Review: Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve Handlebar & C260 Stem

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

Ritchey’s SuperLogic components sit at the top rung of their line, representing the lightest and most advanced parts they make.

Two of the more recent items for road bikes are the C260 stem and EvoCurve handlebar. Both debuted last summer in the new matte black finish, with stems for both road and mountain bikes getting 260º openings. Compared to a 3K woven carbon WCS bar I had from just a few years ago, the UD SuperLogic EvoCurve is just as stiff but rides much smoother. And the stem is stiff as can be, which is what you’d expect from something with it’s girth.

They’re also super lightweight, and the bar’s shape is perfectly comfortable for my larger hands. Click on through for actual weights, shapes, details and the full review…

DETAILS & WEIGHTS

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

The SuperLogic C260 stem is Ritchey’s first full carbon stem. Only the bolts and faceplate are metal. The overwrapped opening for the handlebar is supposed to reduce stress on the faceplate bolts, but it also holds the bar in place safely in the event one of the bolts does break mid-ride. Well, safely enough to come to a stop without everything going horribly awry.

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

The faceplate bolts start from the rear and thread into the faceplate, putting all threads into the alloy part and eliminating the need for metal inserts in the hi-mod carbon body. The three bolts in the rear alternate directions and thread into small “nuts” that are basically stuck in there. Seems like a good solution without getting into comolding metal parts into the stem body. The bulk of the threaded section does extend a bit more than some other stems, and I’ve brushed it with my knee a few times when standing and cranking, but it and the bolts are rounded enough so it doesn’t scratch the skin.

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

The SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar is a carbon monocoque bar that’s heavily shaped. The center section is OS 31.8 and clip-on aero bar compatible, but it drops down slightly as it moves outward. The flats have a 4º sweep and ovalize into a broad perch. Not only does it more closely match the position of my hand, but it spreads the load over a bigger area, reducing pressure points. On long rides, it helps prevent hot spots and numbness.

Drop and reach are a shallow 130mm/80mm for sizes 40, 42 (tested) and 44. A narrower 38 is also available and has a 75mm reach. The curve is a dual radius, giving it a slightly flatter section at the bottom without resorting to hard bends like the SuperLogic II.

The bottom has cable grooves on the forefront, which end up giving it a rounder total profile once wrapped with bar tape.

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

Weights are 122g for the stem (90mm tested) and 199g for the bar (42). Pretty darn light.

RIDE REVIEW

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

The backward sweep is more obvious from this viewpoint. The shape cable placement combined with Zevlin’s fairly thick (and comfortable!) bar tape makes for a nice fat resting place.

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

The stem could look out of place on thinly tubed bikes, but man is it stiff. There’s no rotation or flex at the bar.

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

The EvoCurve shape works great with hands on the flats, but depending on how you like your shifter placement, they might have too much of a slope on the drops. I tend to align the forward part of the flats with the angle of the stem so that they’re inclined just a bit, then try to get the hoods inline with that so I have one long, flat section for my hands. On these, this meant the drops are sloped down a bit too much for extended riding in them. But, I spend 99% of my time up top, so it’s not a big deal. I’m likely going to slide the grips up just a bit further on the bar next time I freshen up the bar tape, though, which might let me rotate the bar down a bit and fix some of that slope.

Ritchey SuperLogic EvoCurve handlebar and C260 stem review and actual weights

The SuperLogic EvoCurve bar and C260 stem are a great combo. I tend to ride mostly endurance pace and a little more upright to enjoy the scenery. For this, they do a great job of soaking up the vibrations…better, as mentioned in the intro, than their older woven carbon bar. Those were stiff at the expense of the damping that carbon bars are supposed to provide.

Now and then, though, I do have to hammer or outsprint a friend. In those cases, their stiffness is up to task.

On top of all that, they’re exceedingly light. That checks all the right boxes for me: Comfortable, stiff and very light. As for durability, I tend to ride rough roads, drop off curbs and do other things pure roadies scoff at…and I weigh about 185lbs. I haven’t broken them yet, but should something happen, I’ll update the post. Given my experience with a number of Ritchey components I’ve owned over the past fifteen years, I don’t anticipate any problems.

The only downside? They’re really, really expensive. Bar is $320 and stem is $300 at suggested retail. The good news? The WCS-level counterparts are only a few grams heavier and offer similar performance at much lower prices, particularly the stems.

Comments

911 - 03/28/13 - 12:54pm

Hi,

What kind of bike frame is this??

Campy Seatpost - 03/28/13 - 12:55pm

Plenty stiff, but apparently not durable enough to handle the impact of a baby deer. Just sayin’.

T - 03/28/13 - 1:00pm

$620 for a stem and bar?

Duder - 03/28/13 - 1:06pm

Looks like an Argonaut to me, 911.

velocitykyle - 03/28/13 - 1:12pm

Please slam that stem already. Cheers.

911 - 03/28/13 - 1:19pm

i saw the price on the website, outta range…
Thx.

Robo - 03/28/13 - 1:40pm

Love the 260 stems but they scratch the paint on every single bar I’ve ever put them on. The carbon version seems to have much more forgiving edges for sliding a bar through it….

Matt - 03/28/13 - 5:45pm

I am betting you won’t see any of those stems (or it’s aluminum cousins) in any pro team capacity, as that clamping design will require you to untape the handlebars if a switch is needed. Mechanics will not be pleased.

Rob - 03/28/13 - 6:00pm

@Matt: what do you mean? i think you can change the stem without untaping the bars, right? am i missing something? or do you mean that if you have to take off a lever, you also have to untape–like after a crash? but then you would probably untape anyway, since the tape would be roached from said crash…

Riley - 03/28/13 - 6:07pm

Holy Stack-O-Moly! Nice collection of spacers you have there. Any thoughts that you might be on the wrong frame with that number of spacers and a 90mm stem?

riccardo - 03/28/13 - 6:08pm

heavy and expensive..to mutch heavy and toooooooooooooooooo mutch expensive

hollywood - 03/28/13 - 7:13pm

that’s one big twinkie…

your face - 03/28/13 - 7:59pm

Pro teams ride C260 stems. Check United Healthcare.

It’s weird people are commenting about how expensive this setup is. It’s not cheap. But considering all the $6000+ bikes out there you can’t blame a handlebar/stem company for offering something to match.

Maybe some of you missed the $10,000 Cervelo frame from a few posts ago?

johnny - 03/28/13 - 9:58pm

If there is a comment section. then expect good and bad comments, sheesh.. logic duh…. “ritchey logic ” :)

gravity - 03/28/13 - 9:59pm

@Matt – Pro teams rarely choose their equipment based on what will make the lowest-paid members of their entire staff happy. Of course, stems and handlebars were the way you’re describing for the first 90 years of pro cycling, and everyone got along OK. Pros frequently change their bartape on a daily basis, but rarely swap their handlebars or stems, except in the instance of a crash, which would require new tape anyway. In fact, I’m not sure why or how you’d be installing a handlebar that is already fully wrapped.

But that doesn’t really matter, since it’s actually quite easy to get a handlebar onto this stem without unwrapping the bar. If you have wrapped to the very, very end and your handlebar has a very abrupt taper, then all you’ll have to do it pull the finishing tape up and upwrap the bar a few centimeters, slide the bar in, and you’re good.

gravity - 03/28/13 - 9:59pm

upwrap = unwrap = d’oh

bass pete - 03/28/13 - 10:08pm

I have the 260 in aluminum. IMHO , It seems a bit delicate , the instructions are VERY amateurish and the assembly is just hard work due to the position of the bolts. That aside it seems like a decent stem but in terms of practicality, I prefer the older model Ritchey stem. I will however keep on buying Ritchey products . I am not a hater, I am just fair.

Alan - 03/28/13 - 10:16pm

What perfect timing. Just picked up literally both of these for my super weight weenie build. Came out at 12.8 lbs rideable. Sure there are lighter bars and stems, but none with so much style. Stiffest stem i’ve ever ridden, and the bars are a comfortable shape. I couldn’t be more stoked on these pairs. The price isn’t nearly as bad if you work in a bike shop either ;)

Matt - 03/29/13 - 2:26am

I just can’t seem to agree with why the design needs to have a clamping assembly which doesn’t allow for easy direct removal of the handlebars. Undo the bolts, take off the stem faceplate, and see if your handlebars can be removed. They can’t. Unless you untape the bars. Admittedly the stem isn’t something you’re switching out on a regular basis, but it just seems silly to do that type of engineering. Form follows function. That said, this stem belongs on a Pinarello.

David French - 03/29/13 - 6:13am

@Alan.. There’s a flaw to your logic…. Yeah we get parts cheap through the trade, but we also make f*#k all in the first place. So the price is just as bad :-P it wouldn’t stop me buying them though, only I just prefer the feel of aluminium bars.

Cpt. Obvious - 03/29/13 - 8:40am

@Matt

I have a c-260 stem and i can remove my handlebars without untaping. You just have to slide the bar to the side a few cm and WAMMO!

wheelz - 03/29/13 - 8:46am

Sick looking stem and bars. Very tempting upgrade.

tigoat - 03/29/13 - 9:31am

Ritchey’s C260 design is awesome. I have two of the aluminum C260 and like them a lot so far. I was never a fan of Ritchey before but I am sold on these stems. I have no need to change the stem on the fly so it makes no difference to me whether I need to untape or not. To minimize scratching your bars, just to spread the c260 clamp slightly before sliding over. Some bars have a bigger OD than others but my two bars have zero scratch with these C260 stems installed.

Tyler (Editor) - 03/29/13 - 9:42am

All – Yes, that’s the Argonaut frame. It’s sweet. If you look at the pic showing bird’s eye view of the bar and stem, you can see a few zigzag blemishes where the bar was slid into the stem. I wouldn’t even call them scratches, but they’re there. Just to the left of the stem. That shows about how far you need to slide the bars to get them into the stem, so in this case I could probably just eke them out without having to unwrap any tape. In the real world (ie. for most of us) it’s not likely to be an issue because, really, how often do we change our bars and stems once we’ve found the right set up?

lesalpes - 03/29/13 - 10:05am

You can’t remove the faceplate and just directly pop the handlebar out? Bike fitter’s nightmare.

pluzall - 03/29/13 - 2:51pm

if they only would use this subtle branding on their forks – love my ritchey UD carbon fork – but the graphics are horrific

wannabeuk - 04/04/13 - 7:25am

Wish they made a 1.25″ version of the stem

Fran Montiel - 07/02/13 - 11:09am

I have the Ritchey C260 stem and the Ritechy Evo Curve handlebar. I do not know how to install the handlebar in the stem, due to the shape on the “curved” part of the handlebar. HOW DID YOU DO IT??

Fran Montiel - 07/02/13 - 11:27am

ok I got it. :) I just had to introduce tilted and be careful not to scratch it, twist and push, twist and push…phew!!

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