If I’m being honest, I’ve never cared much for carbon. I don’t want a carbon bike and I’ve always thought that the price for weight reduction is really steep – the Easton Haven 35 Carbon Bar really proved me wrong here.
A carbon handlebar is a different beast entirely. Here it isn’t so much about the drop in weight as it is the added flexibility of the bar, helping to take some of the trail chatter off your hands. Again, if you’re a carbon sceptic like me you’d probably think that’s bullshit but seriously, it is one MTB upgrade that you’ll really notice.
Easton Haven 35 Carbon Bar Review
This handlebar is a thing of beauty. Matt black carbon with shiny decals really make this bar pop but in a completely subtle will-go-with-any-bike kind of way. The 35mm diameter is something completely new to me (another bike industry standard to keep up with) but one that’s been designed to give carbon handlebars extra strength and stiffness with the same width options as aluminium competitors.
You can definitely feel that this bar is more supple on the trail than the likes of my Funn Full On bar or the Nukeproof Warhead. It picks up the chatter well, giving you a bit more confidence to hammer through some rockier, gnarlier sections of the trail while not being so flexible so that you feel that you’re not in control or that you’ll snap the bars at any minute.
Over the last few months, I’ve given these bars a hammering on local trails, BikePark Wales and Cwmcarn – logging plenty of miles, lots of jumps and drops and a good collection of crashes and these bars have been flawless. Paired with my soft, thick DMR Deathgrips I can honestly say that this is the most comfortable cockpit that I’ve ever ridden.
The only place I’ve been a bit scared is attaching the brakes, shifters, dropper lever and grips – torque too much and you can damage the carbon, torque too little and they’ll slip around. This took a little bit of playing with and some Fenwicks Carbon Assembly Paste and they’ve been hassle-free ever since!
Easton Haven 35mm Stem
What’s there to say about the Easton Haven 35 stem? It’s black and it matches the 35mm bar, you can get it in 3 lengths – 32mm, 80mm, and 90mm (I went for 32), it’s pretty light at 140g.
Overall it’s very well built, looks bloody beautiful and holds my bars as tight as you’d like. I can’t see it failing this side of the Armageddon which is pretty handy and for the price it was an absolute bargain compared to some of the other products out there.
If you’re thinking about dabbling in carbon then the Easton Haven 35 carbon bar is a great place to start – flexible yet stiff (if that makes any sense) and can be found in the sale for around £60 which makes it pretty affordable. You may have to buy a 35mm stem – in which case it’s stem namesake works beautifully and matches it.
For a cockpit set up that could cost you less than £100 you really can’t do much better than this. The sweep of the bars is nicely planned, there’s a very low rise so that you don’t feel like you’re riding a clown bike and the design is subtle yet beautiful.