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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For a race setup what are desirable brands and specs for a new bar, stem and headset?
 

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MBAA!
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-=Canuck=- said:
For a race setup what are desirable brands and specs for a new bar, stem and headset?
Thomson or Easton would be my preference. EA90 stuff is really good. Or is it EA30? Is it lower is better or higher is better? Im pretty sure higher is better...
 

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For the bars Easton, FSA and Race Face are all great brands, along with some others. For the stem Thomson, Easton, and FSA along with quite a few others. For the headset, obviously Chris King, but also FSA, Cane Creek, etc.

It really depends on your budget and what you are looking for.
 

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All depends on personal taste and riding style.

*edit* This was supposed to be below Canuck's reply. :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
im planing to get all tompson (stem and seat post) What about rise on the stem and handle bars. Is no rise with flat bar condusive to a race setup or is it all dependent on my personal taste and physiology?
 

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I love Pisgah
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For racing the Thomson stems are way heavy. You did say "racing", right? The posts do better regarding weight, altho not nearly as light as the more race oriented posts, like the pricy Extralite and somewhat less USE Alien carbon/ti posts. Thomson stems are pretty tho...

For a race duty stem, look at the Syntace F99(100gms) or the newer Ritchey WCS(100-115gms), or Ritchey Pro(with ti bolts its aprox 130gms for a 120mm), or the beautiful and high $ Extralite UL stem, which runs around 105gms. All are plenty stiff for racing. A touch heavier would be the new lighter version of the RF Deus.

For bars I prefer low riser carbon somethings, but thats just me. Flat bars only shine when climbing. I hate'm for descending and general control compared to risers. Ever see a MX bike with a flat bar? Nope. But I'm an old MXer, so wadda I know...Anyhoo, my personal fav is the MaxM MX5 isogrid low riser at 135gms. Just as light or lighter then any other riser avail, and considered argubly stiffer then anything out there(other carbon risers).
 

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Maxm

I second that vote for the MX5. love those bars and ordering a new one for this year. I think they are a bargain. My vote for stem is the Ritchey WCS. I hear alot of flex talk about the Syntace. Stem legth will probably be middle of the road like 100-110 should work for 90% of people.
 

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I love Pisgah
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WCS vs F99 beta.

All that flex talk is from the looks of the stem. I too was skeptical. The stem uses a 2 strap type(2pc) face clamp, that upon first inspect..looks rather spindly. The trick is, that the 200 degree bar mount means that 200 degrees of the bar is carried/supported in the stem body itself. The other 160 degrees is carried in the face plate. Most stems are 50/50, and I think the WCS series are the other way around, now that I think about it(having more bar overlap at the plate). The Syntace design takes the load off the face plate, and in turn puts more so into the stem body itself since it "captures" the bar for the most part=less faceplate material and smaller bolts without sacrificing stiffness. I have a 110mm WCS in service atm since 02. Also a Ritchey Pro, Pazazz(140gm generic from PP), RF Deus(1st gen and the stiffest stem I've used to date) and of course the F99. I swear the WCS feels more flexy then the F99, with the F99 feeling more like the stiffer(but heavier) Ritchey Pro. And I like the WCS, so thats good enough for me.

Just an unbiased impression of the stems mentioned since I've raced both.

Duck

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good explianation Duckman

Hey Duckman,

You explained the head of the Syntace stem very well thanks!

We are also getting ready to release our carbon seat posts.....check out the links.http://www.syntaceusa.com/index.cfm?pid=3&pk=1231

Duckman said:
WCS vs F99 beta.

All that flex talk is from the looks of the stem. I too was skeptical. The stem uses a 2 strap type(2pc) face clamp, that upon first inspect..looks rather spindly. The trick is, that the 200 degree bar mount means that 200 degrees of the bar is carried/supported in the stem body itself. The other 160 degrees is carried in the face plate. Most stems are 50/50, and I think the WCS series are the other way around, now that I think about it(having more bar overlap at the plate). The Syntace design takes the load off the face plate, and in turn puts more so into the stem body itself since it "captures" the bar for the most part=less faceplate material and smaller bolts without sacrificing stiffness. I have a 110mm WCS in service atm since 02. Also a Ritchey Pro, Pazazz(140gm generic from PP), RF Deus(1st gen and the stiffest stem I've used to date) and of course the F99. I swear the WCS feels more flexy then the F99, with the F99 feeling more like the stiffer(but heavier) Ritchey Pro. And I like the WCS, so thats good enough for me.

Just an unbiased impression of the stems mentioned since I've raced both.

Duck

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Flexy stems?

Can you really tell if a stem is flexy or not (whatever "flexy" means)? And if so, when do you notice it?

It just seems that with large tires at ~30 to 40 psi, and 3 or 4 inches of travel in a fork, it would be almost impossible to notice a mm or two of flex at the stem.
 

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I agree for the most part. But, when going back and forth daily between 3 or 4 bikes all with different stems, one can then tell from one to the next, say when your out of the saddle cranking on the bars, rough rocky tech stuff, etc.
 

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Completely disagree.

IMHO the F99 is a total noodle. I've been riding an F99 this last season and it wasn't until I put on a different stem that I noticed a huge difference. The F99 stem w/easton monkey lites was flexing probably +- 1.5 cm's at the end of the bars. When I initially put on the F99 I thought it was ok, probably because I spent so much damn money on it, but now after a season of riding on it I'm definitley thinking twice about it. Everytime I get out of the saddle and start cranking I've always got that feeling that if it breaks it ain't gonna be pretty. I've never ridden a ritchey wcs but when I compare the F99 to the Ritchey Pro I believe there to be a definite distinction with the ritchey being much stiffer than the F99.

But it is dang light.

Just my 2 cents.
 
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