Our "Rider Review" article series features the honest reviews from verified purchasers of Worldwide Cyclery. They contain the photos, thoughts, feedback & overall review you are looking for.
When OneUp Components debuted their compliant carbon handlebars, we immediately were interested and even did an entire video comparing them to some of the other top handlebars on the market. After tested, we can confirm that these bars are seriously impressive. Check out what our customer Reid had to say about them!
After a few years of riding my 2015 Specialized Enduro with basically a “stock” cockpit I decided to upgrade things. I purchased the OneUp Components Carbon Bar with the 35mm rise and paired it with the OneUp Components 35mm long stem. I also bought a set of Ergon GA2 fat Grips to install at the same time.
I did some research on carbon handlebars prior to making this purchase. My bike is an Aluminum Enduro so I am not into counting grams, but figured anything I shave off helps. I was also interested in the responsiveness of carbon bars, but since this is a bike aimed more at going downhill I was worried about how stiff they may feel. I decided to go with the OneUp Carbon Bars based on their unique design of being laterally stiff, but vertically compliant. It also seems to be at a really good price point being one of the lower priced carbon bars on the market.
I chose the OneUp Stem for a combination of reasons. I have the EDC pump and multi tool, so thought that I may want to install it in the steerer tube someday. I also thought that the cost and weight were a good value and to be honest I like matching up brands of components as much as I can.
I decided to go with the Ergon GA2 Fat Grips after reading a number of reviews on grips and wanting to try something thicker. I don’t feel like I have large hands, but I am kind of in between Large and XL for glove size. I typically end up with XL gloves unless they are a size Large that runs big.
Installation of everything was pretty straightforward. The stem is well marked with torque numbers for the stem bolts and bar clamp bolts. For the bar clamp you tighten the top screws until tight and then torque the bolts on the lower side. I chose to use carbon assembly paste so reduced the torque a bit and they have held in place perfectly. There are also markings for the preload bolt if you are installing it with the EDC stem kit to carry the multi tool in your steerer. This new version of the stem and EDC kit don’t require you to put threads in your headset. I didn’t understand this when buying the stem, so didn’t get the EDC kit with it. This is something I would like to get in the future as I do carry the EDC tool.
The bars have indicator marks for how they are meant to be oriented. This is important to get the vertical compliance part in the right direction. I put mine right on the suggested mark. They have markings around the center mark so I assume you can roll them forward and back a bit to get them how you want them. There are marks to trim them down if you want something shorter than 800mm width, but I left them at their full width.
The Ergon grips are also built to have the right padding and grip where you need it, so they have markings to orient them correctly. There is an “Up” marking with a few marks on either side, again like on the bars letting you adjust a bit from the suggested position.
It took me a while to write this review as I wanted to try things out on a variety of trails. I got them in the middle of winter and then with the Corona Virus was not able to get to all the trails I normally would for a while. This is good as I now have a lot of miles on them on everything from roads to downhill style trails.
I was immediately impressed with the stiffness of the bars in cornering even on lower speed XC trails. I felt like the precision of steering improved dramatically. After a ride or two I didn’t really think about it anymore, but know that they definitely made an impression on my out of the box. I also am happy with the 800mm length on these bars. I thought they would feel wide coming from bars in the 740-760mm range, but I adjusted to them immediately. I am just over 6’ tall with wider shoulders so I think wider is a good fit for my frame. One of my local trails has a number of narrow areas between trees that are hard to clear with narrower bars and I had to pretty much come to a stop and weave through with these. Outside of those situations they work great, so I woud recommend trying them longer and cutting down if needed.
The grips also have been very comfortable and don’t feel overly fat. I really like the extra thickness and would recommend them to people with size Large and above hands. I always bike with gloves that are typically pretty grippy, so can’t say I noticed an improvement. They do seem to be plenty grippy when I grab them with bare hands, so would think they would work for people who don’t wear gloves.
Once I finally got a chance to ride on a rougher enduro trail with extended downhill I was able to see how they performed in that situation and they didn’t disappoint. They didn’t seem any harsher than my aluminum bars and probably seem a little more damped. I had no vibration coming into my hands or arms even through rougher rocky and washboard sections.
This cockpit update as a relatively cheap upgrade to an old bike that made it feel new again. I would like to get the EDC Stem kit, so that I can try installing the EDC Tool in the steerer tube. I also may trim the bars to 780mm as this will be a trail bike ridden on more XC style trails where I would like a little more clearance in the tight trees.
I am currently in the process of building up a frame where I can choose any components and am planning to go with this same bar/stem/grip combo. I think that means I really like these components!