Chromag has a strong history of manufacturing handlebars. The OSX is one of our best selling products and put us on the map as a bike components company. The OSX has a reputation for its perfect combination of bend and upsweep. This geometry combined with an array of colour choices has made the OSX a popular choice for pretty much any discipline of mountain biking.
The OSX 2020 is the next step in our progression. By refining the shape, and utilizing variable butting, high grade alloys and advanced heat treatment techniques, we have increased the fatigue life by over 50%. So much so, that we’ve seen fatigue test results reach over 1 million cycles.
7050 Series Aluminum
We use aerospace grade aluminum to achieve our required properties of strength and toughness, with added resistance to stress and corrosion.
Advanced Heat Treatment
Heat treatment gets thrown around a lot, but most of the time the word consistency doesn’t come along with it. Depending on the batch an individual bar might be subjected to vastly different temperatures during the process. HTX ditches the disparity and provides uniform, quality heat treatment on every single bar.
By increasing the tapered sections and using a larger radius we have inherently built more strength into the shape of the OSX.
Varying the wall thickness of the bar allows us to add strength where it’s needed, and keep the weight down in less strategic areas. The OSX has 7 different butting locations.
Zedler is known within the cycling industry as the foremost test institute for bicycle frames and components. Based in Germany, they have been making test equipment and conducting third party testing for 30 years. In the cycling industry, the most common testing standard for bicycles and components, the EN/ISO Standard, is decades old and not really relatable to the kind of loads that modern components see. For this reason, Zedler have created test standards that test up to the EN/ISO standard and then far beyond this, to simulate the most extreme scenarios that today’s components will see in use.
Part of the latest evolution of our handlebars was to ensure that all of the design improvements we’ve made translated in to real-world, measurable increases in performance. Part of this was to build our own test lab and equipment, where we can test prototype and also production batches of handlebars for safety and performance. We also sent our new carbon bars to Zedler to test them to their high industry standard, which allows us to benchmark them against other products available on the market.
The tests in question relate to the fatigue life of the bar, and are designed to simulate the loads that the handlebar will see over its entire service life. These include a precisely designed and controlled sequence of loads on the handlebar in all directions, and also a ‘Push-Pull Test’ which as the name suggests, pushes and pulls on the bars with a high force, in the middle of the test. In the real world, this could relate to landing a large drop to flat after already riding the bar for a few years.
Both the Cutlass and BZA passed the highest test standard available from Zedler, the ‘Advanced Plus’ test. Both handlebars were intact at the end of these tests, and we stopped ‘End of Life’ testing when it became clear that it may take many more rounds of testing to see a failures from the bars.