I know that many a times, people favor the stem made from alloy more than carbon. I am keen to know how many here actually tried and support the use of a carbon stem. Do you find it better as in stiffness/weight/absorb more buzz from uneven road?
I just recently switched over from 3T Arx Team Stealth to 3T Arx Ltd carbon stem and i instantly can feel a different to the bike handling and buzz from the uneven roads. I do know that people also say that tire pressure or wider tires play a bigger role in these but i would love to keep everything the same and just by switching the stem to see what's the stem did to the overall feel.
After I switched to carbon stem and carbon handlebars I am never doing aluminum again in those two areas. This is why:
Since your hands are always on contact with the handlebars these is a critical area for hand and upper body fatigue.
1st I did the handlebars. I was amazed at the improved level of comfort. Vibration is reduced considerably and your arms feel less beaten up. I got the Thomson handlebar bc they are one of the lightest and they are made of a complete piece. Not like many others at that time (4 years ago) that were put together by pieces and reattached. I saw many of those crack badly on accidents since these attaching points are weaker.
I have been on many accidents and the bars are going strong. In one of those the bar cracked the frame and the bar is still going.
2nd after being so impressed with the handlebars I decided to do the stem. I went with the Easton ec90. The result was dramatic! The cockpit became like butter. So pleasant. And it is stiff. Not as stiff as an full aluminum cockpit but barely noticeable. There is an initial give and after a certain point there is no more. I noticed this at the beginning. After a while it is part of how the bike handles.
With aluminum there was no give. The Aluminum cockpit is harsh and unforgiving. I will only use aluminum in a track bike where the surface is smooth.
I was afraid regarding durability but so far so good. I am a big rider 195-205lbs. I have had many accidents which has resulted in 3 cracked carbon frames. The cockpit has survived 2 of those and no issues in 4 years.
This is the ride. You can't see the Thomson logo but you can see the EC90 stem. Good luck
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