I'm a mechanic with an overactive imagination. I believe a bike should be tailored to one's needs. So when I got this used Jamis Allegro 1.0 flat bar road bike this weekend in my size, I figured it was time to get configuring.
I'm a shorty - 5'4/125 - so most every bike on the planet is too big except kiddie bikes. This Jamis is a 15" compact frame with a 50cm ETT, just about perfect for me. But as it came with wide no-name flat bars and funky curved bar-end extensions, it was all wrong for me. I don't like wide bars & grips, makes me feel like a condor taking off. I have narrow shoulders, so time to make this bike work for me.
I knew I wanted to ditch the no-name flat bar and the funky bar-end extensions. I also knew that I couldn't keep the 2x8 trigger shifter/brake combo units, as their opening was too narrow for any of the road bars I intended. Rest of the component lineup included an FSA Vero black compact crank (I think it's 50x34) and new Sora 8-speed rear. Time to start replacing components to suit that drivetrain.
I wound up going with Shimano Sora 8-speed black lever brifters. Left shifter is normally triple front, but no problem turning a triple into a double, just dial in the FD outer limit screw.
Then bars. Settled on carbon ITM Millenium WingShape bars with wide, flat tops that are incredibly comfortable, very shallow drops, anatomical bend...work perfectly with the Sora brifters. Most folks wouldn't tape over the flats on these, leaving them bare. I wanted to go stealth here - there are all kinds of graphics underneath, didn't want those to show. From the few rides up and down the alley, they seem to quash resonances quite well.
The NVO original stem turned out to have an odd built-in 1" - 1-1/8" adapter that I couldn't separate, so out it went. A Bontrager Race stem with short extension and steep rise fit perfectly and just happened to be the same 31.8 oversize as the ITM bars. I had to scrounge every black spacer I had to build up enough height for the compression cap, but it all worked out.
I'm not crazy about running brifters to linear-pull brakes without a Travel Agent or Rollamajig, but I can always get those somewhere down the line. They have enough feel for now.
So in all: new Specialized saddle. Replaced cheap platform pedals with dual-sided SPD's. Replaced stem, bars, shifters, housing, cables. Threw on an adjustable length kickstand too. Fenders & rack already on the bike when I got it. Cost of the bike only was $175, then just the rest of the parts from my parts bin.
With the swaged stays, this bike is really comfy as set up. Much smoother than I would have imagined at this price point. I believe it's 2008, retail somewhere around $550. It's 6061 aluminum, but I'll guess that a fair amount of the comfort is in the stays.
First pic is the bike with original flat bars.