A few years ago, while we were working on a batch of Speedvagen 'cross machines, we noticed how clunky the traditional cable hanger system was. It seemed like such an afterthought, never really meant to be a part of the bike, just this sort of booger hanging off the nose of an otherwise really slick racing machine. I guess the next step was kind of like wiping the nose of the traditional cross bike. In that moment we think 'cross bikes grew up a bit.
That year we started talking to our old friends at ENVE about what we could do to get rid of the booger. They worked with us over the next year to design, develop and test our new stem prototype. What we got was a lighter, smoother stem reinforced where it matters and tested for integrity.
Testing in-house is one thing, riding it, hard, that's another. We put the stem on our team bikes for a couple of season's and made more refinements based on our teammates feedback. Their experience was that it essentially eliminates front-end chatter while braking. The additional benefits that came with smoother cable routing, lighter braking action and 51g weight savings rounded out an improved rider experience.
In 2011 we offered the stems on our Speedvagen cross machines as an upgrade and most of our customers opted for them. We started to think that this could be a stand alone component.
Jump ahead a year and change. Ty of Golden Saddle Cyclery and Team Mudfoot wanted a new cross stem. Ty has been a part of the Vanilla family for years. We were happy to get him on a Speedvagen Integrated cross stem and we painted it to match the Mudfoot kit to boot. Ty raced the stem this year and was stoked on it.
This is the first time that a Speedvagen component is being offered separate from the frameset and we’re so excited to release something that we feel brings real value to all cross racers.
The Vanilla Workshop is celebrating the 2013 UCI Cyclocross World Championships with a special limited edition version of our Speedvagen Integrated cross stem. Painted in the Vanilla “stars” and stripes by Coat Paint Shop. Only 13 of these stems will be produced. Pre-order your size in black or white. The stem is also available in a standard issue black or white too.