope for researching further cycling innovations.
Smart innovations brought in by science studies count accessories such as smart helmets. Smart helmets display innovative designs (to both men’s and women’s taste) having innumerable features such as water or wind proofing, robust materials of construction, LED lights ability, may have built-in speakers or microphones and so on and so forth. Some smart helmets may even have a safety feature able to send out SOS signals in case that the helmet has hit at a great impact.
Habitual bike users would find integrated lighting systems useful when cycling in the darkness and may want to purchase other lights to increase visibility during a nocturnal bike ride.
Other innovations include wireless electronic shifting for mountain bikes which has already set to outstrip its traditional mechanical counterparts. Or also portable electric pumps, which are the any flat tyre’s best pals.
All these features and benefits definitely come in handy for cyclist racing on the French Tour, but also do benefit habitual riders who venture out on long distance rides. For this kind of cyclist, it is also recommended to download cycling apps such as Strava, which allows them to monitor and analyse their whole cycling experience, leg work, while also functioning as GPS.
1) WhiteCrow Hub
Any experienced mountain biker knows what is like to cycle on softer tyres, which would offer more traction, and what is like when riding on harder tyres, which make it easier on a softer terrain.
As it is quite impracticable to stop and either inflate or deflate the tyres depending on the terrain, the WhiteCrow Hub comes extremely handy in these situations. It is a revolutionary bike technology allowing to adjust tyre pressure while cycling. It is a fully integrated hub which enables the best traction on any type of surface while optimising the tyre’s contract-patch grip on the different terrains.
This technology deflates on command while pedalling, while it provides an excellent and efficient inflation ad any time, thus ensuring an increased comfort while riding, an optimal handling from handlebars to pedals and even extra safety provided by the low pressured tyres over rugged surfaces, which is one of the main causes of crashes.
2) Theft prevention
Another trouble annoying every biker is definitely having to leave the bike outside the shop before doing groceries and running the risk of your bike being stolen as it did not have a proper lock. With NutFix all these little nagging matters are solved. As most people lock their bike up leaving them standing upright, with NutFix the nut is fitted with a clever mechanism which releases the screw below it only when the bike is on its side, thus preventing any thieves from robbing parts (especially the sought-after wheels or seat) or the whole of the bike. Thanks to all its durable, high-quality stainless-steel components, these locks are a secure, smart and innovative way of solving an every-day problem.
3) Easy-to-carry and powerful pumps
There is nothing more time-wasting and vexing than having to stop on the side of the road to change a high-pressure tyre and having to pump it back up. That is one of the reasons why many cyclists use compressed, albeit disposable, canisters. The company Interbike has developed a brilliant and revolutionary idea, a pocketable battery electric pump, the miniFumpa.
This pump’s portable design and features were thought in order to increase speed, to be simple to use, effortless and light to carry around. It contains a compressor design able to compress surrounding air at amazing speeds to fill the tyres, it uses brushless motor technology to provide incredible power and it is rechargeable through a micro-USB cable.
4) Measuring power
Modern technology has now brought extremely useful types of device mainly to improve performance of professional cyclists. One such gadget is the STYX Powermenter, a piece of gear fully embedded in the cycling cleat and utilising 3D force sensors in both cleats to monitor fully the power being transferred between the rider and the bike. It communicates the data collected with a standard bike computer or with a smartphone through the brand’s own app or other cycling apps.
The STYX Powermenter is very practical as it mounts on any type of shoe with the standard three holes in the bottom. To provide a more complete reading of power measurement, the setup actually consists of two power metres and cleats, one for each foot and shoe (which has to be the same to provide relevant and exact outcomes).
5) The e-bike: a new era of cycling
Cycling innovation such as the invention and the subsequent spreading of e-bikes has made riding a bike even more common as it is an electric power-aided bike mostly using rechargeable batteries, thus being sort of a hybrid between a normal bike and a motorcycle.
In order to avoid urban traffic and the nuisance of finding a parking spot in town, many commuters would choose to use bike sharing, electric bikes (e-bikes), lightweight commuter or folding bike models that can be easily carried around to for practical reason and also to avoid thefts when leaving the bicycle around. Thefts are the main reason why any respectable bike owner or user would possess at least one solid bike lock (such as NutFix) or even a secure anti-theft system.
In 2018 e-bikes are no longer a sensational discovery, but a quite ordinary means of transport used especially by people who have no time or no energy to cycle a normal bike. This is because the majority of the e-bikes just has kits incorporating motor, battery and electronics within a while which can be just applied onto a regular bike, thus turning it into an electrical one. This power-aided bikes end up being impossible to pedal in unpowered mode, extremely hefty to carry around and extremely impracticable, and all this not necessarily when the power is switched off.
The Swytch eBike Conversion Kit addresses that problem by moving all the e-bike’s components (battery and electronics) into an all-in-one clickable pack of a bracket mounted on the handlebars. this conversion kit makes it really easy to turn the bike into an electrical one; it can be applied to any type of bike, from road bike to beach cruiser.
All these features, gadgets and accessories are very much thought to make anybody’s cycling experience more comfortable, more precise, safer and, needless to say, more enjoyable. We only need to wait and see what the next brilliant and useful cycling innovation is going to be and going to bring to our bicycle and overall experience.