Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The 2011 Taipei Cycle Show - Day 1!

The Taipei Cycle Show is undoubtedly the largest bicycle exhibition held in Asia. Although it's not as glamorous as the North American Handmade Bicycle Show or Interbike, The Cycle Show is the place where buyers can directly met their manufacturers since Taiwan is the largest country to produce bicycles and bicycle parts. And because Taiwanese are so much nuts when it comes to bicycles.
On with the show. Apparently the 29er and cyclocross craze will be the next big thing in Asia, although some might say that bigger hoops are not suitable for Indonesian tight singletracks. From the large names such as Giant Bicycles and Merida, as shown here:

The 2011 Giant Anthem 29.
All time favourite hardtail XTC, now in 700c flavour.
The TCX Advanced! WANT.
Neat carbon hardtail offering from Merida...
...complete with bridgeless seat and chainstay for massive tire clearance.
Once UCI stated that discbrakes are legal for 'cross racing, everyone's follow suit.
Even everybody's favourite framebuilder, Astro Engineering, has their own 29er lineup. Let's see if anyone catched waves...

Expect this frame to be rebadged with someone else's brand. No kidding.
And all the way to new brands and brands that unheard of before, like these.

Check out the adjustable rear dropout!

And if you can't make up your mind between a 29er and a cyclocross, you can mash them up... into a monstercross, like this Voodoo over here.

Holy tall stem, Batman!
It's also worth noting the latest trend in frame detail, post-mounted rear disc brake caliper.

To those who lived in Indonesia and familiar with old 27" touring or road bikes from China or Taiwan, the name Sunrace might ring a bell. The brand still exist, and they offer top-range drivetrain components, dubbed "Driven". They're available for road and mountain applications.

Although I'm not sure what is it with this integrated--and ventilated--pie plate on what's apparently looked like a 7-speed cassette:

For cooler cassette, maybe?
Sunrace also made drivetrain components that sits below Driven's class. check out that sweet flatbar thumb shifters, something that retro grouches will give approval of.

A while back, Sunrace bought Sturmey-Archer, the legendary name behind internally-geared hubs and drum brakes. It's really nice to see their latest offerings, including their S3X 3-speed fixed gear hub (more on that later).

Tensioners that looked just like Shimano's Alfine.
The new heir to the AB-3 series legacy. If only my late grandfather could see this...
Speaking of old brands, here's another find on the venue: Modolo dropbars and quill stems, still retaining the 26mm bar clamp diameter standard.

Chosen, a hub manufacturer introduced the Smart Hub, a hub with ratchet mechanism so silent and low in resistance, they decided to compare it head-to-head with Shimano's Dura Ace and Campagnolo Shamal wheelset. And yes, if you crank them at the same time, the Chosen hub still rotates even long after the Dura Ace and Shamal stop revolving. Well played, Sir.

Why didn't we ever heard about you before?
Wellgo, the name behind the stock pedals we replace as soon as we test our new bikes (actually they're not that bad. Really. I run them on my red singlespeed for a long time before I replaced them with Eggbeaters) introduced their new crankset. It is designed so that the pedals can be easily removed, just like MKS' Ezy line up, but they integrated the quick release mechanism into the crank arm so that the pedal didn't protrude outside as much.

Pull that knob to release the pedal.
Moving over to Token, purveyors of all stuffs with rotating bearing on a bicycle (hubs, bottom brackets, derailer pulleys and headset). For 2011, they launched new singlespeed freewheel. Available in steel and aluminum, they have enough engagement points to make Shimano XT hubs feel envious.

17T for my beater singlespeed, please.
Also on their display are their trademark Tiramic bearings applied on headsets and bottom bracket bearings. Check out that terribly light quick release lever that comes without, er, lever.

Taipei Cycle Show is also a good place to spot some good quality parts with reasonable price, just like this Amoeba component line up that comes in carbon fiber and titanium. Also worth noting is their patented hub with waved flanges designed to shave weight.

Apparently electrically controlled suspension system is the latest jam on Taiwanese suspension manufacturers, as demonstrated in RST equipped Santa Cruz Superlight over here.

SR Suntour also comes with electrically controlled lock-out system for their suspension fork. Speaking of which, it looks like after its comeback to the drivetrain market with their mountain bike parts, Suntour pushed their luck by launching two-piece roadbike crankset, as shown here.

Also found anywhere in the exhibition are unbranded parts ready to be labeled by other brands, including these outboard bearing bottom bracket cups. Notice that super long bottom bracket set on the background. If you're wondering what kind of bicycle ever needed a bottom bracket spindle that long, stay tuned for the second day report tomorrow!


  1. xie xie buat reviewnya, hahahaha....

  2. Chosen is a well known hub manufacter, but doesnt have so good reviews (at least by what I know).

  3. until recently, all I know about Chosen is that they focused on the low-end market. I used them on my beater SS, not a super fantastic one, but does their job.

  4. me want some S3X! :D

    hmmm, RST Simon? :P

    eiya, super long BB axles for some super-big-tire-clearance-with-no-worry-about-Q-factor? :P

  5. nice reviews...