Deity has just introduced an all new lineup of 35mm bore handlebars, all on a mission to redefine the stigma around the large clamp diameter handlebar. Deity has added 5 new 35mm bore handlebars and again strengthens their complete lineup of products. The Deity Skywire handlebars is Deity's carbon offering intended for trail/enduro use and is available in multiple rise options. We are all big fans of Deity for both their top of the line performance and rad styling. The Skywire bar is one that immediately grabbed our attention. We've got Max Morgan out on the trail with some 25mm rise Skywire bars. Check it out!
Deity has taken the last three years to design and develop a full lineup of 35mm handlebars, all claimed to improve your experience on the bike. In the past, 35mm bore handlebars have been notoriously too stiff and might leave you with more hand fatigue and arm pump. Deity's aim with this project was to completely redefine the the 35mm bore standard and we can't wait to get some miles on the new Skywire bar.
The Deity Skywire handlebar uses a unidirectional carbon layup that is intended for enduro and trail use. Just like the majority of Deity's bars, the Skywire uses a 9 degree backsweep and a 5 degree upsweep and is topped off with some non slip textured finishes around the stem clamp and bar ends.
For this particular review, Max will be riding a Santa Cruz Blur which features 100mm of rear wheel travel and 120mm of travel up front. This particular build features a Fox DPS rear shock, a Fox 34 Step Cast fork, Industry Nine Trail 270 wheels, a Maxxis Minion DHF 29 x 2.3 tire up front, a Maxxis Aspen 29 x 2.25 tire out back, and a full Deity kit to finish things off. If you want to learn more about how this bike stacks up against others in its class, check out our Yeti SB100 vs Santa Cruz Blur comparison.
The Skywire handlebars seem to fill a whole in Deity's full lineup of handlebars. Previously Deity only offered two different carbon handlebars, both 31.8 and just a little bit outdated. On paper, the Skywire handlebar looks like it should check all the boxes. The Skywire comes 800mm wide and I have cut 10mm off each side to get the overall width down to 780mm. The textured areas on the handlebar actually seem pretty trick. We have seen this sandpaper like feel on other handlebars before, but I think it's quite smart Deity has also added this finish on to the bar ends as well.
The biggest takeaway after riding the Skywire handlebars is just how they seem to balance both control and assertiveness with compliance and comfort. You have the ability to point the bike exactly where you want to go very precisely while being able to feel the terrain through you hands. There are a lot of different variables like suspension, tires, and tire pressure that can affect how your front end feels, but with this back to back test, it was very easy to understand just how the Skywire handlebar was affecting my experience out on the trail.
I ended up taking the Skywire handlebars out for a tour of Dupont state forest in western North Carolina, riding from the Corn Mill Shoals parking lot on the Burnt Mountain and Big Rock trails as well as from the Lake Imaging parking lot on the Hickory Mountain and Ridgeline trails. Burnt Mountain and Big Rock both offer rough and demanding descents while Hickory Mountain and Ridgeline are more polished and flowy. The Santa Cruz Blur thrives on the trails in Dupont and these four trails seemed to throw a little bit of everything at the Skywire bars.
In general, the Skywire bar feels a little bit flatter than some of Deity's other bars like the Skyline that also claims to have a 9 degree backsweep. I actually prefer just a little bit flatter feel so I ended up liking the shape and my position on the bike. I am a fan of the 8 degree backsweep you find on the Deity Brendan Fairclough signature handlebar and the Skywire feels somewhere in between that BF800 and the Skyline handlebar. In terms of stiffness, compared to the Raceface SIXc handlebars I have also ridden lately, the Skywire seems to have a softer touch.
If you are looking for a quality carbon handlebar for your mountain bike, the Deity Skywire is a great option. I love how the Skyrwire gave me both complete control and feel over the front tire. This isn't one of those handlebars that will rattle your teeth out during a long day of riding. The chrome graphics we have here look really sharp and the textured clamp and bar end surfaces are a nice final touch. Good effort Deity!
Max Morgan is 26 years old, and lives in Brevard, North Carolina. Max grew up in Atlanta, Georgia and started racing downhill at the age of 15. He has now been racing professionally for the last 9 years, competing in the UCI World Cup series and U.S. Pro GRT series. To learn more about Max, check out Max's rider spotlight here!