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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 08-13-11, 10:47 AM   #1
r32nj
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Handlebar width for flat bar road bike

I have a Cannondale Quick Carbon with the stock width handlebars. I am starting to feel that the bars are a bit too wide. I understand (I think) that the general guideline for DROP BARS is for the bars to be the same width as your shoulders. Is this the same guidance for FLAT BARS?
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Old 08-13-11, 12:11 PM   #2
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I also have a Cannondale Quick. I had nearly an inch cut off end. But I don't know the rule of thumb. It helped me a lot. Not much if any more could come off and still get grips on the handlebars. I got Ergon grips and they had to be cut off.
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Old 08-14-11, 12:22 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by r32nj View Post
I have a Cannondale Quick Carbon with the stock width handlebars. I am starting to feel that the bars are a bit too wide. I understand (I think) that the general guideline for DROP BARS is for the bars to be the same width as your shoulders. Is this the same guidance for FLAT BARS?
What works for you; is the rule for your bike.

Move the brake levers, shifters and grips inboard an 1/2 inch and try it, then another, etc until you find what is comfortable for you. Ride at least a couple hundred miles, then cut the bars off to suit you. A pipe cutter (plumber's tool) work well on aluminum and low end steel bars; not very well on cro-moly or carbon.
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Old 08-14-11, 05:28 AM   #4
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don't forget to factor in your bar ends too, if you use them..
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Old 08-14-11, 08:52 AM   #5
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What works for you; is the rule for your bike.

Move the brake levers, shifters and grips inboard an 1/2 inch and try it, then another, etc until you find what is comfortable for you. Ride at least a couple hundred miles, then cut the bars off to suit you. A pipe cutter (plumber's tool) work well on aluminum and low end steel bars; not very well on cro-moly or carbon.
you should never use a plumbers pipe tool to cut carbon. a hacksaw with a grit blade will work well. I agree with everyone else, start by just sliding your controls in a little bit and try riding like that. I ride a pretty narrow 58cm hbar on my commuter bike so that I can slip by narrow openings with cars even though i'm a broad shouldered 6'3" I don't do long rides on that bike so it's not really an issue. regarding your comment about "road bikes usually go for width of shoulders" I can definiteively say that No, it's not the same standard for a flatbar bike. Road bikes usually have 40-44cm wide bars while as I mentioned earlier, flat bars are usually 58-62 Also, flat bars are usually sold in a one length and then you cut to size as needed.
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