Join Date: Apr 2008
Bikes: Cervelo RS, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Pro, Schwinn Typhoon, Nashbar touring, custom steel MTB
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Originally Posted by Bethany
So, how do you find what drop bars fit best and how do you know to change out the bars or shorten the stem? Or change the height of the bars? How does it affect the handling of the bike? Or just get Woodchipper bars?
Drop bars have three specs that you should be familiar with:
1) Width. Usually measured center-to-center (but sometimes edge-to-edge) across the lower, horizontal portion of the bar.
2) Drop. The distance between the top of the bar and the bottom of the bar
3) Reach. This is the distance from the top bar to the front of the curve
If you know the specs for your current bars, it then becomes easier to shop for a new set of bars. In your case, it sounds like you want a bar with more drop and less reach. In general, reach doesn't vary too
much from one bar to the next. I use 3T drop bars. In their product line, there's only a 12mm difference between the bar with the shortest reach and the bar with the longest reach. If you need more that 10-15mm of reach adjustment, you'll probably have to swap the stem.