Interbike 2014: Outdoor Demo, pt 1
images by Nick Salazar
Sep 9, 2014  hits 123,031

Here is the brand new Scott Plasma 5
Here is the brand new Scott Plasma 5

Scott Plasma 5 » The Plasma 5 has been hogging all the media attention recently, and with good reason. This highly-integrated bike is the latest and greatest from the venerable brand, and it has some very interesting features.

Each year, Interbike begins with an Outdoor Demo day in Boulder City, Nevada. Although it's primarily catered to off-road bicycles, there is always some very high-tech aero gear hidden away in the sand. We managed to find so much of it that it's going to be split into two separate galleries. Here's the first of the two, featuring the brand new Scott Plasma 5, the LOOK 795 Aerolight, and the Fuji Norcom Straight, as well as some miscellaneous bits.



Scott Plasma 5 

The Plasma 5 has been hogging all the media attention recently, and with good reason. This highly-integrated bike is the latest and greatest from the venerable brand, and it has some very interesting features.

  • Here is the brand new Scott Plasma 5
  • Here is the brand new Scott Plasma 5
  • Frontal view of the new Plasma 5.
  • The fairing behind the integrated bottle was a bit tricky to get in place, and kept poking out during our shoot. Scott says this is being dialed in for production.
  • Integrated top tube storage.
  • Single-bolt seat tube clamp.
  • The newest Ritchey saddle clamp has found its way onto almost every new tri bike, and I'm delighted to see that -- this is simply the best saddle clamp I've ever used. It features minimalist design, single-bolt side-address functionality, a wide range of adjustment, it never binds, and is compatible with new accessories from X-Lab.
  • The scoop-shaped chainstays are presumably helpful with aerodynamics.
  • We had a hard time getting the rubber fairing parts to cooperate, but Scott says they will be dialed for production.
  • The rubber fairing parts were a little difficult to work with and install. And without the bottle in place, they simply fall off -- Scott tells us that this is one of the first three prototype bikes available, and that these rubber pieces are still being dialed for mass production.
  • The plastic brake fairing scraped the finish off of this prototype bike - presumably this will be dialed in for production as well.
  • The integrated bottle with its three rubber fairing pieces. It's a pity these fairing pieces weren't simply built into the shape of the bottle, which could have increased storage capacity and obviated the need for extra rubber pieces.
  • And here's the bottle minus the rubber fairing pieces. I wish they had simply been integrated into the shape of the bottle, making things simpler.
  • Here's the front end minus the bottle. You can still see the rubber storage fairing peeking out from behind the stem.
  • Interestingly, the Plasma 5 stem installs in the middle of the head tube, rather than above it as on every other bike.
  • The Plasma 5's integrated storage bolts onto the bike with the now de-facto standard spacing (the same used on water bottle cages) - nice move by Scott.
  • The rear brake is built for Shimano's direct-mount standard.

LOOK 795 Aerolight 

One of the most interesting new bikes is the LOOK 795 Aerolight. Although it's not a tri bike, it has some very interesting integration that could easily be seen on a next-gen TT bike from LOOK, which we were told would be launched next year.

  • The LOOK 795 Aerolight is incredibly clean and integrated, but its polarizing aesthetic might not be for everyone. Personally, I love it.
  • The 795 Aerolight is very thin up front.
  • The integrated brake helps keep the front end quite tidy.
  • A very skinny steerer tube also helps with aerodynamics.
  • The cables look a little messy here, but keep in mind that they're basically all sitting right in front of the head tube, and aren't adding much frontal area, if any.
  • The integrated stem is adjustable from -13 to +17 degrees or so.
  • The integrated stem is adjustable from -13 to +17 degrees or so.
  • The integrated stem is adjustable from -13 to +17 degrees or so.
  • The integrated stem is adjustable from -13 to +17 degrees or so.
  • The integrated brake helps keep the front end quite tidy.
  • LOOK 795 Aerolight
  • Look's ZED 2 crank is very slick, very light, and adjustable from 170-175mm in length.
  • Look's ZED 2 crank is very slick, very light, and adjustable from 170-175mm in length.
  • LOOK 795 Aerolight
  • LOOK 795 Aerolight
  • A Shimano direct-mount rear brake.
  • A Shimano direct-mount rear brake.
  • A Shimano direct-mount rear brake.

Fuji Norcom Straight 

Nothing substantive about this bike has changed since I reviewed it last year, but the new nude carbon paint scheme is simply stunning, and I couldn't pass up showing it to you.

  • The Norcom Straight looks absolutely beautiful in nude carbon.
  • The Norcom Straight looks absolutely beautiful in nude carbon.
  • The Norcom Straight looks absolutely beautiful in nude carbon.
  • Very nice battery integration here on the seatpost. You could also tuck the battery between the saddle rails.
  • Multiple cable port options are swappable via a allen bolt.
  • I'm not sure why anyone would prefer to shift only their rear derailleur from the extensions, but that's what Fuji has spec'ed on this Di2-equipped bike. You'd have to go out to the base bar to shift the front derailleur.
  • I have to say, these aerobars are a bit of a disaster, aesthetically and (almost certainly) aerodynamically. And the cable management is more or less nonexistent.
  • This is certainly too much valve extender, and according to Josh Poertner of Silca (formerly Zipp) fame, that's a significant aero penalty at yaw.
  • BB cluster.
  • TRP V-Brake below.

Misc 

  • The new ENVE SES aerobar is a highly-functional bar, if unconventional in appearance.
  • The new ENVE SES aerobar handholds are fairly short in length, but the forward-swept base bar still puts them in a good spot fit-wise.
  • Lots of adjustment on the ENVE SES aerobar.
  • The ENVE SES aerobar hardware can be mounted beneath or above the bar.
  • The new ENVE SES road bar.
  • I'm a huge fan of KMC's products, and generally use their chains, master links, and chain tools on every bike build I do.
  • Campagnolo has just switched to a four-bolt pattern for their top-end Super Record crank, following Shimano's move to a similar pattern.
  • A rainbow of Speedplay pedals makes for a nice and colorful display.
  • The boys of Kappius Components have been innovating some very cool tech in the last few years. It is generally marketed to the off-road crowd, but their integrated wide-bearing hubs are available for road bikes as well.
  • The boys of Kappius Components have been innovating some very cool tech in the last few years. It is generally marketed to the off-road crowd, but their integrated wide-bearing hubs are available for road bikes as well.
  • The boys of Kappius Components have been innovating some very cool tech in the last few years. It is generally marketed to the off-road crowd, but their integrated wide-bearing hubs are available for road bikes as well.
  • All sorts of creatures come to Interbike, including some uninvited guests!

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