Category: Product News


Recent Posts

XDR is here, so what do you need to know?

With Sram's introduction of their new Red Etap AXS group, they also announced their new XDR freehub body.  XDR isn't actually new though: the first place we remember seeing it was on Sram's 900 series of hubs, which came out back in 2016.  When asked about the new driver body, which a the time had no apparent use, we were told that it would allow for the development of a 12 speed road drivetrain at some point, and now that has arrived!

Chris King's teaser of their new XDR driveshell for their R45 and R45D hubs.  Photo courtesy of Chris King

So what's the actual difference between an XD and an XDR driver?  The latter has splines that are 1.85mm longer, making the driver body that carries the cassette effectively longer (the same as an 11-speed road Shimano-style driver, but more on that in a moment).  If you want to run an 11 or 12 speed mountain cassette, you just need a 1.85mm spacer behind it on the XDR driver, and you're good to go.  It's worth emphasizing, however, that while the freehub is very similar, it is longer, so it needs a hubshell that's designed for it.  This is one reason that it Chris King is offering it only on their road hubs, which are built for a longer 11-speed road Shimano style freehub body to begin with.  Since White Industries makes all of their hubshells slightly narrower to fit an 11-speed road freehub, the XDR freehub will work on all of them. 

White Industries current crop of titanium driver bodies: Campagnolo, Shimano 8-11 speed, Shimano Micro Spline, Sram XDR.  Photo courtesy of White Industries

Because all hub brands have approached freehub and hub design in general in their own way, it's hard to make any blanket statements about compatibility across multiple brands, but here's what we can say about the brands we carry:

  • Chris King R45, R45D Gen. 2, and R45D Centerlock hubs will be compatible with Chris King's new XDR driveshell, and conversion kits, as well as complete hubs should be shipping around the middle of March, 2019.  Currently there is no word on possible compatibility with other Chris King hubs.
  • White Industries has an XDR driver that is compatible with all of their recent hubs.
  • Onyx Racing Products is working on an XDR driver, and while we expect that it will definitely compatible with their road hubs, we don't have any word on compatibility with mountain hubs.  We'll keep you updated as new developments arrive on that front.
  • Phil Wood currently doesn't have plans to make an XDR driver.

Beyond this basic run-down, we're sure there will be questions, and we'll be here to answer them!  

 

 

Click Here To Read More.


Making it all match with White Industries

It's no secret that we get a kick out of color matching parts.  Whether the color scheme is a subdued mix of blacks or silvers, or something a bit more exotic, we take pride in our ability to track-down the parts that will work well together across multiple manufacturers.  When we can match parts from just one manufacturer though, we're even happier!

We've gotten some really beautiful red White Industries parts in recently and since we know that not everyone gets to see just how these parts look together, we wanted to show a couple of combinations.


With the new Shimano XTR 9100 becoming more readily-available, we also wanted to remind everyone that White Industries has a driver that's compatible with Shimano's new Micro Spline cassettes, so you don't have to choose between color and the new XTR because you can get both!

Polished White Industries M30 Crankset with red extractor caps and Black TSR chainring, BSA Bottom bracket, and CLD hub with the new Micro Spline-compatible freehub body.

We really like the way White Industries cranksets tie in with other parts in a very subdued way with their colored extractor caps.  The addition of a colored bottom bracket is a great way to add just a bit more color to the center of the bike, but we've seen some great builds that used the bottom bracket to tie into the more subdued crank arm color, so there are lots of ways to get a great look.  Keep in mind that you could use a black crankarm and silver TSR chainring to completely change the way this combo looks too!  

White Industries' polished crank arms are mirrors, so they pick up the colors around them beautifully!

We're big fans of the centerlock rotor-mounting standard, and the low-flange hubs (such as the CLD) that it encourages, but for some bikes, the high flange XMR hubs are just such a perfect fit! 

White Industries XMR hubs with BSA bottom bracket.
XMR hubs, M30 crankset, and BSA bottom bracket.

Next time you're looking for a way to pull your bike together with color, let us know what you're looking for because chances are that we'll be able to help you get the look you want!


Click Here To Read More.


Onyx Racing Hubs Are Here!

Today we're really excited to announce that we're adding Onyx Racing Products' hubs to our catalogue! 

And for a limited time you can get 15% off any pair purchased using code "ONYX_PAIR" until FEB 28th.

Minnesota based Onyx has been around for many years, having started out making hubs for BMX racing, and has slowly been gaining a following in large part because of their unique Sprag Clutch freehub, which gives virtually instant engagement (technically there's a tiny amount of rotation needed to engage the clutch, but take it from us: it's imperceptible) and infinite engagement points.  

After the instant engagement of the freehub, the next thing that jumps out about these hubs is what happens when you stop pedaling: silence!  In a world where loud freehubs are synonymous with high-quality and fast-engagement, Onyx hubs are a total anomaly because of their silent freewheeling.  And there's more to that silence than quiet: because when you coast, the sprags disengage, there is almost no drag caused by the freehub mechanism.  This is a big departure from traditional pawl-based freehubs, which generally employ some combination of more pawls and stronger pawl-springs to ensure quick engagement, which translates to more surfaces dragging across more teeth with greater friction, and therefore more drag. 

Onyx's road hubs are heavily relieved to shed weight, and like all of their hubs, are available in a huge range of colors!

To complement the low-drag freehub mechanism, Onyx hubs come stock with Enduro hybrid ceramic bearings to lower drag even more!  Hybrid ceramic bearings have lower drag than their steel counterparts, and are an upgrade that few hubs come with out of the box.  The fact that Onyx hubs come with them stock just shows that racing is more than just part of their name: it's part of their entire design ethic.  These bearings are protected from the elements with extremely tight tolerances in the bearing covers, and a labyrinth seal between the freehub driver body and hubshell.  And for those who want either full ceramic or full steel bearings, they are replaceable when and if they wear out.  

Onyx offers the Helix hubshell option on many of their hubs to save even more weight and give a truly unique look


Beyond the bearings themselves, Onyx hubs have an easy to use, and very solid bearing preload adjuster mechanism (with titanium bolts), which can really help get the most life out of a set of bearings, and which we feel is a great feature on any hub.  It makes adjusting the bearings possible (which a good thing to be able to do even with cartridge bearings), and also makes disassembling the hub much easier.

So can you get one to fit your bike?  The answer is almost undoubtedly "yes"!  From fatbike to road, BMX to boost singlespeed disc hubs, there is an Onyx for just about any spacing and configuration! 

If there's a downside to the design of these hubs it's that the sprag clutch is relatively heavy.  There is simply a bit more steel in the freehub than is necessary in most other designs.  Whether this is a big deal to you, is a decision you'll have to make, but we tend to feel that the benefits are worth the bit of extra weight for most riders.  For reference, a standard rear ISO disc mount Onyx hub weighs about 100 grams more than a comparable hub from Chris King.  It's something; but it's not unreasonable by any means, and we feel that the silent, low-drag design makes a small weight trade-off acceptable for most uses.  If you're trying to build an ultralight project bike, you might be better-off going with something from White Industries, but for most other uses, these hubs will be hard to beat.

Bikepacking.com had two different engravings on their set of hubs!  Photo courtesy of bikepacking.com.

One final, and very important note about these hubs is that you can get custom laser engraving at no extra charge!  When you consider the almost encyclopedic range of color options that the hubs have, and the fact that you can mix and match end cap and axle colors, this means that you can customize them more than just about any other hub on the market!  There are a few limitations on what you can have etched onto a hub, but within reason (think single color mainly), the options are endless!  The photo above from Bikepacking.com shows that intricate patterns are no problem, so as long as the design is single color and not copyrighted, you should be good to go!

These technically superb hubs are backed by a 5 year warranty, and we're really stoked to have them.  We're excited to be able to offer something that offers riders a unique product that has proven extremely durable and functional, and are happy to answer any questions about them so let us know if you've got any!  Also note that if you don't see a configuration on our site, just get in touch because it may take us some time to get everything up! 

In the meantime, head on over to the product page to take a look at the options!

Click Here To Read More.


Chris King Titanium Headsets are Back in Stock!

Chris King titanium headsets are in a category of their own.  Given Chris King's already legendary durability, these might not be absolutely necessary for most riders, but they are beautiful, and even more durable that the standard aluminum NoThreadsets, so for those who want the best of the best, this is your headset! 

Sometimes a bike simply demands something really special in a headset.  The Chris King NoThreadset Ti headset is the one for those. 

  When you see a Chris King ti headset on a bike, it's hard if not impossible to just glance at it: they require a second, closer look.  Whether it's to see the intricate pattern of the laser engraving, or just look at your reflection in the mirror polish that won't tarnish under harsh conditions, it's hard to tear yourself away from one of these beauties.

  Chris King NoThreadset Ti headsets are always limited edition parts.  When Chris King makes these headsets, that's all they make.  They have to change their tooling, and that new tooling gets worn out more quickly than usual because of how much harder the material is, which means that they don't produce them very often and there are often very long gaps between production runs. After each run there's also the question of whether they'll make them again.

We were able to buy a small stock of them recently from the last production run of the year (and maybe longer), so now's the perfect time to get one of these rare gems. 

Check out our webstore for current availability!

Click Here To Read More.


A custom wheelset for when you need a trio of wheels....

Sometimes you need a custom wheelset because your current wheelset is worn out, and sometimes you need one because you're building your dream bike and there isn't a stock wheelset that will do the trick!

That was certainly the case with this trio of AVT Works Custom Wheels that we recently built for a customer's new bike!  This rider wanted two front wheel options for his new bike, and they needed to match, so he had us build two front wheels-one with the tougher Enve M930 laced to 20mm thru-axle Chris King ISO AB hub, and one M630 laced to a 15mm thru axle Chris King ISO AB hub–and one rear wheel built around a Chris King ISO-B hub.  He has two different forks for this bike, and needed a wheel for each, hence the different spec.  All three wheels were laced with Sapim CX Ray spokes which are the strongest as well as one of the lightest spokes on the market today.  If you've been checking our posts recently, you'll remember that we posted some photos of this wheelset in process as we got the parts and again once we'd finished the wheels.  We did that not only because it's a trio of wheels that uses rad parts, but because this rider wanted silver accents! 

The stock hub on the left, and the finished product on the right

We love black parts, but sometimes it's really refreshing to see something that's really different, and this wheelset is nothing if not different!  We started out by switching the hardware on the hubs out to silver.  Chris King had just recently changed all of their hubs (apart from silver) to being supplied with black hardware, so we had to swap the axles and adjuster caps out.  

All of the parts set out and ready to build

Once we got the hubs prepared, we built the wheels.

The finished wheels are gorgeous.  The silver Sapim CX Ray spokes give the wheelset give the wheels a completely different appearance than the black spokes we're used to seeing laced to carbon rims, and we think it's a rad way to pull together  a classic look with modern parts to create something truly unique!

Built, but with the original decals

The resulting bike is an impressive combination of the latest tech and a very thorough matching color scheme!  Notice that the final touch on the wheels was to swap out the stock decals to matching matte punch ones.  This is a detail that we like about Enve rims, and it's certainly used to full advantage here!

The wheels with their new decals on the bike

There are many ways in which a wheelset can be custom for its rider, and this one is a perfect example of someone making use of just about all of them: the rider needed a wheelset that would match the quality and color scheme of his bike, that would be able to accommodate his two different forks and their intended use, and finally, he needed a wheelset that would handle the kind of riding for which his bike was designed! 


Admittedly, this set might not be in everyone's budget, but whether you are looking for one where money is no object or one on more of a budget, there's no reason to think a custom wheelset is out of reach!  We have a whole host of options to help you get the best wheelset for your riding style, bike, and budget; and with 34 years of experience, our wheelbuilder will build you the best wheelset around, and we think you'll be happy you took the leap!


For more info, head over to our AVT Works Custom Wheels page!

Click Here To Read More.


What's so special about custom wheels?

Most of our customers have probably been riding custom wheels for years, but even some of them may not have really thought a lot about what makes those wheels so worthwhile, so whether your bikes still have their stock wheels or not, read on to learn a bit more about what makes a set of custom wheels so good!

When thinking about custom wheels, the most basic question to ask might be “why?”.  It’s not a bad question either: most of us have at least one bike that has a stock wheelset on it, so why should anyone want to replace it, and supposing it does need to be replaced, why not try to get the exact same one that you already have?

First, it’s important to understand the difference between a stock bicycle and something like a car, for instance.  The latter has parts that are very specific to it, and which are usually of good quality and so a good choice when something needs replacement.  With a complete bike, in many cases the wheelset that comes with it has been machine-built, and isn’t of the best quality. This is because wheelsets are made of many parts that don’t look that sexy on a spec sheet, making them an easy, and definitely a go-to place to save some money when spec’ing a complete bike.

Of course this isn’t true on all bikes, and some come with really high-quality wheelsets, but in general even on higher-end bikes the wheelsets aren’t built to the same quality standards, and with the same quality materials as an aftermarket wheelset would be.  The result is that many of the wheelsets that come with complete bikes have inbuilt stresses that mean broken spokes, broken nipples, and the need for frequent truing.

Those issues are rare on a custom wheelset, and for riders who haven’t experienced one, it can be hard to believe that the difference could be so pronounced, but those who have been riding a top-quality, custom wheelset for any length of time, know that replacing spokes and nipples, and even truing wheels are things that hardly ever need to be done!  While the cost of a custom wheelset is seldom small at the outset, the long term cost can be really low when you consider the reliability and durability.  The fact that you also get a wheelset that is lighter, stiffer, smoother rolling, and more beautiful can actually start to seem like a bonus!

Beyond all of these very utilitarian differences are a whole host of aesthetic ones, because once you open the door to a custom wheelset, the options for how that wheelset looks are pretty much limitless!  That's where we really start having fun too, but we'll leave that to another day....

If you're ready to get started on your new wheelset, head over to our Wheels and Rims page!  And of course, if you have any questions, feel free to get in touch!

Click Here To Read More.


Rare and Hard to Find Hub Colors

Here at AVT we have the latest parts, but we also have some older, out of production ones, and in this post we show a sampling of them!

What hub do you need on you're work bench?

With the rainbow of colors that manufacturers like Chris King, White Industries, and Phil Wood produce, it's easy to forget that those respective rainbows have changed over the years!

This coming Monday Chris King's color choices will be changing again because they will have their last call for their Polished Turquoise and Polished Mango.  After those last batches get anodized, they will be increasingly hard to get a hold on, so if you've been wanting a set for your bike, now's the last sure time to get some before the options become limited!

But what if that color that you know would be perfect for your bike is already out of production?  We don't talk about it every day, but we have more parts than those shown on our Rare & Hard to Find and AVT Outlet pages(though they're great places to start!).  Below is a small sampling of some of the many hubs that we have waiting for that special project! 

Our stock is limited on these parts, and we have more of some colors than of others, so if you're looking for something in particular, the sooner you get your order in the better!

Chris King R45D in Polished Green
Chris King R45 hub in Polished Pewter
Chris King R45 front hub in a dark Polished Brown
Chris King R45 hub in Gold
Phil Wood Track hub in White
Phil Wood Track hub in Mango
Phil Wood Track hub in Pink
White Industries T11 hubset in Green

Click Here To Read More.


Dropset Fit Roundup

Chris King DropSet compatibility revisited

You may have read our first blog post about which DropSet fits which bike, but now that we've worked with more customers, and done more digging to find out which bikes work with which DropSets, we figured it would be a good idea to do a followup post! 

First a little refresher on the different models:

DropSet 1: IS41/28.6 45/45 degree Upper Bearing, IS52/40 45/45 degree Lower Bearing (fits many Santa Cruz, Yeti, Alchemy, IBIS).
DropSet 2
: IS42/28.6 45/45 degree Upper Bearing, IS52/40 45/45 degree Lower Bearing (fits OPEN plus many Specialized, Trek, Cervelo and other major brands).
DropSet 3
: IS41/28.6 45/45 degree Upper Bearing, IS52/40 36/45 degree Lower Bearing (fits forks with a 36/45 degree crown race).

Below is a list of the bikes and brands we've checked out.  It's not exhaustive by any means, and we encourage you in any case to take a look at your headset bearings (they will almost always have their dimensions etched onto the outside of the bearing) before ordering just to be sure yours matches the information we have! 

If you need help finding the correct headset for a bike that's not on this list, we'd recommend checking the Cane Creek Headset Fit Finder, and then calling us so that we can make sure you get the right one!

All-City:

The new Cosmic Stallion uses the an integrated tapered IS42/28.6 IS52/40 headset, which translates to a DropSet 2 headset.  Pretty much every All-City frame is compatible with a Chris King headset, and many will also work with the options we have from White Industries and Phil Wood, but we're sticking to DropSet compatibility here, so we won't go into detail on the others!

Ibis Cycles:

Most of the Ibis frames use one of the InSet variations, but the Hakka MX uses and integrated tapered IS41/28.6 IS52/40 headset which translates to the DropSet 1 headset.

Mason Cycles:

All Mason Cycles frames currently use integrated tapered IS42/28.6 IS52/40 headsets, so they work with the DropSet 2.  

Santa Cruz:

The vast majority of Current Santa Cruz bikes use integrated tapered IS41/28.6 IS52/40 headsets, so they work with the DropSet 1.  The few exceptions to this are the V10, which uses  an Inset 5 and the Jackal, which uses an InSet 3.

Trek:

Many, but not all Trek bikes use the DropSet 3.  The best idea with these is to remove your headset bearings and check the size, because Trek uses many different headset styles and standards across their line, and some are completely proprietary, while others will work fine with an aftermarket headset like DropSet.

Specialized:

Many Specialized bikes use a DropSet 2, but because of the wide range of variations between the models it's hard to say with much certainty until you look at the bearings in your bike, so that's what we recommend doing in order to determine which will work best.  One example that we've researched is the current S-Works Tarmac Disc, which uses the DropSet 2

3T:

The 3T Exploro uses an integrated tapered IS42/28.6 | IS52/40 headset, which translates into a DropSet 2.  Currently there isn't a Chris King headset that will work with the Strada, which uses a smaller lower bearing.

Open:

The Open U.P. uses an integrated tapered IS42/28.6 | IS52/40 headset, like the 3T Strada above, so it uses a DropSet 2 as well.  This is true for all versions of U.P., including the 'Classic', 'New', and the U.P.P.E.R.

Genesis:

Genesis, like some of the other brands already mentioned, uses a variety of headsets, some of which have Chris king equivalents, and some of which don't.  We've found that many of the ones that use integrated headsets use the DropSet 2, but we recommend checking the bearings in yours before ordering. 

Beyond this list, Chris King has these general compatibility notes:

The DropSet 1 is compatible with Santa Cruz, Yeti, and Alchemy, among others.

The DropSet 2 is compatible with Open, 3T, All City, Low, Cinelli, and Lynsky, among others.

The DropSet 3 is compatible with the Santa Cruz Stigmata (without baseplate), among others.

Given the vast array of variations in headset dimensions right now, it's beyond the scope of this post to list everything, because in many cases finding out what will fit what takes some research, so we'd love to hear from you about any new fits that you find.  This will help us help other riders to find the right headset for their bikes!

And of course, if you need our help figuring out which headset will fit your bike, we're here, so just give us a shout!

Click Here To Read More.


Black Axles Now Standard On Most Chris King Hubs...

As you might have seen, black axles and end caps have been available up to now only on Chris King Matte hubs, or as an optional upgrade.

But new for 2019, Chris King will now be shipping all hub colors with the exception of SILVER with the black axles, axle clamps, end caps and driveshell.

Matte Punch Boost AB hub shown with both black parts (standard) and silver parts (custom).

So good news all round for fans of the black parts, but we're all about customization here at AVT, so if you are still looking for a pair of Chris King hubs in any color with the silver parts (or a pair of Silver hubs with black parts for that matter!) we've added that as an option AT NO EXTRA CHARGE! 

A pair of new gloss black Centerlock R45 hubs, previously available with silver parts as standard, now with black parts.

Just contact us once you've placed your order if you'd like to change the parts color - and please allow a few extra days for hub assembly before shipping.

Click Here To Read More.


1   2   3   >   >>