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PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2012 7:58 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2012 2:17 am
Posts: 47
Juggler,

Can't say, ive got em mounted on my bike now. They felt pretty damn light when i had them off, thought. I bought them at the start of the season for $150 used. They seemed like they came from a genuine rider, since there was still a lot of cork bar tape residue, and he shipped it with (coincidentally) in a Pro vibe box, which he switched the LTDs out for (hmmmmm). I'm not going to take them off now, but I don't feel a whole ton of flex in them, even in the 44cm size.


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Posted: Fri Sep 14, 2012 7:58 pm 


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2012 8:20 pm 
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Location: Bay Area
Its a god damned stem. It will hold your bars. It doesn't need to be carbon and its probably more than stiff enough. Get what you think looks nicer and works for your fit.

The 3T stems are pretty stiff, pro tour tested, and work fairly well. Most aluminum stems on the market are pretty similar in that regards. Some of the older Ritchey models with the narrower faceplates and the older Deda Zero 100 models were a tad flimsier according to a few people.

If a Pro Tour rider felt their stem was limiting them they'd go buy a different aftermarket stem and you really don't see that happening much except for the best of sprinters who want the Cav stem.

If you want a WW stem just don't expect it to be super stout. Most of the stiff stems weigh roughly the same once you slap ti bolts on. FWIW a local shop had a rash of 3T stems that would randomly have the ti bolts snap.

I've used just about every stem, have a decent sprint and top end power, and really muscle my bars around. With that said I have not noticed enough differences to make me return to one brand. I currently use the Pro Vibe carbon stem from this year because I EP'd it for cheap and it matched my bike at the time. The Puzzle clamp is nice.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:49 am 
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I find the ENVE stem/bar somewhat lacking in stiffness. I rode a 3T Team setup (Stealth Ergonova Carbon Team Bar) - Stealth ARX Team Aluminum Stem - A much nicer stiffer combo.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 11:34 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 6:26 pm
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reggiebaseball wrote:
To summarize many thoughts mentioned.

First, there is no logical reason in the universe for stems to be made from carbon. They can be made stronger, stiffer, lighter and cheaper in aluminum. In fact, pro riders often eschew carbon options and almost always run alloy stems. There is no ride benefit from running a carbon stem.

The 3T alloy stems and Thomson are both very stiff. There are lighter (potentially less stiff) options from KCNC, EXtralite.

If you were fit for 44 bars, ride 44 bars. If you want some REALLY STIFF 44 bars, I suggest the Pro Vibe series, I have 3 sets (in 44cm) and they are fantastic.
On two of my bikes I ride these bars with 140mm stems (pretty long and you figure they would show flex if they were gonna), and neither stem has let me down at all- I have a Pro PLT alloy stem and a 3T Team. Both stems are appropriately rigid, and both can be cleaned up to remove logos with acetone.

On another bike I have a 130mm Thomson (that is the longest they make with 31.8 clamp), and it too is plenty stiff.


I'm pretty sure so called carbon stems are actually aluminium with carbon wrap. AX are the only makers of genuine all carbon stems. The AX stems are beautiful, very light (about 65gms) and in my view plenty stiff enough. You can have problems with slippage but this is easily rectified. A WW classic.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 1:11 pm 
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Although there are a lot of carbon-wrap aluminum stems out there, the enve, 3t, zipp sl speed, their old 145, a couple bontrager models... Are all full carbon


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:12 pm 
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Location: Denmark
Precisely. The AX beautiful? Not so much.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:35 pm 
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Posts: 26
tdudzik wrote:
good answer. any insight on the 3T ergosum LTD 44cm bars? A bit lighter than the pro vibe, looks good paired with 3T stem, and can be found for a lot cheaper than the $400 msrp on ebay. I got mine for $150. Haven't ridden on the Pro vibe, but it does look promising.


The 3T LTD bar is truly a noodle. Light for sure. My Ergonova came in att 180. But the riding experience is terrible. At least if you prefer a stiff front.

I haven't tried the ENVE stem, but 3t and PRO stems. The 3T:s are very nice and I'm not sure I could tell the difference between the 3T and a PRO Vibe, even though I want to think that the PRO stem is less flexible. I switched from the PRO Vibe to the PRO Cavendish version and that was a huge difference. The PRO Cav weighs a ton, but now it's impossible to go back. The Cav stem is incredible!

I use the Cav version of the PRO Vibe handlebar as well. It's a heavy set-up, but I'm addicted. I wouldn't dare taking a tight corner in full speed with the 3T LTD bar.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 11:31 pm 
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Location: Australia
I'll be matte clearing my ARX LTD and Ergonova LTD as soon as I finish rendering a wall, replace gutters and downpipes, paint the house and replace the front door. 8)

I'll post some pics when i'm done.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 12:56 am 
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In a 38 cm bars I have both an Ergonova alloy and a LTD. Huge difference in stiffness. It actually seems that the flex comes right at the stem clamp, and the LTD actually deforms right there -- not in a passive state but when flexed by riding. The alloy Team version simply doesn't flex. It's as hard as the toughest track sprint bars (Scatto and Easton EC90 track sprint bars) that we've been using. So picking your bar wisely will give you a lot of stiffness you can't recover with your choice of bar.

Beyond that, the stems seem not to flex that much, but actually torque on the steer. We had both Enve 1.0 and 2.0 forks, so hopefully construction and other issues are equivalent except for a weight difference which shows up mostly in the wall thickness of the steer (and it's quite a significant difference). with both forks mounted in the identical frame with identical headset and spacers, we looked at flex and saw a big (huge) difference with either fork -- either fork simply distorted the top of the steer. We tried using a longer steer with 2 cm spacers over it just to see if this was a problem at the end of the steer, and we had some improvement, but even 2 cm from the end of the steer, the thinner steer still deformed from any stem we put on it. You didn't have to be a rocket scientist -- you could see it right in the opening of the stem clamp.

As for reliability, we kept seeing problems with Deda Zero hardware and galling and breaking problems with any titanium hardware. 3T was better than some (Deda was the worst) at Ti hardware, but I don't think you'd want to keep the Ti hardware. How much weight are you saving? How much will extensive gauze bandages weigh?

Alloy bars are heavier these days because they were breaking too much with ultralight wall thicknesses and European standards required more durability. It's not a lot of weight (20-30 grams), but it makes them hugely stiffer. Frankly, I'd go with a slightly stiffer steer, alloy bars, and alloy stem, and save the weight elsewhere. If stiffness doesn't matter, the lighter steer and lighter bars seem perfectly durable, and you won't save weight going to carbon so it's either a cosmetic issue for you or simply stick with the nice alloy ones and just avoid the few that have reliability or recognized flex problems. You won't have a problem with 3T or Enve in those regards.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:26 am 
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I'm having second thoughts on this ergosum LTD bar. Any way to tell if its fake without taking everything off? I might end up putting it on my winter beater bike and getting a new bar set up. Without resulting to alloy, whats the stiffest carbon option. the pro vibe looks promising


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 1:38 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2012 12:41 pm
Posts: 115
tdudzik, mine (ltd as well) weighted 214gr on my "enough" accurate scale (it also felt so light on my hands.. I have to check it, but my shop-bought ergonova team weighs 202gr). so about 23% overwreight compared to claimed weight. Ive posted elsewhere at ww that I contacted 3T website but they never answered both my questions.. it sucked badly, their service!
I called 3T representatives in Brazil and they told its likely a fake, for the weight of course, and that they usually come from the same factory in taiwan, so they can add exactly the same graphics and looks. sorry to inform u, it may not even be as resistant as the original, and as I couldnt return my anymore (got here in Brazil months after purchase) I had to sell it for a very cheap price, and the buyer, heavier than me at ~85kg said it was pretty much ok after his first ride with the bars..


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:27 pm 
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Location: Bay Area
11.4 wrote:
In a 38 cm bars I have both an Ergonova alloy and a LTD. Huge difference in stiffness. It actually seems that the flex comes right at the stem clamp, and the LTD actually deforms right there -- not in a passive state but when flexed by riding. The alloy Team version simply doesn't flex. It's as hard as the toughest track sprint bars (Scatto and Easton EC90 track sprint bars) that we've been using. So picking your bar wisely will give you a lot of stiffness you can't recover with your choice of bar.

Beyond that, the stems seem not to flex that much, but actually torque on the steer. We had both Enve 1.0 and 2.0 forks, so hopefully construction and other issues are equivalent except for a weight difference which shows up mostly in the wall thickness of the steer (and it's quite a significant difference). with both forks mounted in the identical frame with identical headset and spacers, we looked at flex and saw a big (huge) difference with either fork -- either fork simply distorted the top of the steer. We tried using a longer steer with 2 cm spacers over it just to see if this was a problem at the end of the steer, and we had some improvement, but even 2 cm from the end of the steer, the thinner steer still deformed from any stem we put on it. You didn't have to be a rocket scientist -- you could see it right in the opening of the stem clamp.

As for reliability, we kept seeing problems with Deda Zero hardware and galling and breaking problems with any titanium hardware. 3T was better than some (Deda was the worst) at Ti hardware, but I don't think you'd want to keep the Ti hardware. How much weight are you saving? How much will extensive gauze bandages weigh?

Alloy bars are heavier these days because they were breaking too much with ultralight wall thicknesses and European standards required more durability. It's not a lot of weight (20-30 grams), but it makes them hugely stiffer. Frankly, I'd go with a slightly stiffer steer, alloy bars, and alloy stem, and save the weight elsewhere. If stiffness doesn't matter, the lighter steer and lighter bars seem perfectly durable, and you won't save weight going to carbon so it's either a cosmetic issue for you or simply stick with the nice alloy ones and just avoid the few that have reliability or recognized flex problems. You won't have a problem with 3T or Enve in those regards.


Can you give us more details on all of these tests? How was the Thomson X2 compared to X4?

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 7:28 pm 
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Can you give us more details on all of these tests? How was the Thomson X2 compared to X4?[/quote]

Nothing too fancy. Frame and headset were mounted in a rigid platform, clamped at fork and stay ends. Different stems, bars, and forks were tried with two different frames (one large, one small, to allow for differences in steer tube flexibility), and weights were applied to the drops of one side and the movement of the other side was measured. Crude but not unreasonable, at least for these comparisons. It all really comes down to the stiffness of the fork, steer, stem, and bars, and very slightly the head tube and headset design (but those two don't really affect it much, as evidenced in two different frame sizes).

Didn't test the X2 because we had enough problems with breakage of the steer clamp on X2's that we weren't considering it.


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 Post subject: Enve or 3T Arx Ltd Stem?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 11:27 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 14, 2009 2:53 am
Posts: 125
Location: Scotland or London
Hi all!

I'm looking for a new stem and am considering the Enve or 3T Arx Ltd.

Does anyone have any experience of them and thoughts on the differences?

Any other full carbon stems which are worth considering? I'm keen on something reasonably stiff.

Thanks!

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 12:36 pm 
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Posts: 618
Location: UK
I realise you’re looking at full carbon stems, but they are typically both heavier and up to 4x more expensive than a decent Al stem (Deda Superlegga, Extralite, Zipp, 3T team), that said you might also consider the Pro Cavendish stem if stiffness is your primary focus (it won’t suit all tastes though)

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Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 12:36 pm 


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