Tioga, 6D, Renthal - Interbike 2016

Sep 21, 2016
by Mike Levy  
Interbike 2016


Interbike 2016


Tioga's Undercover Stratum Seat

Tioga's webbed Spyder Stratum and Spyder Outland (a more flexible Stratum with thin rubber pads) look out of this world, but their unforgiving appearance contradicts an extremely comfortable design, at least for my behind. I've been using the same Spyder Outland for over a year now, moving it between test bikes as required, but it still elicits weird looks and questions about how I'm able to function properly after sitting on it for three or four hours at a time. A seat's padding has very little to do with how comfortable it is - the shape and flex are what counts - but this is a hard point to get across when trying to convince someone that the gray-colored cheese grater I'm perched on really is comfortable.

Tioga knows that this is discussion is always going to be an uphill battle, which is why their new Undercover Stratum was born.

The Undercover Stratum is basically a Spyder seat with a thin layer of foam - Tioga calls it 'Bio-X Pad Ergo Foam' - applied overtop the flexible webbed shell to provide a bit more forgiveness, both for a rider's underside and his or her eyes. The shell is different from what the two current Spyder seats use, with the flex is tuned to work with the foam padding that's on top of it. The Spyder Stratum and Spyder Outland can feel a bit stiff where the rails attach to the rear of the shell, and up front over the nose, and the Undercover Stratum's additional padding should remedy this while still taking advantage of the design's low weight and the shell's built-in flex characteristics.
Interbike 2016

Claimed weights sit at just 150-grams for the carbon railed model that will cost around $200 USD, and 190-grams for an Undercover Stratum with hollow chromoly rails that will cost about $100 USD.



Interbike 2016


6D's Updated ATB-1 Full Face Helmet

6D's ATB-1 full face helmet gets an update to bring it in-line with Europe's EN1078 testing standard. The ATB-1 had no issues when it came to impact testing, but rather it came down to a field-of-view requirement that forced 6D to create a lower profile chin guard. So that's what they did, essentially knocking a good portion of the mouth piece's height away to have its top edge sit much lower than the original design. Having spent a lot of time in the ATB-1, I can say that I've never had an issue with the chin bar obstructing my vision, but that doesn't matter if Europe's testing standards call for something different and 6D wants to sell their helmets there.

The rest of the ATB-1 remains unchanged, including the helmet's ODS system that sees a number of strategically placed rubber dampers used between its inner and outer EPS shells, a design that essentially creates a sort of in-helmet suspension by allowing the inner and outer EPS foam shells to move independently of one another.

The result is a system that can not only better deal with straight-on impacts but is said to be able to also dissipate those low-angle collisions by allowing the two shells to shear in relation to each other.
Interbike 2016




Renthal's Data Acquisition System

There was a time when designing a handlebar was probably a relatively simple job. You know, before computers and testing standards and whatnot. Things are a bit different these days, however, and companies like Renthal are taking extra steps to not only ensure that their designs are safe, but also that they're performing as desired when it comes to flex. No, having a rock solid handlebar is not a good thing, and creating one with just the right amount of flex is even more difficult now that many feature a 35mm clamping zone.

Regardless of what you think of 35mm handlebars and stem clamps (they're silly, by the way), it's apparently a really easy way to make everything too stiff and unforgiving, which is why Renthal has been using a neat data acquisition system that measures the force being put through the handlebar via sensors plugged into each side of it.

People could push down on the fork in Renthal's booth, which was set up hard as a rock to exaggerate the force being fed into the handlebar, and watch the computer screen give a readout of what exactly is happening. A stiffer, less forgiving handlebar would transmit more force, whereas a softer, more flexible handlebar would make for lower readings, and the data acquisition system allows Renthal to tune this to their liking.
Interbike 2016

85 Comments

  • + 11
 Haha, I'll make a data analysis chart with a barrage of information to show how absolutely everything to do with your bike just fails once the seat on your bike costs less than 200$.
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  • + 2
 Finally an article with interesting "data" to absorb through my eyeball-z.
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  • + 3
 When it comes to testing renthal have raised the bar.
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  • - 1
 Renthal make the best handlebars, bar none.
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  • + 29
 "Regardless of what you think of 35mm handlebars and stem clamps (they're silly, by the way) [...]", indeed they are, very silly!
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  • + 19
 @Marcusthefarkus: 35mm handlebars and stems are silly. No matter the price.
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  • + 26
 Wait a second, did i just read that correct; the 35mm clamping diameter has made designing bars with the correct amount of flex more difficult? WHY THE f*ck INTRODUCE IT THEN?
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  • + 27
 The release from Renthal has already been a bit like: "yea... we have to keep on selling bars, so we made this 35mm stuff (since Truvativ, PRO, Easton and RF will supply it as OEM to most new bikes in 2017)... it's been a hell of a lot of pain in the arse to not make it too stiff and feel like crap... but what can you do"

I'm Glad they still offer 31,8. And by the way @Marcusthefarkus. there's plenty of loaded people wanting 31,8. There's been some here who already tried 35mm and prefer 31,8 for compliance.
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  • + 8
 @Marcusthefarkus: It's common for people to think that more new standards and expenditure automatically makes things better too...
(Look at how little love there is for press fit bottom brackets - we should all cast a critical eye on things before jumping in.)

I could afford 35mm but I'm not sold on it. Even if there was a benefit to going to a 35mm cockpit, the benefit would be so incredibly marginal and certainly not worth the £150 or so I'd have to spend on it... Whilst there is maybe a little truth in what you've said, I think there are a lot of people here who can afford it and still think it is silly...
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  • + 31
 35mm carbon bars are made for dentists because they make your fillings fall out
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  • + 24
 Everytime I go out downhilling, I feel my hands getting raped by my bars and think ''gee wouldn't it be nice to have something even stiffer to destroy my hands on a new level ?''. Also when I crash, I always think about how nice it would be to have an even thinner handlebar wall so my bars would have to be replaced everytime !

I dont understand why you guy are complaining so much !
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  • + 2
 Just in case anyone is interested, I have 35mm bars on my Scalp and I like them a lot. They're no more expensive than the 31.6mm equivalents and I wouldn't swap them. People like different things, get over it
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  • + 3
 But they look so cool!
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  • - 3
 @Kiwiplague: no, because f*ck you.
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  • + 8
 @codfather1234: Off course people are into different things. The issue is: why does now almost EVERYONE is forced into what a few enjoy? 650B wheels have been around since 2005 or so, Kirk Pacenti was allegedly making some cool 650B bikes. Why did we all had to taste it though? Damn right ther are companies making 32"er - wanna try, instead of 29ers? You can put a 165mm fatbike rear spacing into a custom Salsa something, to heave super stiff rear wheel but with regular tyres, but how cool will that be if every new bike in 2018 will have one? Or that stupid steerer Giant twats tried to push? Someone is surely into dropper stems, please enjoy it in the confinement of your own life. We can rest assured that we are closing to the tipping point where this reshaping and resizing of things at a amassive scale, will actually be detrimental to MTB performance and experience. You are the first one I've heard that like 35mm bars over 31.8, and I heard opinions from people who tried both that they are too stiff. Like RF Next 35
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  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: Neither Truvativ or PRO offer 35mm stuff, even those new DESCENDANT parts are 31.8. I actually think that's one of the most interesting aspects of this, actually: neither of the 500lb gorillas of the bike industry has signed on for this particular standard, & remember that SRAM is, according to internet commenters, the evil new standards company.
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  • + 4
 @Marcusthefarkus: it's common for people who think they have money to suggest that they can buy solutions to problems that don't exist. And also to be douchebags.
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  • + 3
 @Groghunter - talking about microscopic gains: I just talked to a roadie work mate about clipless pedals - he claimed they are 30% more effective than flats - I'll make the long story short, operation went well, patient lives, he is only slightly shaken. Let's leave the never ending debate and focus on interesting thing: why do companies don't fight each other on which system is the most efficient? We tried to find any article on "which clipless pedal system is the most effective". Found nothing. Suspicious... Anybody can chime in? Big Grin
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  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: The only studies I've seen that seemed to be properly scientific, showed basically no difference between clips & flats.

I'd still use them on a road bike though, because they're lighter, & because they take the thought out of foot placement, which is beneficial when you're on tilt after 80 miles of riding. I actually sometimes get annoyed at my feet moving around on long pedally sections even on the MTB. love that flexibility for descending, but it doesn't really do much for me on the ups.
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  • + 8
 Lets meet in the middle, 33.4!
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  • + 3
 @WAKIdesigns: I am so happy seeing all these comments regarding the sillyness of 35 clamp bars. I though the mtb industry was so obsessed with "stiffness" that something perceived as being stiffer is simply allways going to be considered better ( obviusly not really the case) It warms my heart that theirs loads of people not dumb enough to buy into some theoretical improvement in handlebars technology .
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  • + 2
 @groghunter: type of pedals do more in MTB than just pedalling efficiency, they take a big part in bike handling. But I just thought that there's a bit of smoke from the fact that companies like Shimano, Look and Time, don't shout at each other for having the superior pedaling system.
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  • + 1
 @schmichael325:
Just great...then it will be 33.4+
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  • + 1
 I ran a 35mm Raceface Next bar (760mm) and a 31.8 Renthal Carbon Lite (740mm) on the same full rigid bike. The Renthal "feels" stiffer. I wish someone had some actual data on these bars...
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  • + 1
 they are good for getting stiff alu bars, but useless in carbon bars. i do have some raceface atlas 35 bars and i love em, noticeably stiffer than my old ones, but i think it would be too stiff if they were carbon.
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  • + 10
 UP, DOWN,... UP , DOWN, UP, DOWN. seems pretty simple to me. Renthal products are bloody good.
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  • + 38
 up up down down left right left right B A start select .... for better bike handling
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  • + 4
 @jpengel: Select -> start... and that's just for two player Smile
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  • + 7
 It's a proven fact that every renthal product on your bike makes you go 15% faster
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  • + 10
 @Grutten: How many parts would I now to make people stop thinking I lost a contact lens when they see me riding down the track ?
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  • + 5
 If Tioga wants to sell more saddles they need to make more sizes. At this point making a single size saddle would be like a bike manufacturer making one frame size. I actually want to buy one after your review, but they don't come in the width I need.
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  • + 7
 No way is your front wheel going to fit in with that there
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  • + 2
 @mikelevy: good to see others use this seat! Maybe I read a previous review from you that prompted me to buy it? i've been using the Outland Spyder for over a year now and love it. Light, simple to clean, and won't get soggy. My bum had to adjust at first but now I don't bother with wearing my padded shorts. Tioga should just make more colors. Beware the ebay knock-offs .
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  • + 2
 Just hanging off the fork will not show much differences in forces, unless you compress quickly (and thus engage the damping circuit in the process). The difference will be more clear on the trail with faster impacts, where flex in the bars will lower the accelerations (by lengthening the slow-down process for your hands compared to the wheel) and through that forces as well.

EDIT: with a too stiff fork on a stand, i think it's hard to squish it fast and long enough for the damping circuit to have much of an effect. A too soft fork would be better for this (preferably with a high damping factor).
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  • + 5
 I think Renthal technicians no a tad more you !
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  • + 1
 @Matt115lamb: I'm going to go along with you on a limb, that you meant to say "I think Renthal engineers know a tad more than you!"

In that case, i can easily be told why my thinking is wrong. It can easily be done by you, it's all the same to me.

It also might be the explanation of the process by Pinkbike, where something was lost 'in translation', but the way it was explained makes zero sense. Sure, it could all be just a marketing gimmick to show people some numbers or i could be missing something. Either way, said explanation should clear all this up.
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  • + 1
 @Primoz: stiffer test fork = less force absorbed by the fork = more force absorbed (or not) by flex in the bar. Having the fork set up stiff mimics a bottom out, square edged bump, high speed vibration or any situation where the fork is going to feel harsh and the rider is going to want the bar to help soak up the impact.

I agree, you'd have to compress the fork quickly to feel any difference in bar flex, but that's the point--on the trail, more gradual hits would be soaked up by the fork, so that's not as much of a factor in the design of the bar. And for actual testing purposes they probably have a linear actuator to compress the fork at precise speeds and forces, rather than some random dude reaming on it. That ain't how you science.
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  • + 1
 The end of 35? Cue rapturous applause if so. Nice one Renthal. No big secrets to bars unless your head is firmly buried up your arse.. alloy bars vibrate more than carbon bars,dampening is in an altogether different league..carbon bars are more expensive and lighter - ...let someone else bore you with the pro's & cons of each & which is best.. IDGAF. Better to set standards than to make a mockery of existing ones by introducing new and unjustified ones..manufacturers are such pussies sometimes.. Don't believe the hype ever..this is MTB, no room for bs!!!!!
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  • + 1
 35mm isn't a standard its just another dimension that looks different and makes an easy talking point for the sale. The greatest effect it has is increasing the number of skews that have to made and stocked. Drives up costs and makes it more likely you won't find what you want on hand in your bike shop. Cons out weigh the pros if any.
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  • + 1
 Hopefully they make a better 35mm bar than Santa Cruz. Worst Handlebar I have ever owned. totally unforgiving and gave me terrible arm pump on trails that I never had arm pump before. Back on some 31.8 renthal fatbars, good times.
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  • + 2
 I loved my fat bar lite until it broke.......then not so much....probably my own fault as I had had a fairly decent crash a few rides prior and hadn't really thought enough about what damage may have been done to the bars.
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  • + 1
 This being the carbon version? Or the ALU?
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  • + 6
 So basically it is kind of all your own fault then and nothing to do with the bar being to blame.
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  • + 1
 @mgolder: Yes own fault but it did show me that you need to check damge on carbon bars
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  • + 1
 On the topic of 35mm bar/stem one thing I've noticed is the lack of 760+ XC/TR/AM bars like the Race Face NEXT SL bars. You'd think being able to run a larger diameter bar would allow manufacturers to get really lightweight yet wide bars. I want 35mm 780 bars under 200g, but they don't seem to exist.
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  • + 1
 RF Next 760mm 35mm bar with 20mm rise is 180g. The 720mm 31.8 Next bar with 19mm rise is 175 grams. Also, if you throw a pair of Ergon grips on the 760mm bar, it should measure out to 772mm.
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  • + 1
 @blast-off: How do Ergon grips make the bar wider? Sticking off the end? An interesting idea...
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  • + 1
 @PHeller: Yeap. I just went out and measured my Renthal 740mm bar, and it measures 755 with a pair of Ergon GE1 grips. If I remember correctly, I got the tip from a bike check interview with Greg Minnaar.
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  • + 1
 @blast-off: happen to remember where that Bike Check was? I can't seem to find any of his bike checks mentions grips.
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  • + 1
 @PHeller: I don't remember, it may have been on the "other" popular bike site. I can tell you I got my pair in February 2016, so I must have got the tip towards the end of the 2015 world cups.
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  • + 3
 That helmet will make me look awesome when I'm flying through the forest on my star wars jumpspeeder
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  • + 3
 Interbike reports this year is like watching paint dry .... Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
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  • + 1
 Thats a shame... used to be the place for great news.
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  • + 3
 You're telling me. Companies don't want to debut new stuff at shows anymore - it just gets drowned by other content too quickly. They want to debut new stuff on their own timeline instead of going with traditional model years and such. It's more relaxed, but I do miss running around like my hair was on fire trying to show you guys exciting things before anyone else does.
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  • + 1
 @mikelevy: I have been waiting to see all the cool new stuff. But seems like all the earlier trade shows and sea otter make Interbike moot when it comes to news. Be interesting if they relook at the whole idea of Interbike after reading the press and publics comment and make it more relevant to todays market.
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  • + 1
 @dv8416: Exactly. Both the Taiwan and German shows are still busy, and there's usually plenty to see there, but Interbike's timing make it a different animal these days. IB won't die, but it's obviously of less importance when it comes to the media and new products.
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  • + 1
 @mikelevy: So here's a question, why isn't there Tradeshow as big as the other shows in Canada? BC is great place for such a show, especially when spring seems to be coming earlier on the west coast.
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  • + 1
 @dv8416: Sucks to say it, but why would there be? There was BTAC, of course, but it's long dead. I can think of a few reasons why there wouldn't ever be a Canadian show the size of Interbike: it's a massive pain in the ass for companies to ship bikes across the border, let along a whole bunch of them; the Canadian market is minuscule compared to others, especially the US and German markets; and as much as I think Las Vegas is a total shit hole, it's cheap to get to and super convenient.

Vegas is close to perfect location for Interbike, even if the city is in contrast to our healthy hobby. Bootleg is a decent place to ride (if it's your first time there) and interesting to anyone who's not spoiled by PNW singletrack, and the convention center and all the hotels are very close to the airport. I get a kick out of everyone who says that Interbike needs to move somewhere that has great riding - I'm sorry, but the show isn't about actually riding bikes. It's about showing new bikes, talking business, etc..

The thing that's holding Interbike back isn't it's location - Eurobike is thriving but Schweinfurt, Germany, has no trails and the town is boring - it's the timing of the show. Not only have the media already shown everything from Taiwan, Sea Otter, and Eurobike, but most everyone's business deals are done. This leaves retailers who want to come to see new bikes, but a lot of major brands have now pulled out of Interbike. So Interbike either needs to change its dates, bring back the big companies somehow, or just continue doing what it's doing. Interbike won't die, but it'll become less relevant.
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  • + 2
 i ran 35mm rf for a solid year to give it a shot, put my 31.8 renthals back on just to see the diference and won't go back... stiffer isn't always better.
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  • + 3
 I read tioga scrotum...lol
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  • + 4
 Tioga .Spygina saddle.
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  • + 2
 That's funny considering that Renthals bars are the stiffest 31.8 bars you can get.
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  • + 7
 Maybe that's what Renthal want?
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  • + 1
 @mikelevy: I always ride renthal bar because of comfort. Maybe it comes from the shape, but my renthal fatbar carbon 31,8 is the most comfortable bar I've ever ridden
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  • + 1
 @fracasnoxteam: same here, settled on Renthal Fatbar Carbon bars due to their uncanny knack of killing the fine trail buzz but not feeling dull and still telling me what the front wheel is up to. My previous Easton Havoc Carbon bars felt way too stiff, would get hand cramp regularly with them.
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  • + 1
 I don't know if that's a fact that Renthal is the siffest, but even the 31.8 aluminum bar is comfy. I love aluminum Fatbars, they are my favorite. I have other aluminum bars that feel stiffer to these hands.
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  • + 2
 @panaphonic
no they aren't, the Germans tested bars and Renthal were found to be weak....I have no idea if there conclusion (seemed to be "dangerous") is right though
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  • + 2
 @DARKSTAR63: agreed. The Fatbars keep making their wayback onto my bikes because, comfort. 31.8 all the way too!
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  • + 1
 Make bikes as stiff as possible. That way the flex point will be the fork crown/steer tube/stanchion interface. New CSUs on warranty for all!
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  • + 2
 Cue comments about what the seat looks like...
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  • + 2
 I want that seat!
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  • + 1
 Did Renthal buy some surplus equipment from the 70s for data acquisition?
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  • - 3
 "Regardless of what you think of 35mm handlebars and stem clamps (they're silly, by the way)"

says someone who's too weak of a rider to have ever broken a handlebar, causing a crash, not resulting from one. I'll take 35 mm, thanks. :/
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  • + 2
 so youre assuming hes never broken a handlebar, and then call him weak because of it?

wow
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  • + 2
 Bigger the diameter, bigger the pleasure? Enjoy yourself taking those 35mm.
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  • + 5
 Your mistake is assuming that a larger clamp diameter is going to make for a stronger handlebar that's less likely to break. It's obviously not that simple. Can a 35mm handlebar be stronger? Sure, and so can a 31.8mm handlebar.

My issue isn't with strength, it's with how some companies (not Renthal) have marketed their 35mm handlebars as being stiffer, and also insinuating how that's a good thing.

Cool that you're strong enough that you've broken a handlebar, though. Kudos, but are you sure it didn't break because it was damaged previously, or maybe from the stem/handlebar interface not being optimal? Nah, it broke because of your strength. I bet your legs break chains as well, not poor shifting or previous damage.
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  • + 2
 @mikelevy: I don't know about other companies, but Race Face only claims a weight savings due to the reduced material requirements of the increased clamp diameter.

Their SixC 3/4" (19mm) rise bar is narrower (785mm) and heavier than it's 800mm wide 20mm rise 35 clamp sibling.

As a freerider dirtbag, I give zero f*cks about a 10g difference. I just like how burly the wider clamp looks, and can attest to it's prowess as a high-end handlebar.
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  • + 1
 What's your riding advanced stats?

My wet root Corsi is elite
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