Check out three of this season’s best ideas to come from homegrown tri-gearmakers.
From time to time we check in on the ever-rotating world of crowdfunded triathlon products. This fall, we look at three cycling ideas coming from producers and wishful inventors. Back one of these prototypes to get in the ground floor, make your training buddies jealous with unique stuff, and help support the little guy.
Culprit Aerodynamic Stem
Backer cost: $70 + shipping
ETA: April 2018
What: While known for their bikes, next year the Culprit crew is making the transition from frames to components. In 2017, their main focus will be on their innovative new stem and simple clip-on aerobars. The proposed Culprit stem is a dream for anyone who hates the clutter of either mechanical- or electronic-shifting cables on their front end. The stem itself hides Di2 junction boxes or ETAP blip boxes (in 100 and 110mm versions) as well as mechanical cables on bikes with top-tube cable entry (check site for compatibility). Their own studies claim a 3-Watt improvement.
Culprit is also offering an easily adjustable clip-on aerobar ($90 + shipping backer cost) and one of the best saddle bag kits we’ve ever tested—including a full bit kit, a mini torque wrench, and all of the standard patch/tools in a convenient roll-up ($65 + shipping).
Backer cost: $100
ETA: Available now; ladies’ saddle to come
What: Using an air bladder in the front of the saddle, the Reprieve bike saddle advertises comfort regardless of body shape or time spent riding. With a standard setup in the rear of the seat, Reprieve’s makers claim no loss of power due to the static position of the sitbones, while the air bladder’s ever-adjusting contour prevents those notorious hotspots from the perineum to the tip of the seat. Riders can custom dial in their ride with an adjustable air valve and pump.
Backer cost: under $100
ETA: To be announced
What: Using yet-unidentified tech, the Radius F1 light increases the brightness output as cyclists move faster—as a way to save battery and give greater warning to both cyclist and vehicles as the rider moves faster. The Radius F1’s makers also boast a flashing feature when users corner or brake to a stop. Waterproof to IXP7-rating and using a built-in Li-Ion battery that runs for two hours on maximum brightness, the quick-release light also includes a Bluetooth remote to manually adjust the light’s brightness.