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I am in the process of building my first 29er. Need to spec the bars and post. I have been a Ti and Steel guy in the past, this is my first Aluminum frame. Asthetically, Thomson Post and Al. bar are a great fit, but wondering about too jarring a ride. How do most folks feels about carbon for applications such as seat posts and handlebars?? I am about 185 in riding gear and ride strictly XC (stairs are drops to me). The new 26" Salsa carbon bars look interesting, but I have always been a little leery about the durability of carbon for these applications. Thank you in advance.
 

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Bikeoholic
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My $.02

I use both a carbon bar and seatpost on my Dos niner and a carbon bar on my rig. I definitly think a carbon bar is nice when concerning bar vibrations on a rigid. I also think they are an excellent light weight option. I'm not so sure how much vibration the carbon seatpost takes out of the ride, but I"m sure its some.

So in the end, I weight in at around 190 or so and I would recommend using Carbon Fiber if you want to. I guess I'm just going to say I don't worry about any of my carbon components breaking.
 

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holy schfincter..
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I wouldn't worry about using a carbon bar on a mtb. It actually takes much more force to break a carbon one over most aluminum bars, but when carbon breaks its usually a catastrophic failure, more of a splintered snap. For general xc use, I wouldn't find harm in using either, but I prefer a thompson post, thats just me. As far as hbars go, I would definitely go carbon.
 

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I have both of my 29ers set up very similarly, though one is a single speed. One the ss I am running a 27.5 inch EA70 Monkey Bar. On the geared, I am running a 26 inch Monkey Lite XC (carbon). The carbon does flex a bit more, but I don't always feel that it is a good thing. Not worried about it breaking, but don't know that I like it all that much. I actually prefer the EA70, especially on the ss. I think this is due more to the length, but it is also nice to have a still bar when putting a lot of pressure on it during those steep climbs (not sure they still make a EA70 Monkey riser bar in 27.5?).

The only place that I see carbon really standing out, as far as helping with taking some of the vibration, is on a rigid. Otherwise, that is what the front fork does. Initially, I had a little creak that I thought was coming from my bar on the ss. Turns out it was the stem. Replaced it with a Thompson and creak is gone:thumbsup:

BTW,I weigh in at 175. Never had a problem with breaking anything (yet at least). I am pretty rough on my bikes and enjoy doing jumps and drops that I probably shouldn't. If I see it or know that it is there, I want to try it. Both of the pic below are on the carbon bar. Just two small examples of carbon being safe (as long as you don't over tighten the stem clamp bolts.

So, in the end, if you have the money for carbon and the bar feels comfortable, get it. There is a bit of a weight difference, but not a huge one. Good luck.
 

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I have long legs, and as a result have a lot of seatpost showing on all of my mountain bikes. Personally I find a large difference in ride quality between different seatpost materials. Especially on a hardtail. Ti is great although I bent the only ti post I owned. Aluminum seems to "load up" and bounce my butt off of the saddle. Carbon (for me) seems to offer the best combination of smoothness and strength. I have an Easton carbon post with well over 7k miles of offroad riding and it is still just fine. I weigh about 175lbs and ride aggressively. Good luck!
 

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fnInt(1/x^2,x,0,1)
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Hey - I ride mostly XC also, weigh around 165-170 riding, and use a Bontrager carbon seatpost on my Niner EMD. I can really feel the difference (with around 9.5" exposed post) between it and my Thomson. I was a bit squeamish with respect to carbon also, but it's held wonderfully and rides nicely.
 

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I am a big guy and have used both the Ritchey WCS carbon post on road bikes and am using the new Race Face carbon post on my MTB with a lot of post showing and so far so good. It feels better than the thomson it replaces IMHO and is quiet and easy to set up. I also have the new Salsa riser bar and it is nice as well, I found the eason monkey lites (nano type) to be almost too stiff and lose the benefit of carbon.
 

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Where's Toto?
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I'm about 190 lbs and have an Easton EC70 carbon post on the MTB and cross bikes. No issues no problems. I have quite a bit of seatpost exposed on the 29er, and I can feel the post flex a bit with bumps etc. Definately a softer ride compared to the Thomson on the Niner SS. Carbon bars on both bikes. Have used Salsa Pro Moto, Easton, and FSA - all about the same, though I do like the wide and flat Salsa for 29er use.
 

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Everyone seems impressed with Ti Moots seatposts. I rode one in a longish race once, and I was awed, considering it was supporting only an SLR race seat.
The only little-sweet bar that I expect to ever want anymore, is the 11º carbon Salsa. The length should help a bit for comfort-flex too?
If you take your bikes seriously though, consider a custom seven Ti bar. Right now I'm very impressed with the alu On-One Mary. It's on a hardtail, so no idea about flex, but for geared riding the shape is just ace. For singlespeed there's no competition for the Ti Jones H-Bar. It's sooo much better than an alu bar with rigid...
 

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my fsa carbon

riser is too stiff with a rigid fork, the al bontrager riser was much softer. i am putting
the reba back on so i will stick with the fsa but if i was going to be rigid all the time
i would not use the carbon riser. not sure why people think carbon bars are more
comfortable than aluminum. look at the stiffnes of these new carbon road frames and
also numerous handlebar mfg's have stated their cf road bars are way stiffer than their al.
carbon may reduce buzz, but as soon as you install grips it does the same thing for all
practical purposes.
 

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I am very happy with my Easton MonkeyLite DH bars. Wide and built to be burly.

I have also raced with a 140g carbon bar that a friend took off of his Scalpel. No problems with that either. As has been said, it takes a lot to break a carbon bar (as long as you torque faceplates and control clamps properly).
 

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I think that pic has everyone wondering, but it is bound to happen every once in a while, no matter what the material. I have a budy I ride with quite often. I can't tell you how many time we've ridden this one trail. Know it forwards and backwards. Well, he bit it pretty hard the other day. That is just how it is. We will crash, and our bikes/parts will fail. Yes, precausions can be taken, but it is bound to happen. (Just hope when it happens to me I can ride one handed too!)
 

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my 0.02$...New Moots Ti seat post...

...owner and could NOT be happier...I was on the fence about going to a sus-post and read the post reviews on MTBR and pulled the trigger on the non-sus-post Moots...VERY happy - never going back to carbon or AL for this application [XC riding on a HT].

0.04$.....Quality carbon is a fantastic product. Having a bit of materials testing/science in my engin-eeeeeering studies/career and being mates with the head guys at Reynolds Compsites - has shown me through the amount/type of testing of carbon vs. other materials - that carbon cycling products are mucho mucho strong.....sure there are failures - someones bound to post a carbon failure ....but we all now/have seen failures in traditional materials as well. Carbon failures these days come largely from when the loads place on the product are too high [daaaaah] or more comonly when the load is applied in in a fashion the the product was not desinged for, i.e. a crash.

Carbon has unique vibration dampaning qualities [due largely to the resin] but in theory be as stiff as hell [given proper fiber alignment].

I'm 185lbs sanz gear....don't consider stairs drops but consider 2' feet a drop....I'm certainly far from a huckster...and I'm finding my Bontrager Race X Lite Carbon [31.8 clamp] risers a bit stiff....I'm considering moving to Ti handlebars as well.

too much coffee....my bad....good luck and have fun riding.
 

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Yes and no

Mattyd said:
I think that pic has everyone wondering, but it is bound to happen every once in a while, no matter what the material. I have a budy I ride with quite often. I can't tell you how many time we've ridden this one trail. Know it forwards and backwards. Well, he bit it pretty hard the other day. That is just how it is. We will crash, and our bikes/parts will fail. Yes, precausions can be taken, but it is bound to happen. (Just hope when it happens to me I can ride one handed too!)
I think mostly you are right about that but there are some products that I'd be surprised if they every failed catastrophically. Like the surly bar or the mary bar-my understanding is that they will bend and not just snap. Now that isn't light stuff, that is for sure, not "high tech"

The way something fails would be nice to know-does it bend or does it snap? Is there any way to tell?
 

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I Have Gnarly Potential
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I worry about seatposts.

The thing about carbon components is they require you to use really no more then the specific torqage for components clamped to it or risk crsh dmg (not always visable, sometimes its just enough to weaken it but not see it)

And on a seatpost if you have quick release it is easy to overdo it a bit since its not really precise.
 

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I was reluctant to put Carbon post and bars on my latest ride but don't regret it at all. They've got so much resin around the actual fiber that you don't need to worry about "scratching" the fibers and causing failure. You do need to be careful about torque tolerances when doing stuff to your handlebars - however, you're not going to be crushing any seatposts with your clamp unless you're just trying to.

I'm about 180 and can feel very little flex in my Thompson seatpost - but after nearly a year of some pretty hard riding - I'm no longer worried about failure.
 

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Krause said:
The thing about carbon components is they require you to use really no more then the specific torqage for components clamped to it or risk crsh dmg (not always visable, sometimes its just enough to weaken it but not see it)
Easton's only torque specification for their handlebars is to follow the guidelines provided by the stem manufacturer. That's pretty liberal.
 
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