Interbike 2014 – POC

by Brian Mullin on October 22, 2014

For
2015 POC has added an MIPS option to the Crane dirt helmet, and they’re releasing the lighter VPD Air armor, mountain bike specific chamois and
revamping their sunglasses lineup.

VPD Air Armor

I always wear soft armor on rides, and some of my favorite has been a tough and durable VPD 2.0 knee and elbow.
The VPD 2.0 works for many types of gravity terrain, including bike
parks and All Mountain riding though I found the knees weren’t
comfortable for long spin sessions. Fortunately, POC is coming out with a
lighter version aptly named the VPD Air, and the knee pads will be $80
and the elbow will be $70. The VPD or Visco-Elastic Polymer Dough
material hardens upon impact for better protection and shock absorption,
and in addition, its lightweight, flexible and moldable. The VPD Air is
lighter, uses thinner material and has less coverage than other beefier
models. The slide on armor utilizes one Velcro upper strap for
adjustment and has silicone grippers to prevent errant movement. I am
looking forward to trying these out, as the excellent build quality and
stitching and durability should makes for a superb soft armor.

Crane Helmet

The Crane is their
multipurpose helmet, and it will be at home with freeride, BMX, dirt
jumpers and bike park users. This season they have added an optional
MIPS inner liner to the helmet, and it will come in a bunch of colors
and retail for $170.
 
The Multi-Directional Impact Protection System, MIPS,
was developed by a Swedish neuroscientist to improve protection from
oblique impacts to the head. Angled head impacts create rotational
violence to the brain, causing strain on the brain tissue, which can
induce concussions and brain injuries. MIPS utilizes a low friction
layer on the inside of the helmet liner for inmold helmets to absorb
much of the energy created by both unilateral or oblique blows to the
head.

The Crane helmet uses an EPS sandwich construction
that combines one softer and one stiffer density foam, to keep it
lightweight and increase the energy-absorbing properties. The outer
stiffer liner together with the vacuum formed thicker polycarbonate
shell (1 mm thick) makes it 50% more resistant to dents, compared to
normal in-mold helmets. The inner foam against your head is for small
and quick falls/crashes or lower energy impacts while the outer and more
dense layer is for more serious or high-energy ones.

Sunglasses and MTB Chamois

The
new mountain bike chamois shorts have a boxer brief cut, for a more
functional shorter length inseam. They should be more comfortable and
can be cross-functional for commuting purposes. This look like an ideal
set of chamois for mountain biking and their price point and design put
them on a wish list.

For 2015, they have narrowed things down to
nine sunglasses designs. They have the sporty styled Do Blade, Do Low,
Do Flow, Did and more casual oriented styles such as the Want, Was,
Will, Know, Wonder. I think the Do Blade and Do Flow was the slickest
and coolest of their lineup along with the more casual Did. They come in
a ton of lens and frame colors depending on the model, with a wide
expanse of pricing. A non-mirrored gray lens model ranges from $130-$150
while a polarized or photochromic lens ranges from $220–250.

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