While Eddie Masters was being stretchered away from the pump track comp at Crankworx Rotorua with a broken collarbone, his brother Wyn and the rest of the Gravity Components team where awkwardly standing in front of a room of international journalists ready to give us the run down on the new GRID line of affordable bits and pieces. Gravity isn't a new brand and due to NZ distributor Wide Open's progressive business model the brand has been very visible here, and hasn't been at all hindered by their international team roster featuring not only Wyn, but our freeride phenoms Kelly McGarry and Conor Macfarlane, both of whom have been riding the components for a long time.
After possibly the best feed I had at Crankworx all week we had a chance to check the new pieces out in the flesh. The GRID MegaExo Crankset is a feature-packed bang for your buck product. Each crank arm is hollow forged from a single block of 6066 alloy and the complete crankset weighs in at 785 grams. It comes in 1x as well as 2x options and as you can see has quite the funky tooth profile. Last year Gravity released a hooked tooth profile called Megatooth. It was an attempt to not blatantly copy SRAM's narrow wide rings, but with every component manufacturer jumping on the narrow/wide bandwagon the Megatooth now features a think thin profile to boot for increased chain retention.
The MegaExo will fit 68/73mm BB Shells and crank arms are available in 170 and 175mm; the BCD is 104/64mm with a 48.5mm chain line. Cranks are available out of the box in 38/24T, 36/22T two ring configurations and in either 34T, 32T, 30T.
Up in the cockpit there is this quite appealing new Grid stem which features a 35mm bar clamp. They have also opted for what they call a no gap face plate, which is similar to Easton's Top Lock system whereby you tighten up the two top bolts tight face to face with the actual stem and then rely on the two bottom bolts to tighten the bar in place. I've been running Haven and Havoc stems for the longest time and LOVE this feature so I think it's a very smart move. The Grid stem is available in 35mm and 50mm lengths and the 35mm length one weighs in at 135 grams.
There are two new GRID Riser bars to pair with the stem, identical in all but their widths with one coming in at 760mm and the other 800mm. They are made from double butted and tapered AL6061-T6 and like the stem only come in a 35mm bar clamp diameter and both again feature 8° backsweep and 5° upsweep. The 760mm model weighs 303 grams.Now the most innovative product in the line is this GRID chain guide. It looks normal enough but the top and lower guides can in fact be rotated out of the way to remove the crank tool free, yup, tool free. Those little D rings are in fact removable pins that allow you pivot the guide out of the way, which is a Godsend if you want to change your chain ring, or need to remove your BB quickly. It's ISCG05 compatible as well as for a standard threaded BB. There's two sizes available one for 28-34 and another 34-38 tooth chain rings. Claimed weight is 160 grams.
And to wrap things up was this pretty cool new GRID wheelset. Now there's more to this thing than meets the eye so let's start with the basics. It features a 27mm wide internal (31mm external) hookless bead and is obviously tubeless compatible. It rocks a 12mm rear and 15mm thru-axle as standard (although the rear can convert to a classic QR) and they are hand built 2 cross in with 28 spokes with brass nipples for both front and rear. And yes it's both Shimano 9 and 11 speed compatible as well as accepting SRAM's 11 speed XD driver. Claimed weights are 1850 grams for the 27.5" pair (w/o QR) and 1980 grams for the 29" (w/o QR).
Now for the tech bit. So the rim is actually asymmetrical and features an offset off 4mm. The 4mm offset creates more equal spoke angles and fewer differences in spoke tensions while also increasing the front wheel's stiffness by 33% over a symmetrical rim and the rear wheels by 20%. Below are some tech diagrams that break it all down for you anyhow.
Now we don't have prices or availability for New Zealand yet on this stuff but as soon as we do we'll update, but when GRID's mantra is "a bang for your buck group and a must have for riders that want the newest standards who don’t want to break the bank" you know it'll be on the money.