Friday, January 11, 2013

Stem Shootout... 2013!

We thought we'd do a little comparison post taking a look at our VCRC Pro stem compared to the competition.  We are comparing their "flagship" alloy stems to our "flagship" alloy stem.  There are many brands that we didn't include simply because we didn't have the space.  We tried to include what most people look at when considering an upgrade (3T, Deda, Ritchey, Zipp and FSA).  Max weight for a stem to make our list is 140g.  Many heavier stems are much cheaper and cost much less per gram, but you are taking a step backwards with a heavier stem.

All stems compared are alloy.  We'll compare weight and price.  Prices will be taken from and We listed the weight for our stem for each size we offer.  Unfortunately most manufacturers only weigh the shortest stem and publish those weights.  That's OK though, we'll base things on our 120mm stem and give everyone else a head-start.

We will then calculate the cost per gram for each stem.  Lower is better.  We divide the price by how many grams the stem weighs, to calculate the cost per gram.

First up, our Pro stem:

VCRC Pro Stem

Regular Price, $69- On Sale for $59
Weight, 90mm (125g) 100mm (128g) 110mm (132g) 120mm (138g) 130mm (141g)
Cost per gram, $0.43
Ti bolt upgrade saves another 8g for $20
Cost per gram w/Ti bolt upgrade, $0.60

3T Arx Team

Regular Price, $117
Weight, 120g (unknown size)
Comes with Ti bolts
Cost per gram, $0.98

Deda Elementi Zero 100 Pista Stem

Regular Price, $136
Weight, 140g (unknown size)
Comes with Ti bolts
Cost per gram, $0.97

Ritchey WCS 4-Axis 44 Stem

Regular Price, $99
Weight, 132g (unknown size)
Comes with steel bolts
Cost per gram, $0.75

Zipp Service Course SL Stem

Regular Price, $109
Weight, 120g (80mm)
Comes with Ti bolts
Cost per gram, $0.91


Regular Price, $109
Weight, 98g (unkown size)
Comes with Ti bolts
Cost per gram, $0.76

------ There are some surprising stems too that come in more in our price range of $0.4x per gram.  The Zipp Service Course, the 3T Arx Pro and the Pro PLT come to mind.  There are certainly others too, but it seems roughly $0.43 - $0.45 are about the best price per gram you can find right now for a sub 140g stem.  Some notable bank breakers like the carbon Ritchey Superlogic C-260 just blow the mind at $2.18 per gram.