Alright, lets get a few things straight. I love Thomson products, always had nothing but great experiences with them. Great quality, never had a failure. I have never said an bad thing about them, until now.
I had my lbs order a Thomson Alloy DH bar, and the Thomson Carbon AM bar from Thomson. I figured I would check them both out, but was really hoping that the finish on the Alloy bar would be different than your standard mat/sating black handlebar. My lbs thought forsure that Thomson would do something different to stand out....something to justify the $110 pricetag (FOR ALLOY!!).
Well, the bars show up and ofcourse the shop owner pulls out the carbon. Ohhhh...nice looking bar, except for all the small scratches in the clearcoat of the bar. Nothing deep, but I bet there were hundreds of them. "I bet this one will be better", he said, and pulled out another carbon Thomson. Nope, same story as the first one. "Seams like they could use better packaging on a $160 handlebar" says the lbs owner.
Disapointed but still hopefull for the Alloy bar, I pull it out of the bag to find that it looks exaclty like every other handlebar out there. Mat/satin black. LBS owner and I both kinda looked at eachother and said "huh...looks like every other bar out there...and they want how much for it?"
Feeling bad that I had him order both, I figured the least I could do was buy the cheaper one. Took it home, mounted it up and said to myself "yup, you just paid a lot of $$ for a little Thomson sticker".
YES..I appreciate craftsman ship! YES, I do appreciate "Made In America". No, I do not like Thomson charging $50-70 more than they should because there is a Thomson sticker on a product.
I am willing to dish out $$ for something I feel is unique or uses cutting edge tech that could make a difference. This handlebar rides and looks just like the $30 handlebar that came with my bike.
I would have loved for this bar to be something special, but it is not. If you are looking for a nice handlebar, save yourself the $$ and go with a Race Face, Answer, or one of many other bars under $40.
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