Zipp Contour SL Carbon Handlebar $294.95
More comfortable than you’ve ever experienced.
Zipp calls its Contour SL Carbon Handlebar 'the stage racer's bar,' and with its range of comfort enhancing features, we're inclined to agree. The flattened tops and ovalized hooks spread the load over more of your hands for all day comfort, even on rough roads. And despite its sub-200 gram weight, the Contour SL is built to put in the miles and keep coming back for more.
Zipp designed the Contour handlebar to be stiff for precise steering, but with enough flex built in for all-day comfort. The flattened top sections provide added vibration damping over a traditional round bar. And that says nothing of the added comfort that the flattened tops provide. When you're nearing the century mark, road vibrations will have taken their toll on your hands, and the added surface area makes the tops an even more appealing place to rest your hands when you need a break from the hoods. Naturally, the flattened tops also provide an aerodynamic advantage over round bars. After all, every bit of drag adds up. And, as you'd expect, the cable routing channels yield a round profile once your bars are taped up.
As for the bar shape, Contour SL handlebars are available in Zipp's proven short and shallow bend. Th bend keeps your position in the drops similar to your position on the hoods, which makes the drops far more usable than a traditional bend handlebar. The ovalized hook spreads the load over more of your hand than a round hook, and the boost in comfort becomes more apparent the longer that your ride gets.
With a weight that's under 200 grams, you might wonder about the durability of the Contour SL handlebar. However, it was subjected to EFBe Laboratory's extensive testing, and passed with its top performance rating. Basically, these bars will hold up to their end of the bargain, so you have one less thing to worry about when you hop onto the saddle.
The Zipp Contour SL Carbon Handlebar is available in the Short/shallow bend, the color Black, and the sizes 40, 42, 44 and 46 cm. Please note: the Contour SL handlebar is not compatible with clip-on aero bars.
What community has to say
Comfortable and responsive
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
I bought the 42cm shallow model and it fits me great! Here are my impressions from 200miles of usage:
1. Stiff - They are very stiff race bars and don't cut out a lot of road chatter. Not a good option for those looking for comfort.
2. The ovalized top adds to the comfort.
3. The shallow drop has a more ergonomic (short) reach that makes moving from hoods to drops and back easy!
4. Slightly more expensive than other comparable bars, but well worth it!
One thing to remember with Zipp handlebars - Unlike other manufacturers, Zipp measures their handlebars from outside edge to outside edge, as opposed to center-to-center. So if your current bar is 40cm, then you need to buy 42cm in Zipp (go up one size).
Flat and comfy :)
Extra nice bar
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
This is an excellent bar - soaks up the chop, and pretty stiff. Switched from a Ritchey Superlogic, and I like this one way better. The drop and reach are perfect - the top is almost flat, not real oblong as some other bars - but I have actually grown to like this - very comfortable.