Bicycle Mechanics - Cutting Handelbars...
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12-11-06, 08:07 PM
I commute with a Trek SU200 in Boston and I think it could make life easier to cut about one inch off of each end of the handelbars for clearance of passing cars (that's me passing, not them ). Has anyone done this before? Is it a good Idea you think? If so, what's the best way to do it.
12-11-06, 08:14 PM
I did it. First make sure that your brake/shifters can be moved inboard that amount without interfering with any curves on the bars. If you can do that, ride the bike with the levers moved inwards to see if it is still comfortable, then cut the ends of the bars. You dont need the width of mountain bike bars for negotiating traffic.
I've trimmed the ends of alloy flat bars. A plumbers pipe cutter that goes around and around makes a neat cut. Will 1" really make a difference? If the bar is really light with reinforced ends you would want to think twice.
12-11-06, 08:18 PM
Wonder if a bike shop will do it? I was thinking about 1-3 inches on each side.
Use a hacksaw with a hose clamp for a guide.
Hacksaw, dremel, angle grinder, file (if you're a brute and really bored), or pipe cutter. They'll all do well enough. Measure twice, cut once.
12-11-06, 10:40 PM
I did it. My flat bars are 18" wide with bar ends on them. Yes, they're narrow. I love them. I tried out drop bars and hated them. Its back to the narrow flatties for me!
12-11-06, 11:07 PM
any shop like boston or cambridge bike can do this for you easily. i've done it multiple times. i've ridden with like 14in flats, and cheap risers cut down so there is just enough room for oury grips (approx 18in?) Just don't act under the impression that really narrow bars will help you get through traffic if they are under your shoulder width and you will be fine.
12-11-06, 11:18 PM
I've cut a pair or two of bars before with no problem. I think the only important thing to it is using some sort of hose clamp, zip tie, etc to make sure you're making a "straight" cut.
I'm wondering though, if you were going to cut some chop-n-flop bullhorns out of a drop bar how would you go about making sure one side was being cut at exactly the same place as the other? I've kind of gotten it to work using a measuring tape, but it's not exact and I'm not satisfied with the job.
12-11-06, 11:30 PM
I once cut my bars with a pipecutter... no problem. I did mine to give me a more comfortable riding position with bull bars, I took 1.5 inches off each side (making the bars 3 inches shorter) and when gripping the bull bars I was sat a bit more upright... I mention it just be sure you know it may change your natural riding position?
I moved them into position before cutting and rode that way for a few days before doing the actual cutting.
Erm... I just realised you may not know what I am refering to as bull bars, I mean the forward pointing grips that were fitted to some bars a few years ago.
12-12-06, 01:35 PM
Nashbar sells a handlebar cutter that I think is the same as a pipe cutter. It works like a dream, far less hassle than a hacksaw. It cost me ten bucks and for even one set of bars, it was worth it.
50 tooth Cannon
12-14-06, 05:53 PM
I've cut several for the same reason, with great success. Ive used the pipe cutter, the hack saw and a dremmel. Go with the pipe cutter. Least stressful tool. I've cut 1" off each side of riser bars, had enough room to mount Oury's and RapidFire/Brake levers with a bit to spare. like the guy said; measure, twice cut once. or in this case measure four times and cut twice.
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