I never really got how stems are so expensive. No moving parts, just some bolts and CNC'd aluminum. You certainly got a good deal on that, but I find it hard to notice increases in performance in the stem category. The Azonic World Force line of stems are pretty damn cheap, and, in my book, seem to be about the same thing. But then again, that is a very nice stem, and probably worth $40 bucks even to a cheapskate like me. It just seems that stems are one area where I can cut corners and save some bucks, at least on an initial build. I'll upgrade later if I think I should and can get a good deal like that.
BTW, I got the block stem for my hardtail for $0.99 on ebay. Its the K2B model. Uses 1/4" coarse thread bolts (ACE hardware style) to clamp the handlebar. Looks pretty damn hardcore.
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