by Marc Basiliere
August 1, 2014
A tidy cockpit? But is it stable?
It’s a simple thing, really.
Dissatisfied at the thought of mounting their pricey Garmin units to bars and stems with elastic bands, the Tate Labs team decided to come up with something better.
Moulded in the US of carbon-bar-friendly structural plastic, the Bar Fly line is that thing. More stable than stock Garmin mounts, Tate Labs’ provide mounting options better suited to their intended use.
On the dirt side sits the Bar Fly 3.0. Where stock mounts are tied to a rider’s stem angle, the 3.0 hovers above the stem, allowing for a stable and visible computer even with short, negative-rise, or otherwise funky stems. The quarter-turn mount is as solid as Garmin’s own and is covered by the company’s lifetime “Buy one/You’re done” warranty and crash replacement policy. In short, break it and they’ll send out a new one.
Beyond that, there’s not much to say. Smaller computers such as the Edge 200 are easily positioned behind the stem’s face plate- easily read and largely protected. Larger computers, like the Edge 1000 sit high enough to clear extended steerer tubes and large bar clamps- but at 120mm long remain somewhat exposed on modern cockpits. Tate does require the use of the lanyard on any computer that includes one- advice we heeded only after a stray knee sent a pricey 1000 flying during a small tumble.
Our red sample was a trade show special- retail units come only in none-more-Tufnel black. The Bar Fly does sell for slightly more than competing units- but the Tate’s first world manufacture and no-questions-asked replacement policy goes a long way towards closing the gap.