Flared handlebars are growing increasingly popular and they come in various widths and styles. Seido Tackle handlebars represent a great, budget-friendly example of the flared gravel handlebar concept. On the hoods, these are just like normal bars but the generously flared drops offer added stability for descending - and the flat-top sections add comfort for climbing.
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Seido Tackle Gravel Handlebar - Technical Details
I can forgive you for not knowing much about Seido - it is Bombtrack's own off-road component range, which the German brand launched early in 2022. Bombtrack has years of experience creating high-quality gravel and adventure bikes, so it comes as no surprise that the Seido's offerings are refined and well thought out from the get-go.
The Tackle handlebar is no exception. It's a flared gravel and bikepacking handlebar that comes in four widths: 380 (tested), 400, 420 and 440mm.
This handlebar is targeted at the everyday rider and comes without any fancy claims. The bars are made of 6061-T6 Butted Aluminium and have a reach measurement of 77mm and a medium drop of 128 mm. The top of the bar is flattened for comfort when climbing with hands on the middle section, and the bar has a standard 31.8mm diameter around the clamp which makes it easy to attach accessories.
The flare is really what makes these bars ‘gravel specific,’ as the drops are wider than the tops, something that has become popular in the gravel cycling segment. These bars have a hefty 25-degree flare, meaning that the 380mm bars I was testing measure 490mm at the drops.
The Tackle Handlebar is compatible with Di2 electronic shifting, meaning there is a hole near the end of each bar (on the drops) for easy routing of the cables.
In terms of weight, Seido says a 400mm bar weighs 366g.
Seido Tackle Aluminium Gravel Handlebar - Performance
The Seido Tackle handlebar looks great, and although I am usually not a fan of flared handlebars, I found this set fit me perfectly both in terms of width and shape. The medium drop paired with the generous flare work well together, although the setup requires you to tilt the shifters inwards a little (which I don't think is a negative).
In the quest to please the broad-shouldered markets, I feel gravel-specific bars are rarely available in widths narrower than 400mm - which for me, is usually on the verge of being too wide especially if coupled with flared drops. The 380mm Tackle I tested was absolutely perfect for me. It was comfortable on the hoods without stretching my arms out, but the flare offered extra width and stability on the drops when I was riding on more technical stuff. I must admit that although I like the width selection, these bars' widest option is 440mm, which might not suit those who are after very wide bars.
The shape of these bars makes them quite ergonomic. They have a flat section at the top which is great for resting your hands on during climbs, and the curve of the drop isn't harsh, but the section where your hands naturally sit. The drops don’t extend behind the tops, but there is enough flat area towards the ends so my hands sat comfortably without having to bend my wrists awkwardly.
In terms of construction, the Tackle bars come in at a hefty 366g for size 400m, which is more than some other aluminium bars - and perhaps some 100g more than carbon equivalents. Aluminium, arguably, also offers a harsher ride than carbon bars, but I personally would not bother with carbon handlebars on my gravel bike, because although they offer some better vibration dampening, they are a lot harder (costly) to fix in case of crashing. Alloy bars are an affordable and reliable alternative, and I think the Tackle bars are a great example of this, at £47 you can’t really go wrong.
I’ve never really had issues with riding alloy bars on gravel unless my bar tape has been sub-par, thin stuff. I found the Tackle really comfortable when I wrapped it in Seido’s own TAB bar tape that is not only grippy but also thick enough to offer some dampening on the gravel rattle.
Seido Tackle Aluminium Gravel Handlebar - Verdict
Considering that these bars cost £47, they are an excellent option for anyone looking for a basic, reliable flared gravel handlebar. PNW Components Coast Handlebar costs £70 and weigh only slightly less, and the Ritchey WCS Beacon gravel handlebar retail for £90 and comes with even more flare but less weight (275g).
Even though the Tackle is a smidgeon heavier than some competing alloy bars and - at their widest (440mm) - could be too narrow for those that seek a very wide setup, these bars really stand out as a great value option. Especially for riders that want a little extra width for the technical gravel riding but don't want to be constantly stretched when riding on the hoods.