This Prime Doyenne Alloy stem offers aero touches and good stiffness at a sensible price. It's a touch on the heavy side, though, and you won't be able to slam it.
- Pros: Cool-looking aero touches, a budget upgrade
- Cons: Slightly on the heavy side, not good for getting low
The humble stem is possibly the simplest component on a bicycle. It's also one of the best parts to change to alter the fit of a bike. You can go from comfy sit-up-and-beg to flat-back racer with just one change.
The alloy versions are all pretty similar, but there are a few touches here that set it slightly apart from a basic stem. These do seem to be pretty much cosmetic, though, so despite the 'sleek aerodynamic design', don't be expecting tangible speed gains.
The aero design can be found around the steerer clamp. The top cap sits flush with the top of the stem which looks really good, especially considering the low price.
With a standard four-bolt face plate, the stem is easy to install and comes with its own spacer that sits nicely with the stem. My issue is that I slam the stem on a flat top bearing cover. The Doyenne won't sit properly thanks to the top cap integration lip that is built into both sides.
All that means is you'll need a 5mm spacer under the stem. Or a conical top cap should do. As an issue it's not huge, as I'm probably in a minority of riders who run stems that low. It's worth considering, though.
Out on the road the stem is stiff enough for my thin cyclist arms and there isn't a noticeable increase in road buzz reaching my hands compared with the PRO Vibe 7S stem that it has replaced.
It has seen some pretty inclement weather and plenty of washing, and there are no signs of wear either on the stem or the bolts. As long as you're careful with the bolt heads, you won't get any rounding. I've been playing around with my bar position quite a bit so there have been a lot of adjustments.
We've got the 120mm version here, and the range covers 80-130mm in 10mm increments. The steerer clamp is 1 1/8in and the bar clamp is 31.8mm. There's no other angle than the +/- 5° found here so if you need to go low, this probably isn't the stem to pick.
At 196g for the 120mm with top cap, this is a slightly heavy stem compared to what you can pick up for similar money. PRO's LT Stem is a bit lighter at 153g for the 100mm length, but a fiver more at £34.99. At £29.99, it's a good budget upgrade (and currently £17.99) that looks a lot more expensive than it is and pretty cool with it.
Plenty stiff enough and looks great, but not one for getting low
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Prime Doyenne Alloy Stem
Size tested: 120mm
Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Wiggle says, "The Doyenne Alloy stem uses an advanced 3D-forged and CNC-machined production process to create a stem with clean smooth lines, a low stack height, and a uber cool integrated top cap.
"It can be installed with either a positive or negative five degree rise, with inverted logos and an integrated top cap cutout on either side. And, best of all, Prime offer this stem at a respectable weight and at a price to suit anyone's budget."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Angle: +/- 5°
All good here. The bolts are fine as long as you're careful with them.
Feels just like a stem. Not too harsh but it handles well in a full-on sprint.
Fine here, no problems. It's not seen the best weather either, so you'd be safe putting this on a winter bike.
Getting on for 200g is quite heavy compared with others at the same price.
Looks more expensive than it is.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Very well. A bit of buzz just like all alloy stems, but this is solid in a sprint.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The added material used to make the top cap integrate on both sides doesn't play nicely with slammed setups.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It's a fiver cheaper than PRO's LT stem and it certainly looks a bit fancier. I'd have to go with the PRO, though, as it offers the rise that I need and the ability to slam that stem!
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yep
Use this box to explain your overall score
Gains points for its great looks and good price – in fact, this looks more expensive than it really is. Loses points for the double top cap integration interfering with slammed setups and a limited range of angles. It's also a bit heavy.
About the tester
I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Di2 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo-cross, commuting, club rides, general fitness riding, I specialise in the Cafe Ride!
Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. After joining the road.cc staff in 2016 as a reviewer, Liam quickly started writing feature articles and news pieces. After a little time living in Canada, where he spent most of his time eating poutine, Liam returned with the launch of DealClincher, taking over the Editor role at the start of 2018. At the weekend, Liam can be found racing on the road both in the UK and abroad, though he prefers the muddy fields of cyclocross. To date, his biggest race win is to the front of the cafe queue.