bar strength comparison - carbon vs high end aluminum
It is time to replace my handlebars (5 year old aluminum). I am considering Ritchey WCS riser bar ($70, ~215 g) or Easton EC70 XC carbon ($140, 155 g). I am a pretty cautious XC rider - no jumps, no terrain parks - weigh 170 #, riding a full suspension bike.
I am kind of interested in the carbon bar to see if I can tell any difference between carbon and aluminum, but don't want to constantly worry about my handlebar snapping during normal riding.
Assuming both bars are installed and torqued properly, will one be more durable than the other?
If you ride conservatively as you say; I don't think strength will be an issue. Either bar should just about outlast your bike.
Full disclosure: I have yet to try a carbon bar, but would not hesitate to do so. I weigh 210 lbs pre-gear and ride pretty rough.
The carbon bar almost certainly has higher tensile strength and better fatigue resistance. And it will feel better (not as harsh) and it is lighter.
I have an LP composite bar that has lasted me through at least 11 or 12 seasons and a Richey WCS carbon bar on my other bike about 4 years old. I do not worry one bit about either one. If I was going to worry about a bar snapping, I would worry more about aluminum, especially ultra light aluminum.
I'm 225 or so, on a 5.5" 29er trailbike, and do drop ledges, occasionally crash, and am on 190g carbon bars that are speced for "all mountain" (Truvativ Noir) and they're just fine.
Carbon bars are great (seatpost too), have easton monkey lites and won't be going back to al bars anytime soon. (ever)
Easton Haven on the AM and Answer pro on the XC both carbon and both get hammered. No flex and ride qualify is so much better than the AL they replaced.
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Originally Posted by smilinsteve