Home / News / Reserve alloy hoops, Tufo gravel tyres, a lightweight hip pack and kit from Go Outdoors

Reserve alloy hoops, Tufo gravel tyres, a lightweight hip pack and kit from Go Outdoors

Aug 04, 2023Aug 04, 2023

Plus highlights from the past week

This competition is now closed

By Tom Marvin

Published: June 2, 2023 at 7:00 am

We’ve finally had some amazing weather in the UK over the past week or two, following what felt like the wettest spring ever (okay, March was the wettest in 40 years, and I’m only 36).

The trails are buff, dust has replaced mud on my fork's seals and Beach Bod 2023 is on its way with my arms and legs developing their tan nicely. My neck has acquired its annual reddish hue.

Following a couple of recent trips to the US, sadly my waistline is not quite in such good shape, though.

It has been a characteristically busy week on BikeRadar, with plenty of news and reviews.

The big news (and review) was the launch of Campagnolo's new Super Record Wireless groupset. It has been a while since the Italian brand launched something to truly compete with both the ‘big S’ brands, so click through to our news, review and opinion piece for all the details.

We also brought you news of the return of the Raleigh Chopper, a cult favourite from the 1970s (so our ancient sub-editor Gary tells me). Garmin released a pair of new smartwatches, too.

We can all benefit from Komoot's new tour-finding developments, making it easier to home in on an area and find suitable routes to follow.

On the reviews front, Bike of the Year continues to populate our pages. This week, we’ve had bikes from Cotic, Trek, YT, Giant, BMC and Cannondale, as well as numerous others. Our tech team poured countless hours and kilometres into testing them all.

If you get your kicks from fixing bikes, check out our guide to performing emergency surgery on your drivetrain to get you home as a single-speeder, our initial impressions of DT Swiss’ new wheel truing stand and our guide to inner tubes.

Finally, as self-proclaimed King of the Podcast, it would be remiss of me to not remind you about the BikeRadar Podcast. We publish at least twice per week, covering off tech, news, views and launches. So, give us a subscribe and tune in every Monday and Friday. Our latest listen is below.

Reserve grew out of the Santa Cruz brand, but the team at Reserve certainly wants to be taken seriously as a standalone component manufacturer. Its wheel range extends from DH to TT.

Recently added to the line-up are alloy hoops, including these do-it-all Reserve 30|HD AL 6069 wheels.

As the name suggests, they have an internal width of 30mm – plenty broad enough for your trail-shredding 2.5in rubber, while the rims are constructed from a 6069 alloy.

The rims aren't overly deep, at 22mm, and they feature an asymmetric rim bed. This enables the spokes to have a more equilateral triangular shape as they travel from hub shell to rim, for a stiffer and stronger build.

The rims come pre-taped, and in the box you’ll get a set of Reserve's Fillmore valves. I’ve been using these for a while and I’ve been impressed by their performance.

The rims are joined to the hubs via 32 J-bend spokes and alloy nipples.

Speaking of the hubs, they’re supplied by DT Swiss. It's the 350 model you’ll find, which comes with a 6-bolt rotor mounting and XD or Microspline freehub options.

Alternatively, I9 1/1 hubs in a 157mm DH spacing are offered for the same price.

If you don't want the DT Swiss hubs, you can buy the rims on their own to build onto your hub of choice.

Czech tyre manufacturer Tufo had a legendary reputation in the past for tubular cyclocross tyres. It now has a whole range of tubeless gravel tyres that are claimed to enjoy the same low weight and fast rolling the ‘cross tyres were famed for.

The tubeless construction includes a high-TPI casing (210 TPI tread body, 375 TPI sidewalls) with a puncture-proof ply layer under the tread and a reinforcing Jubena layer to protect the sidewalls.

Starting with the wet-weather specific Swampero, this 40mm-wide tyre features a directional arrowhead tread pattern with well-spaced blocks. At 4mm-deep, they should offer plenty of bite in sloppy conditions. My test tyres tipped the scales at 455g each.

Next up is the Thundero, again available in a 40mm width with a tightly gridded tread that maxes out at 2.5mm deep.

A tight diamond-pattern centre strip tread should provide fast rolling on tarmac, while the more spread-out tread on its flanks and shoulders is designed to give ample bite in dry dusty corners.

The Thunderos weigh in at 439.9g each.

Finally, it's Tufo's fastest gravel option, the Speedero. These have a tightly packed low-profile (1.5mm-deep) tread.

Bicycle Rolling Resistance gave these tyres a full five out of five score and a 17.5-watt measure of rolling resistance – bettering the likes of Pirelli's Cinturato Gravel, Specialized's Roubaix Bliss, Continental's Terra Speed TR 40 and Panaracer's GravelKings.

The Speederos tipped our scales at 444g each.

Tufo's gravel tyres are priced at €49.90/£49.99 each and available in tan wall or all black, in 44mm, 36mm or 40mm.

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The Uphill 2 Hip Pack from German brand Vaude packs two litres of capacity, plus an exterior bungee cord system for stashing items such as a lightweight jacket, into a minimalist package.

This makes it ideal for riders who need to carry kit, but who don't want a bulky cycling backpack or to strap a plethora of bags all over their bike frame.

The main compartment, with a dividing sleeve, is backed up by zipped mesh pockets on the wings. String draw tabs make getting in and out of the storage nice and easy, too.

The waist belt is relatively narrow, and has stretch built in to give extra comfort. It's secured with both Velcro and a clip.

The hip pack itself is built nicely, but it's Vaude's environmental credentials that really interest me.

The brand offers up a full CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) report for those who want to read it, but in essence, there's a lot of innovation in material use designed to reduce the impact on the environment of its products.

This pack, for example, is claimed to be carbon neutral.

It uses a fabric impregnated with oils extracted from used vehicle tyres, reducing the use of raw crude oil. The fabrics themselves include plastics recycled from PET drinks bottles.

Apex7 is GO Outdoors’ MTB kit sub-brand. It's claimed to include all the performance features you’ll find on top-end kit, but at much more affordable prices.

GO Outdoors is a UK outdoor supermarket, similar to Decathlon, offering equipment for everything from fishing to climbing. It's also responsible for Calibre mountain bikes.

We have a range of Apex7 kit in the BikeRadar office ready for testing, and here's a selection.

The Lithium jersey is your do-it-all MTB top, with an athletic fit and quick-drying polyester fabric.

The jersey features reflective detailing and a zipped rear pocket.

Flatlock seams should keep you chafe-free when wearing a riding pack.

The Nitrogen Pants might not be primed for summer, but this is the UK, so who knows?

These riding trousers feature a DWR coating designed to shrug off spray, making them ideal for damp rides in autumn and winter.

The cut is tapered towards the ankles to keep them from flapping in your chainring, while Apex7 claims there's room for slimline knee pads underneath.

The waist features Velcro adjustments and grippers, while there are zipped pockets too.

This 2.5-layer waterproof jacket can be stuffed in your pack for emergencies, or worn when the weather is sub-optimal.

The fabric has a claimed 10k waterproofing and 10k breathability rating – not groundbreaking, but certainly good enough for many damp situations.

There's a hood, vented mesh-backed hand pockets, elasticated wrist and waist hem, and reflective details to boot.

All items are available in-store or from

Senior technical editor

Tom Marvin is a technical editor at and MBUK magazine. He has a particular focus on mountain bikes, but spends plenty of time on gravel bikes, too. Tom has written for BikeRadar, MBUK and Cycling Plus, and was previously technical editor of What Mountain Bike magazine. He is also a regular presenter on BikeRadar's YouTube channel and the BikeRadar podcast. With more than twenty years of mountain biking experience, and nearly a decade of testing mountain and gravel bikes, Tom has ridden and tested thousands of bikes and products, from super-light XC race bikes through to the most powerful brakes on the market. Outside of testing bikes, Tom competes in a wide range of mountain bike races, from multi-day enduros through to 24-hour races in the depths of the Scottish winter – pushing bikes, components and his legs to their limits. He's also worked out that shaving your legs saves 8 watts, while testing aerodynamics in a wind tunnel. When not riding he can be found at the climbing wall, in his garden or cooking up culinary delights.

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Reserve 30|HD AL 6069 wheels: Reserve 30|HD AL 6069 rims: Vaude Uphill Hip Pack 2: Apex7 Lithium jersey: Apex7 Nitrogen Pants: Apex7 Radon Jacket: