How could you say no to a pair of pedals called Funn Rippers? That is everything great about mountain biking. Having fun while ripping trails. I guess you could say no to them if you ride flats, but if you are part of the clipless crowd, the Rippers have everything you need. The double pedals take SPD cleats so you don’t have to fuss with a different cleat design and get used to different levels of float and tension … unless you don’t use SPD cleats, in which case fuss away. Funn has equipped the pedals with its Angular Engagement System the company claims increases the smoothness of cleat engagement. You have the option of adding four traction spikes on each side of each pedal. You also have the option of not adding them. The pedals are built around a CrMo axles, sleeve bushings and cartridge bearings, all fully serviceable. A pair weighs 570 grams and they are available in six colors. Grab a set and head out for a rip.
Kona Key Grips--$20
Good grips are key to a good ride. You definitely want to lock in a good pair. They make a big difference when it comes to handling your bike, so you don’t want to set the bar too low. With Kona’s new grips, finding the right pair has become a turnkey experience. And now that I have all of those terrible puns out of my system, I can talk about where the advantages of Kona’s Key Grips stem from. Ok, that’s the last one. The new Key Grips come in a myriad of colors to match your bike, or your new Ripper pedals, and the rubber compound is slightly tacky, but not uncomfortably reminiscent of a dive-bar floor. That tackiness extends to the inside as well. A few panels of rubber are exposed to grip the bar and add grip to the trip. They lock with a single clamp, and on the outside, they have a closed end. So don’t worry about losing bar plugs and packing your handlebar with dirt the next time you fall. Do people still worry about that? A bar plugs still a thing? It’s no matter, the Keys will have you gripped on your next ride.
Blackburn Countdown 1600--$160
Sixteen hundred, 1,599, 1,598, 1,597 … wait, not that kind of countdown? Indeed the name may be flummoxing since the Blackburn Countdown doesn’t include a timer (for the record, a kitchen timer/bike light is a fantastic idea), but it does countdown in the sense that it shows exactly how long is left until the light dies. The light has a few different modes including Blitz (1,600 lumens), high (1,200 lumens), medium (600 lumens) and low (300 lumens). As you switch between the different settings, the LED screen reflects how much time is left in that particular mode. There are also pulse and strobe modes if being seen is a higher priority than seeing. The light is waterproof in up to a meter of water for 30 minutes and is protected against grit and dust. And if you’re looking for a bike light that doubles as a kitchen timer, this is about as close as you can get.
Dakine Hot Laps Gripper Bike Bag--$22
All your friends are in the enduro scene, crushing you uphill and down. When they go around a corner it is graceful and fast. When you go around a corner it is awkward and slow. Your center of gravity is always moving and hard to find. Theirs is low and steady, and it shows. Moreover, at the end of the run, the back of your shirt looks like a Rorschach test, and theirs are fresh and clean. What do they have that you don’t? Skill? Nah. A reckless abandon for speed? You have that too. The only difference is they don’t wear a pack and you do. Aha! Drop that pack and suddenly you a whipping 40-footers on your trail bike, where before you could only straight-air dead sailor. Ok, maybe the difference isn’t that drastic, but there is something to be said for losing the pack on short rides, if only to quell that sweaty back. The Hot Laps Gripper makes losing the pack a little bit easier. With pockets on either side, two sleeves in the front, a larger central pocket and a burly velcro strap to keep it from moving, you can move your tube, tire lever, CO2 and even a small tool from your pack to your bike.