WHAT IS IT? With his first offering of composite levers, ARC’s Bob Barnett convinced us that he had a winning idea?even though we broke the levers. Bob kept working on the durability issues and believes that he has finally come up with the ultimate design.
WHAT’S IT COST? $69.95 (lever only), $189.95 (lever and RC-8 perch).
CONTACT? www.arclevers.com or (714) 543-0362.
WHAT STANDS OUT?
Here’s a list of things that stand out with ARC’s Mnemlon composite levers.
(1) Materials. The only update for this lever is material. Don’t be fooled into thinking that this is the second version of ARC’s composite?it is the 27th version. ARC logged months of R&D hours and, at $1200 for each of the 27 different recipes, invested a substantial sum. The big difference from the last lever MXA tested is the absence of the long carbon fiber fill that made the lever somewhat brittle. ARC named the new material Mnemlon (the “m” is silent) from the Greek word mnemonikos (memory) and nylon (although there is no actual nylon in the material).
(2) Feel. The Mnemlon composite lever is so pliable that you can bend it in a circle. The question isn’t, “Will the lever flex to absorb the impact of a crash?” It is, “Will the lever flex when I pull it in?” We tested the Mnemlon clutch lever on our Honda CRF450 and Suzuki RM-Z450, both with stiffer clutch springs. In the pits, the test riders could feel the lever flex, but on the track, the flex was imperceptible. No complaints.
(3) Brake. Due to the precise nature of its contact with the master-cylinder piston, many aftermarket brake levers have some initial slop when actuating the brake. We replaced one such lever with the ARC Mnemlon lever and had to pump the piston to make more room at the master cylinder to get it to fit. This told us that the ARC lever would be as responsive as stock, and our first ride confirmed it.
(4) Durability . We bent our clutch lever 180 degrees over two dozen times, then mounted it and crashed on it a couple of times. So far we have yet to break an ARC Mnemlon composite lever.
(5) Warranty . ARC offers a lifetime warranty on all their products. Send $15 for shipping and handling along with your broken part and they will fix or replace it. If you bought an original composite lever, ARC will even waive the $15 fee.
WHAT’S THE SQUAWK? Even though there is technically enough cable pull, we don’t like to run Honda-spec leverage ratios on YZs or KX-Fs. We do run the ARC levers with the stock YZ and KX perches, but we use the ARC RC-8 perch on Hondas and special order RC-8 perches with Suzuki specs for yellow machines.
ARC pioneered the folding-lever concept, and now they are the first with an unbreakable lever. These levers are tough.