Perfect marriage of lightweight and stiffness.
Zipp doesn't hesitate to extend their craftiness beyond their signature aerodynamic wheels. This SL Speed Carbon Stem is a prime example of Zipp's quest to reshape bike componentry from the bottom up. The most notable aspect of this stem is its ethereal lightness. Zipp uses exacting construction standards and some forward thinking to maintain the same top-notch level of performance and durability you'd find on their other go-fast products, without sacrificing lightness.
The SL Speed Carbon Stem has rearward facing stem bolts, similar to what we've seen on Oval stems in the past. On Zipp's design, the bolts thread directly into a two-piece carbon/titanium faceplate. On the backside, the single-bolt steerer clamp appears standard in every way, but Zipp found, through product testing, that normal fasteners don't always seat properly in their bores when the clamp is torqued to spec onto the fork steerer tube. To fix this, they added self-aligning washers to ensure positive contact between the stem and the shoulders of the fasteners, which also enables the construction to be completely carbon. The Zipp SL Speed Carbon Stem uses uni-directional carbon fiber, laminated in such a way as to have exceptional torsional stiffness to resist twisting when you're really cranking on the bars in a sprint or uphill.
- Stiff, secure, and ultralight stem for road or gravel
- Unidirectional carbon is seriously stiff and tough
- Light enough for roadies, tough enough for cyclocross
- Torx T25 heads for precise torque readings
- T25 wrench included for easy adjustability
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Reviews & Community
This is the *new* Zipp SL Speed carbon stem (with new stealth graphics).
Zipp, undeniably, one of the very best carbon road wheelset makers in the world... has quietly become one of the very best makers of carbon cockpit components.
The SL Speed carbon stem is expensive. It is strong. It is light (Zipp says 123g in size 100mm).
It is also stunnigly beautiful in stealth matte carbon black (and will match any frame color)
American company/design. Cool.
By the way, Zipp uses Torx fasteners because they are "simply a better bolt." As Zipp explains, "They are more durable (strip less). And they provide more accurate torque readings."
Install note: This stem is a work of art. You must use a quality torque wrench (or one of Park's excellent new torque keys @ $45) to tighten the bolts (cross X) to spec (6 Nm max torque).
If you have a carbon bar, add a swipe of grip paste ( I rec Finish Line, $7/tube). Don't over tighten. And you don't need to if you use a torque key and grip paste.