Setting up a gravel or adventure bike sometimes requires mixing road and mountain components. Dialing in fit can be a challenge, but Easton offers a wide range of handlebars, stems, and seatposts in both aluminum and carbon fiber. I outfitted my new test bike with the company’s EX90 SLX carbon drop bars, and alloy EA70 stem and seatpost. How will these parts hold up to mixed-surface recreational riding and commuting?
It’s no secret that bicycle helmet technology has improved dramatically over the past 40 years. Today’s helmets are lighter, more comfortable, and look a radically different than their predecessors. Some of the more recent technological advances aren’t so obvious, though. Since 1996, Stockholm-based MIPS has been working on improving how helmets protect against rotational trauma and angled impacts. In 2014, MIPS partnered with Bell Helmets to bring MIPS technology to a wider audience.
Bell currently offers sixteen MIPS-equipped helmets, which range in price from $60 to $240. With MIPS-equipped helmets available in road, mountain, lifestyle, and gravity models, Bell has something for any type of cyclist. I split my riding between pavement, dirt, and gravel, so I opted to test the company’s Stoker MIPS ($95 MSRP) and Gage MIPS ($195 MSRP) helmets.