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  1. #1
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Pros (and cons) of bar end grips?

    Hi.

    My wife rides a Trek 7.4 FX. She's been having a little tough time with uphills and is wondering whether bar end grips would help her climb with a little more ease. Some websites claim they do, but I'd like to have your feedback here.

    She also feels as though those bar end grips help with a long ride by allowing her to take different positions rather than just one (as is the case with flat handlebars). I tend to agree in theory, but I totally lack experience. What do you think?

    Also, are there any "cons" with bar ends, other than added weight?

    Thanks in advance for your input!
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  2. #2
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    If your bars are somewhat wide then bar ends can be a liability where greenery impinges onto the trail. I once hooked a bar end on scrub oak and took a spill, but in addition to having too wide bars there were other issues like having my saddle too far forward and my stem way too short, both of which made handling unstable. There's also the slim possibility of goring yourself in the gut if you go over the bars, or of goring another biker coming from the opposite direction.

    These issues can be addressed though by using less wide bars, angling the bar ends more horizontal or turning them upside down if they curve in a dangerous direction. For long climbs it is nice to have extra reach, it makes climbing easier IMO. I'm all the way out at the very end tips of my bar ends during a long climb pulling backwards with my thumbs. It's also inherently more comfortable to ride with your wrists parallel to the bike frame as on drop bars for example, this seems to be the more natural monkey grip of power. On dirt trails it's sometimes nice to have a lower center of gravity by riding the ends but of course you've got be watchful and anticipating a quick return to the brake levers while approaching blind corners and such.

    For a hybrid bike there are more pluses than liabilities. You can have both a stretched out climbing position while preserving the other sightseeing and downhill position. Bar ends are inexpensive and worth a try. If she develops a strong preference for the bar ends then consider a conversion to drop bars.
    Last edited by Clem von Jones; 09-08-13 at 11:37 PM.

  3. #3
    Must... ride... more... Phil_gretz's Avatar
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    Ergon GP-2. It provides a broad hand support area, and a small hand grip that will assist with leverage on climbs or accelerations. They're not inexpensive, but they provide the best combination of comfort and utility. Her comfort will depend on precise adjustment/tinkering with the platform angle. Once you find the sweet spot (somewhat level for the palm), she'll know it.

    The real answer though, is for her to climb more. A lot more. And to maintain a steady cadence in the 70-90 range, depending on the length of the climb and the incline. Fitness is built gradually, but she'll get there if she has the desire. Good luck. PGergon gp2.jpg

  4. #4
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clem von Jones View Post
    For a hybrid bike there are more pluses than liabilities. You can have both a stretched out climbing position while preserving the other sightseeing and downhill position. Bar ends are inexpensive and worth a try. If she develops a strong preference for the bar ends then consider a conversion to drop bars.
    Quote Originally Posted by Phil_gretz View Post
    Ergon GP-2. It provides a broad hand support area, and a small hand grip that will assist with leverage on climbs or accelerations. They're not inexpensive, but they provide the best combination of comfort and utility. Her comfort will depend on precise adjustment/tinkering with the platform angle. Once you find the sweet spot (somewhat level for the palm), she'll know it.

    The real answer though, is for her to climb more. A lot more. And to maintain a steady cadence in the 70-90 range, depending on the length of the climb and the incline. Fitness is built gradually, but she'll get there if she has the desire. Good luck. PG
    Thanks guys!

    I agree, nothing can replace training. She has been riding fairly actively lately, but she tends to avoid uphills because it's hard on her. Of course, that won't help her at all. I'll encourage her to do more hill climbing (preferably with me so I can get better too). Living in Seattle, we have plenty of hills.

    As for the actual grips, her bike has built-in ergonomic grips (Bontrager Satellite) that she likes. What she can do is buy their "bar end adaptors" so their (or third-party) bar ends can be attached to them. I appreciate your suggestion on the Ergon GP-2, though.
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  5. #5
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Ergon has a range of them 2 is the shortest bar end, 3.4. 5 is the longest ..
    integrated, but independently adjustable, grip and bar end is the benefit ..

    [trekking bars are in their figure 8 bar bend bars . reach near and far and bar ends all in one.]

    in addition to the Ergon combination grip/bar end is their Phorm grip line,
    a short bar end is molded in one piece with the ergonomic shaped grip

    http://phorm-cycling.com/collections/grips-int
    Last edited by fietsbob; 09-09-13 at 10:03 AM.

  6. #6
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    Hi,

    Combined ergonomic grips with bar ends are pretty cheap on ebay,
    and are more about better and more hand positions than full on
    climbing bar ends, which are not as comfortable.

    rgds, sreten.

  7. #7
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Ergon has a range of them 2 is the shortest bar end, 3.4. 5 is the longest ..
    integrated, but independently adjustable, grip and bar end is the benefit ..

    [trekking bars are in their figure 8 bar bend bars . reach near and far and bar ends all in one.]

    in addition to the Ergon combination grip/bar end is their Phorm grip line,
    a short bar end is molded in one piece with the ergonomic shaped grip

    http://phorm-cycling.com/collections/grips-int
    Thanks for the suggestions. Unfortunately, I'm afraid the Bontrager Satellite handlebar she has isn't compatible with those regular grips. The Satellite is shaped so that it needs Bontrager elastomers on both ends. (The grip covers wrap around them.) I think that's why the Satellite handlebars are sold together with Bontrager's own grips.

    http://bontrager.com/model/09171

    Fortunately, Bontrager do sell bar end adaptors that can be attached to the Satellite handlebar. Since my wife is pretty happy with the existing grips themselves, she's leaning towards buying the adaptors.
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  8. #8
    Lover of Old Chrome Moly Myosmith's Avatar
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    +1 on Ergon grips. I've got them on my trail bike and my flat bar touring. My wife and daughter have them on their commuters. One of the best investments you can make on a flat bar bike.

    I'm not familiar with the satellite bars, but from that picture, it looks like there are set screws on the grips. My guess is that if you loosen the set screws, you will be left with a standard handlebar. If not, it isn't expensive to swap to a standard bar that will take the grips/bar ends of your choice.
    Last edited by Myosmith; 09-09-13 at 07:37 PM.
    Lead, follow or get out of the way

  9. #9
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    so the Con is you have a bar with few options, there are other handlebars to replace whats there ,

    perhaps your Trek dealer will give you a trade in deal?

    or as you say get the adapters and live with what you can do, with what you have.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by daihard View Post
    Thanks for the suggestions. Unfortunately, I'm afraid the Bontrager Satellite handlebar she has isn't compatible with those regular grips. The Satellite is shaped so that it needs Bontrager elastomers on both ends. (The grip covers wrap around them.) I think that's why the Satellite handlebars are sold together with Bontrager's own grips.

    http://bontrager.com/model/09171

    Fortunately, Bontrager do sell bar end adaptors that can be attached to the Satellite handlebar. Since my wife is pretty happy with the existing grips themselves, she's leaning towards buying the adaptors.
    I put the bar end adaptors and inexpensive bar ends on my 7.5 ... they work just fine for me ...

  11. #11
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForFun View Post
    I put the bar end adaptors and inexpensive bar ends on my 7.5 ... they work just fine for me ...
    Thanks for the feedback. Sure sounds good.
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

  12. #12
    Senior Member daihard's Avatar
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    I ordered two sets of Bontrager bar-end adaptors, for both my wife and myself.

    Now time to look for good bar ends themselves...
    Badly-behaved cyclists are usually just cyclists with inadequate infrastructure. Or none at all. - Mikael Colville-Andersen

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