Touring - Drop bars for my Karate Monkey
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03-21-10, 03:02 PM
I am looking to set up my Karate Monkey for road/dirt/touring with drop bars. I have checked out the Origin 8 Gary, the On One Midge and the likes of MTB flared drop bars, but these seem like they really only offer the one hand position, being in the drops. I have also looked at the Nitto Randonneurs, but I am afraid they might not be wide enough as they only go to 45 cm wide. The off brand drops I currently ride are 47 and I like the width. I am looking for a more flared drop that also offers a riding on the hoods hand position as well as comfort in the drops. Anyone have any suggestions?
03-21-10, 03:56 PM
The Salsa bell lap is a popular bar with a wide flare. I haven't used them myself. Nitto makes the noodle bar up to 48cm. I ride with a 44 noodle and it is my favorite bar, although it doesn't flare out. I found the randonneurs to be too narrow. Your suspicion about the midge was true for me, I only found them to be truly comfortable in the drops. If I angle the levers to be comfortable on the hoods, they were too far away from the drops.
03-21-10, 06:02 PM
I have the Nitto Noodles in 48cm. Very comfortable with all the requisite hand positions of drop bars. They are a bit more expensive in 46 and 48 because they are heat treated. Check them out at Harris Cyclery or Rivendale.
03-21-10, 07:10 PM
I do really like the flared drop bars for off road riding, but I always find them awkward for road use. The hood position is just barely there, you have to have you wrists canted in at an awkward angle. The tops weren't much better, narrow and right next to the stem. They work great in the drops though, but it's always a challenge for me to get them set high enough. At 6 foot 3, with long legs, getting the bars even close to saddle height requires the longest most noodle like stem nitto has ever made. Or a new bike, but I'm too poor for that.
They are great bars, but maybe not for a touring bike.
03-21-10, 08:40 PM
I have Randonneur, WTB dirt drop, and Salsa Woodchipper bar. From my experience, the randonneur is great for long road travelling maybe light offroad too, the woodchipper is great for offroading but not so good for long road touring. The WTB is the best of the world, good for offroading (when in drops) and good for long road travelling (multiple hand positions) although it feels a bit wider for me (in the drops) and the weight is heavier than others.
The Woodchippers, set at the right height made a big difference for me on my Fargo. I've done a fair amount of off roading with them and they work VERY well there but on the road they have also worked well offering several hand positions. I can ride on the hoods sort of but given my brake lever position its not set up like my cross or road bikes. I have the hoods in position but not the "horn". Mine are about and inch or two above my seat which puts the drops about dead even. The only thing I plan to do is double wrap them - add a layer of Brooks leather wrap over the currently gel cork.
I use the 31.8mm Bell Lap bars on my cross bike which sees a good amount of road time and I much prefer them over the stock drops Scott put on.
03-22-10, 08:34 AM
Now I am also considering Mustache bars. How would you compare them to drop bars for the same uses (road/dirt/touring)?
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