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  1. #1
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    Gary vs. Midge (cross post)

    So I picked up a pair of Gary bars last week for the Monster Cross bike. I like them allot. I need a new, longer, higher stem, but I'm not sure that this will entirely satisfy me. You see, the Gary seems to have no flare None is listed on the site, and the bars point straight back. In riding it, it seems that I would be allot more comfortable with some flare at the bottom of the drops. On-One list the Midge's as having 113* of flair, which I'm going to interpret to mean 23* (113*-90*). Is this about right? Anyway, does anyone have any direct experience with both of these bars?

    Thanks,

    Rob.

  2. #2
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    ir_beej is the resident midge expert here. I'm sure he'll chime in. In the meantime, this topic is often discussed in the 29er forum at mtbr. Hope this helps.

    link 1
    link 2

  3. #3
    B.C. to D.C.
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    add the wtb mountain road drops to that list as well. I got mine on a lark to replace a broken set of midges. Basically the same as the midge with extra length on the drops. I kind of like them better! (sorry beej)

    Personally, I think the Gary's a pretty bad design if only because the brake placement is so awkward. Midge or WTB are much better thought out.

  4. #4
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    I built a bike up for a kid and used garys because the midges were unavailable and he didn't want to drop the coin on the wtb's.

    I built him up a bike that's almost identical to mine but the midge/gary thing is one of the differences. I was using tektro levers and no matter what I did, they wouldn't stay clamped high enough on the bars so I just moved them lower.

    The midges feel beefier, I would trust them more if I was going to be riding off road. the garys are listed as an "urban" bar. so far as a str8 vs. flare thing. the midges are super nice. I have also ridden the abovementioned WTB bar bike and it's also nice. WTB's are usually easier to come by nowadays.

  5. #5
    Senior Member TimJ's Avatar
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    The gary's have a ton of flare. I don't think what you're talking about is flare.

    For reference here's a photo of the midge and gary together:

    http://g-tedproductions.blogspot.com...ar-update.html
    fun facts: Psychopaths have trouble understanding abstract concepts.
    "Incompetent individuals, compared with their more competent peers, will dramatically overestimate their ability and performance relative to objective criteria."

  6. #6
    Portland, OR i_r_beej's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robcycle View Post
    You see, the Gary seems to have no flare None is listed on the site, and the bars point straight back. In riding it, it seems that I would be allot more comfortable with some flare at the bottom of the drops. On-One list the Midge's as having 113* of flair, which I'm going to interpret to mean 23* (113*-90*).
    Sorry I don't have any experience with the Gary bar. I know I'm going to come across as a snob, but... the Gary bars-- indeed ALL three of Origin-8's "urban" bar line-up rip-off On-One's Mary (flat sweep), Mungo (moustache), and Midge (drop) designs.

    The problem with that, if you look at the Gary and Midge together, is that what On-One spent years developing and getting "just right" the Gary bar completely misses.

    They have a narrower top and (according to you) no flare on the hooks. The Midge DOES have 23-deg of flare. (And the "flare" TimJ is referring to is actually the slop of the hooks. The Gary has a shallower slope (more pronounced) than the Midge. That may be a bit of a toss-up, but I think that shallower angle would make riding on the hoods-- and being able to use the levers-- more problematic.)

    Do this: Let your arms dangle by your sides. Look down at your hands. See how your palms angle slightly back? Your thumbs are closer to your body than your pinkie. That angle closely matches the 23-deg of flare on the Midge.

    Since you spend a majority of your saddle time in the hooks of the Midge (and Gary) you'll find the flare to be more comfortable than no flare.

    I don't doubt the material quality of the Gary, but their design is all off. If they were to have designed them properly then they'd be a direct copy of the Midge. Like I said before, On-One spent years getting it right and had the input of Shiggy who has apparently been riding off-road with drop bars for 20+ years.

    http://www.mtbtires.com/features/bik..._dropbars.html


    Quick note about fit: You will need a higher stem. Likely a 35-deg rise. I've tried 20-deg and it just wasn't high enough. You have to throw out all you know about fitting conventional drop bars and start all over! As a rule of thumb, you want to try and get your hands in about the same position as they would be riding a flat-bar MTB. On my MTB the tops of the Midge are about an inch above the top of my saddle. Sitting up and placing my hands on the tops feels almost goofy high. However the tops of the bar are only for noodling around. In the hooks my hands are roughly 1.52 inches below the saddle-- which is where I was with the flat bar.

    On my 'cross bike the tops are even with the saddle and my hands are lower-- but I race 'cross and the races are only 45-50 mins. And I like being a little lower there.

    I'm sorry to harsh on the Gary bars, but I'm a graphic designer by trade and originality means much to me and the notion of copying or "stealing" ideas is anathema to me.

    Yeah, I guess I did have to chime in!
    Despite the fact that I constantly recommend Kool-Stop brake pads-- no, I don't work for Kool-Stop. (Although their factory is just a few blocks from my house!)

    I ride drop bars off-road. (The excellent On-One "Midge.")

  7. #7
    Senior Member TimJ's Avatar
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    I guess I don't understand what flare is? I thought flare referred to the drops coming out from the bar at an angle, is that not "flare"?
    fun facts: Psychopaths have trouble understanding abstract concepts.
    "Incompetent individuals, compared with their more competent peers, will dramatically overestimate their ability and performance relative to objective criteria."

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TimJ View Post
    I guess I don't understand what flare is? I thought flare referred to the drops coming out from the bar at an angle, is that not "flare"?
    I guess I'm confused too. Maybe because the Midge "flares" twice, if you will. Once, on the shoulder, above the hoods, and then in the hooks below the levers. For contrast, my Randonneur bars don't flare at the shoulder, but do flare at the hooks.

  9. #9
    Portland, OR i_r_beej's Avatar
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    TimJ: The ends of a drop bar are typically parallel with the stem. Flare refers to the angle at which the ends deviate from that parallel. (The Midge had 23-degrees) What you're talking about is the slope of the drops. A conventional drop bar--like on a road bike-- have no slope. The Midge bar and similar "dirt drops" do have slope to varying degrees. As do some "randonneur" (did I spell that right?) handlebars.

    Hope this helps!
    Despite the fact that I constantly recommend Kool-Stop brake pads-- no, I don't work for Kool-Stop. (Although their factory is just a few blocks from my house!)

    I ride drop bars off-road. (The excellent On-One "Midge.")

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