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4 New Wonder Materials That Can Change Cycling | GCN Tech Show Ep. 54

(slicing sound effects) – Welcome to the GCN Tech show. – This week, we have the
world’s first smart bike integrating Amazon Alexa, four new hi-tech wonder materials that could revolutionize cycling, as well as your upgrades
and the Bike Vault. – Nice, let’s get cracking. – Let’s do it. (bass music) Jon Cannings isn’t here this week, but he’s got a good excuse
’cause he’s in Australia looking for the latest
World Tour bike tech, so stay tuned for our guide to the 2019 World Tour bikes, which he’s doing a little tour Down Under. Can’t wait for that. – Bit closer to home though, Halfords, the UK retailer have announced the world’s first connected smart bike which has access to Amazon’s Alexa. – Yeah, the company’s called Cybic and their top of the range
model is called the E-Legend and the head of Halfords
is quoted as saying “We’ve seen innovations
in alternative commuting “go from strength to strength
and after electric bikes, “we predict that the next
big trend for commuters “will be smart bikes.” – They are including lots of functions which will be useful to urban riders such as turn by turn navigation, traffic and weather
updates, lighting settings, and well pretty much anything
Alexa can do, including music. – So on your ride home you could order your favorite takeaway and tell Alexa to put the kettle on in time for when you get back. – Yeah, sounds perfect. – Sounds ideal, doesn’t it? – Where do I order? (laughing) In addition to that, this bike has all the
features you would expect. Performance data such as speed,
time, distance, GPS, mapping and some that you might not
expect such as a security lock which can be accessed can be
accessed by the bike’s app, theft tracking, an alarm, Vodafone sim, HD music player, and Wi-Fi. – Blimey, I mean that sounds pretty good but, a little bit alarming. Not just ’cause the alarm, because well, Alexa now knows not everything you say and do when you’re at home but if you’ve got this bike, it also knows where you
go, when you go there, and what you do and do and say when you’re going those places. I mean, it’s kind of like Skynet isn’t it? I don’t think Sarah Connor’s
gonna be buying one of these. – It’s hat stuff, isn’t it? But I think it’s pretty cool. Anything that makes
commuting more accessible and functional for the
average person out there, surely is not a bad thing. – Yeah, it’s a good
vote in my book as well. I agree. And, the makers are
looking to distribute this throughout the rest of the world, too. But initially, the UK distribution is set to be available in summer of 2019. – Yeah, just don’t expect it to be a featherweight racing machine. I reckon it’ll be 30 kilos looking at it. – It’s got a motor that sits on it. – Oh, nice. (bass guitar) – Last week we asked you what tech you’d like to see in 2019. As ever, thanks for all
your great comments. And we’re gonna read a
few of them out here. – Here we go, right. First is Todd Taylor, “I don’t need any new tech for 2019, “I just need the tech that already exists “to become more affordable. “I’d like to buy a power meter “and a disc brake equipped Trek Madone, “but I’d rather not sell
a kidney for either.” – Interestingly, we had a look at the price of black market organs, and a kidney is about 10,000 dollars, so that would pretty much buy you a power meter and Trek Madone, just about. – Yep, there are better organs to sell. – You can get more money
for different things. – Well, you sell your eyeballs,
that’s about another grand. You could get some wheels to
go on your Trek Madone as well. – Yeah, good luck, let us
know how you get on with it. Oh, you won’t be able to because you won’t be able
to type into the comments. – Yeah, well you could
sell your scalp as well. You’d get, probably,
more money for your scalp than most people, I reckon. A lot of people would want your scalp. – False economy, a lot
of money on hair gel. – Yeah, well, there you go. Well anyway, we also had
a great comment from Ger. – Oo, “wireless shifting from Shimano.” I like that one. Well I think everyone wants wireless… It’s interesting though, I don’t know if we are
actually gonna see it. – No, but I mean, to be fair to them, their stuff works as well
as it is, doesn’t it? – Yeah, but, well– – It would look better with them. – Will Shimano go wireless? We don’t know. And, Alacycle commented saying he just wants to see a better
Go-Pro mount that can fit the larger oval shaped
carbon road handlebars that the puny round
mounting system won’t fit. And he said he got no response from the makers of Go-Pro
when he suggested it to them. – There are ways around that
one though, aren’t there Ollie? – Well, there are. I mean, I can totally relate to this. A lot of you commented previously when we were filming in Alta Badia and I had to resort to simply sort of taping a Go-Pro with some
bright red insulation tape onto my Canyon aero bike. It’s a bit of a first-world
problem, though. – I read once that actually
the best Go-Pro mounts are the ones you make yourself. So there you go. – There you go, right. – On to the rest of the show. (slicing sound effects) – This look at future tech
got us thinking about, well, what else is out there? So we did a bit of research and we came across four
exciting hi-tech new, well, wonder materials that could completely change cycling in the future. – Starting with ThermalTech, then. And this is a patented, lightweight fabric made from 100% stainless steel mesh with a solar-selective coating. The fabric is excellent at absorbing heat in the form of UV lighting and conducting and dispersing this throughout the entire material. – [Ollie] Yeah, it’s also said to offer a huge amount of insulation
for relatively low bulk, so, this makes it particularly
exciting for the sort of minimalist clothing we
use for winter cycling, compared to something like skiing. And the makers reckon that it offers 25% more insulation than
a traditional jacket. And, well, it’s also a
flexible fabric as well. – [Chris] Hang on though,
if it gets its heat from the sun and UV lighting, presumably it’s really cold in the dark. – Well, apparently not. Apparently once the sun goes down, it’s able to absorb heat from your body and heat itself up that way and it can also thermoregulate as well. So, it stops you overheating because it can dissipate the excess heat that you generate, as well. – [Chris] Nice, pretty cool huh? – [Ollie] Yeah, and it’s not
just science fiction because back in 2016, there was
an Indiegogo page set up to fund a jacket made using this material and it met its funding target and apparently you can buy it. – [Chris] Well, I guess
it’s only a matter of time until we see if this works its
way into the cycling world. – [Ollie] Yeah, well,
I imagine it is, yeah. Exciting. – [Chris] Nice. – Next up, we have self-healing polymers now these are still in an
early stage at the moment but they have extraordinary promise and we fully expect to see lots of applications for these in the future. So, scientists at MIT, which is in Boston, have reportedly developed
an elastic polymer that is able to self-heal
and repair itself when it’s being cut or torn. – Yeah, it’s genius. And it does this by absorbing
carbon from the atmosphere, which has a posh phrase,
sequestering, apparently. – I know. – Oh. – And the process is
apparently quite similar to the way that plants absorb CO2 during photosynthesis, as well. – Yep. And that’s gotta be good for
the environment, isn’t it? – Yeah, well anything that
reduces CO2’s gonna be cool. But what are the actual
cycling applications for this? Well, I think the first one,
the most obvious one for me, would be something like tires. Imagine tires that, if they
get cuts or slices in them, they can just heal up
and repair themselves. That would be brilliant, wouldn’t it? – [Chris] Yeah. Well, it’d make life a lot easier. What about screens on your computer? – Yeah, or your phone. – Yeah, they could do with
a self-healing screen. – Yeah, you could have a screen that just, when you crack your phone
screen or computer screen, it can repair itself. It’d be awesome. – Engineers at the Sandia
National Laboratories have created a new alloy made from a combination of gold and platinum. – Gonna be cheap, then. – Yeah well maybe not. But it is said to be 100
times more wear-resistant than your general hard and taut steel. Which, I think, is pretty impressive. And that puts it into the
same category as diamond, although not quite as hard as diamond it is more abrasion-resistant
than other alloys. – That’s pretty impressive. I mean imagine if you
made cassettes or chains or drive chain components
out of that stuff, or even just coated in it, it’d last far longer than
any currently existing drive chain components, you’d imagine. – You’d imagine so, yeah. 10% gold and 90% platinum. – Is it harder than Chuck Norris, though? – That’s gotta be close. – Really? – No. – Yeah. Lastly, we have a special coating that can be applied to
glass to block sunlight. So, coatings that can
tint glass already exist and are controlled by electricity. But scientists at RMIT,
which is in Australia, have developed something
which is arguably superior in that, it’s able to regulate
it’s transparency by itself. – Isn’t just a light-reactive lens that’s been around for years, though? People have been wearing them for a while? – Well they have been
around for a long time, but this isn’t a coating that
simply lightens and darkens, it actually switches from
completely transparent, to a mirrored finish,
which is pretty cool. And it does this because it’s
made from vanadium dioxide. And I’m gonna get nerdy
chemistry nerd on you now, okay? So vanadium dioxide is a special compound and at 67 degrees, the electrons within vanadium dioxide
are able to flow freely and in doing so they release energy which can be seen in the form
of the material switching from transparent to mirrored. – Yeah, I know. (laugher) – Yeah, I know you did. I was explaining it to them. – But that would be really cool if you could get that into
a pair of cycling glasses. – Yeah, no, it would be absolutely awesome if you could have glasses do that. I mean like, where you’re descending and you go through tunnels. I mean, you’ve got experience
of that, it’s like– – You would no longer just
have to hope for survival. – Yeah, yeah, it’s pretty cool, awesome. But, as ever, we wanna know
what you’re most excited about and also, the tech that
you would like to see and the things that could make the biggest difference
to your cycling, so– – Jump down. – Let us know in the comments. (drilling screw gun) It’s now time for Screw Riding
Up Grades, Buy Upgrades. Where you submit pictures before and after of your bike or upgrades for a chance to win the ultimate prize: the GCN Capron. Hang on a minute, where is the capron? – You said you were bringing it. – I’ve got it here, guys. – Oh, nice. – What’re you doing down there? Thanks, suggestion boy. Right. – Anyway, last week was
Fred from New Jersey who had this incredible
homemade smart trainer and we really enjoyed
this comment, actually. “I wonder if Fred with
the homemade Zwift trainer “could come and have a
look at my Wi-Fi” please. – Yeah, that was a good comment there. It was up against Tim,
from Royal Wootton Bassett, who had his pink Ello Vello bike. So, who is the winner? – Drum roll for the winner. And that was Fred, with a
whopping 71% of the vote. – Wow, that’s a massive landslide that. So, yeah, just caprons in the post. I’ll get suggestion boy to– – He comes around and
delivers it personally. – To post it out for you. And also don’t forget to have a look at that Wi-Fi connection
for Andy, as well. Right, this week we have– – Robert in Colorado, who has upgraded his
Specialized Tarmac SL4. To save some money, Robert purchased an older
Specialized Tarmac SL4 with plans to purchase
upgrading components over the period of a year. A year later, this is the result. The main upgrades included
Shimano R8000 Crankset, Ultegra Chain, S-Works Carbon Seatpost, Specialized Power Pro Saddle, S-Works Aerofly Carbon Handlebars, Specialized Comp Multi Stem, and Roval CLX 64 Wheelset. – That is nice, isn’t it? – He’s done a good job, I like that. – That is seriously smart and also, well, a really
sensible way of doing it. To save money, is buying an older model and then tarting it up
with a plan to upgrade it. Nice work, big fan of that. Well, he’s up against
Joseph from Cleethorps. Now, if you’ve never been to Cleethorps, it’s like a far nicer version of Colorado. And it’s got better fish and chips, too. So, you know, book your
next holiday there. Now, Joseph bought his
bike at a charity auction. It had no distinctive markings, so he made it his own. It was a bit rusty and
needed a lot of TLC, so, me and my dad spent the week cleaning and respraying and upgrading the parts, complete with a custom head badge from the Coat of Arms of Cleethorps, which is his hometown. And that’s on the seat
tube and the head tube. And the groupset was
upgraded to Shimano 600 and a new racier set of
handlebars was also installed. That is very nice. – [Chris] Yeah, it’s
good color coordination. – Yeah, the way that the brown bar tape and the saddle, I love that. You don’t see enough brown tape and saddles on bikes these days. But it’s very smart. – No, it’s all black and black isn’t it? – Yeah, and also, considering how little money’s been spent on that bike, it looks very, very nice indeed. – Yeah, good work to
you Joseph and your dad. – Yeah, it’s a tough
one this week, isn’t it? – Anyway, it’s not up to us, Ollie. – No it’s not, you’re right. – It’s up to you guys. So, make sure you vote up there and find out who the winner was next week. – Yeah. (slicing sound effect) – Bike of the Week now, and last week was the incredible Honeycomb Pinarello from Fatcreations and that was up against
the sprayed gold BMC. – Yeah, battle of the custom paint jobs. And the winner, with a comprehensive 73% was Fatcreations Pinarello. – [Chris] Nice, I do like that. – That is a cracking
looking bike, isn’t it? So this week, well, we had to do some of the new pro
bikes on the World Tour. – So many to choose from. – Yeah, so excited about
those at the moment. And we’ve put two of our
favorites up against each other. So, we’ve got, the new Sunweb Team bike, well the Cervelo, S5. – [Chris] With the funky bars. – Yep, versus the Dimension Data BMC Time Machine TM01. Cav posted a picture on Instagram and it looks really good. – You know where to
click, up in that corner. – Yeah, head to head. You decide. (slicing sound effect) It’s time for the Bike Vault. – Best time of the week, Ollie. – Yeah, it’s my favorite
part of the show I think. – Yeah, me too. You need to submit your bikes if you want them to be
included in the Bike Vault using the link below
for the uploader tool. – Yeah, and we judge them to be nice. – Or super nice. – And what happens if the
bike says super nice, OP? – We get Jon’s little cowbell out and we give it a good old ring. You asked for it. – I don’t know who’s
more scary, you or Jon. – Jon, easily. He’s an angry man, Ollie. When he gets his cowbell out. Come on. – [Ollie] First up this week we have got Roy from Wisconsin, in the USA. Now Roy says that he
purchased this frameset and built up his bike in 1975. And now he’s restored it in 2018. And he’s got complete
Campagnolo Super Record original groupset on there, except the pedals and saddle,
which are more modern, as he does actually
plan on riding it again. And he also sent us a picture of the current state of the bike, but also, I really like
this, he sent us a picture, one of him riding it in a race in 1976. And he says this bike
has got many memories. Look at that. That is awesome, isn’t it? – Yep, this is an easy one for me, Roy. That is one of the coolest
things I’ve seen submitted since I’ve been on the channel. – That is awesome. (cowbell rings) – [Chris] I love it,
I think that’s really- – [Ollie] Well, even
though I never even passed, – [Chris] I did it, it
doesn’t even matter. – [Ollie] I was in agreement. – [Chris] You know that Jon
would’ve given it super nice. – [Ollie] You knew I
was, yeah, that was easy. That was easy, right. – [Chris] I think it’s the fact that you’ve had that bike
for so long, actually, that does it for me. And the fact that you’ve looked after it and you’ve clearly got history with it. I love it, good work. – [Ollie] Love it. – Next up is Dominico,
with his Trek Madone in the Puglia countryside. – [Ollie] See, well we all
know how much I love that bike. But, I mean, he’s photographed
it on the wrong side. – [Chris] Oh, that’s minus three points. – [Ollie] I mean it’s not,
it’s on the non-drive side. I mean, I do love the ENVE
wheels he’s gotten there. They’re very, very nice. What do you think, man? – [Chris] It’s the wrong way round. – [Ollie] And the crank
arm’s in the wrong position. – [Chris] You know it is actually, it is a really, really nice bike. But because you’ve photographed
it the wrong way around– – [Ollie] He’s just not doing it justice. – [Chris] And there are
no real rules in here. – [Ollie] I think it’s a nice. I think it’s a nice. – Alright then, how about Bernard, who’s up next with his 2019 S-Works. – Well, he would be
Bernard if he was in the UK but he’s actually in California, so it’s Bernard. – Sorry, Ollie. – Bernard. – Aluminum bike. First one of the week. – [Ollie] Yeah, well I love
the Specialized Allez Sprint, ’cause it’s just a great
looking frame isn’t it? Those tan sidewalls on there and the Roval wheels are seriously nice. – [Chris] And it’s photographed
the right way around. – [Ollie] Well it’s got the, yeah. – [Chris] Come on, let’s show
some love for alloy bikes. – [Ollie] It is super nice, isn’t it. (cowbell rings) – I like the Supacaz bar tape as well. Anyway, next up we’ve got Mario. – Oh, Mario. – Who’s in Montclair, New Jersey. And he, well he says a
Christmas present from himself. SRAM eTap, Quarq DZero Power Meter, it’s a Venge ViAS. What do you think? It’s a very smart looking bike. – [Chris] It’s very Christmasy with all the ribbons around it. – [Ollie] It is. And he’s photographed it well. He’s got it in the big, small, the crank arm’s in the right place, there’s no excess steerer, there’s no saddlebag on there. – [Chris] He’s got an ass saver. – He has got an ass saver on there but I think that’s a GCN ass saver, I mean that’s the hight of– – He’s won the competition, hasn’t he? – [Ollie] Yeah, I mean I
like the way the tire walls, the red tire walls
match the frame as well, the red on the frame, that’s pretty cool. – [Chris] Coordination. – [Ollie] Yeah, I mean
the one little gripe is that the valves
aren’t lined up properly. – [Chris] You should see the
valves on my bike, Ollie. – [Ollie] Yeah, but… – [Chris] What do you reckon? Your call. – [Ollie] THat’s a super nice one. – [Chris] Alright, go on then. (cowbell rings) – [Ollie] What do we have next? – We have a Felt F65X, which has just been rebuilt. It’s from Congleton, in Cheshire, and it belongs to Pete. – [Ollie] Yeah, see what
I like about this is that that is just a fully functional, ready to go, winter bike. – [Chris] Yeah, that’s easy for me. I think that’s really cool actually. With a mega long flap on the back as well. – [Ollie] It’s got all… I mean, some people, when they
take a picture of their bike, they’re like right, we’re
gonna remove all the appendages and this just breaks that tradition and says no, I’m putting
all of them on there to show how functional and
good my bike is in winter. And we’re in winter, if you’re in the northern
hemisphere right now. – And I ride to work in the dark and home, and I’d love a bike that
was set up so perfectly to keep it dry and
bright and seen and safe. – [Ollie] Yeah, but you
still catch the rules ’cause he’s got his, you know, his big, small, and the crank arm. That’s a super nice for me. – [Chris] A bell ring for
function over fashion? – [Ollie] Yes. (cowbell rings) – [Chris] Nice bike, Pete. – Yep, and lastly, we have got this. – [Chris] From Savvas. – Yes, in Cyprus. It’s a Bianchi Specialissima Dura Ace Di2. Well, it’s in Celeste. – [Chris] Yeah, is that okay? – Well I really like Celeste, I mean– – It’s got a filthy chain. – Jon Cannings loves Celeste, he pretty proper loves it. – I know he’s not here this week, but I think it’s only right that this gets a super nice because– – [Chris] Even with the chain that dirty? – [Ollie] But Jon Cannings
isn’t here this week and he would be crying
at the screen right now. He’s gonna be watching this going, “But that’s a super nice, guys!” So, I mean, we kind of have to give it a super nice, just for Jon. – Come on, Ollie. I know you want it. I can see you’ve been
reaching for it all evening. – This Celeste Bianchi is
a super nice, isn’t it Jon? (cowbell rings) – It’s been nice having
you on the show, Ollie. Yes. (laughs) (slicing sound effect) – That is it. It is the end of the show. – Yeah, but coming up on
the channel this week… Well, tomorrow, we have a guide
to the 2019 World Tour Bikes which Jon is doing Down
Under at the moment. And we also have, on Sunday, and I’m excited about this,
we’re gonna be comparing electronic versus mechanical groupsets and see which is actually heavier once you factor in all
the cables and housings and bits that people don’t
necessarily always consider. And we’ve got brands as well represented, Shimano, Campagnolo, and SRAM, so yeah. – Yeah, I’m looking
forward to seeing that. – Yeah, it should be good. I don’t actually know what the answer is. That should be good. But also, if you enjoyed this video, then give it a thumbs up,
subscribe to the channel, and check out the GCN shop, we’ve got a massive 40%
sale on at the moment. – I could do with a new t-shirt. – Or a capron, you can buy them there. – Yeah, good for cooking. – Yeah, right. See you later!

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