Looking to add a little more flare to your ride, but not too much flare? You could always add some handlebar tassels, but if you’re not into that kind of flare, the Ritchey WCS Butano just might be the drop bars you’re looking for.
Ritchey WCS Butano Handlebar Features:
- Triple-butted 7050 alloy
- Compact reach (73mm) and drop (118mm)
- Material: triple-butted 7050 alloy
- Widths: 40, 42, 44, 46cm
- 12° drop flare with 2° outward
- 4° backsweep at the tops
- 31.8mm clamp diameter
- Compatible with Di2 junction box (one side)
- C260 compatible
- Weight: 295 grams (44cm, actual)
- MSRP: $104.95
A great shape for all-roading
In my opinion, flared bars can be taken too far. I get it. It’s nice to have extra control in rough stuff, but most riders are better served with something in-between. And that just what the Ritchey WCS Butano Handlebar offers. With a road-like shape and 12-degrees of flare, it’s hard to even notice they are anything different than a standard road bar. But, that added wrist clearance and control does become apparent when the terrain gets rowdy.
Ritchey utilizes triple-butted 7050 alloy on the WCS Butano, which provides a reasonable weight and some compliance. I replaced the Zipp Service Course SL-70 XPLR bars on the 3T Exploro RaceMax with the Butano’s and immediately noticed a few things. For starters, they are a touch heavier (a mere 15 grams) and they don’t have quite as much outward flare. Similarly though, they both feature traditional road placement of the hoods (which is really nice). When bars are overly-flared and the hoods are mounted sideways, things can feel a little strange to me. A traditional, vertical hood placement just feels right and will feel awesome for those of us who come from extensive road backgrounds. The WCS Butano Handlebar maintains that roadie-like feel with just enough control for today’s all-road bikes.
Installation was easy. I mated them to the Ritchey Toyon Stem, which features the C220 clamp design for added security. On these bars, the clamping areas are outfitted with seriously burly and rough friction coatings. It’s akin to 80 grit sandpaper and does a great job at securing stems and hoods in place. I added friction paste to the stem/bar junction for good measure and that C220 mount really is solid. There are markings for stem adjustments, but none for the hoods, so you have to eyeball it to make sure they are mounted level.
All my testing has been with all-terrain rides. I’d say 60% gravel and singletrack and 40% road. With that mixture, the Butano’s shine. I can dance around the bars without hesitation and it’s easy to settle into the tops, hoods or drops. When the terrain gets challenging or on winding singletrack, the drops are a great perch with just enough added control. On long climbs, Ritchey’s trademark backsweep on the tops hits the sweet spot for hand comfort. It doesn’t take a degree in ergonomics to realize that your hands curve backwards from index to pinky. That marvelous 4-degrees of backsweep feels perfectly-natural and I just plain love Ritchey bars for that reason.
If you’re going mechanical with the Butano’s, the cable routing may get a little bulky because the cable groove isn’t very pronounced. Even with a single brake line, that bump is noticeable, but not distracting. Because the tops are nicely ovalized for comfort, the cable becomes less noticeable versus standard round tops.
- Really an ideal shape for road and gravel
- That extra flare in the drops helps in rough stuff
- Backsweep on the tops is superb
- Easy to dance around the bar
- Matte finish looks sleek
- Grippy friction coatings on clamping areas
- Ovalized tops for the win
- Cable grooves could be more pronounced
- Not as compliant as other bars in this category
The Bottom Line: Ritchey WCS Butano Handlebar
No question, bar shapes are changing for the better. Short reach/drop bars are now the norm and unique shapes with added flare are more and more the norm. With so many people venturing into gravel roads on the drop bar bikes, the WCS Butano is a great choice. The added control they afford and the overall shape is outstanding for all road adventuring.
Buy Now: Available at JensonUSA