If your eye was drawn by our story on counterfeit bike parts being sold through online auction websites before Christmas, but thought that the great deal that you were could get might be worth the risk, then maybe this video will change you mind.

The video shows a staff member at Swedish bike shop Cykel City snapping a pair of carbon handlebars with his bare hands, something that could quite easily happen out on the road if you hit a big enough pot hole.

>>> Cheap Chinese carbon imports: are they worth the risk?

The handlebars were bought online by shop mechanic Mattias Lundin, who wanted to take a closer look at some of the fake parts that he sees regularly on customers’ bikes.

“I bought this €30 handlebar as a “Zip SL70 Agro” to try out the quality and was not surprised when it started cracking when tightening it in a stem for the first time. It has the exact shape of a Specialized S-Works Aerofly bar and some kind of attempt on Zipp graphics.”

>>> Can you trust repaired carbon bike frames?

Mattias also repeated the test with a pair of genuine Zipp handlebars, which would only give a small amount of flex, with no cracking sounds, even with much more force applied.

The moral of the story is to always buy your bike parts from your local bike shop or through a reputable online retailer to make sure that they will never fail you out on the road.

  • Andrew Bairsto

    I have both expensive and cheap carbon bars the only ones I have broken were genuine PRO bars ,if the genuine article was not so extortionately expensive then there would not be copies.

  • My original point is that most genuine carbon items come from the far east as well as these ‘fakes’ and you don’t know if the genuine brands are trying to protect bottom lines with stuff like this video to scare people from byuing fake items? maybe it is a bit of a conspiracy theory on my part, I do believe it’s actually a genuine video but the video is a little unfair as the bars are taped and already damaged (from over torque), if they were done straight out of the box then fair enough.

  • Matt Newman

    Oh god, straight to the conspiracy theories then. Yon don’t know jack about carbon. Yes 90% of all carbon frames are made in China/Tiawan but they are radically different from the knockoff carbon produced for a fraction of the cost. And most bike brands these days are proud of their overseas manufacturing. Just because something comes from Asia does not immediately mean it’s garbage, but like everything in the world it can be done right or quick and cheap. Cheap carbon products will never hold up to quality carbon product regardless of the country they come from. You need some education.

  • Bob Higgins

    We had a customer with a pair of “Specialized” aero bars that he bought online that didn’t look right and we had him snap them so easily. He learned why you should buy from an known supply line like your local bike shop.

  • Kim Moon

    All of the Carbon bits on my Giant TCR are from Ritchey. I only buy from reputable on line retailers…chain reaction bicycles in this case. I figured a few bucks more on a $3k bike was worth it. Ritchey road bars, stem, seatpost. And what did the mechanic have to gain from making a fake video? So i believe its authentic.

  • @grayvelo

    I’ll take a ticket to that gun show, Ooft.

  • Brian

    this begs more questions than it answers. i’ve had a genuine easton bar break in the same place on a ride. there are plenty of pros who’ve broken parts (and then bones) of brand names in big races (not that the bike porn press reports it). the story says he was tightening the stem and yet this broke near the shifter clamp. lastly, are we supposed to believe he’d’ve posted a vid showing this $30 bar was actually quite solid and good value? or that he’d show a brand name failure? and this shop would keep its dealership?

  • Chris Thomas

    I don’t know of any major brands that claim to be made in the US Germany etc. They all claim to be made in Taiwan or China. Big difference is they are all going through a rigorous standards testing process. I have never seen a 3T bar crack at the stem, I have only seen a couple of Zipp ones and that was many years ago. Buying stuff off Ebay from Asia is playing with fire. If its seems too cheap there is a reason. Anything sold in EU on a bike has to be CEN standards approved. That should give you a big vote in confidence in what you are buying.

  • Jordan

    He was building a bike it started cracking while torquing things down, so he took it off completely wrapped and did this test.

    Claiming something is made in one place and having it not be is illegal. Most companies are open about what products they have manufactured in taiwan but there is difference between reputable factories in Taiwan and a factory just throwing fibers down quickly with the cheapest available to make a product and get it out the door in mainland china. My general rule of thumb for carbon is unfortunately “China carbon is fragile like china plates”

  • CyberTonTo72

    It is carbon, and i’m sure high end bars would snap if the pressure was applied that way too, might take a bit more but still

  • ummm…


  • Mike Prytherch

    Boy has some guns eh !

  • interesting they were taped up before being snapped? how do we know the mechanic hasn’t been put up to this as a promotion stunt for the bigger brands that bike shops stock and sell? I custom paint bike frames for a living and know from stripping them down that most of your brands claiming to be made in Germany or the USA etc are made in asia somewhere as the have the QC stickers with chinese/taiwanese writing inside – it’s all bollocks marketing, smoke and mirrors.