Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 04-16-14, 08:39 PM   #1
Archery_Queen
It's Queen to you!
Thread Starter
 
Archery_Queen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Bloomington, IN
Bikes: Roadmaster
Posts: 96
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Switching flat handle bars over to drops?

Is it possible t switch the flat handle bars of a vintage bike to drop handle bars?
Archery_Queen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-14, 08:46 PM   #2
jon c. 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Bikes:
Posts: 2,022
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 35 Post(s)
Generally speaking, yes. Obviously need to switch out brakes as well. Ans shifters if not downtube. I have a bike on which it was done and it works fine. Although whoever did the conversion went with stem shifters, which is not the choice I'd have made.
jon c. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-14, 08:51 PM   #3
LesterOfPuppets
cowboy, steel horse, etc
 
LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Rock Springs, WY
Bikes: My War
Posts: 26,703
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 205 Post(s)
There's a nice thread about Drop-Bar Vintage MTBs.

Show Your Vintage MTB Drop Bar Conversions

I've done three.

MTB front derailleurs can be problematic with brifters. Travel Agents might be needed if V-brakes are on the bike.

A few other details to think about. What bike ya want drop-barred?
LesterOfPuppets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-14, 10:30 PM   #4
Rudz
Senior Member
 
Rudz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Fontana, California USA
Bikes:
Posts: 228
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I did it on my Rapid, actually worked fine with the flat bar front derailleur too. But now I upgraded that to a 105 so it's a moot point. I went with Sora sti brifters.
Rudz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-14, 11:30 PM   #5
Isaiahc72
Senior Member
 
Isaiahc72's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Northwest Arkansas
Bikes: 2015 Kona Rove AL, 2016 Giant Escape 2, 1995 Giant attraction SS,
Posts: 291
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It would probably cost a bit
Isaiahc72 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-16-14, 11:59 PM   #6
LesterOfPuppets
cowboy, steel horse, etc
 
LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Rock Springs, WY
Bikes: My War
Posts: 26,703
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 205 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Isaiahc72 View Post
It would probably cost a bit
My cheapest one was with $10 bars, free barcons, $5 brake levers and a $10 front derailleur.

Most expensive one was with $10 bars, $45 Ultegra brifters (that need some new hoods but still shift great) and a free front derailleur.

With all new parts it would be REALLY expensive.
LesterOfPuppets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-14, 06:23 AM   #7
no1mad
Thunder Whisperer
 
no1mad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NE OK
Bikes: '06 Kona Smoke
Posts: 8,708
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 102 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
My cheapest one was with $10 bars, free barcons, $5 brake levers and a $10 front derailleur.

Most expensive one was with $10 bars, $45 Ultegra brifters (that need some new hoods but still shift great) and a free front derailleur.

With all new parts it would be REALLY expensive.
Especially if one paid the LBS to do it.
__________________
Community guidelines
no1mad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-14, 09:42 AM   #8
alan s 
Senior Member
 
alan s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Washington, DC
Bikes:
Posts: 4,624
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 77 Post(s)
Drop bars are totally overrated. With riser bars, I'm as aero as 95% of drop bar commuter bikes (and actually more aero than many), and have as many or more hand positions with Cane Creek bar ends. Plus I get to use MTB hydro disc brakes.
alan s is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-14, 11:12 AM   #9
LesterOfPuppets
cowboy, steel horse, etc
 
LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Rock Springs, WY
Bikes: My War
Posts: 26,703
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 205 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by alan s View Post
Drop bars are totally overrated. With riser bars, I'm as aero as 95% of drop bar commuter bikes (and actually more aero than many), and have as many or more hand positions with Cane Creek bar ends. Plus I get to use MTB hydro disc brakes.

I love my flat bars and risers but after about 3 miles of straight road riding I'm dying for a set of drops. Even some bar ends. I ride to most of the trail rides and STXC races I do, so just grin and bear it on those days, saying to myself "Just 7 more miles of road. OK, just 6 more miles..."

It's not even the aero I care about (unless it's a windy day), I just gotta have the hand positions.
LesterOfPuppets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-14, 12:04 PM   #10
fietsbob 
coprolite
 
fietsbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Bikes: 7
Posts: 19,730
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 466 Post(s)
Quote:
Is it possible it switch the flat handle bars of a vintage bike to drop handle bars?
It is possible , as said, not cheap , unless you get another bike to cannibalize, for cheap/free ..



old guy, I now like figure 8 bend Trekking bars , as a simpler swap from straight bars ,

because of the ease of re using the contol levers off the staight bars .. is there .

Most LBS can get some . prefer online/mail order ? under $20..

XLC Multi Functional Trekking Bar, 580mm, 25.4, Black

Last edited by fietsbob; 04-17-14 at 12:08 PM.
fietsbob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-14, 12:37 PM   #11
hueyhoolihan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Above ground, Walnut Creek, Ca
Bikes: 7⃥ 9 road bikes
Posts: 6,401
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
IME and generally speaking, anything that is attached to the flatbars, sometimes including the stem, will have to be replaced due to an OD mismatch between the flatbar and tbe roadbar. there are exceptions.
hueyhoolihan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-14, 01:31 PM   #12
LesterOfPuppets
cowboy, steel horse, etc
 
LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Rock Springs, WY
Bikes: My War
Posts: 26,703
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 205 Post(s)
Luckily going forward it'll be pretty easy in the stem dept. Most decent road and MTBs have 31.8mm clamp diameter these days. Both realms have also adopted the same diameter for the next size up - 35mm.

The 31.8mm agreement is one of the best things to happen in cycling in the last 20 years. That and Campy/Shimano/ Sram cassette spacing being the same for 11 speed. I still can't believe that one but I've heard it through the grapevine.

Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 04-17-14 at 01:34 PM.
LesterOfPuppets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-14, 01:36 PM   #13
LesterOfPuppets
cowboy, steel horse, etc
 
LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Rock Springs, WY
Bikes: My War
Posts: 26,703
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 205 Post(s)
I still wish someone would make some 31.8 quill stems, though.
LesterOfPuppets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-14, 04:47 PM   #14
wolfchild
Senior Member
 
wolfchild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mississauga/Toronto, Ontario canada
Bikes: I have 3 singlespeed/fixed gear bikes
Posts: 4,116
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 124 Post(s)
Is it really necessary ?? Can you afford it ??..Drop bar conversions can get tricky and expensive. Drop bars are good for people who have longer commutes and windy conditions.... For short city commutes and errands, flat bars with bar-ends or riser bars are much better. To do a drop bar conversion you will need new brake levers, new brake cables and cable housings, new shifters and new stem. You will need to experiment with different size stems until you get a comfortable fit...I've done it to one of my mountain bikes but mine is a singlespeed so it was very easy and cheap, no need for shifters ..To be honest the only reason why I've done it is because I just wanted my mountain bike to be a little different and not because it was necessary...The hardest part was getting the fit dialed in, I've tried about 5 different stems before everything was just right.
wolfchild is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-14, 12:00 AM   #15
Leisesturm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 2,307
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
I still wish someone would make some 31.8 quill stems, though.
Origin8 Pro Fit ATB Quill Stem - 1" (22.2) 90 x 31.8mm, Black

Also available in 110mm. FWIW.

H
Leisesturm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-14, 12:08 AM   #16
Leisesturm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 2,307
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Tektro levers - $25/pr. Tektro Cross Levers - $25/pr. SunRace DT shifters 8sp. - $17 Stem $15 - ??? Civia Emerson Bar - $30 Come on, you guys spend more than that for rain gear. Cross levers are very optional but I like them, especially for a commuter.

H
Leisesturm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-14, 04:46 AM   #17
turky lurkey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Bikes: 1986 Cannondale SR600, 1965 Schwinn Super Sport, 1973 Schwinn World Voyaguer, 1984 Specialized Stumpjumper, 1985 Specialized Rockhopper, 2002 Specialized Rockhopper, 1993 Univega Rover
Posts: 759
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It would make a big difference if you showed pics of the bike you want to convert. It's not necessarily expensive, depending on the bike, if you do it yourself, and if you have access to some old inexpensive parts. I did one one, it was cheap, but I did lose index shifting. I converted to friction down tube shifting (some people might not like that but I don't mind), which meant shifter compatibility wasn't an issue. The old mountain bike I used had Canti. brakes and they work well with the standard road brake levers that came off an old road bike I had. Just had to adjust the yoke height a bit on those brakes. The other thing that kept things simple was that I used old steel drop bars that have the same clamp size diameter as old mtn. bike bars. (25.4mm). It can be a little tricky if your not familiar with working on bikes and are unsure about compatibility (to me it's being unsure about compatibility that is the most challenging thing about bicycle mechanics), and it can be expensive if you want to keep your project light weight and high tech (Not something I was to worried about). BTW: I love my cheap drop bar conversion, I commute on that bike daily, I found the change in geometry made me quite a bit faster and more comfortable on that bike.

Last edited by turky lurkey; 04-18-14 at 07:32 AM.
turky lurkey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-14, 07:04 AM   #18
Archery_Queen
It's Queen to you!
Thread Starter
 
Archery_Queen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Bloomington, IN
Bikes: Roadmaster
Posts: 96
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I would love to have the option to break while my hand is on top on the bar as well as inside the bar.
Archery_Queen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-14, 07:05 AM   #19
Archery_Queen
It's Queen to you!
Thread Starter
 
Archery_Queen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Bloomington, IN
Bikes: Roadmaster
Posts: 96
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Is it really necessary ?? Can you afford it ??..Drop bar conversions can get tricky and expensive. Drop bars are good for people who have longer commutes and windy conditions.... For short city commutes and errands, flat bars with bar-ends or riser bars are much better. To do a drop bar conversion you will need new brake levers, new brake cables and cable housings, new shifters and new stem. You will need to experiment with different size stems until you get a comfortable fit...I've done it to one of my mountain bikes but mine is a singlespeed so it was very easy and cheap, no need for shifters ..To be honest the only reason why I've done it is because I just wanted my mountain bike to be a little different and not because it was necessary...The hardest part was getting the fit dialed in, I've tried about 5 different stems before everything was just right.
Well to be honest, I want to be able to go on weekly community rides.
Archery_Queen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-14, 07:19 AM   #20
wolfchild
Senior Member
 
wolfchild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mississauga/Toronto, Ontario canada
Bikes: I have 3 singlespeed/fixed gear bikes
Posts: 4,116
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 124 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Archery_Queen View Post
Well to be honest, I want to be able to go on weekly community rides.
It's a lot easier to purchase a bike which already has drop bars then to do a conversion. Older road bikes or Mixties with drop bars are sometimes sold cheap on craiglist or garage sales.
wolfchild is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-14, 07:22 AM   #21
Archery_Queen
It's Queen to you!
Thread Starter
 
Archery_Queen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Bloomington, IN
Bikes: Roadmaster
Posts: 96
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
It's a lot easier to purchase a bike which already has drop bars then to do a conversion. Older road bikes or Mixties with drop bars are sometimes sold cheap on craiglist or garage sales.
Thank you, I'll look out for that!
Archery_Queen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-14, 07:35 AM   #22
wolfchild
Senior Member
 
wolfchild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mississauga/Toronto, Ontario canada
Bikes: I have 3 singlespeed/fixed gear bikes
Posts: 4,116
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 124 Post(s)
You could also put some bar-ends on your flat handlebars... Bar-ends will give you a more comfortable hand position on longer rides and they also give you more leverage to make hill climbing easier.
wolfchild is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-19-14, 11:41 PM   #23
devianb
Senior Member
 
devianb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Central Illinois
Bikes: 2008 Dawes Haymaker 20XX Leader LD515
Posts: 704
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Origin 8 makes bolt on drop bars so you could keep your shifters and brake levers.
Amazon.com: Origin 8 Bicycle Drop Bar Ends, Black: Sports & Outdoors

Attached Images
File Type: jpg 61AGglr2EUL.jpg (77.0 KB, 11 views)
File Type: jpg 315opGCJ7wL.jpg (10.5 KB, 4 views)
devianb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-14, 09:55 AM   #24
e0richt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Hammonton, NJ
Bikes: Dawes Lightning sport, Trek 1220, Trek 7100
Posts: 986
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
I saw these quite a few years ago, but decided that I really don't use the drops much at all (even on a drop bar road bike) and found that just normal bar ends give you more hand positions and comfort similar to riding the hoods or top bar of the road bike...
e0richt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-21-14, 11:18 AM   #25
ronocnikral
Lurking Under a Rock
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Golden, CO
Bikes:
Posts: 139
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Tektro levers - $25/pr. Tektro Cross Levers - $25/pr. SunRace DT shifters 8sp. - $17 Stem $15 - ??? Civia Emerson Bar - $30 Come on, you guys spend more than that for rain gear. Cross levers are very optional but I like them, especially for a commuter.

H
Agreed. I converted my handlebars on my commuter. Of course, I went with bars that are a bit of splurge. The $100 or so for new campy veloce shifters worked out well. It's a clunky downshifting on the front derailleur, but it works and I love it.
ronocnikral is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:43 AM.