Renthal Goes 35mm

Words Andrew Major
Photos Cam McRae
Date Jun 7, 2016

Renthal goes 35mm. I know what you’re probably thinking, dear reader: “big woopty ding dong.” But please, just hear me out… and yes, *spoiler alert* this is a press release.

Since Easton dropped their cardinal DH bar, the 800mm wide Havoc 35mm, the steady trudge towards the inevitable adoption of the standard, at the very least for All Mountain, Enduro, and DH riding, has had the subtlety of an explosion on Bikini Atoll.

That doesn’t mean there’s nothing to get excited about. For lovers of super high-quality products looking to go over 780mm in width, the adoption of 35mm on the Fatbar, Fatbar Carbon, the gorgeous Apex, and Integra stems means an 800mm width in one of the nicest bar/stem combos you can buy.

Renthal goes 35mm with both all versions of the Fatbar and the Apex and Integra stems. The big news? One of the nicest riding bars you can buy now in 800mm width in Carbon and Aluminum.

Renthal Apex 35 stem. The unique 240-degree clamps and extensive, and gorgeous, CNC machining combine for a very stiff bar/stem/steerer interface in a lightweight package.

The Apex 35 stem uses a retention design which asks you to bottom the bar clamps down below and then to torque the upper bolts. Easy torquing and another example of why it always pays to peruse the instruction manual.

The claimed 225g weight of the Fatbar Carbon is impressive – particularly if they have managed to avoid the over-stiff, some would say harsh ride that some other 35mm carbon bars present.

With all our new 35mm handlebar line, we saw the ride quality and flex characteristics being of optimum importance. For all our 35mm handlebars we have matched their flex characteristics to the 31.8mm equivalent. All 35mm diameter options have the same ride quality that Renthal handlebars have become synonymous with.

Personally, I feel there is a je ne sais quoi about the ride quality of the 31.8 x 780mm Fatbar (aluminum) that I have been riding which I chalk up to the huge amount of experience the Manchester, UK, based global juggernaut of power sports handlebars (OE & Aftermarket) brings to bear on the cycling market. I’m interested to see if the ‘special’ ride of the original Fatbar has been carried into this wider, tougher tube of aluminum.

The Integra direct mount stem uses 6-bolts, instead of 8, and Renthal’s trademark machining to keep the weight down; the clamp positions reduce stress on the bar via the uninterrupted underside.

Here’s the Renthal Goes 35mm press release:

Renthal is very pleased to announce the launch of a 35mm diameter option to our range of Fatbar, Fatbar Carbon, Fatbar Lite and Fatbar Lite Carbon handlebars and Apex and Integra stems.

With all our new 35mm handlebar line, we saw the ride quality and flex characteristics being of optimum importance. For all our 35mm handlebars we have matched their flex characteristics to the 31.8mm equivalent. All 35mm diameter options have the same ride quality that Renthal handlebars have become synonymous with.

Do I look 1.5 grams heavier in these pants?

We have increased the width of all handlebars by 20mm, taking the Fatbar 35 and Fatbar Carbon 35 to 800mm and the Fatbar Lite 35 and Fatbar Lite Carbon 35 to 760mm. At the same time, we have achieved the same ride quality with no loss of strength or durability and at a very similar weight to the 31.8mm equivalent. The only exception to this is the aluminium Fatbar 35. By improving the efficiency of the use of material in this handlebar, we’ve reduced the weight significantly, whilst maintaining the same level the strength, durability as the 31.8mm diameter equivalent.

All Fatbars come in at a similar weight to their 31.8 equivalents… except the aluminum Fatbar which is significantly lighter.

Our challenge with the Apex and Integra stems was to keep the strength, stiffness and durability of the larger 35mm diameter package at the same weight as the 31.8mm equivalent. Developing each stem from the ground up, but sharing the same 240-degree clamping system of the 31.8mm stems, the strength, stiffness and durability were all matched to the 31.8mm equivalent. An average of just 1.5g increase in weight for the Integra 35 and an average of 7g increase for the Apex 35.

Is your 31.8mm bar looking a bit dainty?

Tags: Apex, Fatbar, Renthal, 35mm, bars, Integra, stems
Posted in: News

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Nat Brown  - June 9, 2016, 10:57 a.m.

I run an alu Fatbar too and also really like it. I'm pretty sure I've read statements from Renthal at least once that they thought the 35 standard was unnecessary to achieve their goals for a bar. I wonder if those statements or the change to 35 is about selling more bullshit to assholes. Maybe neither and they just changed their mind.

Do they intend on continuing to make 31.8? I like that their 31.8 alu bars are shot peened and hope that doesn't change with the move to 35. I imagine it won't.


Ivan  - June 8, 2016, 12:39 p.m.

Sorry but just no. Tried and tested 35mm bars…all have the claim of not being stiffer than there 31.8 counterparts, but at the end of the day all led to a ridiculous level of arm pump. Its a standard that just needs to die as I have heard nothing but complaints from people who have run 35mm, and there really is nothing wrong with 31.8.


DrewM  - June 8, 2016, 3:04 p.m.

Hi Ivan, I think it is fair to argue that it is a cosmetic upgrade over 31.8. The same way that 31.8 bars looked better on big-tubed alloy bikes over 25.4, the 35mm bars definitely make for a more organic pairing with the even-bigger- tubed carbon frames today.

I know that is probably not a valid justification for most people commenting on MTB media, but Renthal is definitely known for the tuned ride quality of their bars (alloy and carbon) and it's hard to imagine them switching to the 35mm trend without carrying over those characteristics.

I'd agree that there are some ridiculously stiff (ridiculous!) 35mm bars on the market - particularly some of the carbon ones I've tried - but I've also ridden some 31.8 bars that are the opposite of comfortable so I'd argue tuning the ride characteristics of a bar definitely transcend clamp diameter.

That said, I LOVE The 31.8 x 780mm aluminum Renthal bar I was running until recently - swapped out for a test bar that is wider - and I'll definitely be very disappointed if the 35mm version - now in an 800mm width - of the alloy Fatbar doesn't have a similar ride quality. We have carbon and alloy bars in for testing and I'll be reporting back on an alloy model once I have enough hours to comment.

Thanks for reading!


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