Oval Concepts T800 riser bar review£100.00

Light, top-end cross-country pipe

BikeRadar score3/5

Oval Concepts' well-proven T800 bar is a light, if narrow, top-end cross-country pipe. The 660mm width means it’s not wide enough to add significant control leverage so it'll appeal more to old-school riders. Its 10-degree backsweep leaves it feeling wider and more relaxed than it is.

The central grip tape wrap keeps it secure, although there are no twist or centring marks unless you can see the central logo through an open face plate stem. The 1000K carbon fibre construction gets a multi-directional Kevlar-enhanced top weave to keep it protected from knocks and clamp surface scarring.

Control and bar end clamp reinforcing segments are built in for extra strength. A concern was that ours was 15g lighter than stated on the website. It’s described as “not for downhill use” but nothing nasty happened during our tests. It’s definitely on the comfy not super-accurate side though.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 45
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster than the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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