First Look: Industry Nine's A35 Stem

Oct 23, 2018
by Daniel Sapp  
Industry Nine A35 stem


You've likely heard (and heard of) Industry Nine's flashy, loud, high-engagement wheelsets. Now the Asheville, North Carolina, based company is branching out from creating hubs, wheels, and other small bits such as their Matchstix thru-axle multi-tool, and adding stems to their repertoire.

I9's A35 stem is machined from aluminum billet and designed for, as the name so subtly hints, a 35mm diameter bar clamp. The stem is available in multiple lengths and like the brand's wheels, multiple anodized colors. It sells for $125 and for those who want a little extra customization, you can mix the stem and faceplate color combos for an extra $15.
A35 Stem Details
• CNC-machined aluminum
• Bar clamp: 35mm
• Lengths: 32mm, 40mm. 50mm, 60mm
• Weights: 128g, 135g, 150g, 165g (respectively)
• Rise: +/- 6-deg (32mm length: +/- 5-deg)
• Stack: 40mm; (32mm length: 42mm)
• Colors: 11 different options
• MSRP: $125 USD
industrynine.com

Industry Nine A35 stem
All the colors.


Background & Design

So, a stem from what's been known as a "wheel company" for over a decade is a bit of a leap, but it seems that the crew at I9 have put quite a bit of thought into it. I asked where the inspiration came from and, according to Vice President Jacob McGahey, it's a project they've been wanting to do for some time. He said, "We wanted to produce something that provided class-leading performance, but also visually distinguished itself from what is currently available. However, we didn't have the room take it on due to the combination of rapid growth and keeping up with all of the demands of the hub and wheel market. We recently added some additional engineering and operations resources that opened up the bandwidth needed to jump into some new projects."

A little history - Industry Nine have been selling their own wheels since 2005. While the stem is technically the first foray for I9 into anything unrelated to wheels and axles, the manufacturing side of I9, Turnamics, has been making bicycle parts outside of hubs and wheels for almost 30 years - including many of the parts for the original RockShox suspension forks. Turnamics still does manufacturing for several other bike industry brands, as well as contract manufacturing for other industries. All of this is under the same West Asheville roof as I9.

Industry Nine A35 stem
Industry Nine A35 stem
Laser etching and anodized colors make for a pretty sleek look.

As far as the design and construction of the stem goes, the same team that designs I9's hubs and wheelsets worked on the stem. According to McGahey, the biggest challenge with creating the stem was "making a structure that meets our form follow function ethos." In other words, I9 likes function and fashion to coincide.

The stem was made to be as stiff as possible, but still at what I9 considered to be a competitive weight, while upholding their standards. "Every curve and chamfer on the stem was designed to place material where it was needed for strength and appropriate wall thickness," according to I9.

To test the stem, I9 built an in-house stem and handlebar testing unit and utilized a test protocol that exceeds the ISO standard for stems. "We brought in competing products from most of the premier stem manufacturers to benchmark against as well," says McGahey. "All four lengths of our stems lasted over 50,000 cycles at progressively higher loads, while none of the other stems we tested made it over 30,000."


What's With the A35 Name & What about 31.8?

The A35 name comes from the A-axis in I9's five-axis CNC machining centers. 35? Well, that's the bar diameter the stem works with. Easy enough.

As far as a 35mm stem goes, I9 said that they wanted to go with it, "because it is steadily taking off as the industry standard for aggressive mountain biking and as bars continue to get wider, the 35mm clamp allows handlebars to be made lighter and stronger." I agree with that - there's no doubt that more and more bikes are coming with 35mm bars. They also said, "we want to make sure we can deliver the 35mm product to our dealers and customers before jumping into additional offerings." Respectably, McGahey says that they do recognize that the 31.8mm size has a place and they are certainly considering adding that diameter in the future.

Industry Nine A35 stem
Industry Nine A35 stem
Details are well thought out.


Performance

I've been using the A35 stem for several weeks now. It went on the bike easy as any stem should. I torqued it to spec and have been riding it without much thought since. I will say that it looks damn good on the front of my Yeti SB130 test bike and has garnered more comments than the bike in short order. I'm using the 40mm edition and it's nice to see a variety of lengths, including a short 32mm offered.

As far as any issues go, we're talking about a stem here so I'm really hoping to never have any or much more to report on that side of things.



Pinkbike's Take
bigquotesThere are a number of good stems available today and more and more companies are adopting 35mm as a standard. Industry Nine's A35 is one of the comparatively few options for what I would consider a "class leading" or "designer" 35mm stem at the current time. The quality of and craftsmanship in the design are very evident and it reflects the company's other high-end work. The ability to color coordinate with bikes, wheels, pedals, or other components is a bonus.Daniel Sapp







284 Comments

  • + 169
 "...The team also tested the stem and claim that their in-house testing gave them results showing that the A35 lasted substantially longer to failure than any competitor's product they tested..."

The bullshit is strong here.
  • + 108
 the bullshit is strong all over the article, clearly paid for advertorial. Its a fucking stem
  • + 81
 "...I asked where the inspiration came from and, according to Vice President Jacob McGahey, it's a project they've been wanting to do for some time. He said, "We wanted to produce something that provided class-leading performance, (chuckle chuckle..) ok, off the record? We wanted to produce something that cost $20 to make and we could sell for $125. And that's not counting the dopes who would pay another $15 for Keith in shipping to put a different color front plate on. Takes him 2 minutes to do that, so you do the math. The markup on these things is ridiculous and we wanted a piece of that action."
  • + 7
 35mm is the new Industry Standard ?
  • + 23
 They seem to have the test rig to be able to back it up - how can you be so sure its bullshit?

Realistically, it may well be stronger than the competition, but that could just mean this is considerably overbuilt with competing products also being easily fit for purpose, they use 7075 for the whole stem for a start which is leagues ahead of the 6061 used in the majority of other stems.
  • - 1
 @ckubler: Its a crap advertorial then - look what the other websites managed to put together as a release article, I would want my money back if I was I9.

bikerumor.com/2018/10/23/hands-on-industry-nine-a35-stem-turns-with-precision-from-cnc-machining
  • + 4
 @justanotherusername: when you do your comparison testing in house some companies may just compare against known inferior products. Not saying that's what happened here. If be nice to know what it was compared to.
  • + 2
 @Duderz7: Quite possibly, but as they are not listing what products they tested theirs against (and it would be wrong to do so as it wasnt independent) its a not really fair to make that suggestion either.
  • + 149
 @smithcreek: Hey bud you obviously have your head far up your a** if you think that something like that cost $20 to make. You know how much a single endmill, ball endmill, facemill inserts, etc cost? Try hopping on McMaster and be ready for your mind to be blown. Choose your material. 7075 is gonna be the top dog in this application. Forging or billet...no chinese pot metal here. Then get on your CAD program of choice and design said stem. After months of iterations of design to Ansys, back to design, back to Ansys, now you're ready to prototype. How about machining time? You ever programmed for a multi-axis CNC anything? How about the amount of machine set-ups that it takes to make a stem? Oh and then there is the tooling to hold everything while it's being machined. Since you'll be mass producing stems (small quantities compared to what some think production is) you'll be sinking a ton of money into tool designs, then either making the tooling in-house or paying a machine shop to do it, depending on your capacity. Don't forget the skilled machinists you're going to need to run the machines that are making these pieces. They don't come cheap, this isn't your burger flipping wages. It's a dying trade. So now your stem is fully machined and it's time to ano. Do you outsource or do it in-house? Tanks, dyes, chemicals, do you want to mess with that? Either way, now you're sending your complete stem to your quality department to make sure that everything is per drawing and in tolerance. Which likely will take more programming by a skilled tech on a CMM. Probably off-line programming because it's more efficient when you have a demanding product line. Ok it's functional. Gets sent to the testing department. Does it pass testing and mimic closely to the Ansys results? If yes, ready for production. If no, start from the top and re-design the appropriate part. Maybe you run that stem for 2 years before you realize that your biking community wants a different design that "looks" updated and fresh. Repeat this process all over again. Now do this with multiple biking components. Oh and notice I left out paying rent for a shop, the cost of CNC machines, the power it takes to run said machine, coolant, etc. We'll just say those are all "free". I can tell you from experience because I worked for a company that made some very high quality components for the bike and ski industry. The mark-up on quality parts like this is minimal. A lot of the companies that you see in the bike industry aren't just making components for bikes, they're a machine shop too with other streams of income. If you don't like the price, move on. But I can't come on here and let someone with no clue spread clueless, incorrect information
  • + 21
 @krashDH85: that should be copied and pasted as a reply to all of those that think making a part by 'CNC' involves a laptop and a big green button on the front of a machine that somehow does all of the rest of the work for you.....
  • + 2
 ...hey look! another cnc'd stem....Does anyone remember dnagerboy? Now that was a cnc'd stem...
  • + 11
 @krashDH85: Now this guy gets it!
  • - 3
 Does I9 makes good hubs and wheels?
I assume so, but never had one.
If they do, then more likely to trust the product.
The marketing thing is quite a turn off, I would prefer they just said this stem has a great finish, it is built with very tight tolerance, it is strong and made in the usa (is it?).
  • + 3
 @smithcreek: Keith in shipping is Randy's long lost brother.
  • + 15
 @krashDH85: It's almost like you know what you're talking about! A breath of fresh air. I love when the armchair engineers come on here and think they know more than the guy whose full-time job it is to do this stuff.
  • + 1
 @RedRedRe: They make the best bicycle wheels on the planet. Their one piece alloy spoke is revolution in wheel design. Not only does it eliminate the flex / weak point of the J-bend, it also eliminates the spoke nipple, which is basically just rotational weight that adds another flex point. Not to mention where the threads are cut into a steel spoke is generally the thinnest part of the spoke and where it's most likely to fail. The I-9 one piece spoke is the thickest where the threads start. Other companies have finally caught up in terms of hub engagement (3 degrees) but the true beauty and engineering marvel of their wheels is the 1 piece spoke. They are also extremely easy to lace and build. I wouldn't touch a j-bend wheel with a ten foot pole at this point. Oh, and yes they design and make everything in house except for the enduro cartridge bearings in the hubs and the actual rims.
  • - 1
 @endurocat: no, just the latest group think project by the puppet masters.
  • + 1
 I'll take that $125 and put it back into my wallet... Then remember, oh hey, I can put that money to something more useful...
  • + 9
 @justanotherusername: Yeah I definitely understand most here won't get it, but there's reason for that. It's not the industry they've ever been exposed to. I'm lucky enough to work with many talented machinists. They have great minds that can do some pretty incredible things with the machines of their trade. Usually massive machine shops will have a mix of machinists and operators, but the process has to be extremely dialed to be able to throw an operator at it. The majority of the work that I did and currently do definitely requires a machinist (or a technician) to be at the helm. I have great respect for the manufacturing industry as a whole.
  • + 8
 @justanotherusername:

An MTB really only needs a Send button
  • + 6
 @krashDH85: Finally someone here who understands what goes to developing product, specially CNC'd product. and even if the raw materials were $20 per stem, that's usually a minor fraction of the overall cost of fabrication. good post, Although I would suggest using paragraphs next time, to aid in reading haha.
  • + 1
 @krashDH85: Check out www.smithcreekmandolin.com/christopherbassguitar.html . I'm a luthier, those are basses I build and a large part of them is done on my very own CNC, with drawings I did in CAD on my very own computers. Not just the carved top and back, but the bridge, tailpiece and some of the metal parts. So yeah, I know a little about endmills and maybe not as clueless as you would like to think.
  • + 3
 @endurocat: and I swear I read recently on PB the trend of wide handlebars has been fading(I never stopped riding my "tiny" handlbar".
  • + 4
 @smithcreek: Beautiful work you do there, but if you truly understand all of those concepts that I laid out you'd also get why something like this doesn't cost $20 to make
  • + 6
 @pedrosalas7: Ha yeah I know paragraphs would help with the ease of reading. Still haven't figured out how that's done.

Even when I seem to put them in they usually just go back to a big block when I post.

Edit: Look at that it worked
  • + 3
 @smithcreek: cool work there man, check the I9 video out though, just the circle of brother / fanuc machines would cost around a mill.

A one machine / one man shop can be very competitive for runs of niche / small qty items and get a good/ fast ROI from a sensible investment - scaling a machine shop / manufacturing plant is extremely expensive though when you consider the relatively small sale quantities.
  • + 9
 It's extremely apparent that 90% of the people commenting here have no idea how a manufacturing company works. Either buy the stem or don't, you just make yourself look like an idiot when you start talking about the big bike conspiracy, everyone's just out to get all of your money right? The people that do this engineering and design work get take a paycut to work in an industry they love and care about, they pour month's of work into an optimized, engineered product just to have it shit on by people who have no idea what they are talking about .

Nice work Industry nine, it warms my heart to see companies engineering optimized designs that are also beautiful and one-hundred percent made in the USA, don't let the haters get to you!
  • + 3
 @smithcreek: I just want to be clear. I accidentally hit the props button with my mouse. I think your comment is based on you not knowing shit about CNC work.
  • + 4
 @krashDH85: Well put. I was about to write a similar response (only shorter!!). I run a CNC mill out of my garage (mainly for hobby) and have made plenty of parts for my bikes and motorcycles (rear sets, linkages, triple clamps, stems, etc., including in-house anodizing). You are devoting a good weekend to run through most of the process you've described IF everything goes perfect the first time and you know exactly what you are doing. Repeatability in production runs is even more difficult than one-offs that I do. Re-homing and re-referencing after each time can be a b_tch even with high precision jiggs! Now I just pay the $125 for a nice stem and spend my weekends riding.
  • - 6
flag duzzi (Oct 23, 2018 at 12:25) (Below Threshold)
 Looks like a Renthal Apex copy cat. Incredibly annoying that it is offered only in A35. planned obsolescence in Action!
  • - 2
 Ill probably buy one and put it on my dentist bike. shiny
  • + 8
 Well I for one find the price reassuring. I don’t want a renthal apex, everyone has one of those. And I can get this in a colour to match my nipples.
  • + 7
 @krashDH85: Hell yeah, brother! I hate seeing rants about components like these by people who have never made anything more than a mother's day card in their lives. If you don't understand the process, then spare us your noise.

Is it a stem? yeah. does it accomplish the same thing as a $20 brand X stem? yeah. But, this thing is bad ass for hundreds of reasons. Some people can appreciate art, design, and craftsmanship and some can't.
  • - 2
 @Satanslittlehelper: Sure, he gets it. But he didn't have to be a dick about it.

Most of what he went on about in that rant are R&D costs. So, while the stem may truly be on the order of $20-$50 in parts and labor, the development is costly and needs to be recouped.
  • - 5
flag Poulsbojohnny (Oct 23, 2018 at 14:22) (Below Threshold)
 @smithcreek:
@krashDH85: Check out www.smithcreekmandolin.com/christopherbassguitar.html . I'm a luthier, those are basses I build and a large part of them is done on my very own CNC, with drawings I did in CAD on my very own computers. Not just the carved top and back, but the bridge, tailpiece and some of the metal parts. So yeah, I know a little about endmills and maybe not as clueless as you would like to think.

Roasted
  • + 2
 @smithcreek: So how do you figure it costs $20 to make stem. Inc development costs, anodizing, machining, machine setup, QC, testing etc etc........best you buy your stems from Aliexpress - see you next time at the medical centre!!
  • + 5
 @Poulsbojohnny: Not sure who that's aimed at, but if at me that's ok. I'm posting facts, not presumptions. Yes, a lot of the cost is R&D. No company out there is eating all of that R&D. Some may see it as a rant, others may find the facts informative. But for those that want to know how the industry works, a fraction of the information is there. There's also separate costs that arise during production. Plenty that I didn't even get into.

As far as being roasted, nah. No one's feelings are hurt. @smithcreek looks to have a quality product and trade. But someone with manufacturing expertise and talent should understand all that goes into costs. Heck the 7075 material needed to make a stem costs about $25 give or take based on raw material weight, at current rates. I don't expect people that have never been in the design and manufacturing industry to understand. I put it out there, people can take it or leave it.

The bike industry is much faster paced as far as products changing (especially now a days) therefor the window to re-coup your investment and turn a profit on your product line is smaller (reads higher prices). You have to repeat all of your steps as soon as your product line changes. If you can swing it you mitigate it by finding ways to re-use tooling and still make product design changes, but that can be challenging and costly. If a company had 5 years to make money on a product you'd likely see prices drop, but that's just not the case in the bike world.
  • + 3
 @TheSmilingDentist: "I don’t want a renthal apex, everyone has one of those. And I can get this in a colour to match my nipples."

I don't think they come in brown.
  • + 1
 @ckubler: Yet it yielded 224 comments.
  • + 1
 @TheSmilingDentist: flesh coloured?
  • - 4
flag Poulsbojohnny (Oct 23, 2018 at 16:31) (Below Threshold)
 @krashDH85: It was aimed at you. Smile Tone was pretty harsh, I thought. You are obviously in the industry so maybe it touched a nerve? This last reply was much nicer sounding. My reply pointed out the 'hidden' costs of putting any product to market. It isn't as easy as some think.

Not that it is any skin off my back, I didn't get my feathers ruffled. Smile

cheers
  • + 0
 @Satanslittlehelper: because nothing says great like proprietary spokes! I hate simple replacements available at every bike shop on the planet, I prefer to ride with a few spare spokes shoved up my ass for convenience!
  • + 3
 @krashDH85: $20 is probably a pretty good guess.

$125 MSRP means dealer buys for ~$75
$75 means distributor buys for ~$48
$48 means I9 must make for about ~$24

Any more than that and they might want to close shop.

But I agree, you can’t buy all the infrastructure required to CNC one stem for $20.
  • + 6
 @spaceofades: Considering every hub has different flange dimensions and every rim has a different erd, all spokes are basically proprietary. Lots of shops don’t have a spoke cutter and the likelihood of walking into a random shop and finding the length you need is pretty slim. I9 provides a few spares with every wheel set, so if you break one riding locally (which I assume is where most people ride) it’s a non issue. If your traveling to ride you should be carrying spares anyway, because again shops don’t stock 4000 different lengths of j-bends. I’ve been riding I9’s exclusively for over a decade now, I’ve never once been stranded by them. 1 because the spokes are so strong they don’t break often and 2 they build to such a strong wheel you have to loose 3 or 4 spokes next to each other for the wheel to go out of true. By all means though, keep stuffing things up your ass, it’ll make it harder for you talk out of it.
  • + 0
 @duzzi: This isn't anywhere near a Renthal Apex. Try a Raceface Turbine..... Ctrl C..... Ctrl V
  • + 1
 I saw the test equipment they were using on their new stems, it was legit!
  • + 3
 @stella10: I understand about keystone pricing, worked in bike and ski shops during school. That was the perk of working there, products at cost (and the only way to afford it in school! )

That first line is true. The 2nd and 3rd are debatable depending if you choose to go through a distributor. I've never worked in a machine shop where they have 100% markups on products each step of the way. That's why short runs are hardly profitable for a machine shop, it's the follow on or production runs that start to make them money.

I purchase material all the time. The raw material mills set the pricing so the machine shop's cost to produce starts there. Billet or forged 7075 is going to cost the machine shop $20+ to make a stem like that.
  • - 2
 @krashDH85: you are overpaying for 7075.
  • - 1
 @stella10: Correct! Because like I-9 he exists in Trump’s America!
  • - 2
 @krashDH85: more like $8-10
  • - 1
 @Satanslittlehelper: I’m not sure if you are being sarcastic or serious...
  • + 2
 @krashDH85: Well said!
  • + 1
 @krashDH85: does the customer must care - how it was manufactured?
Only if you are interested in process I guess.

So, we have RF stem that will last till the end of our days, and we have A35 that will last the same. Design is subjective so ..

33$ vs 125$
Tough decision.



And about CNC - are machines used ONLY for making those particular stems? No. So, don't count them for 100% when speaking about manufacturing price of stems.
  • - 1
 @krashDH85: Wouldn't a company that already produces (and maybe also has anodizing equipment) intricate parts of this nature be able to skip some of these steps?
  • - 1
 @ssteve: yup, just what I wrote before. )

And even more funny - pass a stem for QC dept and testing dept. Department? Seriously? Like a crowd of specialy educated scientists?! ))))

Oh, marketing is such marketing..
  • + 1
 @ckubler: ...and its freaking heavy compared to others.
  • + 2
 @krashDH85: Well said!
  • + 4
 @ka81: You obviously don't have a clue what you're talking about. Yes there are quality control specialists. They have departments. As well as testing. It can be 1 person, or it can be a group. They have things like calipers and micrometers, CMM's, bore mics, depth mics, large, flat graphite slabs...all sorts of fun tools. They have to know how to use these and be able to accurately measure to 1/6 the width of one of the hairs on your head. As well yes, a lot of these people will go to a tech school how to learn these type of trades. They have to know geometric dimensioning and tolerancing (GD&T) very well, if it's used by engineers. They have to understand engineering drawings and engineering intent. They are the last department that's able to ensure a part is correct before it gets to you, the customer. It's not to be taken lightly as design margins need to be met. If something is designed to hit a tolerance, it better be there because it COULD mean the difference between functionality or failure for you, the end user.

Oh also it doesn't matter if the customer "cares" how it's manufactured or not.
These are businesses, not charities. All of these things have to be factored into pricepoint to be a successful business.

As far as CNC machine time, you most certainly count that in. You just have to factor in the amount of time it takes to make that particular part...not the entire CNC or other runs of parts it makes. Buying the CNC is a capital cost, which is why I left it out of my original post
  • - 8
flag ka81 (Oct 24, 2018 at 11:26) (Below Threshold)
 @krashDH85: you don't have a clue what are we here talking about. And we are talking about stems. Stems, amigo, not frames, not brakes, not cranksets, but stems.
  • - 1
 @krashDH85: Nice stem - well machined and manufactured. For sure heavier than it has to be.
But do you truly believe, all you are saying? You really think, that this is how a stem is designed and manufactured? You make producing a stem sound like a lot of rocket science is involved.
There isn´t! Period!
Believe me, or believe me not, you are being overly dramatic.
People are willing to pay this price for a nice piece of stem from I9. That´s why it costs the price it does.
And that is totally legit.
  • + 2
 @Sacki: @Sacki: What he has written is pretty typical of the way a larger machine-shop is staffed and operated in terms of the standard of employees required to perform many of the tasks such as metrology, 5 axis machine programming and tooling design etc etc.

Not all of this is absolutely required to make a stem and a perfectly good stem can be made more simply and with less steps to the process but I can almost guarantee this will be pretty much how a company like Hope would also go about getting a stem to market and ensuring it is being made to the standards they require - Check out a video from hope, it will show pretty much all of the steps.

This is the reason precision manufacturing is an expensive game, the software is expensive, the machines expensive, the supporting articles (tooling, air, workholding, metrology etc) expensive and the people experienced and qualified enough to use them are also relatively expensive.

Do I think pricing the stem at $120 is too much? - It is a lot of money for what it is / what it does - Much of this will be because of the way the industry works (manufacturer, distributor, retailer all taking a cut) though and the realistically low sales numbers but Hope and Renthal do much better in terms of price and as we don't have a comparison between the function of them we cant say if one performs measurably better than the other either.

What I will maintain is that its just a choice, if you don't like it then shop elsewhere but I am sure the guys at I9 wont be buying a private jet from the stems sales, they aren't involved in a conspiracy to put the price of parts up in the industry and they do seem to have produced a well tested, quality product, at least it isn't an older crank-brothers style deal where you pay high prices but get junk, as you say its a nice thing and that's why people will pay for it.
  • + 2
 @justanotherusername: I am not saying, the stem is overpriced. Producing parts by full CNC is expensive, no doubt. That is one of the reasons, why the stem is priced at that level.
However, if @krashDH85 believes, that designing a 150g 50mm stem requires a lot of ANSYS (FEM) work then he is wrong.
He is writing about months of ANSYS testing back and forth before even going for prototyping. Riiight.
If a stem was designed with FEM optimization in mind, it would not have sharp edges and radiuses. It would simply not look edgy. Period.
Messing up a 150g stem in terms of strength would be really really hard to do.
He just makes it sound as if there was a lot of crazy development involved at a stem like this.
Hope was never famous for being light, but for being reliable and well manufactured. Same goes for I9. Those guys make nice products with a great finish.
That does´t mean that it takes half a year to design a stem.
This stem ha its price tag for good reasons., but those reasons are not mainly to required design cost, development cost, testing cost, and especially not the dramatically explained QC cost.
Oh, and I like the stem!
  • + 4
 @krashDH85: when I started as an engineer in the automotive world, I was blown away by the cost of prototyping and how these companies just throw hundreds of thousands of dollars around.. but as time went on and I experienced first hand the amount of time and work that goes into getting something ready for production, I became more tolerant to the cost stamped onto certain things.

I would like to thank you for taking the time to write this all out, because I am a weaker man than you, and do not have the patience to do so.
  • + 1
 @Sacki: thank you for BikeYoke )))
THAT component definitly worth its price!
  • - 3
 @Sacki: Are you the owner of Bikeyoke? Pretty poor form on many levels if so.
  • + 1
 @krashDH85: ????????
  • + 1
 That was suppose to be a thumb up guess no imojis on PB
  • + 54
 You know the axle standard B.S. has gone too far when Industry9 is looking for an alternative hobby.
  • + 50
 860 words about a stem, of which 111 are about performance. Wut?!

2 bits of metal, 6 bolts, looks decent, comes in lots of colours, costs a fortune.

Review done.
  • + 3
 you really counted the words?
  • + 8
 @gtill9000: copy/drop into Word...?
  • + 2
 @pau11y - ok will word tell you that 111 of the 860 words are about performance?
  • + 6
 @gtill9000: It's a plugin
  • + 2
 @gtill9000:
Highlight sentences of value and repeat above...?

Just tossing an option for avail tool with which you can pull this off.
  • + 2
 @gtill9000: you use alt + f4
  • + 4
 @pau11y: you solved the big mystery! Yes you can word count a specific section in word, took about 7 seconds. Was not expecting this to be the main focus of the replies though ????
  • + 5
 Thanks for the IT support everyone
  • + 26
 Does anyone actually buy a stem based on criteria other than price/size/colour? I genuinely have never heard of a properly tightened stem breaking, perhaps I'm just lucky...?
  • + 6
 I'm sure they can and do break, but it's extremely rare compared to every other part on a bike. Seriously, it might have the lowest failure rate of any bike component.
  • + 6
 Raceface Turbine, Thomson - theres a handful that crack faceplates.
  • + 1
 @browntown40: what should you do to crack faceplate of stem? WHAT? )))
  • + 2
 I had a NS stem that cracked on both sides the moment i torqued it to recommended Nm...
  • + 0
 I’ve cracked a half dozen Thompson stems over the years.
  • + 1
 Cracked RF turbine faceplate (yes it was to torque)
  • + 6
 @onespeedbrian: Stop using Thompson stems...
  • + 2
 You missed a very important criteria: --Looks Bitchen-- but apparently some people just care about the other stuff.
  • + 1
 Had a burgtec one snap while rolling round a car park once
  • + 17
 Can someone explain me - what is the difference between any stems (in one size I mean)?
What's a difference between 35mm stem from I9 and from Truvativ or RF or any other?
They all sit strong on fork steerer tube and keep strong handlebar!..
  • + 18
 Price? Lol.
  • + 11
 www.jensonusa.com/Race-Face-Aeffect-35-Stem
$33.99

What is different from $125 I9 A35 ???
  • + 17
 One starts as a block of alloy and was designed, machined, anodized, lasered, and assembled all under the same roof here in America. The other is just another cheap stem.
  • + 25
 @FindDigRideRepeat: Unlike just another cheap brake, just another cheap rim, hub or tyre, the just another cheap stem, or seatpost really do the job just as well as I9, Burgtec, Rideworks. etc. They bring nothing more but emotional value. Fine let's just be clear about it. As long as you don't shop at Ali Express, but buy from major companies, then nobody is doing himself some disservice by buying a bloody cheap stem.
  • + 5
 @ka81: Looks and Weight
  • + 17
 @FindDigRideRepeat: the cheap stem that was forged is actually stronger.
  • + 3
 I've had threads on cheap stems strip out during a crash
  • + 9
 @LukeBurgie: Good thing they're cheap so you can buy another one.
  • + 1
 @LukeBurgie: Did you try that theory yourself? Did your dentist tell you that? Wink Thomson stems are so fkng made in USA. They fail without crashing.
  • + 1
 @FindDigRideRepeat: yeah, but which is which?
  • - 2
 @justanotherusername: not much rocket science here really. I9 stem is done with high QC and manufacturing standards. This is why weight can be brought down, fine shapes can be carved. Changes in design can be applied directly. Cheap stem has added material for error margin. The error margin means they need less QC and lower manufacturing standards. Difference up to 100g. Do you care? If you do, fine. Not all cheap stems are casted. Some are CNCd. Which means they can be as good as this I9. You are left with emotional value.
  • + 4
 @WAKIdesigns: Waki, I part own a manufacturing company with CNC machinery being our primary type of production, I didn't say it was rocket science, just a bad article.
  • + 2
 @WAKIdesigns: oh and your argument is missing one thing, material.

7075 v 6061/6082.
  • - 5
flag RedRedRe (Oct 23, 2018 at 5:45) (Below Threshold)
 They are all made in china. If you run carbon bars you know the difference.
  • - 2
 @FindDigRideRepeat: "One starts as a block of alloy and was designed, machined, anodized, lasered, and assembled all under the same roof here in America. The other is just another cheap stem."

I hope you are just kidding and (in a topic about just STEM) you are not serious, especialy about value of being made in America.
  • - 2
 @rattlehead: "Looks and Weight"

Looks - it's very subjective so it CAN NOT has such influence on REAL PRICE (3 times difference!!!).

Weight - ok, this one I agree, it's some reason (not for me but I agree).
  • + 0
 @justanotherusername: "7075 v 6061/6082"
Again, we are talking about STEM (not cranksets, not frame, not .........)!!
So, does it matter for STEM if it's 7075 or 6061/6082? I mean when we speak about 33$ and 120$.
  • + 1
 @ka81: Craftsmanship and materials. Different alloys have different qualities and costs. I personally would but the $34 stem, unless I had disposable income, then I'd get the fancy one.
  • - 1
 @Duderz7: I understand, I know, but - we are talking about STEM!!! ))
  • + 1
 @rattlehead: "Looks and Weight"

Two more things we're not number one at.
  • + 1
 @ka81: Does it matter? I have not designed a stem so cant comment but imagine most stems on the market today work to a standard whereby they are more than strong enough for the typical environment and length of time that they are expected to perform within it.

What does appear to the be the case though is that this material and design has allowed for a very strong product which failed after its competitors (we dont know what those are, I will admit, but whats the point in testing your product against somethign you know is junk?)

I9 are offering you the option you the option to purchase their product, if you dont feel its worth it then go and buy something else.
  • - 3
 @justanotherusername: I have no bloody clue about CNC. I work with buildings. But structural margins are margins. It is no wonder to me that if their stem weighs 150g, then whatever I buy on CRC weighing at 250g, will do the job.No matter the material and method. As long as it is not Ali Express kind of shit. Then I wouldn't even trust a 500g one. I really think if you buy your stuff from there you deserve to end up in a hospital. Then you get some insane Germans getting insane numbers. This is where there are quite possibly virtually no margins. Nobody suddenly pulls out 100g stem out of their arse and it can take same thing as 150g one made to high standards like this I9. Ti bolts alone just don't cut it.
  • + 3
 The colors, just look at all the colors!
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: you have lost me there Waki, sorry, the only sense I can make is you have no idea about how this kind of part is manufactured or designed yet you will comment on its function regardless and that 100g isn't important to you.
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: You are too opinionated. Not everything on AliExpress is shit, even though it might be cheap. You're almost certainly riding some of the stuff made in the same factories and designed by the same engineers as the stuff sold on Aliexpress off-brand, you just might have a fancy sticker plastered to your part (or, ehm, lasered onto an anodized surface) which brings you emotional value, and you probably paid much more.

Don't judge if you haven't tried it. Any rebuttal rant will be disregarded until you have evidence you bought "shit" from AliExpress and put it through the rigors of riding.
  • - 6
flag WAKIdesigns (Oct 23, 2018 at 7:43) (Below Threshold)
 @zdebruine: heh, sorry not risking that. No rebutall here, Natural selection is a good thing.
@justanotherusername - no idea how it is manufactured and designed, really? huh... tell me when you get your contract with NASA. Let's just respect each other. I never said it is stupid to make or buy a stem like this I9. I have no idea what your problem is.
  • + 0
 heres a good one:
How can you tell if someone is an engineer?
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: Waki do you have a split personality?

Your own words being you have 'no bloody clue about CNC and work with buildings'.
  • - 5
flag WAKIdesigns (Oct 23, 2018 at 8:27) (Below Threshold)
 @iqbal-achieve: by his certificate and work experience? Maybe people who you work woth can say whether you are an engineer or not? I am currently fixing a revolving door placement in a facade, which requires problem solving complexity I could write 1000 words about, that making a stupid stem for a stupid mountain bike cannot really match? I can draw a stem like that in 3D, I can even make it parametric, I can even print it in 3d. One call a couple of hundred of bucks, one mail, and i can get that machined from whichever material you find “optimal”. Should I keep describing how unfortunately big my penis is?! Honestly... if there is anything impressive in making of that stem it is how do you make bike parts and stay in business. Sorry. Holy sht. So you operate CNC machine? How cute!
  • + 4
 @WAKIdesigns: Bud, I like most of your posts on PB because of the controversy and conversation it draws, but when you have ZERO clue about a process, just eat it and don't argue with the people that know what they're talking about (@justanotherusername). Your comment "Not all cheap stems are casted. Some are CNCd." says it all. Casting, well that's process to create raw material. That would fall into the same category as billet, or a forging. CNC, well now that's a machining process. Apples and oranges. Not all bike components are created equal.
  • + 1
 It matters if a stem does not have tight tolerances, ie your bars can spin or break as you need to over tight. Even more with carbon. It matters the quality of the material, as you dont want to strip the threads. Not all alloy xx are the same. It matters the design of the steering clamp and top area, as you do not want to cut yourself. It matters how easy is to properly install the bars. That said, there are plenty of cheap stems that are better than high end stems ie i ll take a basic 3t road stem over a thompson, ritchey, specialized in a second.
  • + 0
 @WAKIdesigns: belittling someone else's trade isn't classy Waki, I don't claim to be well versed in civil engineering or any of the aspects that go with it, the only thing I can also do is use Cad like you can, let's swap jobs, we would both be screwed.
  • + 0
 @WAKIdesigns: just out of interest, are you one of those guys who would be desperate to work in the industry but just can't manage to do it and earn a decent living so kind of operate on the fringe thinking that everything that others that are involved are doing is easy or pointless?

Your comment about anyone who makes parts for the bike industry's only achievement is their survival itself is quite telling, but I'm sure you know better and could teach hope, chris king, MRP, I9 and a whole host of others a thing or two about where they are going wrong.
  • + 2
 @RedRedRe: " It matters if a stem does not have tight tolerances"
This is somewhat true statement. Tight tolerances are not always necessary. The RIGHT tolerances are necessary. This is what keeps production costs down. If you over-tolerance everything, the machining becomes complicated and drives your prices up. I would actually argue that the clamp to stem body interface doesn't have to be tightly toleranced (I guess depending on what one considers tight tolerances...ie building a house vs a press fit bushing tolerance). Most stems with a 2-piece (face-plate) are designed to have no gap up top when tightened, and a gap on the lower interface. This gap tolerance could vary significantly as long as the material wall thickness of the plate stayed within it's margin and you maintained a nominal tight tolerance of the 35mm diameter. All of this is going to be based of designing the correct datum structure from the very beginning, and identifying the key features of the part
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: no I was going to say
Because they’ll continually create arguments that lead to engineering and upon arrival at the top of engineering towers promptly piss their engineering knowledge over all the those who ‘have know idea about how this kind of part is designed and manufactured’

I.e don’t worry, they’ll tell you.

You won’t get any kind of meaningful debate from the guy, he’s too concerned with propping up his own ego to see what the debate is actually about.
  • + 0
 @iqbal-achieve: I think he started the engineering argument, does Waki really look like he is interested in making any kind of debate? Making contradictory comments and bashing things without reason?

What have you added to the 'debate' anyway, oh enlightened one?
  • + 0
 @justanotherusername: that’s all I’m here to do. Just be enlightened. It’s a tough job.
  • + 2
 @WAKIdesigns: I paid $60 for a stem once....because it's blue. No other reason. I don't fear a $30 stem snapping, they've all worked just fine...I just couldn't find a blue one Wink
  • + 1
 @LukeBurgie: maybe you crashed because your handlebar was loose in your stem
  • + 1
 @iqbal-achieve: There's no creating an argument. People want to talk about why something costs as much as it does. It's my hope that when I talk about this, that I'm actually helping people understand why it is what it is. A discussion of cost with this part has to lead back to engineering and manufacturing. To run a successful business you have to do ROI's. Return On Investment. It's a business concept. Design and manufacturing falls under this concept.
  • - 4
flag iqbal-achieve (Oct 23, 2018 at 10:03) (Below Threshold)
 @krashDH85: my point is that isn’t the point. Somebody make the thing out of pure unicorn tears and put a very realistic price of 85,000 haystack needles on it but it’s still a stem for a bloody bicycle that can be made to function perfectly well, even exceed expectations for the price of a few beers. To justify it shows just how bad it is.
It is stupid, making it is stupid and buying it is even more stupider. Let’s have a real article about this product that is clearly a joke and do it properly. By laughing our asses off at it.
  • + 4
 @iqbal-achieve: you don't half talk some crap, almost everything you ever write is just complete drivel and you blast anyone with an actual opinion, the word 'stupid' has never been so apt.

You are blindly criticising a company, whole industry and its customers because you personally don't see (or can't seem to understand) value in a product - people are allowed to choose what they purchase, a company what it produces and where value lies.

I9 isn't employing some kind of hard hitting marketing campaign to attempt to persuade you the stem is a 'must have'.

I am quite sure you will own things I consider 'stupid' and that I own things you consider 'stupid', but it's called choice, we are allowed to have one - almost every luxury item is ridiculous but we all keep buying them.
  • + 0
 @iqbal-achieve: How does one know that a stem is going to function well? Because it looks good? Your statements are highlighting your ignorance. It's one thing if you're here to understand and accept concepts of a trade, it's another to purely ignore them and spout off about nothing.

The same basic processes are in place for designing and manufacturing this stem as well as a return manifold on say, a rocket engine.

There's a reason that you haven't lost all your teeth from a stem that failed on your bike leaving you with your handlebars in your hand not attached to your bike. And it's not because someone said, "eh, that looks good enough to work"
  • + 1
 @BoneDog: is this true?
  • + 0
 @justanotherusername: perhaps you’re right. Will try and be more receptive.

I completely disagree that there is any value in this product whatsoever other than mild humour. But I am not trying to convince anyone who believes otherwise - I’m just telling you what I think. At least that’s all I’m doing this time Wink

@krashDH85 sorry dude I’m not sure what you mean.
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: I don't think there's any, "natural selection" in buying shitty bicycle parts. What do you do when a bicycle breaks? Walk. I'd say, "natural hindrance, or annoyance". It's not the end of the world if your bike breaks.
  • - 4
flag iqbal-achieve (Oct 23, 2018 at 12:23) (Below Threshold)
 @krashDH85: I am not ignorant of manufacturing processes and costs. I am dismissive. This is where you seem to have me wrong. And I’d say a fair few of those above sit in the same boat.

Somebody could have spent 15 years designing and honing a process to manufacture a dinner plate but if it comes to market and it’s still just a plate (albeit with some fancy glaze) and a price point that’s 5x that of the plate I’m already using I’m not gonna buy it, I would also question why anyone would buy it. If somebody takes the time to explain to me why it’s come to market at such a high price point id say “okay, I totally get that. It doesn’t not make sense and thanks for the explaination mister”, but I’m not gonna buy it because of a sob story that they’re expensive to make, just like I won’t pay crazy prices to ‘support my local bike shop’. No, I’ll keep buying these other plates that I know’re solid, won’t break my back when I load the washer, look cool in my kitchen and I can buy a whole set for the cost of the one.
If some other guy really wants these plates then that’s cool, I’m not going out of my way to try and get them taken off the market but I would think it’s odd and I’d suggest to him there are other options that I think make a lot more sense. But when I see he has a £45 Porsche baseball cap to go with his 2005 Cayenne I shut up and go home.

I am not a consumer, I’m a mountain biker. If you’ve ever noticed any of my other comments you may have gathered I have no love for high prices, whether or not the price is ‘justified’. This is just me pushing back at a situation I see getting worse. People are riding shocks that cost more than my bike. Then they spend that again having the thing ‘tuned’ for their loop over Ladybower. Meanwhile Sam Hill wins everything on a Monarch with a M/L tune off the shelf (probably). I don’t want mountain biking to become a consumer sport like Skiing that’s all. And I want it to remain accessible to both young talent and those less well off.
  • + 3
 @ka81: You do realize that the stem is the one and only part on the entire bike that keeps the bars attached to the frame. When a stem breaks it is catastrophic, $80 more is worth it to have some sort of gaurantee that there has been some actual thought and testing done.
  • + 4
 @iqbal-achieve: Your explanation is just an extension of your previous comment, basically saying that if you don't 'get it' anybody that does is just plain stupid.

Nobody is asking you to buy the stem, nobody is attempting to 'drive' the sport of MTB to becoming a 'consumer sport' and if they were, it certainly wouldn't be a business like I9 who are absolutely tiny in the scheme of things - MTB is already a commercial sport - we have £10k bikes readily available for god sake and we are constantly buying new products that will improve our experience on the bike, its non-stop - Its more commercial than most sports if you ask me in terms of required expenditure.

Are all of the items in your pictures yours (or were yours?) - if so you definitely seem to be a 'consumer', you ride a luxury performance bike, have pictures of an expensive Commencal, Absolute Black ring, Fox rear shock etc - then you say people are riding shocks that cost more than your bike (assuming its yours again)

Your final point of bikes being accessible to young riders is probably the worst, I9 making a stem wont make the sport less affordable to young riders and there has never ever been such a choice of bike available and the lower price point bikes have never been so good, stuff from YT etc is literally phenomenal for the price point as tech has trickled down.

The point you are making here is all in your own head, its imagined, a small machine-shop / bike part business isn't trying to compromise your ability to ride push bikes!
  • + 1
 @thejames: Good comment. I eluded to it in one of my other posts. At the end of the lift season this year I had what could have been a catastrophic failure of my stem. Got to the bottom of the run and my bars felt "loose". Got a tool to tighten things back down when I noticed the stem cap had almost fully failed.

One side of the "cap" was cracked all the way through and the other side the crack had migrated about halfway through the material. It looked to be a cyclical loading failure right along a sharp edge (think stress riser). I was very fortunate that both sides didn't fail completely at once.
  • + 0
 @justanotherusername: ahhhm. Nope, I think I’m saying that I get it and I think it’s still stupid. But I’m not quite sure I’m understanding you correctly. But yeah basically my point of view has not changed.

This stem comes out (doesn’t matter who makes it, big, small, etc) then the next guy comes along and there’s now a new reference to pricing. Their new stem is now priced 7.5% up on what they might have considered previously. It’s been proven that people will pay and they’re confident they’ll sell the quantity they need at that higher point. They may or may not account for it in the production process. Either way the rider pays more next time he want a stem.

People keep saying that entry level bikes are now better than ever and to me that shows exactly how bad things are! They’re good because what you’re looking at as affordable is in fact 2 thousand quid. My bike at 15 cost me about £200 not £2k. I had a nice hardtail with decent suspension and parts to rip. I am also on a low income and can not afford what is considered a ‘lower price point bike’. They’re not as expensive as the top end but they are not cheap by any stretch.

I don’t suggest that there’s any conspiracy here other than to make money. We live in a capitalist society, I accept it but I don’t have to like it.
  • + 1
 In case anybody missed it... this is a discussion about a f##king stem! Not the role of artillery in the battle of Arne.

Ahhahaahhahha, dance puppets daaance! I am the stygian charnel-fire of Cosmic Blasphemy!!! Salute
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: it did not pass me by
  • + 1
 +1 for @WAKIdesigns

A well designed forged stem is lighter, stronger and cheaper. Pick 3.

A well designed CNC stem looks nice and makes you feel good.
  • + 2
 @WAKIdesigns: douche bag
  • + 2
 @thejames: you do realize that 99.99% of stems last longer than your life???
It's a STEM!
  • + 1
 @ka81: ...the I9 is 14mm shorter and comes in Rainbow colours Big Grin
  • + 16
 This 35mm bar rubbish makes boost look like a stroke of genius
  • + 9
 Pinkbike, how does it compare to Hope DH stem and Truvativ Stylo T20? How many percent stiffer is it? These are some options I consider and I would love some more comparisons thank you. Making unrealistic expectations on a free site increases my sperm count.
  • + 4
 You have to go to german websites for that. They love that shit.
  • + 0
 @Aptlynamed: what american websites love?
  • + 3
 when is the shootout coming?
  • + 1
 And how does it compare to a forged stem? Spank Spikes are around half the price and look sweet.
  • + 8
 It’s actually made in America and that counts for something. I get it if you want the absolute cheapest stem possible. But if going to spend 150$ on a block of aluminum and bolts might as well support your fellow American.
  • + 8
 What if i'm not a fellow American? then it doesn't really count for f*ck all..
  • + 15
 @Captain1Eye: Get a Hope then Brah
  • + 1
 @peleton7: But are Hope made in Jolly Ole, or do they outsource to China/Taiwan?
  • + 9
 Comments evenly split between butthurt and feeling super smart for identifying that expensive things are expensive.
  • + 8
 This defines the debate of need versus want. I do not need one of these stems, but I really want one...when the 31.8 diameter comes out.
  • + 6
 i9 is the real deal, We toured their facility in Asheville last year and came away so impressed with their commitment and passion for quality it is undeniable. To anyone who doubts it take the tour, they surprisingly hide nothing and are a completely open book about the processes they use to get the most out of those blocks of aluminum. We need more companies with Industry nines attitude and philosophy towards design and manufacturing, the bike biz is full of crap products made by crap companies, like em or hate em you gotta respect how i9 gets it done.
  • + 1
 Judging by their wheels, I have to say I definitely get the impression they actually care about quality control and the product that goes out.
  • + 5
 Maybe ya'll don't want to pay $125 for a stem, and that's fine. Not sure I want to, either -- especially since I have 31.8 bars and don't want to shell out an additional $150 for new bars to fit the stem. But damn, I9 makes some quality stuff and stands behind its products. And they are beautiful to look at.

You know how you can look at something, hold it in your hand and know you've got something solid and superbly crafted? Just from the look, feel and finish know it's quality? Yeah, those are I9 wheels. If the stem is anything like that, you can decide if the value is worth it for you, but the finished product is probably worth the money.
  • + 4
 "because it is steadily taking off as the industry standard for aggressive mountain biking and as bars continue to get wider, the 35mm clamp allows handlebars to be made lighter and stronger"

Marketing bullshit flood is steadily drawing us all. It's just another f*cking non sense.
  • - 2
 "We had no valuable reason to chose 35mm over 31.8mm but you know, we are just idiots so we follow trends blindly like 99% of the bike industry"
  • + 2
 Bars are still getting wider?? I can’t imagine riding anything wider than my 785mm bars. But then, I know a girl who barely breaks 5 feet tall that rides 800s.....
  • + 0
 @skelldify: it probably makes her feel better or she has very weak hands so she needs huge lever to make bike turn Wink
  • + 8
 Looks like a . . . RaceFace.
  • + 1
 Turbine r?
  • + 12
 @dagzin: No no no. This is available in pink. Totally different.
  • + 12
 It doesn't have 2 bears grabbing their nuts on the front so no good for me.
  • - 2
 You mean a Session?
  • + 4
 lets be real. the people buying the top end ones, i9, raceface, thompson, are not hurting for cash and theyre doing it for the bling factor and lets be honest, out of all the things on the bike, 140 bucks is not that much. this is obviously on same market orientation as enve stems and similar.
  • + 2
 Does it have a zero gap faceplate install like some of the newer stems(Renthal, Nukeproof Horizon, Easton Havoc, etc), or does the faceplate still stick with the annoying 4-cross pattern for installation(screw that if it does)?
  • - 11
flag ninjatarian (Oct 23, 2018 at 0:24) (Below Threshold)
 You can zero gap the faceplate on any stem, it’s just that manufacturers hadn’t thought to recommend it years ago.
  • + 16
 @ninjatarian: zero gap any stem and you'll end up eating shit, just saying.
  • + 3
 Zero gap is important why?
  • + 6
 I'm pretty sure he means zero thigh gap.
  • + 2
 @SJP: easiest and most reliable stem installation. Zero gap the lower face(s), then tighten the upper bolts to spec. Job done. Screw tightening a face plate like the lugs on a car. This is why I paid extra for the Renthal stem. That and I think it looks cool.
  • + 2
 @AaGro: have fun with the weak steerer tube clamp
  • + 1
 @AaGro: "Easiest and most reliable stem installation" - That, right there. Cinch up 2 bolts and then torque down the last 2. No fiddling about, trying to get equal spacing and torque across 4 different bolts. Less chances for the home mechanic to mess up. There's a reason why so many of the Thomson stems cracked in the faceplate.
If the Renthals don't work for you guys, check out the Nukeproof Horizon, the Straitline Pinch, Easton Havoc and I'm sure there are a few more out there.
  • + 1
 @DH-Angel: @LOLWTF:

Funny, I’ve heard that people have had that experience, and I’ve heard that people have had squeaking from the Renthal face plates. Been running mine for more than a year and have only tweaked the bars twice (both in pretty big offs where I would have expected bar movement)
  • + 5
 Forged is best. This is better looking than a hope stem. Has it got 4mm hex, the 3mm on my Thomson are bit sh1t.
  • + 6
 The Chromag BZA 35 I am about to buy is more expensive than this stem.
  • + 2
 and 100% made in Canada!!!!! lol can u tell im a canadian?
  • + 2
 Why did pinkbike put out this terrible article when all of the other online news websites have a much more informative one including weghts, test results and a video?

bikerumor.com/2018/10/23/hands-on-industry-nine-a35-stem-turns-with-precision-from-cnc-machining
  • + 1
 This stem is expensive-plenty of cheaper stems perform as well. But......it's well finished and comes in lots of colors. If your main focus is performance/cost, this isn't the product for you. Frankly, it isn't the product for me for that reason.

But....if you want to bling out your bike, the range of colors (and mix/match option) is awesome. If you're gonna spend this much on a stem, might as well floss out your ride with some sweet anodized colors (90's style 3d violet would be my preference).

So.....not a product for everyone, but this will tie a flashy build together better than Lebowski's rug tied his living room together.

A few final notes on cost; small batch anodizing parts is pretty costly. Between U.S. manufacturing, custom hardware (bolts) and the range of available colors (and the mix/match option) these aren't cheap to make. So.....while those features don't make a stronger or better performing stem, they do make for a more expensive one.
  • + 1
 I think this is part of the reason I9 developed a stem. They said "hey guys, we do a lot of anodizing, what else can we throw in the bath?" Look at Paul Components. Their seat clamp or brake levers are just like any other, but when you need matchy matchy, you look no further. I9 is just getting in on the matching colors market segment.
  • + 3
 I didn't bother to read all the fluff, but did they say the 'tuned' the stem to fee like a 31.8? Why anyone would buy any other stem than a Syntace Megaforce 2 is beyond me.
  • + 1
 Megaforce 2 is a great stem. Replaced Renthal Apex of the same size. Thicker bolts, better grip on the bars, and creaking went away.
  • + 1
 @sutter2k: I have the same issues with my Renthal stem. I hadn't heard a bad word about them before and now there's multiple comments about slipping and creaking in this article. Fak.
  • + 1
 How funny that everyone gets bent up about a $125 stem when frames cost 20X that. Its a fashion piece. I bought a Danger Boy stem back in the day. Loved how it looked but unfortunately it was 24.5 diameter. It was also a big waste of money.
  • + 1
 My cheap Intense branded stem, weight less by 10%, cost I assume less in 10 times, do the Job within 10% margine.

However i9 is ' nice piece': of alu that can personalize your build, does it looks good - not to my taste, does the price fair - yess, similar to competitors
  • + 1
 Too stiff of a handle bar set up makes for tired arms at the end of a ride. Who asked for 35 mm ?
Who runs this stuff?
Some flex in the bars is a good thing.
Sorry I didn't read all the marketing BS I just like the pictures.
  • + 3
 Let me guess, 35mm for added stiffness - comes with built in compliance to increase "feel"
  • + 3
 35mm stems are just another means for the nwo to fulfill their population control agenda. do your research people
  • + 5
 Looks like a session
  • + 1
 Haha, too expensive, too heavy and uses puny allen bolts.

For 30€ I got Syncros XL1.5 stem that's only 135gr in size 50mm, comes with Torx bolts but it doesn't come in rainbow colors.
  • + 2
 And if you really want to go lite, some brands are making solid stuff 20g lighter for 70€...
  • + 1
 Did they compare it with 1.5" steerer stem for 31.8mm handlebar ? I doubt they could reach stiffness of 1.5"/31.8 stem with the same length of handlebar.
  • + 1
 That makes no sense
  • + 1
 @drunknride: Why wouldn't? Stem for 1.5" steerer tube has much larger mounting cross-section, and even that "narrow" 31.8mm handlebar is mounted to the stem on longer distance than a 35mm handlebar ( freaking 3mm wider !!!) on narrower 1 1/8" steerer stem.
  • + 4
 35mm only, Really?
  • + 2
 For all the Southwest Englander's, the A35 is synonymous with beautiful rolling hills and potential summertime traffic.
  • + 0
 Hum...
Numers looks on par w/ Hope's 35mm AM stem, and i KNOW those things are burly...and I can get those from the UK for a pretty good deal. $125 for this seems...a bit over the top!
  • + 3
 Nice... but waiting on the new stuff from Deity Big Grin
  • + 1
 Sweet. The matte anodize is a nice touch. Ti fasteners, helicoils and tumble finish could geek it a bit more $$$$$. 5 axis keeping set-ups to a minimum I9 has it dialed.
  • + 7
 It's a stem.
  • + 3
 All these comments??? For a stem?????
  • + 1
 It's a very small detail but are the bolts made of an anti-corrosive material. Pivot stem bolts rust after 3 months. EDventure
  • + 2
 Would buy if it came in a 31.8 clamp! I like the little bit of flex with 31.8 bars
  • + 3
 Just buy a deity for 35 bucks less, and you get the same color shit
  • + 2
 All the anodized Rasta colours are back baby!
  • + 1
 I didn't see it maybe I missed it How many paws of engagement does this have?
  • + 2
 I'll stick with my Renthal stems, thanks.
  • + 2
 Just when you think 1 piece handlebar/stems are the future.
  • + 14
 I'm a 31.8 stalwart
  • + 1
 @kwapik: Me too! I've tried a couple of different 35s and they were way too stiff and harsh.
  • + 2
 I'll snap it if it's not forged, so will my buddy Noah.
  • + 2
 Ticks my boxes, colours, looks cool, expensive.
  • + 2
 I want an A318 stem....no 35 for me.
  • + 3
 What's it sound like?
  • + 0
 You guy's are the worst. Ether you like it or you don't. What you guy's should really do is get off the internet and go ride your f*cking bike!!!! Mic drop!!!
  • + 2
 i love lamp. and deity copperhead
  • + 2
 Hello moth.
  • + 1
 I would like to buy one of these but I don't ride 35. To get the color that I want am currently running a Deity copperhead.
  • + 2
 but will it match up with a renthal alu handlebar
  • + 1
 So.... Is it basically just a Thompson stem with color or did I miss the point of this?
  • + 1
 Wow..almost 270 comments about a overpriced accessory..thats not bad .
  • + 1
 The testing claim is suspect? Looks flexible and with tiny bolts!
  • + 1
 What size are the fasteners? 3mm or 4mm?
  • + 1
 Is anyone other than Thomson using 3mm?
  • + 1
 @shinook: hence, my question
  • + 1
 Good looking stem! Always been a fan of i9’s Big Grin
  • + 1
 performance difference of stems....
  • - 2
 Nukeproof Neutron £25 doesn’t come in ‘tacky ano’ but has a super wide clamp and seems rock solid to me. Why we are paying anywhere near the price of this cheesey shit is beyond me. ‘Designer’? Gtfo.
  • + 0
 The nukeproof neutron is a chinese off the shelf stem, already used by other brands for some years ie IRD, Loaded Precision etc.
  • - 1
 @RedRedRe: I don’t see your point? Unless any of those options are cheaper which id be pleased to hear about.
  • + 1
 @iqbal-achieve: This same thought process can be said for seatposts. I understand weight savings, but a $25 RaceFace Ride vs a $100 Thompson seat post will do the same thing and neither will break.
  • + 1
 @Ryan2949: yeah I suppose it’s true of a lot of stuff now hence my frustrated comment. Nobody wants their bike to look shit but I think we can have bombproof function as well as form in many components without spending stupid amounts of cash (the Neutron stem isn’t even heavy either). People will buy this stuff to look cool? I guess? Well if I see you coming with a $125 stem I’m thinking the complete opposite. If it’s also colour coded with a load of other shit ano stuff I’m gonna be trying not to puke in my mouth.
Bloody daft. It’s a stem.
I’m not sure what’s I dislike the most, the companies that sell this crap or the fact there is actually a market for it.
  • + 1
 @iqbal-achieve: sorry you missunderstood my comment, i was just pointing out it was a rebadged stem. I think the nukeproof is the cheaper option. Besides that, i do not think the quality/price ratio is the same for all companies. I always go for the less expensive/better quality/lower weight.
There are plenty of $30 x that function better than $130 x
  • + 1
 @RedRedRe: fair play! I had no idea tup
  • + 1
 Looks like a Chromag BZA. Nice piece of hardware.
  • + 1
 $125!! Trump tariff right there!!
  • - 1
 wtf are you talking about
  • + 1
 Hoping Wolf Tooth has a stem soon.
  • + 1
 Twenty6 Components also make a nice stem...
  • + 2
 No they don’t. They used to. But now they dont.
  • + 1
 And it makes me cry often!! No more pedals!! Damn you Tyler!!! I blame @krashDH85 to just because he is on here and I can pick on him!!
  • + 1
 @whattheheel: Blame me blame me!! I still have some pedals I'll re-build until they give the ghost. I think I have a DM stem somewhere too
  • + 1
 I have 4 pairs of pedals not in use ATM and one set on the wife's bike, I have the old three piece DM stem as well as the newest one. I also have the old style SC stem on the wif'es bike and a new SC stem on my DJ. And then there's about 4 or 5 spost clamps and a few bar end caps floating around too. I R WHORE!!! Oh and some levers too! www.instagram.com/p/BpSesO2H5ZE/?taken-by=joeyoyoma
  • + 1
 @whattheheel: Ahh love the progression through the generations. Yeah I'm still rocking the levers on my 2nd gen codes. Still can't give those brakes up yet.
  • + 1
 I am still punching myself for selling any of his goodies!! Dammit!
  • + 1
 fucking price dude.
  • + 1
 Make it in 31.8!
  • + 0
 This stem looks exactly like my Race face turbine stem... Not a bad thing.
  • + 1
 Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
  • - 2
 I'm pretty confident 30$ is plenty for a piece of alu connecting two tubes at a 90deg angle
  • - 1
 I'm as big of a fan of i9 as the next guy, but $125-$140? Seriously?
  • + 5
 Grace stem 150euro, 77designz 90euro etc. Been plenty of stems in this price range for a long time. Heck the Dartmoor shorty petrol stem is up there, or a Thomson.
  • + 0
 Color Me Badd
  • - 2
 Still prefer HOPE stem
  • + 4
 Chromag for me, its got 2 bears grabbing their nuts on the front!!!
  • - 2
 Yeah.. a 125 USD stem must be made of f*ckin Gold
  • + 10
 Current market price of 165g (weight of the 60mm stem) is 6554USD.
  • + 1
 @ciszewski: i mean covered by gold
  • + 2
 @ciszewski: so if it is actually made of gold its a pretty good deal
  • - 2
 another overpriced shiny stem for the magpies to swoon over.
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