Deda’s M35 Trentacinque – that’s thirty-five in English – is a new oversized bar and stem combination. The standard diameter for oversized bars is 31.6mm, but by going to 35mm and custom shaping the thicknesses of the carbon fibre M35, Deda have been able to limit the weight to a super-light 224g (44cm) while increasing stiffness by a claimed 50 percent over a standard 31.8mm carbon bar.
The Trentacinque stem is a more traditional 2014 alloy offering. With its multi-thickness construction and titanium hardware, weight is kept down to just 125g (10cm). The clamping surfaces are well finished, and despite its lightness it’s remarkably free of flex. The same goes for the bar – in fact it’s one of the most rigid bars we’ve ever tested, regardless of material.
The 35mm diameter top feels great in your hands, though some will bemoan the fact that you can’t tape the top section, and those with smaller hands may find it a bit trickier to hold. For the top-to-drop shape of the bar Deda have used their RHM design. RHM, or Rapid-Hand-Movement, has a tighter forward bend than a standard bar, offering better wrist clearance when in the drops; it also makes getting from the hoods into the drops easier.
We expected the bar to feel a bit harsh because of its stiffness, but it not only sharpened up the handling of our test bike, giving a more direct feel to the steering, it also reduced road buzz. In fact riding in the drops was as comfortable as we’d ever need.
Up on the hoods the M35 has a somewhat thudding nature over bigger hits, but it still remained free of high frequency buzz. Whether the Trentacinque will appeal to anyone other than sprinters, racers or bigger riders remains to be seen. But the quality and ride certainly impressed and surprised us.
This article was originally published in Cycling Plus magazine.