limited edition vanilla speedvagen louisville stem

Admittedly, having the UCI Cyclocross World Championships in the US for the first time going all the way back to the 1950’s is a big deal. There was just an article about it in the Wall Street Journal for crying out loud. To celebrate, Vanilla Workshop is putting out a limited edition Integrated stem that commemorates the occasion in a distinctly Vanilla way.

Just how do you create a stem that goes for $550? Read on to find out.

limited edition vanilla speedvagen louisville stem clamps enve bar

Vanilla starts with their Speedvagen Integrated stem – a carbon stem that features a built in routing for cantilever brakes that eliminates the need for a  brake cable hanger. The stem itself has a carbon body with a cold forged alloy face plate that is secured with titanium bolts. A stainless steel internal routing for the brake cable is molded into the stem with a gradual radius so that the housing enters through the front of the stem and the brake cable pops out of the bottom.

The stem tips the scales at 133g and considering you are eliminating the cable hanger and a good chunk of housing, there is another 50 some odd grams lost as well. Stems are offered in 90, 100, 110, and 120mm lengths with a 6° rise, 1 1/8 steerer clamp, and 31.8 bar clamp. Because there is no need for the brake hanger, the Integrated stem offers the lowest possible stack height for cross bikes without a fork mounted brake hanger and reportedly cuts down on brake chatter with less cable friction.

limited edition vanilla speedvagen louisville stem logo

If you’re wondering what part of the process allows a stem to fetch a $550 price tag (some are already sold), it’s not the stem. Well, partially not the stem. You can pick up a standard issue Speedvagen Integrated stem for a comparative value of only $350. So what does that other $200 get you?

For starters, you’ll be one of only 13 people lucky enough (wealthy enough?) to have this custom stem gracing your bike. Vanilla enlisted the help of Coat Paint Shop to create a custom Louisville 2013 edition in the Vanilla “stars” and stripes pain scheme.

While supplies last, buyers will have the option of either a black or white paint job with each featuring the same limited Louisville graphics. Stems are pre-order only, limited to 13 pieces as mentioned (2013, get it?) with each piece signed and numbered. Orders are due in by February 17 and expect to ship out on March 18th.


  1. pmurf on

    That’s pretty slick, IRT the cable routing (paint is also gorgeous). For some reason, I thought the SV stems were just plain stock Enve’s painted to match.

  2. Mark Sheffield on

    The basic design seems like it would actually increase fork shudder from what I’ve read other places. Can anybody confirm or deny?

  3. Aindreas on

    Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!

  4. Cynikal on

    @ Mark S.
    The farther you move the cable stop from the straddle cable the more you increase the chances for shudder with modern carbon forks. When I have a stop mounted on my stem my cross bike was unridable on the street due to the shudder.

  5. Jon Danger FTW on

    @cynakal true true true. This stem puts the cable stop at the highest possible point. John “Prolly” Watson will get one, and 12 other doctors and lawyers are gonna be complaining about front brake shudder on their morning greenway Fred sessions. Dumb. For $550 it better reach back and give me a handy while pedaling.

  6. Joe on

    It’s a shame most hi-end cross forks these days don’t have a drilled crown to run a crown mounted cable stop. If Paul made one I’d be all over it, but for now I suppose I can be happy with my ten dollar Tektro number mated with a Moon Unit and Neo-Retro Cantis.

  7. mudrock on

    Last gasp for canti brakes. They are outperformed by v-brakes (even my $15 Tektro), Paul-style centerpulls, and discs. If one does stick with cantis, fork crown hanger is the only way to go.

  8. Ripnshread on

    Yea, this seems like the most expensive paint job on the planet. Is that real gold on their? The paint shop is owned by vanilla….sooo…a $70 upcharge for a custom molded Envy stem and $200 for paint…on a stem…what? And imop its freaky ugly. If you din’t actually win the CX worlds your gonna look like a goob with this on your bike.

  9. Joe on

    I had TRP Mini Vs on my Space Horse frame for a year’s worth of riding, and ended up getting some Paul cantis because the rim clearance was absolutely horrible, and the mechanical advantage was so extreme it made braking very mushy and learning how to modulate their extreme power was practice of inertia input rather than lever feel. I adapted eventually, but they were absolute hell in the rain because power was so high with such little positive lever feel. Discs are obviously the future, but I’ll stick with cantis for the traditional builds from now on.

  10. Dillao on

    “cuts down on brake chatter” *When used with a 1.5″ tapered fork. So you put those 51g saved into a fatter steerer tube and headset. The routing does look cool though.

  11. John on

    Kind of sad that with CX worlds losing sponsorship dollars Vanilla felt the need to produce this. Official Merch for worlds can be purchased on the Louisville2013 website. How about you post that instead Bikerumor.

  12. Johnner on

    complaining about the price? So what? no one forces anyone to buy this stuff. . . I wonder when you’re out and about and you pass an expensive shoe shop – do you look in the window and ‘lose the plot’, start ranting and raving about the price to passers by? No, you probably don’t, because people would think you belong in a mental institution – however on the Net – well, hey that’s just fine. . . FFS!

  13. JimmyZ on

    that guy in New York made a whole career of complaining about how the rent is too high, and nobody said that he belonged in a mental institution. In fact, I bet that if you went to New York City right now, you would find that many people love to complain all day long, to everyone. The mental institutions don’t want them, they are tired of their constant complaints.

  14. Eli on

    Its my understanding that Sasha did these as next year all SV CX Machines will be DISC ONLY – my cousin overheard a convo between Sasha and Tony Pereria last month at a coffee shop and its confirmed. Not saying if its good or bad, but if you are the canti type you might want to grab one.

  15. ND on

    @Eli: Uh, no.
    @ the haters: Yeah, yeah, this is expensive. We get it. Now, please come and visit Portland sometime. Knock on the door to Vanilla’s workshop, if you can find it. Ask to see the paint shop. See for yourself exactly how many man-hours goes in to masking and painting a multi-color stem. One. Stem. I bet it takes them half a day or longer to paint each one–spread out over multiple days because the masking has to be re-done for each color after the last color has dried. Now, how much do you get paid for half a days work? Once you see how it is done, you will understand that this isn’t just a stem. This a piece of art painted on a stem. I hope they all sell out, and I hope Sasha keeps his crew employed for a long, long time.


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