The X1 from Schiller Sports blurs the line between boats and bikes. The frame is made of rust-free anodized aluminum, with stainless steel components and inflatable pontoons. The propulsion system features a Gates Carbon Drive belt and sprockets because a chain would corrode. The X1 may be the most advanced water bike ever created, a vehicle that allows bicyclists to “experience the thrill and freedom of biking across a spectacular blue planet,” says company founder and CEO Judah Schiller.
Riders steer the X1 via two oscillating props connected to the handlebars. It weighs about 45 pounds, can be disassembled to fit into the trunk of a car or home closet and can hit speeds of 8 knots (10 miles per hour) depending on rider ability. Schiller worked with engineer Marcus Hays, founder of Gates belt drive eBike brand Pi Cycle, on the design. “If you can ride a bike, you can ride the Schiller X1 anywhere there’s water,” Schiller told USA Today in an article about the invention. “I had the X1 out at the beach locally, about a mile offshore, and ended up biking with dolphins.”
The X1 costs $6,495, with a special Founder’s Edition for $8,775. The company is based in the Bay Area and all X1s are manufactured in Northern California. Learn more at www.schillerbikes.com. Just watch out for sharks.
Judah Schiller chilling on the X1 off the coast of Northern California, above, and pedaling near the Golden Gate Bridge.
Guapa Cycles is a new British brand that is combining natural materials to create elegant city bikes. Founded by brothers Tom and Harry Williams, the company’s first bike is the Urban One, which features a frame constructed of bamboo and flax fiber. The flax fiber adds strength and dampens vibrations, and Guapa says its bike frames are as strong as an equivalent steel or aluminum frame.
Flax might sound like a curious choice, but this is not the flax seed you’d find in your breakfast granola. After being harvested in France, the fiber is woven into an incredibly tough fabric in Italy and then impregnated with a resin. “Flax has been chosen over the use of carbon or glass fibre due to its complimentary mechanical properties to wood,” the company says on its website. “This has enabled us to create a wooden bicycle that is lightweight and stiff yet with minimal vibration.” Learn more about the process and watch a video about flax fiber fabric here.
Guapa completes the Urban One with a Gates Carbon Drive belt system and a NuVinci N360 continuously variable planetary hub for clean, smooth and simple pedaling and shifting. Read the Bike Radar story about Guapa. This is bike innovation at its finest. Call it natural selection.
Frank Schneider of the Gates-Nicolai mountain bike team shatters the stereotype that fat bikes are for old guys with beards who want to go for slow rides in the snowy woods. “Schneidi” met up recently with photographer Hoshi Yoshida for a shoot in a gravel pit near the Nicolai headquarters in Germany. The Argon Fat that he is riding is one of the most innovative fat bikes on the market. Thanks to the Pinion gearbox and Gates belt it provides twice the fun with none of the grease. The Argon Fat will be displayed at Eurobike next week and Interbike in early September. If you are attending, come check it out. You may not be able to ride this pig like Schneidi, but imagine how fun it will be in the snowy woods.
As we prepare for the Eurobike show next week in southern Germany, we were inspired to provide this image from America’s “Little Bavaria.” Leavenworth is a popular tourist town in Washington State with a Bavarian themed main street and one of the largest Oktoberfest celebrations in North America. About 2.5 hours from Seattle on the eastern slope of the Cascade Range, it is a haven for skiers, mountain bikers, rock climbers, paddlers, hikers and drinkers of fine brews. See the image gallery.
The Icicle Brewing Company is the leading microbrewery in Leavenworth, and it has a special keg trike to deliver beer at festivals and events. The keg trike, seen here ridden by an Icicle fraulein, features a Gates Carbon Drive belt system for clean, smooth and grease-free simplicity. It holds two quarter barrels and a CO2 tank, has a seven-speed internal hub for shifting, disc brakes—and a parking brake so it doesn’t roll away. It was made by Zack Lodato of Lodato Design. If you plan to visit the Pacific Northwest, swing through Leavenworth to get an American Bavarian experience, and visit the keg trike at Icicle Brewing. Not convinced? Check out this ludicrous video featuring town mascot Woody Goomsba the nutcracker.
Gates will showcase a wide range of innovative bicycles and electric bikes at the Eurobike trade show in late August, including a beautiful Gulf Racing themed fixie from Overlap Bikes, whose colorful frame and drive are shown above. Read the full news release about Gates at Eurobike 2014 here. Gates will display bikes with Carbon Drive from Canyon, Stevens, Grace, Biomega, Ibis, Idworx, Flitzbike, Nicolai, Schindelhauer, Overlap, Dvoika, Faraday and Electrolyte. In addition, many other brands will display new models equipped with Gates Carbon Drive belts in their own booths: Ghost, Cube, Marin, Tout Terrain, Kettler, Mika Amaro, Patria, Riesse & Muller, Pilot, Derby, BMC, and more. New eBike brand Klaxon will launch multiple new models with Gates Carbon Drive in its booth and Demo tent. Below we offer a sneak peak at some of the bikes that Gates will show in its booth (A2-203) and at Demo Day, as well as some top picks that will be displayed elsewhere on the show floor.
Flitzbike is headquartered in the Upper Swabia region of southern Germany. For 2015 Flitzbike is introducing the CR18 Electric, a high-performance e-mountain bike that looks super-fun to ride.
The motto of Danish brand Biomega is Furniture for Locomotion. Their NYC, to be displayed in the Gates booth, comes in an eight-speed electronic shifting version, or with a two-speed auto shift, and features a mud guard on the downtube. Biomega will also launch a new cargo bike with Gates Carbon Drive at Eurobike in their own booth (A6-303B).
Bergamont is a favorite German brand with several models equipped with Gates Carbon Drive. Below is the E-Line C MGN.
Marin is an iconic brand that helped introduce the world to mountain bikes 30 years ago. In recent years it has pushed into the pavement category. New for 2015 is the Fairfax SC6 DLX, Marin’s top commuter bike. Marin will display the bike in its Eurobike booth (B4-100).
is a stylish new eBike brand that will display its Porteur (below) in the Gates booth. Faraday plans to launch in Europe in 2015, and its Porteur has been a big hit in the USA.
Overlap’s Gulf Racing themed fixie is a must-see for street riders and track aficionados.
The Grace MXII, below, is widely considered to be one of the most stylish and high performance eBikes on the market.
For mountain bikers, Gates will display the new Ibis Tranny “Unchained” belt drive singlespeed—among the most coveted singlespeed race bikes available. Read our previous post about the Tranny, Ibis Unchained: Unleashing a Singlespeed Legend.
Nicolai will likewise show its new Ion 16 enduro bike with Gates belt and Effigear gearbox. This innovative MTB pushes the boundaries of what is possible for a rugged and low-maintenance enduro bike. Nicolai will also show it’s Argon Fat, below, which can be seen shredding and flying like no fat bike ever has in this video. It’s fääzzt and fett!
Gates Carbon Drive’s motto for Eurobike is “Belting the world’s best bikes and eBikes. We will post more photos of Gates equipped bikes in the coming weeks leading up to Eurobike, so stay tuned. Meantime, read more about the new bikes, products and innovations that Gates will unveil at Eurobike.