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  1. #1
    jbf
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    Carbon Handlebars ?

    Building up my old 6" trail bike after riding a hardtail all summer. I have most of my parts together but need new bars. I have never run carbon parts on my bikes, but am tempted to try the Protaper AM carbon bars to save a little weight. Would you run a carbon bar on your all mountain bike? I tend to crash alot and live in the northeast, so when I go down there is usually an impact involved (trees, rocks, stone walls, logs). Are modern carbon bars up to the task? I am not looking for throw away parts.

    This question has probably been asked before, but I did not find much discussion using the search function so links would be appreciated too.

  2. #2
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    I run that bar on my Blur LTc - 1/2" rise. Wide, feels good, no flex... I've not crashed on mine so can't tell you about durability.
    That said, carbon bits == torque wrench & carbon paste.
    Naysayers never apologize. Critics go to their grave thinking everyone else is wrong.
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    I'm running enve DH bars. They received their first scratch after 3 months or so. I sent a pic to enve they said it's nothing to worry about. Am I 100% confident in the structural integrity of my bars? Not 100%, but I'm trusting these bars can take a few hits.

    All carbon is not equal. I don't know anything about protaper. Easton is offering a life time warranty on their havoc bars I think? Enve says their DH bars may reach their expected life span in 2 years? WTF Enve? I only bought mine because I got a smoking deal, I wouldn't recommend buying over priced bars that may have a short life depending on frequency of use. Carbon is supposed to have a longer fatigue life than metals too?

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    I run carbon frame, post, bars on my Enduro. Have had a few falls out west in rocks and there's not a single scratch on those parts. In today's world carbon is no longer a weak point. They are stronger and often lighter than AL. I would not hesitate one bit on carbon (as obvious by the carbon DH bikes flooding the market along with DH carbon bars and such).

    Pricepoint has the Answer Carbon AM bars for $90 right now, best deal out there. The Easton Haven Carbon's are lighter by about ~40gr (9mm narrower at 711 vs 720), but they also run ~$130. The Specialized Enduro Carbon bars are 720mm and 205gr and run retail $130. There are numerous 660-680mm carbon bars out there if that width fits your needs. I have some FSA K-Force carbon bars on my Enduro, they are 660mm I belive and were only around 160gr and feel very stiff.

    Jump on those Answers and never look back
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbf View Post
    Are modern carbon bars up to the task? I am not looking for throw away parts..
    Yes and pay the extra for some Eastons, lifetime warranty and they stand behind it.

    Look at the warranty attached to carbon bars to judge what the company thinks of their product, there's some supposedly DH carbon bars floating around that come with warnings about jumping and 12 month warranties on the box... right...

    Also invest in carbon grip paste.

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    just bought a set of riser 31.8 monkeylite's for my enduro, hope they are good
    2013 Ibis Mojo HD Special Blend with dropper post, hope/stans wheelset and hope x2/m4 brakes

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    If a company tells you that you need to replace a set of bars in 2 years
    I would go somewhere else. Either they have junk bars or they just want
    to get in your wallet. I've been using Easton bars for years and have not
    had a single problem with them.

    Best, John

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    i have a set of raceface high rise handle bars ive gone down on a few times and even went over the handlebars and there holding up find... i paid somewhere around 150 for them but i wouldint risk cheap carbon

    i think its been said here before but there are different types of CF and different weaves, if you buy a good set you should be fine carbon fiber is suppose to be stronger than aluminum

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbf View Post
    Building up my old 6" trail bike after riding a hardtail all summer. I have most of my parts together but need new bars. I have never run carbon parts on my bikes, but am tempted to try the Protaper AM carbon bars to save a little weight. Would you run a carbon bar on your all mountain bike? I tend to crash alot and live in the northeast, so when I go down there is usually an impact involved (trees, rocks, stone walls, logs). Are modern carbon bars up to the task? I am not looking for throw away parts.

    This question has probably been asked before, but I did not find much discussion using the search function so links would be appreciated too.
    I just got an Answer Protaper Carbon 720mm bar. Love it. I'm not afraid of carbon fiber from a reputable company.

    This gets argued about a lot.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    I have been running a Easton Haven Carbon on my Nomad for the last year and it is fine on drops act. I run a Havoc carbon on my V10. Both bars have landed on rocks ect and are fine. if you gouge carbon bar enough that you should replace it you would need a new Alum bar.

    I was riding at Bromont Que and Mont St Anne and the bars met the rocks a few times at high speed and are fine,

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    those answer bars really do have a special bend to them. i feel so much more confident, comfortable, and aggressive with them compared to other bars ive tried. wish i could comment on the durability of the carbon

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    hi guys, what do you think of these ? any good ? right now i am using syntace vector which are great but wanna get true DH bars for better control. i could get these for fairly good price

    chainreactioncycles price

    Not one shred of evidence exists in favor of the idea that life is serious.

  14. #14
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    Running Easton cf bar. Robust.

    The weakest aspect of a cf bar is its crush strength (ie. bar end clamps can damage the bar if proper plugs are not used.

    FWIW, I have snapped alu bars (landing from a jump on my old Marin XC bike) but not carbon.
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    CAR BON all the way. One of the best investments you can make and you will feel a difference.
    Ran an old Easton Monkeylite and still holding strong, replaced it with a new Easton Havoc trimmed to 730 for my DB 6x6 and I too got my Answer 720am for 90 bucks too from PP. That went on my Stumpy EVO. The Answer is way blingy compared to the Easton. Trying to convince my ridin buddies about carbon bars still...
    Peace from Hell...

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  16. #16
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    Ran Easton Monkeylite's on my old bike. They were great right up to the point where I landed a jump, the bars twisted down in the stem with the brakes pointing straight up, and I hit a tree. Broken knee cap, cracked sternum, and a broken rib... not to mention the huge gouge taken out of bar when it spun around.

    Probably a 99% chance that won't happen to you, but just be aware. With that said, I am getting the aluminum EA70 risers for my new bike.

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    Let me add that my terrain is pretty much xc here in MO with the occasional AM sort of riding here and there. So it's fair to say I'm not really pushing carbon to its limits...
    Peace from Hell...

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  18. #18
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    Easton Monkeylite DH bars for years now-drop after drop, jump after jump......nuff said. May get the new Haven Carbon's for my SX

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    I really like my havens. I snapped them in a spectacular race crash that also snapped the seat off its rails and gave me a bad concussion. Probably would have severely bent/broken another bar as well. Easton sent a new one in less than a week. Good folks there!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thustlewhumber View Post
    Ran Easton Monkeylite's on my old bike. They were great right up to the point where I landed a jump, the bars twisted down in the stem with the brakes pointing straight up, and I hit a tree. Broken knee cap, cracked sternum, and a broken rib... not to mention the huge gouge taken out of bar when it spun around.

    Probably a 99% chance that won't happen to you, but just be aware. With that said, I am getting the aluminum EA70 risers for my new bike.
    Wow, that really sucks, sorry to hear it.

    I'm not sure that what happened was due to it being CF. I don't think CF is any more likely to twist in the stem than Al.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    I was watching a roadie sprint race in Reno 5 years ago. A guy from Washington snapped his carbon bars at the stem and went down really really hard at around 40 mph. Happened right in front of me. Don't know what brand, or anything about his stem. Just sayin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tls36 View Post
    Easton Monkeylite DH bars for years now-drop after drop, jump after jump......nuff said. May get the new Haven Carbon's for my SX
    A few years ago, I had an Easton Monkeylight DH bar on my wife's bike. It fell of the back of my car going around 60 mph. Needless to say, the bike was a mess (bent rims, saddle rails turned in to a pretzel). The bars got hit hard enough to twist a fairly stout stem, but the bar did not crack or break. The ends were kind of buggered up. Anyway, that really hit it home to me how strong a CF bar can be. Of course, I did toss the bar after that.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Centurion_ View Post
    I was watching a roadie sprint race in Reno 5 years ago. A guy from Washington snapped his carbon bars at the stem and went down really really hard at around 40 mph. Happened right in front of me. Don't know what brand, or anything about his stem. Just sayin.
    Yeah...
    And maybe you should think about how a 5 year old PC stacks up against an equivalently equipped one today...
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbf View Post
    Building up my old 6" trail bike after riding a hardtail all summer. I have most of my parts together but need new bars. I have never run carbon parts on my bikes, but am tempted to try the Protaper AM carbon bars to save a little weight. Would you run a carbon bar on your all mountain bike? I tend to crash alot and live in the northeast, so when I go down there is usually an impact involved (trees, rocks, stone walls, logs). Are modern carbon bars up to the task? I am not looking for throw away parts.

    This question has probably been asked before, but I did not find much discussion using the search function so links would be appreciated too.
    There are other reasons to run carbon besides saving weight. Strength, stiffness, dampening are good reasons to chose carbon. I've got carbon on my dh bike, the slopestyle bike and the pump track bike. Carbon is nice.

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    Running Easton Havec 750mm bars on mu Tracer....So far perfect bars!
    They're super strong! They don't flex, super comfy bend, and the width has lot of room to be cut.

    I'm running it at full lenght, and although they sometimes feel a tad to wide, specially uphilling, I wouldn't cut them.
    My Bike: http://forums.mtbr.com/showpost.php?...3&postcount=49

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pau11y View Post
    Yeah...
    And maybe you should think about how a 5 year old PC stacks up against an equivalently equipped one today...
    Gee. And I thought this thread was about carbon fiber handlebars.
    Just describing what I saw Paul. Thought it might be worth mentioning.

    Thanks for the suggestion though...

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    have had many brands of carbon bars. only cracked one going over a log. klein's stratum 90. Superlight and supposedly were super durable. maybe had a crack from a previous crash... i'll never know.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Centurion_ View Post
    Gee. And I thought this thread was about carbon fiber handlebars.
    Just describing what I saw Paul. Thought it might be worth mentioning.

    Thanks for the suggestion though...
    Evolution of CF tech hasn't been static, and 5 years is a good bit of time...just making a comparison to something else that exhibits evolution
    Basically, your 5 year old observation is meaningless.
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  29. #29
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    Merry Christmas

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    Type in the coupon code "ridejoysticknow" and get 40% off.

    Merry Christmas, ride well.
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  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pau11y View Post
    Evolution of CF tech hasn't been static, and 5 years is a good bit of time...just making a comparison to something else that exhibits evolution
    Basically, your 5 year old observation is meaningless.
    -----
    Believe this July's incident is quite relevant, and a big-carbon eye opener.

    No it didn't happen JRA.. No longer will I trust my teeth/face to carbon.

    Not me in pix by Denis.
    And a November non-handlebar carbon event.

    (How can a seatstay break from impact inside of the rim w/o causing any spoke/wheel damage?)
    After a # of calls/emails with Trek, I got word yesterday they've sent a new frame, my thanks to Todd. BIG
    Last edited by Flyin_W; 12-03-2011 at 02:16 PM.

  31. #31
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    I ran CF Monkeylite bars for years. Never an issue. When crashing usually the frame is at more of risk it seems, and a lot of AM bikes frames are CF. Anyhow moved to Al Answer Protaper bars a year ago. I can't tell any real world difference in the feel between CF and these Al bars. I would ride either happily.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyin_W View Post
    -----
    Believe this July's incident is quite relevant, and a big-carbon eye opener.
    Serious question, how tight must the brake lever have been to cause a failure there? Never had a bar fail there, always at the stem with an almighty CRUNCH...

    That an xc bar failed in a bunnyhop competition isn't exactly a jaw dropping revelation either. Fit some Havoc carbons, they'll keep your teeth much safer

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fix the Spade View Post
    Serious question, how tight must the brake lever have been to cause a failure there? Never had a bar fail there, always at the stem with an almighty CRUNCH...

    That an xc bar failed in a bunnyhop competition isn't exactly a jaw dropping revelation either. Fit some Havoc carbons, they'll keep your teeth much safer
    Or better yet an aluminum Renthal Fatbar. I feel much safer on one of the most respected moto manufacturers offerings than any carbon bar out there. I want my suspension fork to provide dampening for my hands and arms, not my handlebar.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmac999 View Post
    Or better yet an aluminum Renthal Fatbar. I feel much safer on one of the most respected moto manufacturers offerings than any carbon bar out there. I want my suspension fork to provide dampening for my hands and arms, not my handlebar.
    Good point, but Renthal stuff's made in Birmingham, I have a hard time trusting a Brummie with anything, nevermind me life!

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    I'm a big guy (over 200 lbs) just getting into aggressive descending so I choose some bad lines but I've had no problem with carbon bars. I run the Easton Havoc DH bars and love them.

  36. #36
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    i trust haven carbon bars with my life.
    RIP Adam Yauch

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fix the Spade View Post
    Serious question, how tight must the brake lever have been to cause a failure there? Never had a bar fail there, always at the stem with an almighty CRUNCH...

    That an xc bar failed in a bunnyhop competition isn't exactly a jaw dropping revelation either. Fit some Havoc carbons, they'll keep your teeth much safer
    ----
    Must lack your knowledge of all things carbon. Seriously, placing blame on the owner or the bars. Are you by chance a doctor? Perhaps this isn't jaw dropping, yet do know that when they snapped it left quite an impression on many. Can't imagine that a 2 ft leap on grass is more demanding than aggressive AM riding. No mo carbo for me, thanks.

  38. #38
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    bunnyhopping with clips? it's almost cheating.
    RIP Adam Yauch

    "M.C. for what I AM and do, the A is for Adam and the lyrics; true"

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    Quote Originally Posted by slimat99 View Post
    All carbon is not equal. I don't know anything about protaper. Easton is offering a life time warranty on their havoc bars I think? Enve says their DH bars may reach their expected life span in 2 years? WTF Enve?

    Not only just Enve or carbon bars have that restriction. If you read the fine print many manufactures only have an expected life span of one season on even aluminum bars (I even had one manufacture email me telling me that when I was asking about the chrome finish on my aluminum bars flaking - they advised it is normal and that the bar should be replaced annually - and they offered me a discount for my next bar).

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    Quote Originally Posted by 006_007 View Post
    Not only just Enve or carbon bars have that restriction. If you read the fine print many manufactures only have an expected life span of one season on even aluminum bars (I even had one manufacture email me telling me that when I was asking about the chrome finish on my aluminum bars flaking - they advised it is normal and that the bar should be replaced annually - and they offered me a discount for my next bar).
    That info needs to be in bold print, not berried in a long warranty disclaimer. I fully understand some parts aren't designed to last super long, but that info needs to be clearly stated so we as consumers can decide if we are ok with disposable parts.

  41. #41
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    So with 160mm of travel and a front tire that I run at 22-25 PSI am I really going to notice a difference between a havoc al vs the havoc carbon? I am not worried about weight. I could see them making a difference on a bike with less suspension am just thinking its not worth. Maybe you can convince me otherwise.
    Whats this line for?

  42. #42
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    Do I actually need to post pictures of broken Aluminum bars to dementrate they break as well? I know someone that broke an arm when her aluminum bar snapped. The fact that it took 1/2 second instead of 1/20 second to fully fail did not matter a whole lot.

    Carbon and aluminum both break, and aluminum can snap suddenly as well and leave you flat on your face. But the point is, both happen very rarely.
    Last edited by kapusta; 12-03-2011 at 08:36 PM.
    15mm is a second-best solution to a problem that was already solved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ronabrandt View Post
    So with 160mm of travel and a front tire that I run at 22-25 PSI am I really going to notice a difference between a havoc al vs the havoc carbon? I am not worried about weight. I could see them making a difference on a bike with less suspension am just thinking its not worth. Maybe you can convince me otherwise.
    I do notice a difference between AL and C bars and I'm currently running a 180 fork. It's not earth shaking, but there is a difference. I notice a more muted feel, less feedback, and a more forgiving feel overall. These traits aren't dramatic, but I do notice them

    I own Enve bars that have a lot of flex designed into them so I don't know how much difference I would notice with another C bar.

    I'm not going to try to convince you or anyone to buy C bars, but there is a difference in feel. Whether or not it is something you like, or feel is worth the extra money is up to you.

    Weight savings really isn't that much, difference in feel isn't dramatic, and there's the never ending durability debate.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Bottoms View Post
    Go to Joystick Components

    Type in the coupon code "ridejoysticknow" and get 40% off.

    Merry Christmas, ride well.
    You still never answered my question from the first thread about your bars. Do you have a warranty on them? If so where is it written?

    Crankbrothers Iodine 11 are solid and have a 2 year warranty. On my second set of 740mm bars. The first pair that were on my carbon Remedy got ground down on both ends after falling off and being dragged by a shuttling trailer. Cut those bars down to 720 and used them until my new ones came. Cut them down further to 700 and are living on the Mrs. Fuel Ex.

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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyin_W View Post
    -----
    Believe this July's incident is quite relevant, and a big-carbon eye opener.
    Yup! This one is relevant. So, the question is just as Fix asked: what kind of torque was used on the brake clamp? Check the last sentence of the 2nd post on this thread.

    The stay crack on the Trek:
    Did it crack 'n' fail due to an impact before or did it hit the spokes after the crack 'n' fail? Anyway, was that a Superfly 100 frame? I've been told that frame, either '09 or the '10 model had 100% failure rate...seems to suggest Trek screwed the pooch somewhere in manufacturing, yeah? And, from all reports, Trek has warrantied every one... M'thinks they pushed the envelope too far...maybe a bit of hubris from their Madone days?

    But then there are the V10c and Fury on the WC circuit. I've been keeping an eye on any news of (carbon) frame failures...SC and GT. No news to date.
    Last edited by Pau11y; 12-04-2011 at 11:07 AM.
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    the wifes monkeylites make me nervous when i ride it , hmmmmmmmmm

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by ronabrandt View Post
    So with 160mm of travel and a front tire that I run at 22-25 PSI am I really going to notice a difference between a havoc al vs the havoc carbon? I am not worried about weight. I could see them making a difference on a bike with less suspension am just thinking its not worth. Maybe you can convince me otherwise.
    Maybe.

    I run 170 coil front and rear, weigh 230 or so kitted up, run in the range of 25+ psi in the front and notice a difference.

    Havoc carbon. Nerve damage in my right hand (yes, riding related). I notice a significant difference in the amount of time and amount of rough terain I can ride before having to stop for a "hand-rest" whilst riding the carbon bar.

    The bar has also taken the normal ride down the hill on a few occasions, when I have spontainiously decided to play in the Gong show. Have one light scratch. They are tough.

    your mileage may vary

    michael

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pau11y View Post
    Yup! This one is relevant. So, the question is just as Fix asked: what kind of torque was used on the brake clamp? Check the last sentence of the 2nd post on this thread.

    The stay crack on the Trek:
    Did it crack 'n' fail due to an impact before or did it hit the spokes after the crack 'n' fail? Anyway, was that a Superfly 100 frame? I've been told that frame, either '09 or the '10 model had 100% failure rate...seems to suggest Trek screwed the pooch somewhere in manufacturing, yeah? And, from all reports, Trek has warrantied every one... M'thinks they pushed the envelope too far...maybe a bit of hubris from their Madone days?

    But then there are the V10c and Fury on the WC circuit. I've been keeping an eye on any news of (carbon) frame failures...SC and GT. No news to date.
    Don't forget to ask "who made it" Great alloy and crappy alloy aren't that far apart in strength. Crappy carbon is just scary. Good carbon is bomber (unless someone's really trying to push the weight boundaries). Seeing an unknown's handlebar break is not an eye opener, nor is the frame. Take a look at bustedcarbon.com
    Most the stuff is roadie, but the xc mountain stuff shows up now and then. If it's "all mountain carbon", I don't generally care for it (I do have a Sixc bar though). If it's dh carbon then count me in. But I'm also in with carbon all mountain frames.

  49. #49
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    [QUOTE=Pau11y;8794202]Yup! This one is relevant. So, the question is just as Fix asked: what kind of torque was used on the brake clamp? Check the last sentence of the 2nd post on this thread.
    No idea, not me, or my bike.
    ------------------
    OT carbon frame ?
    The stay crack on the Trek:
    Did it crack 'n' fail due to an impact before or did it hit the spokes after the crack 'n' fail?
    No mark of impact near the crack, and nothing ever contacted the wheel/spokes/rim. No idea of just how/when it happened, finished a 9 mile ride, and when putting on the rack, saw the broken stay.

    Anyway, was that a Superfly 100 frame?
    No, a 2008 GF Hi-Fi 29er WR frame

    I've been told that frame, either '09 or the '10 model had 100% failure rate...seems to suggest Trek screwed the pooch somewhere in manufacturing, yeah? And, from all reports, Trek has warrantied every one... M'thinks they pushed the envelope too far...maybe a bit of hubris from their Madone days?
    Trek really did not want to warranty this frame. My (?) went unanswered for 3 weeks, and until I asked the reg mgr "How is it possible that a spoke can be stronger than a CF seatstay", did they agree to replace.
    Just returned from the LBS with an '11 Hi-Fi Pro frame. Instantly noticed the bigger pivots, added weight, and no more carbon stays. Me thinks it be much mo betta!
    [/IMG]http://
    Anyone ever suspect that they crashed, or seen one of these on a Ti, Steel, Alu, or bike or part?

  50. #50
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    All my bikes have CF handlebars I trust it a 100% buy from a reputable company and U going to be fine. Have had many crashes on all of it with 0 failure so far.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Carbon Handlebars ?-img_1789.jpg  

    Carbon Handlebars ?-img_2337.jpg  

    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by pvflyer; 12-04-2011 at 05:15 PM.
    "My GREATEST FEAR is that one day I will die and my wife will sell my watches for what I told her I paid for them."

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