We're constantly wowed by the latest, greatest bicycle part that comes down the pike when it comes to weight. Even complete bicycles are amazingly light these days. The thing is, I wonder how jaded we have become when it comes to weight, and more specifically, materials technology. That we can even trust this gossamer weight componentry is, to me, nothing short of a miracle.
Still, as consumers, we seem to go, "Ahh......so what. This could be lighter." As if we expect it will never stop. For example, I remember when Bontrager came out with that 118 gram titanium bar. Whoa! That was nuts. How could you ride that? It was so much lighter than the 150 gram plus bars we were using then, it was unbelievable. Of course, that bar was super skinny because it was super short. But now, a 120 gram XC bar that is fairly wide is no big deal.
Or for a better example, how about this.....
For a bit of perspective, that is similar in weight to one Salsa Gordo 29"er rim, or three Thomson stems. That is flat out amazing.
I mean, try making a single leg fork for a mountain bike that is rideable out of a Gordo rim. Ya know what I mean? That's insane.
So when things like this get shown, folks don't say, "668 grams? Are you nuts? Prove it works." No, they want to know who to send the credit card info to and if it takes more than three days to get, they will be upset. Really. It's just wonky out there.
One has to wonder where the line will be drawn in terms of what is safe that will work, and also, why. I mean just that: Why? Don't get me wrong- I love great performing, lightweight, durable, trustworthy parts as much as the next mountain biker, but there comes a point where it goes over the lines. The line of safety, the line of controllability, and the line of costs. The line of practicality, the line of reliable performance, and the line of wisdom also must be considered. Why mess with that stuff?
I don't know. I suppose there is always a fool and his money-will-part thing going on out there to some degree. I suppose some folks will always want to push the limits which will make our "reliable, trustworthy" parts even better. I suppose I should just keep my mouth shut and ride.
Speaking of which- I really wish I could do that safely right now, but it is below zero here, and not just a little bit. I guess I could, but my "common sense" and "better judgment" say otherwise.
Which might be a good thing to employ when it comes to these lightweight wunder-parts out there.