by James Englert, PCI #1081
Arapahoe County (CO) Sheriffs Office
IPMBA Industry Liaison
This past September, I attended the Interbike Expo in Las Vegas with former Membership Coordinator Tony Holte. Interbike is the premier retail expo for the cycling industry.
Our agenda for the week was packed with meetings with the many retailers, manufacturers, and vendors that participate in our Product Purchase Program (PPP), exhibit at the IPMBA Conference, advertise in IPMBA News, etc. We wanted to thank them for supporting us. Tony put together an ambitious list of more 30 vendors, and we did our best to talk to a majority of those companies. It’s nice to put faces with names and for them to meet us and learn more about our sometimes unique needs.
Another agenda item was to find new vendors and products that would be of interest to police / EMS / security cyclists. We spoke with many such potential vendors to see if they would be interested in our niche market and in joining the PPP, sponsoring us, or attending our annual conference. Most vendors expressed excitement and said they would like to be involved with us. After Interbike, it is up to us to contact those vendors to establish what we hope will be ongoing relationships.
Some friendly faces we ran into were Tim Shurr, the owner of Ashland Bicycle Works in Ashland, Oregon, and instructor of our Maintenance Officer course. We also got to spend time with the owner of Volcanic Bikes, Eric Kackley, who typically sponsors mechanical support during the IPMBA Conference. Helping us were two members of the Industry Relations Committee – Jeff Britton of Central Point (OR) Police Department and Bob Dunivin of Los Angeles (CA) Fire Department. Jeff and Bob were officially attending Interbike for other reasons, but they also talked to some vendors for us.
There were some interesting and noteworthy products. The bicycle locks were especially impressive. Kryptonite (sponsor of bike theft workshop at the 2013 IPMBA Conference) was showing their full line of quality locks. Cantitoe Road was showcasing the new Trelock frame lock. This lock has a seat tube mount that mounts to the rear seat stay; all you need to do is lock it and the rear tire is secure. Tony and I thought this was a good idea because if you are in a hurry, you can lock the rear tire quickly. Trelock also make the lock with a chain to lock it up to a fixed object. Another one of their Trelocks is a folding lock, which makes it harder for the bike to be stolen. Cantitoe Road participates in our Product Purchase Program, offering Wipperman chains and now the Trelock frame locks at wholesale prices.
I’m always interested in helmet technology since it seems like it is always changing. At the show we spoke to people from Bern. They are always very interested in IPMBA and very helpful. They are big supporters of IPMBA and have attended the last few IPMBA conferences as a vendor. This year was no different with the technology: Bern has a new helmet called the Morrison coming out in February 2014. The Morrison has a removable front visor with their ZipMold technology that is thinner, tapered, lighter, and a higher strength-to-weight ratio. The part I like the most is that the molding features a new dial fit as opposed to their previous Velcro padding, and there is a performance liner for customized fit with moisture control and airflow. The Morrison has 16 vents, twice as many vents as their other helmets. As with all their helmets, the liner snaps out for cleaning and cold weather liner.
Another product I’m very interested in is called Bar Mitts. I’ve seen these in the past but never had the chance to actually try them. These are Neoprene hand covers for winter riding. Ward and Patti Graham are very supportive of IPMBA and have joined our PPP, giving 20% off MSRP and free US Shipping. I have worn them a few times since Interbike, and I really like them. In the cold, I can wear a light glove for a more comfortable ride and the Bar Mitts keep the cold wind off my hands. Patti has already provided to Bar Mitts for our silent auction at our annual conference in Tampa, one of the many reasons to attend the conference.
These are just a few of the vendors we spoke to at Interbike. More reviews will follow in future issues. Don’t forget to check out the IPMBA Product Purchase Program often. The vendors and discounts do change and we’re always interested in potential new participants.
James Englert is a School Resource Officer in Centennial CO. He is going through training to become an instructor with NASRO (National Association of School Resource Officers). He was certified as an IPMBA Instructor in 2008 and currently serves as the Industry Liaison on the IPMBA board. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article appeared in the Winter 2014 issue of IPMBA News.