The 3rd iteration of the ever popular Crud RoadRacer has arrived, snappily called Crud RoadRacer MK3 ; and great things are expected as the MK2 was great for some, but often fell short in the eyes of many. The main design of the Crud RoadRacer MK3 stays the same, a slim, stealthy shaped that hugs the tyre to be easily missed, which helps most forgive the problems of the old design to keep their bike looking racy deep into winter. Gone now are the fiddly elastic fittings, screws, and elastic bands, and in come a much simpler velcro attachment. Actually velcro is an unfair description. It is actually Duolock, a much stronger product very similar to velcro but very sturdy and with a long life. In theory, just stick the pads on the fork and rear stays and all that’s left to do is pop on the mudguards when you want them. The obvious question is how do remove the sticky pads (and they do stick on very very securely) if I put them in the wrong place or simply don’t want them on there? Just use a hairdryer to warm them a little and they peel right off. I can’t vouch for this as of yet, I’ll be leaving the pads on for winter to ensure they get a good chance to stick on firmly and/or fall off. I’ll update in the new year if any problems arise.
Once pads are on fitting is simple and solid. I opted to fit to my trusty winter bike which is not the easiest bike to fit mud guards to due to its tight clearances and pencil thin rear stays but they went on without too much trouble. Crud Products are aware some bikes have narrow clearances and after a quick chat with Peter at RoadRacer to confirm no issues, I trimmed the front guard to clear the fork. The design of the new support arms being such that trimming the guard does not affect support of coverage.
On the back the uber sticky pads hung on to the thin stays admirably and remained so even after I had fitted and removed the guard numerous times to test and align the guard to meet my obsessive desire to ensure milimetric symmetry each side of the tyre.
The rear guard also comes with a handy extension that carried on down to the rear stays and curves in on the right hand side to protect the front mech a little from muck and spray. Not something I had considered too much but a nice touch and shows they have tried to cover all angles with the Crud RoadRacer MK3.
Out on the road and no rubbing to be heard. Those that have owned the MK2 will remember the little furry pile stickers which helped reduce the annoying noise of plastic on tyre. They are still in the box for the Crud RoadRacer MK3 but you won’t be needing them now unless you go to the max fitting of 38mm tyres and even then there is still a little space.
A spirited few rides on Norfolks finest country lanes couldn’t force and vibration or rubbing and only the biggest of bumps and pot holes created any noise which is probably the last of your concerns at that point, so +1 for the MK3.
The front and rear wheels are covered well by the guards, even without the extension pieces that come in the box, and your derrière is free of that chilly morning wake up spray which is nice. Riding behind the bike there is a noteable lack of spray also, so you will once again be fully welcome by the angry old boys on club runs who insist on mudguards for 10 months of the year. Up front, toes are well protected and whilst some spray still kicks up, I’m yet to find a guard that stops it all together. Come on though, if a little spray bothers you that much then maybe the turbo trainer may be the better option.
All in all, I’d consider this a big step in the right direction and the MK3 is everything the MK2 should have been. After killing 2 pairs last winter I had moved over to another leading brand of mudguards which are a little more bulky but now I thing I may have just been swung back. If you want a set of mudguards that can be fitted/removed in seconds and are discreet enough to still look pro on the club run then you can do much worse than these.