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Donkey Label Bike Tool Roll Review

Anyone who knows me will tell you I hate cluttering up my saddle with a saddle bag.  I'm a stickler for keeping things in my pockets.  If you want to get technical, it's in the rules.  Because of that, my pockets often look like an overstuffed lunch bag.  Or, you might think I've got half of a Home Depot shoved into my jersey.  Either way, it's not a flattering look.

For years, I used a variety of solutions to corral the various tools and gear in my pockets.  I switched back and forth from a pump to a CO2 inflator.  I tried different multi tools.  Tubes went into a separate pocket with a band around them.  Sometimes I just rubber banded everything together and stuck it in a pocket.  For a while, I tried using a small camera case to hold everything together.

The bottom line is if you like keeping stuff in your pockets, it's going to get messy at some point.

That all changed when my wife bought me a bike tool roll.  A Donkey Label bike tool roll to be exact.

Click through to see my review of the Donkey Label bike tool roll and learn how to purchase one yourself.

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Dura Ace Track Stages Power Meter Install

Power meter options for track bikes are very limited, and the Dura Ace Stages power meter is one of the most reasonably priced and simple to use on the market.  Based on the Dura Ace 7710 Octalink platform, the Stages power meter offers a simple, elegant power measuring solution for fixed gear bikes.  Painstaking refinement has gone into the algorithm used to calculate power to meet the unique demands of a fixed gear bike, improving performance and reliability in data recording.

Check out the video of the installation, re-posted from Periscope.  Throughout the installation, there's a little bit of Q&A about power meters based on questions from live viewers.  Click through the jump to watch the video and check out the video show notes:

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Lezyne Road Drive Pump Review

Lezyne has made a name for themselves with beautifully crafted, exceptionally functional aluminum cycling gear and their Road Drive pump is no exception.  And that's really saying something: you wouldn't think a pump could elicit such praise (you wouldn't expect their valve extenders to either, yet they do) but when you're sitting on the road with a flat tire, you'll be thankful you have this stuffed in your jersey pocket.  The Lezyne Road Drive looks to be a simple enough pump, but that's part of it's charm.  When it comes to pumps, the Road Drive sits near the top of the pile.

Road Drive: Keeps Rides Alive!

Fully aluminum construction hides the technological aspects of this little package.  Instead of a fixed right angle head, the road drive pump hides a little secret in its barrel: something called an ABS flex hose with built in air bleed.  Simply pop the cap off the pump, unscrew the ABS flex hose, flip it over and screw it into the end of the pump.  Now you're ready to go.

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Holiday Gifts For Cyclists

It can be difficult finding holiday gifts for cyclists on your list.  Hunting through the Black Friday deals, searching for the perfect item to put a smile on their face can be fraught with peril when you don't have much of an idea of what this cycling thing is all about.  How can you expect to get the perfect gift when you don't know the difference between a cassette and a headset, but you don't want to lame out and get them a Visa gift card with the directive “go buy what you want?”

That's why I'm here to help you out.

In this holiday gift roundup, I'm including a little of everything from the low cost to the lavish.  There's something for everyone from the beginner to the lifelong rider.  So check through the list and check out the links.  In many cases, you'll find something that you hadn't thought of before, or maybe you'll not only find something for that special cyclist, you'll find something for yourself too.

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Stages Power Meter Review

The Stages Power Meter burst onto the scene in 2013 with the promise of an affordable power meter option attached to the crank arm.  How does it compare?  Is it as good as it claims to be?  Compared to similar offerings of the time the Stages meter was a novel, if not brilliant idea.  It cut the cost in half by placing the measurement device on the left crank arm only.  It was easily transferable between bikes and easy to remove and replace if it needed service.  The super light weight of only 11 grams also made for an attractive marketing point.  So did the user replaceable, easy to source coin cell battery.

Yet not everyone was on board.

From the get-go, many complained about the left sided only power measurement.  It was claimed to be prone to inaccuracies due to the “doubling of the left leg” power calculation.  Many claimed the accelerometer principle wouldn't provide sufficiently accurate cadence to properly report power.

Here we are more than two years later and Stages power meters can be found on every manner of bikes from weekend warrior up through Tour de France winners.

I've got about 2 years on Stages power meters now.  How does it stack up against other power measuring devices I've used like Quarq and Powertap?  You can read my thoughts on the Stages power meter after the jump:

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