- Stiff, solid and creak free stem
- 40mm option available
- Fairly hefty for the price
- Slightly faffy bolts
Race Face offers two Aeffect stems, with this ‘R-for-Rally’ model costing £20 more and rated stronger than the cheaper version. One other benefit of the R model is that it’s available down to 40mm rather than 50mm length – useful if you have a new school bike with longer reach or want a really short stem to speed up the steering feel.
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The Aeffect R stem is cold forged from 6061 aluminium and finished off with CNC machining for a more sophisticated shape and profile. The bar holding area is wide to spread the clamping force over a bigger footprint and Race Face also use a design whereby the upper two bolts tighten down hard so the faceplate has no gap at the top; a feature that looks neat and makes it easier to set up. The two steerer bolts are 5mm whereas the faceplate bolts are 4mm, which adds a minor extra level of faff during installation or removal.
This Race Face stem just gets on with the job nicely with no creaks and issues and is plenty stiff and solid. I had zero drama with any of the bolts having poor threads during installation or working loose while riding.
The black Allen head bolts seem to resist rusting well too, despite multiple muddy rides and jet washes. £60 isn’t a total bargain price considering you can easily find stems that are 50% lighter, but it’s a fair deal for the solid reliable performance and quality finishing.