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Old 12-02-10, 10:29 AM   #1
contango 
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Bar end thoughts

Hoping this will get some comments.

I've been riding my bike (2009 Specialized Rockhopper Comp Disc) for about 18 months now. Most of my cycling is on roads or decent quality trails (compressed gravel, hard dirt etc), with probably 10-15% on loose mud and the kind of thing I'd associate with the term "mountain biking".

I'm looking to replace my handlebar grips with ergonomic ones to avoid the numbness I tend to find on longer rides. I've been looking at something like the Ergon GC3 with built-in bar ends, but I've never used bar ends before so have no idea what to expect from them.

Can someone explain in simplistic terms just what difference they make? I get the idea of pulling one handlebar when pushing the opposing pedal to get extra power down, I just don't quite get how bar ends help with that. I'm also a little wary of having a place to hold the bars but where I can't reach my shifters or brakes.
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Old 12-02-10, 11:29 AM   #2
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People use them on climbs to move their weight forward and for leverage. It also gives you another hand position. And if you crash, they might protect your shifters and brakes. They're not used very much anymore though.

I'd be careful with ergonomic grips though. They can limit your hand positions somewhat. I didn't like them when I tried them since I like being able to move my hands around on the grips depending on where my weight is. It's all a preference thing though.
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Old 12-02-10, 11:44 AM   #3
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Thanks Zephyr... I don't do a lot of riding where I need to keep shifting my hands around. There are a few hills with loose surfaces where I find myself twisting my wrists for a better grip (as if my hands are rotating clockwise, as seen from the left). But for me my hands going numb is more of an issue because when that happens I can't use my shifters at all because my fingers don't work properly (I had a problem a while back when I needed to shift down gears to stop at a red traffic light, but my right thumb didn't have the strength to pull the shifter, so I ended up having to pull away in a higher gear than was ideal).

I guess ultimately I need to just pick one and run with it, I'd just rather not pick one and then find I hate it!
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Old 12-02-10, 12:10 PM   #4
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I have Ergon GC-2 grips & they made a huge change in both comfort & climbing.
I've run ODI lock-ons for 10+yrs & had been having some soreness, numbness issues after being out 30+ miles. After I slapped those on, long rides are no longer an issue (on my hands). I can move my hand position around a bit, probly 4 different places during a ride.
Climbing was improved (riding SS) as I could move my hands around a bit to gain more traction.

Wanna give the GP-1s a shot on my HT next.
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Old 12-02-10, 12:34 PM   #5
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I recently picked up a bike with just the mustache bar. I miss my old bull horns. You get different hand positions, climbing torque and protection for your knuckles when riding through some branches. I am going to stick with the straight bar for 6 months to see if I get used to it. At this point I miss the old way, but I am old and stuck in the past in many ways. Long Live WOODSTOCK!
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Old 12-02-10, 12:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daspydyr View Post
I recently picked up a bike with just the mustache bar. I miss my old bull horns. You get different hand positions, climbing torque and protection for your knuckles when riding through some branches. I am going to stick with the straight bar for 6 months to see if I get used to it. At this point I miss the old way, but I am old and stuck in the past in many ways. Long Live WOODSTOCK!
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Old 12-02-10, 12:57 PM   #7
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Bar ends plus bikes =
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Old 12-02-10, 01:33 PM   #8
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Had bar ends on my bike when I first got it. I rode with them for a while & they were nice for climbing, but after a few weeks they became a crutch I no longer needed. I left them on because they didn't appear to be hurting anything. Then I endo'd & got a bar end straight to the ribs. I don't ride with bar ends anymore.
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Old 12-02-10, 02:02 PM   #9
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dminor had some pretty sweet bar ends on his DH bike.
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Old 12-02-10, 03:41 PM   #10
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^ dang boiii
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Old 12-02-10, 03:47 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chelboed View Post
Bar ends plus bikes =
OH YEAH, I bet you don't even know what Woodstock is either.................
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Old 12-02-10, 03:56 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daspydyr View Post
I recently picked up a bike with just the mustache bar. I miss my old bull horns. You get different hand positions, climbing torque and protection for your knuckles when riding through some branches. I am going to stick with the straight bar for 6 months to see if I get used to it. At this point I miss the old way, but I am old and stuck in the past in many ways. Long Live WOODSTOCK!
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Had bar ends on my bike when I first got it. I rode with them for a while & they were nice for climbing, but after a few weeks they became a crutch I no longer needed. I left them on because they didn't appear to be hurting anything. Then I endo'd & got a bar end straight to the ribs. I don't ride with bar ends anymore.
Interesting... one of you misses the bullhorns and another used them for a time and took them off. I've never had them and in 18 months of riding never did quite figure them out.

I can see the different hand positions they offer but still not quite sure how they offer a benefit when riding. Perhaps the best thing to do is buy a pair and see how I get on with them.
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Old 12-02-10, 04:17 PM   #13
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did sombody say bar ends?
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Old 12-09-10, 07:20 AM   #14
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Well I spoke to my LBS about them, and the guy disappeared out back. When he came back he had a pair of straight silver bar ends that looked pretty awful. Turned out they were second hand and he said I could have them to try them out for a while, if I liked them I could buy a nicer pair and if not I could just give them back.

After half an hour I was sold... so put in an order for some nicer ones I'd looked at a while back.

Thanks everyone for your thoughts... the new ones will look SOOOOO much nicer (for starters they are black and so match the rest of the bike...)
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Old 12-09-10, 07:53 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Daspydyr View Post
OH YEAH, I bet you don't even know what Woodstock is either.................


My first MTB in the mid 90's was a Trek 820. I put bar ends on it. I wised up back then and bought a Scott Vertigo wide riser bar. I still think bar ends are
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Old 12-09-10, 09:34 AM   #16
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I have bar ends on my commuter hybrid. Come in handy on the commute (17 miles each way) to provide alternate hand positions. That said... I'm looking into doing a drop-bar conversion on the bike. I'll have the flat bar-ish portion on the middle of the bars (the tops), I'll have the sides of bars behind the brake hoods, plus the hoods themselves (which will be similar to bar ends in terms of position), plus the drops. A lot more hand positions.
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Old 12-10-10, 02:45 PM   #17
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as for hand position, if you ever do six to eight hours in the saddle like a death ride, bar ends can be a welcome addition.
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Old 12-10-10, 03:20 PM   #18
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I've only ever done that long in the saddle on two days (two consecutive days as it happened).

My Specialized bar ends arrived today, and they do look so much nicer than the scraggy aluminium things that are now going back to LBS.
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Old 12-10-10, 04:01 PM   #19
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My first MTB in the mid 90's was a Trek 820. I put bar ends on it. I wised up back then and bought a Scott Vertigo wide riser bar. I still think bar ends are
You get to my age and you appreciate things like walkers, canes, bar ends........

Solid Woodstock response.
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Old 12-10-10, 10:36 PM   #20
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Haven't used them in about 13 years.

But in 2011, I may be going back. Seriously.
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Old 12-18-10, 02:08 PM   #21
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I have the older Ergon grips with the small-ish bar ends. I like them simply (only?) because they offer me an extra hand position, which is good to have as I ride 2 hours a day, almost every day.

I guess I don't need the bar ends... but I sure couldn't ride without my Ergon grips.
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