Thursday, July 27, 2017

Like, Venture To The Max, Dude

The "Captain America" rig with the Ritchey Venturemax bar
Handle bars that were flared for off road use, and also great for gravel travel, were rare as hen's teeth only a few years ago. I can remember putting On One Midge bars on my Karate Monkey back in '06 or so and thinking how weird that was that you could even do such a thing.

Even before this, getting flared drop bars was no joke. It was really not a very easy thing to find. WTB probably can be blamed for putting flared drop bars on the map, and Specialized/Nitto also helped in that regard, but even those were super rare. Not many folks had a use for such a beast as a flared drop bar.

Compared to those days, you would have to consider thinking about how these days, flared drop bars are almost commonplace. This is the "golden age" of flared drop bars, if you will. There are more companies than ever offering them, and you can even get carbon fiber ones now. I never figured on seeing that happen, by the way.

So, now there are more flared drop bars than you can count with both hands. One of the late comers to the game is Ritchey. They have a "Venturemax" model out, which they have sent me to test for The overall flare, sweep, and drop is probably most like a Cowchipper. That's what I've found the best comparison is. But when you look at the thing, it looks kind of like the cross between a Cowbell and a Bell Lap bar, which were both Salsa Cycles offerings. That "ergo bend" in the drops.......I am not sure about that. 

And I know that now days that everything is trademarked, so coming up with a name for a product is a real pain. Names that are obscure, mythical, ancient cultural things have become names for components and bicycles. It's almost as if you are taking a World History and Ancient Religions classes when you are trying to figure out names for things like tires and forks and the like. So, Ritchey uses a naming convention that is a bit of a uninspired thing in a world of oddball names. Their names are almost campy and hearken back to a time when "valley girls" meant a way that you walked and talked. I mean, "Venturemax"? Like, venture to the max, Dude. 

Well, at least they are consistent with their names. More on the bar to come.....

Ritchey sent the Venturemax drop bar for test and review to at no charge. I have not been paid nor bribed for this review and I will strive to give my honest thoughts and opinions throughout.



Ari said...

Those look like they have a long reach from what I see on the photo. Ari.

Guitar Ted said...

@Ari- A little longer than a Cowchipper, but not by much. The TRP/Gevenalle hood is super long though. That's due to their having to stuff a master cylinder for the hydraulic brake in there. said...

I did one ride with a pair on my RLT and decided I did not like them at all. Went back to the Cowbells pretty quick. Nice bars, nice weight, just not for me (or at least the RLT setup)

Smithhammer said...

I put a VentureMax on a couple weeks ago, and so far I really like it.

Ari said...

Yeah, some of those hydro levers are really long. Sometimes we have to install shorter stems to keep the same reach.