@dadoflam08: Howzit going, mate? Thanks for your interest. There's a distinct lack of updates since I thought I'd spare everyone the nuisance of not getting production going yet. Having tried to come to an agreement with various manufacturers in the past months, being let down by each one and still coming up empty-handed is nothing to write home about.
And yes, it's true what weeracerweenie said. And he is the first official Wert client. We're in the process with a long time CNC partner of prototyping the revised seat clamp, road hubs, a headset expander. Unfortunately, this firm doesn't do production. The plan was to have the stem on the market already. Hopefully, the manufacturing gods will grant Wert a good omen soon.
My question for Wert would be about the lower stack stem designs.
I might be wrong here, but is it not so that a longer stack stem will be more stiff/ rigid?
Let me refer to the Fair Wheel Bikes' 2014 Stem Review
. The aluminum stem with the least deflection is a Thomson Elite X4 and has a specified stack height of 40.64mm, while a Thomson Elite X2, which wasn't featured in the test, has an even lower specified stack height of 36.07mm. Many stems typically have a similar or greater stack height. My reference stem is a Thomson's Elite X4 in 130mm, which I rode in the past years with great enjoyment. All my lighter previous stems weren't as stiff, even with a taller stack height, and with stems I prefer stiffness over weight.
Stiffness and durability aren't necessarily correlated, although a lighter stem is typically also less stiff due to its design limitations. My aim with the Straight Shooter was to design a stem within the stiffness range of a Thomson but at half the weight while also passing EN14781 for safety and durability. We still don't have the final pre-production prototype yet so stiffness is only indicative. Nevertheless, it seems our goal are attained with the Wert Straight Shooter stem.
I use a Rotor S3X among others, great stem (also low stack) but i always like to have a stem that is higher than the ordinary 40mm versions.
Why no 45mm stack? To heavy or?
Stack height of a hair under 38mm was a result of the design, and being lighter than a 45mm stack height is a matter of volume. The transition between the barrel and steerer clamp area dictated its given stack height.
On a full carbon steerer however, it's recommended to keep a few mm extra length above the stem to favor a slightly stiffer interface and, more importantly, to spread the stress a stem exerts on a steerer over a larger surface area. In addition, this provides added safety against steerer cracks to avert potential catastrophic failure.
Is it even possible for these light weight stems to compete with more heavy alu stems?
Let's have Wert clients be the judge of that. First things first: getting these stems in production and meeting customer demand.
We'll post photos as soon as the expander proto's are done.