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Old 08-14-05, 08:57 PM   #1
GrannyGear
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Am I the last aero bar user?

I don't see many aero bar riders on the roads in my area. I suspect they have come to be considered a bit geekish among the non tt racer crowd, but I find them comfortable on long rides and a nice position for riding into the wind...not to mention a real change of position for my hands. Others out there using aero bars?
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Old 08-14-05, 09:17 PM   #2
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GrannyGear
I use a set of profile aero bars on my ride, a 1990 cannondale 400st. Like you I find them useful for changing positions and taking some of the heat off my hands and shoulders. Now that you mention it, I don't see many other riders in this area using them either. They do seem, however, to popular on the tri-bikes I've seen at some of the local shops.
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Old 08-14-05, 09:18 PM   #3
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GrannyGear
I use a set of profile aero bars on my ride, a 1990 cannondale 400st. Like you I find them useful for changing positions and taking some of the heat off my hands and shoulders. Now that you mention it, I don't see many other riders in this area using them either. They do seem, however, to popular on the tri-bikes I've seen at some of the local shops.
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Old 08-15-05, 12:06 AM   #4
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i'm looking to purchase an aerobar - any suggestions? what are the key points to look for when purchasing? which should be avoided? i plan to use them mainly in TTs.
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Old 08-15-05, 12:45 AM   #5
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I'm no expert....but range of adjustability is important. Adjustable distance between arm pads (which allows you to bring your arms in for more "aero" or move them out for more comfort/stability, adjustable length of the bar extension--you might have long forearms, and perhaps adjustable height of armrests. The bar should fit your handle bar diameter--which usually isn't a problem.

Personally, I've always found the basic, less expensive bars just fine...but I wasn't racing the clock and aero wasn't my intention so much as comfort.

** There is a model aero bar that has spring loaded arms which flip up when you're not using them to allow your hands access to the regular bar sleeve area around the stem. Personally, I'd avoid these. The arms take more effort to get down on and, worse, they rattle when in the up position. Drove me nuts!
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Old 08-15-05, 06:26 AM   #6
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I was riding in Amish country the other day and was amazed to see that Aero bars are everywhere in that area. I saw Amish using them on old cruisers, hybrids - anything. These folks ride at a leisurely pace so they must gain some comfort from the bars. They aren't in a hurry. No helmets either. Every rider wore his flat brimmed straw hat. Overalls, straw hats and aero bars. It is a curious sight.
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Old 08-15-05, 07:53 AM   #7
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Glad to see I'm in good company....though I wonder about the aerodynamic qualities of beards and straw hats! Gotta admit that after a hard push, collapsing onto the aero bars for a slow cruise is relatively comfy.
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Old 08-15-05, 08:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrannyGear
I don't see many aero bar riders on the roads in my area. I suspect they have come to be considered a bit geekish among the non tt racer crowd, but I find them comfortable on long rides and a nice position for riding into the wind...not to mention a real change of position for my hands. Others out there using aero bars?
g

I am a recent convert to aero bars thanks to recommendations from another forum member. Here is what I experienced:
Same speed with use of aero bars requires less energy. (wind resistance!)
This energy is now available for sprinting or powering up a hill.
I use the leverage of the aero bars to lift a few inches off the saddle in order to really sprint with full power.
My average speed has increased at least 5%. I have gone in aero bar position for over 50 miles on one trip. My aero bar position is not set aggressively low, more for comfortable long distance.
I ride often in Detroit Metro Park roads. There are many aggressive riders there. Most have aero bars. I cannot keep up with these guys. Going over 25 MPH average.
(Group riding!)
I also ride a lot on R to T's. There nobody (except me) uses aero bars.
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Old 08-15-05, 09:01 AM   #9
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I forgot to issue a caution in my post above.
Aero bars are definitely less safe than keeping your hands close to the brakes on the bars. There are brakes available on the aero bars, but less effective and of course there is cost and complexity.
Aero bars take some effort and time to get used to. I had to overcome balancing and stability problems. It took a few days before my system compensated for the new task of steering with my elbows. I can see why less determined bikers will not use them.
I use aero bars with flip ups. They do rattle. Nothing a rubber band cannot fix.
The trade off is that it gives me more room on my bars for hand positions for very long distance rides as well as better vision to other things on my bars.
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Old 08-15-05, 12:00 PM   #10
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[QUOTE=GrannyGear]I'm no expert....but range of adjustability is important. Adjustable ...

thanks for the valuable info
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Old 08-15-05, 08:00 PM   #11
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I have Syntace C2 aerobars on my bike. Where I'm from, the wind is always blowing, so they really help on those long upwind legs. The Syntace bars are adjustable for width, length is determined by three different sizes, and very lightweight. They DO block the top of the bar for placing your hands there, but the ability to ride the aerobars trumps that as a negative. I love'm!

Had the Profile bars with the spring arms, and both sides broke the springs in less than a year. Replaced in warranty, but still a hassle.
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Old 08-21-05, 11:51 AM   #12
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i plan to participate in a TT race this sept, thus i went to my LBS to inquire on the subject of aerobars. The owner said he doesn't sell but he has one hanging around that he could let me use. The name "Scott" is printed on the right pad holder (left one is missing). I tied a piece of spong to the left arm where the pad is supposed to be and I'll try it out tomorrow. Where can I get a pad and pad holder for aerobars. I tried to find something on the internet but the only thing I found were the pads - how do you connect the pad to the metal tube?
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Old 08-21-05, 12:22 PM   #13
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Berts,
Those more expert can correct me, but Scott was one of the original aero bar users and "may" still be making them. For $50 from Nashbar you can get a good Profile aero bar with some adjustability.....and all the sponges present and intact!! You might even want to keep it clipped on after your tt.....just for comfort.

*The sponge isn't as important as the curved holder that fastens to the bar itself. If there is no holder for either sponge, and the "sponge" just fastens to the bar itself, then you've probably got one of the very earliest models.....they've become better by far.
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Old 08-21-05, 02:54 PM   #14
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I only use Aerobars for my Time Trials. They definitely help me to stay down which creates the smallest position for me to punch a hole in the air. I use the Profile Design Wing model-arm rests are spring loaded and are raised off the handlebars when not being used. I wanted to get a Syntace model but they did not make one that would fit my larger 31.8mm handlebars.

I agree that it's nice to have the option to move into other positions on rides. I could use mine on solo rides but those are becoming less frequent these days. I certainly don't need the extra weight for some of the climbs I do. I also would not use them in group rides as I need my hands closer to the brakes and shifters.
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Old 08-21-05, 09:43 PM   #15
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I tried a plastic set offered by Performance. I had some balance problems like I guess is normal, but I did note a significant difference in wind resistance. I feel that they are worth one cog. That is, for any given effort, you can do the same cadence in the bars as out at one higher cog. They also made me faster gliding down hills. I'm unsure if I wish to use them as I"m not a racer and the stability issues concern me - but they do work (for me).
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Old 08-21-05, 09:51 PM   #16
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I put profile clip-on aero bars on my road bike when I move to this land of wind and now hills. For all the reason's given above, they provide great position options to get you "out" of the wind. I also had some carpal tunnel issues, so they give my wrists a rest-which is a must if I don't want more surgery (amputation I think my doctor called it....

And yes, I have noticed fewer road bikes with bars, but many many more very very expensive tri/TT bikes on the road. I've found many of the "serious" roadies, those who race, or at least have enough logos on their jerseys that they think they do...you know the ones--those that never wave or pretend to not look up when you pass them on the opposite side of the highway. They seem to think that aero bars are somehow beneath their elevated cycling skill. Mind you these are the same guys who usually ride in threes and fours (in good wind-cheating formation, mind you) so they don't really need the bars as much as lonely ole me.
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Old 08-22-05, 10:56 AM   #17
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I tried my aerobar today and was very pleased with the results, they provide a definite advantage on the flats. Since my left pad is missing my left arm was a bit strained after a 30 miler. This will give me incentive to put out for a new one, it's between something in the price range of about $100 like Syntace or Profile @ $50.
Is the difference in price justified?
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Old 08-22-05, 04:13 PM   #18
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berts,
Have not used the Syntace, but I am pleased with the $50 Profile...although you can also spend more for a Profile, too. For the additional money you probably lose some weight and bulk, get a sleeker appearance, etc. I doubt the comfort could be greater. In fact, I suspect comfort is more important at the "cheaper" level than maximum, seconds shaving performance. I am especially pleased with the Profile's arm pads. Again, the value of the additional $50 is relative....maybe someone here with Sintace's can reply?
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Old 08-25-05, 06:16 PM   #19
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Have a set of Ovel "slam bars" on Merlin Agilis. NOt quite Aero but comforatble none the less.

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Old 08-25-05, 07:41 PM   #20
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I'm too klutzy to use aero bars safely. I'll stick with ordinary drops.
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