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November 19, 2020
Photography by Jered Gruber
We’ve said before that we’re in a “golden age” of chain lube these days, with big advancements in recent months that not only reduce drivetrain friction but dramatically extend the lifespan of your components, too. We discuss the latest releases from CeramicSpeed and Silca — one for wet conditions, the other for dry — and make the argument for why they’re actually better bargains than you might think.
We’re also on the cusp of a potentially big revolution in frame materials, with magnesium finally emerging (after multiple attempts in the past) as a truly viable alternative to carbon fiber, aluminum, titanium, and steel. James chats with Bruno Maier, the president of “Super Magnesium” maker Allite Inc., to find out exactly why magnesium is so promising, and why this time around might be different than before.
James has already reviewed the new Vaast gravel bike if you’re interested in reading about that.
Finally, we cap off this episode with another round of Ask a Mechanic — albeit, without our resident pro mechanic, Zach Edwards, who we were sadly stuck in a giant vat of tubular glue while we recording. How do you true a wheel without a truing stand? How long will that spare tube last in your saddle pack? Is it safe to use a cheap bearing press? Can you bend a steel frame back into shape after a crash? And why are any of us still taking mechanical advice from Caley? All of these answers and more await within, and maybe next time we’ll actually find that mute button on Caley’s mic.