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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Currently using 3T stem and Ergonova bars Pro. For my upcoming new bike build I am looking for another a brand with top quality control. The alignment graph paint on the bars are off.

Shimano is usually pretty good on QC, does anyone have any feedback on the PRO seatpost, bar and stem? I am interested in the vibe7s kit.

I've used FSA SLK compact bars before and I really like the geo on FSA bars, I currently use the k-force seatpost on my current bike.

Out of these three brands, which would have the best or strictest QC?

Thanks
 

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Other than basing it on crowd-sourced rep, that'd be pretty hard to know without having worked in the QC department of all three or have been a supplier to all three. IMO, they're all good and would choose based on which had the most desired features wrt fit, shape, weight, cost, cosmetics, etc.. Personally, I don't generally match the brand on seat-posts, bars and stems, preferring to choose each on their individual merits.
 

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I've used Shimano Pro Vibe stem and shallow drop bars, and 3T stem and Ergonova bars. No experience with FSA. Personally, liked the Shimano Pro better - stiffer, and bends in bars fit my hands better. Obviously personal preference, and doesn't answer your quality control question - agree with Looigi, don't know how you could really answer that unless you'd sampled/inspected lots of both.
 

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Big is relative
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I swapped out my Ergosum bars for some Pro bars. I didn't like that the 44 c-c Ergosum bars measured 41 c-c at the hoods. Good in the drops, not so good on the hoods when climbing. The Pro bars measure 44 all the way around.
 

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Cranky Old Bastard
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The alignment graph paint on the bars are off.
3T and FSA carbon pieces are heavily counterfeited in China. Check it out at aliexpress, you'll be amazed.

Those fakes are so good that you often can't see any difference when comparing pictures from their website to those of the originals.
It seems to me that the fakes must be coming from the same factories where the real items are made but naturally I can't say for sure.

One of the "tells" of a fake is that the graphics aren't aligned well. Not saying you have a fake but that is one of the signs. QC of the better companies won't let a piece leave the factory with crooked graphics.

People are buying fakes and not realizing it.
A lot of this crap is on fleabay. 3T Rotunda and FSA K-Force bars for $80-$100 while all the reputable online sellers charge $200+.

This stuff shows up a lot second hand also. There was an ad in the classifieds here on RBR for FSA bars that looked like they could be fake to me. He was asking $150, $80 off online new, but he may have gotten them from China for $70.

I bought a couple of FSA cranksets (from Nashbar) that have serial number stickers on them and I understand that they are doing that to show that the parts are genuine. If you want to make a warranty claim with FSA you have to have the number off the sticker and they have to validate it.
The fakes usually don't come in printed boxes or with original documentation either.

Just something to consider.
 
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Carbon Fiber = Explode!
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+1 for Randy.

Realize even CHEAP 20-40 dollar handlebars have graphics that are aligned properly. So anything that should be priced in the higher end $80-600 should also have graphics aligned.

3T is not a company that would let that pass thru. Nor Shimano, nor Ritchey, nor FSA, nor Easton, nor Salsa, nor..
 

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They're all good brands seen ridden at the highest level. QC should be equal all around. eBay 3T bars - namely the ones with less labeling - should be avoided. You really can't tell if they're the OE or fakes until they're in your hands. iirc it was Wheel&Sprocket claimed to be the only legit seller.

imo Shimano PRO has the best aesthetic. I have their Vibe 7S stem, and their Vibe Sprint handlebars. Both was been problem free, and very stiff. The stem is a cool one. Name how many other stems on the market are triangular...

Also had a 3T ARX-Team. The Ti bolts are pretty bad. Many including myself managed to pop them, even when not at the torque limit. Stem itself is nice, though.

I've only used an FSA headset and chainring. Stuff works. A lot of people love their Wing Pro handlebars.
 

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Cranky Old Bastard
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Check out some of these:
Aliexpress.com : Buy Sales promotion 3T Ergosum TEAM full carbon bicycle Handlebar /carbon bike Handlebar /carbon road handlebar 31.8*400/420/440mm from Reliable handlebar suppliers on Kevin

Aliexpress.com : Buy FSAK force carbon fibre seatpost MTB Road bicycle seat post 27.2mm/30.8mm/31.6mm from Reliable FSAK seatpost suppliers on Fanjian full carbon fiber bicycles shop

Aliexpress.com : Buy 3T Arx LTD stem Pro full carbon fiber Stem MTB bicycle bike 31.8*80/90/100/110mm from Reliable 3T Arx LTD suppliers on Fanjian full carbon fiber bicycles shop

Aliexpress.com : Buy NEW FSAKForce Compact 3K Carbon Road Bike Bicycle Handlebar 31.8*400/420/440mm from Reliable FSAK Handlebar suppliers on Fanjian full carbon fiber bicycles shop

Aliexpress.com : Buy FSAK package carbon bicycle stem bike stem 31.8*80/90/100/110mm free shipping from Reliable fsaK stem suppliers on Fanjian full carbon fiber bicycles shop

Those stems and seatpost are right around $100 here for the real item. That FSA stem is $14.50??? The handlebars are maybe $230 here, $70 (or less) there??

Another small "tell" is that the bolts on the FSA stem should be tapered but they are straight in the pics. One of the reviews from a buyer said that his FSA stem came with steel bolts when "Titanium Bolts" is printed right on the side of the stem.
Hell, 6 titanium bolts are worth more than the $14.50 price of the stem! No wonder they are steel.

When I first discovered aliexpress I thought that the parts are good and they were just cutting out some middlemen (distributors) or things like that, but then I found an article with FSA complaining about the fakes and I learned the truth. I had no idea that someone would fake bike parts, wow.

When I consider any carbon from FSA or 3T or Ritchey or Bontrager or other brand I've seen listed there my attitude is that it is fake until proven genuine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
3T and FSA carbon pieces are heavily counterfeited in China. Check it out at aliexpress, you'll be amazed.

Those fakes are so good that you often can't see any difference when comparing pictures from their website to those of the originals.
It seems to me that the fakes must be coming from the same factories where the real items are made but naturally I can't say for sure.

One of the "tells" of a fake is that the graphics aren't aligned well. Not saying you have a fake but that is one of the signs. QC of the better companies won't let a piece leave the factory with crooked graphics.

People are buying fakes and not realizing it.
A lot of this crap is on fleabay. 3T Rotunda and FSA K-Force bars for $80-$100 while all the reputable online sellers charge $200+.

This stuff shows up a lot second hand also. There was an ad in the classifieds here on RBR for FSA bars that looked like they could be fake to me. He was asking $150, $80 off online new, but he may have gotten them from China for $70.

I bought a couple of FSA cranksets (from Nashbar) that have serial number stickers on them and I understand that they are doing that to show that the parts are genuine. If you want to make a warranty claim with FSA you have to have the number off the sticker and they have to validate it.
The fakes usually don't come in printed boxes or with original documentation either.

Just something to consider.
Thanks for your feedback, actually the alignment graph going off is pretty common. For example, I bought a 2013 Specialized carve SL and the bars that came on the bike alignment were off as well. I bought the bike from a well-known local bike shop that sells a lot of high end bikes.

Handlebar Alignment Off?

Human error is inevitable but good/strict QC can reduce the parts leaving the factory. I will give Shimano PRO seatpost, bars and stem a try since I am or have used FSA and 3T.

Thanks
 

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...Human error is inevitable but good/strict QC can reduce the parts leaving the factory...
Exactly. As far as good/strict QC, what's the AQL? Specification, inspection method, test method, inspect/test every item, one unit/day, 10 random units/lot, ...? One hopes QC is stricter for factors that affect safety (material properties, final dimensions, correct processing...) How do all these vary between the companies in question?
 
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