In this review, one of our customers finishes off his titanium Steve Potts frame with some Thompson Carbon XC handlebars and ODI Troy Lee Designs lock on grips. These carbon handlebars help dampen the vibration of the full rigid bike while the ODI TLD grips give you control to be precise on the trail. Read more!
I recently finished the build of my titanium Steve Potts custom dream bike, with rigid Type II forks. After having ridden with suspension for many years, I knew the switch to rigid forks would be an adjustment and many people suggested using a carbon handlebar to help dampen vibration. I wanted wide, flat bars with minimal sweep for the new build. I searched around and originally thought about getting Easton EC70 or EC90 SL bars, but although still listed on Easton's website, no-one seems to stock them anymore. Luckily, the specs of the Thomson Carbon XC bars are pretty similar.
The 730mm width is 10mm more than I previously ran, but they feel great and it's unlikely I'll cut the bars down: they're wide enough to provide lots of control in technical descents, but not so wide they're uncomfortable for climbing. The handlebars feel great and have a little flex to help with the trail rattle, but not so much that they interfere with steering or climbing. I've only put about 50 miles on the new bike and haven't yet ventured on super-technical terrain, but so far I have no complaints. The bars look great with a high-gloss finish and understated graphics.
I paired the bars with ODI's Troy Lee Designs lock-on grips in red. The red grips look great on the black bars and complement the color scheme of the bike (black, red, and raw titanium). The grips are are great width for my smaller hands and the diameter is perfect. They're grippy, but not too soft and provide great feel and control. The distinctive half-flanges on each side of the grip are very comfortable, they're not so big that they get in the way, but still provide support for the outside of your hands when you rest them against the outside of the grip - just enough to provide some added support.
Thanks Worldwide Cyclery for the great service, great selection and great prices: the Thomson bars and ODI grips look awesome on the new bike and perform great.
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