Tech Summary: Ritchey WCS Zeta ZX wheels, Pirelli sealant assortment, TICCC Roam shorts and Apidura’s bag sizing tool
This week’s round-up includes 25mm internal rims, tubeless road tire sealant, baggy shorts and frame bags—products that would have seemed unlikely to most drop bar enthusiasts just a few years ago, if not downright outrageous to the traditionalist.
But times are changing. Broadening horizons and opening minds has meant that cycling has made some major (heavy) strides lately. And while product development pales in comparison to events like the Tour de France Femmes and its subsequent impact, gear that might get more people cycling can only be a good thing, too. Okay, off the soapbox and up to the products…
Ritchey’s new Gravel Hoops are built to last
Examine any Ritchey product and you’ll quickly see the thumbprint of its founder. Tom Ritchey infuses all of his designs with a few tried and true principles like reliability, durability, and simple common sense. The new handcrafted WCS Zeta GX gravel bikes appear to be no different.
Available in 700c and 650b sizes, these alloy tires are tubeless ready and feature a generous 25mm internal rim diameter. This makes them perfect for today’s high-volume gravel tires, with Ritchey suggesting compatibility with rubber between 30mm and 50mm, which pretty much covers the range regardless of the terrain you’re riding.
This practicality is a recurring theme. The Centerlock hubs feature sealed bearings and use a simple ratcheting system. You don’t need any tools to maintain them. They are laced with 28 j-bend DT Competition spokes front and rear for an ideal blend of strength and weight. Of course, they use brass nipples for their anti-corrosion properties. Freewheel options include Shimano, SRAM and Campagnolo.
The WCS Zeta GX weigh 1,840 g (700c) and 1,740 g (650b) per pair. Of course, there are lighter gravel wheelsets out there, but as Ritchey notes, “strong and reliable” is the end game here.
Visit ritcheylogic.com for more information (opens in new tab)
Pirelli makes sealants for high pressure situations
One of the problems with going tubeless on your road bike is that the sealant doesn’t work as well with the high air pressure that comes with narrower tires. Pirelli wants to make that a thing of the past with the release of its P Zero sealant.
The sealant, which shares the same name as the Italian brand’s road tire line, uses a formula specifically designed for thin-wall tubeless, TLR and tubular tires that run at higher pressures. Its properties also mean P Zero sealant will not coagulate when CO2 is used to inflate the tire – a bonus for riders who prefer cartridges over a traditional pump.
The Pirelli range of sealants doesn’t stop there, however. The Cinturato sealant joins the brand’s gravel product lineup and Pirelli says it’s rated for a much wider range of tire pressures, from 15psi to 100psi. This makes sense given the often varied terrain of a “gravel” ride, which can range from road to light gravel to rocky singletrack.
While P-Zero’s formula contains both ammonia and latex, presumably to support its high-pressure claims, Cinturato’s ingredients, being free of both, are far friendlier to both bike rims and allergy sufferers. As for the longevity of both sealants, Pirelli suggests three and six months before a refill is needed, “depending on volume and weather conditions.”
The P Zero sealant comes in a 60ml or 2oz bottle which Pirelli says will fit at least a 700c tire up to 32mm wide, while the Cinturato comes in a larger 125ml / 4.5 ounce size which Pirelli claims to “save space when packing spares for long adventures”.
Visit velo.pirelli.com for more information (opens in new tab)
The Roam shorts by TICCC combine the technical with the practical
While a good pair of bib shorts is essential for most rides longer than a few miles, they can leave you feeling a little exposed if that ride also involves stopping at a coffee shop, setting up camp, or anything in general Spending time off the bike. Hence the creation of the cycling overpants.
TICCC’s Roam shorts are a first in this growing category and for what they describe as “everyday adventures on and off the bike”. The unisex fit is “engineered” for the on-bike activity, but the shorts also feature pockets and belt loops so they look and function like a regular pair – in fact, TICCC advertises them as shorts to be worn alone or over bibs , with ergonomic paneling that allows the latter.
The material is made from Italian technical fabrics with recycled fibers and is designed to allow freedom of movement, dry quickly and resist wrinkles. There is also a reflective logo on the leg for high visibility in low light conditions. All of these elements add up to a short that’s well-suited for gravel rides, multi-day touring and a two-wheeled trip to the pub.
The TICCC Roam Shorts are available in four colors, Storm Black, Lava Grey, Space Blue and Pine Green, and in sizes XS to XXL.
Visit tic-cc.com for more information (opens in new tab)
Apidura helps you measure twice so you can only buy once
Choosing the right frame bag for your bike is not always as easy as it might be. While most bag brands offer a range of sizes and will advise which will best fit your bike frame, this is not an exact science. Internal frame dimensions vary widely, and then there’s the number of bottle cages and placement. To combat these issues, Apidura introduced its own interactive sizing tool.
The online tool on Apidura’s website is easy to use. Simply add a photo of your bike – you need to make sure it’s a sideways shot, with the rear wheel on the left – orient it according to the instructions and then start choosing different bags from the Apidura range to create a virtual setup. From here you can closely inspect the fit of each bag.
While it’s not quite the same as getting a custom frame bag made to your specific measurements, given Apidura’s extensive range, it seems likely that you’ll find a bag that not only fits, but fits well. The tool is also said to reduce the number of bags that need to be replaced due to poor fit, which is certainly positive from an environmental point of view.
If you prefer to do things the “old fashioned” way, the Apidura website also offers a drop down menu where you can select your bike to see a chart of all compatible bags as well as downloadable printable templates .
Visit apidura.com for more information (opens in new tab)