Monday, October 27, 2008

New Poll - What bars do you use?



I've got a new poll up! What kind of handlebars do you use? I personally was a great fan of the Nitto Randonneur bar. It had a great shape. Flat-ish ramps made a comfortable platform, the drops were on the shallow side and flared out for comfort. At one point, each of my bikes had them. Two years later, only my road bike has them and everything else has Albatross bars in some configuration or the other.

For me, I enjoy the rather upright position of Albatross bars. I also find that the A-bar is actually a pretty good multi-position bar. There is a more slow and meandering position near the ends and a more aggressive position near the stem. I particularly enjoy them on loaded climbs out of the saddle. The wide bars give a comfortable and stable handhold to stomp on. When I was using drops, I was mostly on the hoods. With some stem adjustment, I position the A-bars so they are roughly where the hoods were on my drops.

One thing I have discovered (maybe someone who is savvy with frame geometry can confirm or deny this), is that the modern frame is generally not made for swept-back bars. For swept backs to work, for me, I have to use a longer stem (120 to 135mm range), whereas if the bars were drops, I would be using something in the 90mm to 100mm range. What this means is if I were to by a frame and I knew that I was going to use an A-bar or equivalent with it, I would buy a frame that is a size or two larger.

On my cargo bike, I've made a modification to my A-bar. I wanted a slightly more stretched out position (the stem was a little shorter than I would have liked), so I experimented with sliding on some mountain bike bar-ends onto the center of the bar. This gives me something that is like an H-bar. It's great. On long straight stretches, I find myself holding on to the bar ends in some form or the other.

Anyway, what kind of bar do you use now? Has it been an evolution to your current bar?

17 comments:

abhishek said...

I have flats on my MTB Xtracycle and albatross bars on my dutch bike.

I am open for recommendations though. The straight bars on the MTB are a bit of a bother for longer distances.

Miguel said...

When I bought my Bridgestone X=-3 many years ago, it came with a moustache bar. I swapped it for a stright bar and did the dumb thing, got rid of the moustache bar. I wish I had it again. Oh well.

Rat Trap Press said...

I've got the stock bars on my LHT right now buy I'm buying some Albatross bars on payday. I'll also be picking up a wald basket.

Dominic Dougherty said...

I have a little bit of everything.
Modolo Gran Fondo drops on my tandem, Titec H-Bar on my Xtra, Sweptback on my porter-bike, bullhorns on my fixie and falts on my MTB.

I can strongly recommend against the Titec H-Bar. The angles on it are in a way that you can only get 1 of 3 positions comfortable.
I really wish I had that $60 back.

Andy said...

Not sure the category they fall in, but I have been using (and absolutely loving) On-one's Midge bar.

Thomas Brock said...

I've only got the stock flat bar on my Trek 7.3FX.

I'm thinking about upgrading to a set of drops or trekking bars. I need some new hand positions in a bad sort of way.

d*pow said...

I've been commuting and cross racing with some of the old B-Stone arc bars. Like you mention in your blog entry, these bars also require a bit longer stem than I'd be running with drops. They feel REALY good though.

twodeadpoets said...

I put H-bar but really we're a multi-bar family. I have an H-Bar on my ute, drop bars on my tour/commuter bike, straight bars on my MTB, and bullhorns on my fixie/single. And my wife uses trekking bars on her tour/commuter.

Guy Bouchard said...

Multi-bar family here too. On-one Mary on my 29er Mountain bike. TTT Morphe 46cm or Zoom Brahma Bar (swapable)on my touring/commuting/expedition bike. TTT Morphe 44cm on my road/cross bike. TTT ??? bar or Answer hyperlite flat bar with bar-end (swapable)on my fixie. Wife use european treking multi-position bar. I was pretty happy with Nitto Dove bar on my commuting/touring bike but this summer, i was missing a more stretch position when touring. It is fun to be able to try different thing if you like.

Justin said...

I have drops on my SS/fixed 26" thing, I had the Jitensha studio flatbar on my Soma double cross commuter but switched those to Nitto promenades (swept back) and was about to put Mustache bars on a new bike. I do it all!

Raiyn said...

Hmm, no provision for riser bars. I run a MAXM MX-5 on the seldom used trail bike, a Titec Hellbent on the townie/grocery getter (read rigid mtb with slicks) and a newly purchased 45cm Nitto B-115 on my Schwinn Varsity project bike.

2whls3spds said...

Some of the above? Depends on the bike. I have Northroads, inverted Northroads, drop bars, Trekking bars, Moustache bars and I believe on bike might still have straight bars on it. All are ridden on a semi regular basis depending on the mood, the day and the company.

Aaron

Long Beach said...

How is the Mary Bar different from the Origin 8 Space Bar?

Or is it?

Gavin said...

I use the Origin8 Gary bar which like the On-one midge, is kind of in between a mustache and drops on my main commute/short tour/do-all bike. I have also run it on my mountain bike which now runs mustache bars. I am not a big fan of flats or risers. I am, however a big fan of drops which I have on my road bike and am burrently building on my touring bike and a new cyclocross/do everything bike.

Geoff said...

I have straights on the commuter with bar ends, a riser on the mountain bike and drops on the road bike (which I never use the lower ends of).

I've never really tried any other bars and the sweeps on the rental bikes we used for the 40 mile sunrise ride down the volcano on Maui don't count. The effortless ride.

Shops around here don't have many options to try out.

d*pow said...

long beach,

As far as I can tell, the Origin Space and the Mary are the same.

LJ said...

ITM Selego Trekking Bars on my commuter and road bike. I have the original bars on my Specialized Globe, but that's only because I use it for trips < 10 mi.