New Products: Technomic Stems, Tire Bead Jack…

New Products: Technomic Stems, Tire Bead Jack…

We’re excited to add a few new products to our program. The Technomic stem is the workhorse among Nitto’s stems. Like the top-of-the-line NP, it’s forged from aluminum for ultimate strength. Functionally, the two stems are almost identical. Most of the differences are aesthetic: The NP is polished to an incredibly beautiful lustre; the Technomic shows very fine polishing marks if you look very carefully. The NP is anodized; the Technomic isn’t. That’s not a big deal, either, because the aluminum alloy used for these stems doesn’t oxidize. The NP has a beautiful recessed nut for the stem bolt, whereas the Technomic’s nut is, well, just a nut. However, if you install a decaleur, you’ll replace that nut anyhow. And finally, the NP has very fine rifling on the inside of the bar clamp to grip the handlebars even more securely. But I’ve never heard of a bar slipping in a Technomic stem, either. As an added benefit, the Technomic also comes in ultra-short versions – all the way down to 50 mm. (That’s what Natsuko rides on her bikes, which are designed with long-ish top tubes to avoid toe overlap.) We’ve got most sizes in stock now.

We’ve all been there: A tire just doesn’t want to go onto the rim. It’s usually because the rim well is too shallow to provide the slack we need to lift the tire bead over the rim sidewall. Pinches tubes, broken tire levers and bruised thumbs can be the result. Kool-Stop sent us a sample of their Tire Bead Jack a while ago, and it lay in our toolbox. Then came the time to replace a tire on a very tight-fitting carbon rim, and after much frustration, we remembered the Tire Bead Jack. The tire went onto the rim in a snap, and the next day, we placed an order with Kool-Stop. Most of the time, Rene Herse tires go onto modern rims without tools, but when a rim is giving trouble, you’ll be glad to have this tool.

We now offer our favorite Maware leather bar tape in white, too. The color is dyed into the leather, so it’s a nice off-white, not the painted-on bright white of many other tapes. That means it’ll acquire a nice patina as you use it. Maware’s tape is made from pigskin, so it’s thin and doesn’t have raised edges. It has the most luxurious feel of any bar tape I’ve used.

Not a new product: Our knickers have been so popular lately that Matt, who makes them right here in Seattle, can’t keep up! He just dropped off another batch, so all sizes are in stock again.

We’re also received another shipment of Rene Herse tires, so all models are in stock now – including our long-awaited Humptulips Ridge 26″ knobbies.

Click on the links or the images for more information.

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Comments (14)

  • Robert Desnos

    On the topic of new products, do you have any idea when the new front brake hangers will be available?

    February 14, 2021 at 6:41 am
    • Jan Heine

      They are in production, but everything is delayed… Hopefully very soon.

      February 14, 2021 at 8:40 am
  • Donald D Dickson

    Will you be getting the Kool Stop seat bag version of the tire jack with built in tire lever?

    February 14, 2021 at 7:11 am
    • Jan Heine

      We’ll see how much demand there is for this – most modern rims don’t require tools to install tires – and then decide…

      February 14, 2021 at 8:41 am
  • Tristan R

    Hi Jan,

    I thought there was some manufacturing difference that effected strength between the technomic, NP and deluxe to do with drop vs gravity forging and whether or not the model is heat treated. Or perhaps they are all the same ultimate strength but more elaborate manufacturing techniques allow some to be lighter? Would be great if you could straighten that out.

    February 14, 2021 at 8:52 am
    • Jan Heine

      Both the NP and Technomic are drop forged. The forgings appear to be the same, so it’s my understanding that the difference really lies in the finish of the raw forging. In theory, you could drill out the quill tube to a very slightly larger diameter on a high-end stem, if you control the tolerances more tightly. I’ll check the weights on Monday…

      With handlebars, you have more differences, because the lightweight ones have a bulged center that requires complex manufacture, compared to a simple sleeve on the less expensive models. The sleeve adds a stress riser, so you can’t use it with thinwall tubing. And thinner tubing isn’t just lighter, but with handlebars, it also absorbs shocks better. (You also need to heat treat the thinner tubing to increase strength.)

      By the way, ‘gravity forging’ seems to be just marketing speak for ‘casting,’ and as you say, that makes a much weaker part. There’s also ‘hot forging’ which in engineering terms is die-casting – also cheaper and weaker than drop forging.

      February 14, 2021 at 10:16 am
      • Jan Heine

        I checked the weights and specs, and they are the same for both models.

        February 14, 2021 at 1:00 pm
        • Alain L.

          Good to hear RH will carry the Technomic. I prefer this stem for all the reasons mentioned above, but I will quibble about the weight factor. Unless something has changed recently in manufacturing, the weight difference is enough to note. At similar lengths, the weight has differed by 40-45g. On stems with the same extension length (80mm), I have cut the column length on both the NP and Technomic to 130mm. The NP weighed 296g, and the Technomic 252g. Not including the clamp bolt. The NP is definitely a showpiece, but the Technomic looks quite nice IMO, and is lighter in weight.

          February 14, 2021 at 1:28 pm
          • Jan Heine

            I checked our stems, and while the weight difference is only 20-25 g, you are right – the Technomic is lighter! We checked, and the wall thickness of the quill is thinner on the Technomic. Not sure whether that is because the NP meets a higher standard for strength. It’s not like anybody has ever seen a broken Technomic stem…

            February 16, 2021 at 5:53 pm
  • Mark Fisher

    I had a VAR version of a tire jack that also had two tire levers. I loved that thing, but it broke after 20+ years. I haven’t needed it with modern tires except for the first mounting. That said, I liked the tirejack because it always avoided the need for tire irons and avoided pinched tubes.

    February 14, 2021 at 9:16 am
    • Jan Heine

      I’ve used the VAR tool for many years, but as you say, they eventually break. They’re also a bit flexible, and with age, become more flexible yet. I’ve never failed to mount a tire with them, but I’ve often worried… Still, if you have one of the VARs, no need to get this one.

      February 14, 2021 at 10:16 am
  • mitch.harris

    Worth noting these MUSA Kool-Stop tire jacks weigh only 80g. The size and length provides the leverage and ability to work with large tires, but with its lightweight & stiff resin material this tool always surprises me how how light it is in the hand. Sort of bulky for a carry-along tool on the bike–I don’t carry it along on rides. But it’s not too heavy for that if you have the room in your bag, have a tight tire/rim combination, and want to carry along a little peace of mind.

    February 14, 2021 at 10:11 am
  • Jacob Musha

    I’ve always known the Technomic as Nitto’s “tall” stem (I have one.) I didn’t even know it was available in a normal height. It might be worth noting this in the description to avoid confusion, if it’s not the tall version.

    If you need a bead jack to install a tire, you must carry it on the bike in case you get a flat.

    February 14, 2021 at 10:38 am
  • T Grills

    Just used my bead jack a couple days ago for the first time in years. I’m new to tubeless and guessing most folks would enjoy owning one of these. The secret to my success seemed to be holding the tool in place once fully torqued. You could watch the bead slowly creep over the rim, it was very satisfying.

    February 16, 2021 at 2:24 pm

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