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cutting drop bars?!

Old 05-17-10, 05:00 PM
  #1  
rgoo92
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cutting drop bars?!

i dont like my drop bars they are ugly =/
can i cut them then turn them upside down so they will be like bullhorns?
if so, what tools waht i need or should i have someone do it for me?
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Old 05-17-10, 05:03 PM
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Sure-cut them.
All you need is a hacksaw. A hand hacksaw will blow thru a bar in maybe 3 minutes.
You will want to file the edges smooth after.
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Old 05-17-10, 05:04 PM
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Ugly? Are they scratched up? Are they some gnarly ergo ones?

Hacksaw
Masking Tape (to tape off a guideline to cut along)
Rat tail file (to deburr the cut end)
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Old 05-17-10, 05:05 PM
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Fairly common, actually. Known as the flop and chop.
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Old 05-17-10, 05:21 PM
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hacksaw or a pipe cutter.
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Old 05-17-10, 05:21 PM
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hah awesome
well here are dropbars similar to mine
https://fatcyclist.com/blogphotos/Ask...5C/dropbar.jpg

here are the types of dropbars i like
https://www.pedalconsumption.com/file...ong_grips3.jpg

not a big difference but id rather have bullhorns than the dropbars that go straight out then drop straight down
im gonna go find me a hacksaw now
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Old 05-17-10, 05:44 PM
  #7  
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What's your shifter and brake levers situation? Should make sure they'll still work (to your liking) after flopping and chopping.
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Old 05-17-10, 05:49 PM
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The tool of choice is a hacksaw with 24-32 teeth per inch. If you're lousy at straight cuts you can use a pair of hose clamps on either side to make a guide on a fairly straight section. On curves use the hose clamp on the good side only as a safety so you don't accidentally cut too short.

Use a half mill file to clean up the ends and round the outer edge off a bit for safety. If your cut is really bad use a mill bastard (fairly coarse file) to get close to the line then finish with a half mill file.

Tubing cutters may be OK in on straight sections, but the rollers can't negotiate the inside of a curve, so they're probably unsuited to the task.
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Old 05-17-10, 05:52 PM
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its a fixed gear and im still deciding whether ill want to put the brake lever at the end of the bullhorn or near the stem hmm
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Old 05-17-10, 06:06 PM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by rgoo92 View Post
its a fixed gear and im still deciding whether ill want to put the brake lever at the end of the bullhorn or near the stem hmm
If you currently have a regular drop bar brake lever, then you can use that at the end. If you mount it with the lever pointing back and it has aero cable routing, then it can be a bit awkward looking. Some people will mount the lever backward, with the lever pointing forward, which I've tried and it felt weird to me.

You won't be able to use a bullhorn/TT lever at the end because it requires a short straight section, which your bars won't have.

A cross/interrupter lever near the stem will work fine.

Personally, I messed with a couple flop-and-chops and various brakes. Eventually, I went with a proper bullhorn bars and TT lever, which has been much better.
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Old 05-17-10, 06:08 PM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by rgoo92 View Post
its a fixed gear and im still deciding whether ill want to put the brake lever at the end of the bullhorn or near the stem hmm
Drop bar brake levers often do not work well if they are not ona bend - the lever will be too close to the bar for effective braking. You may be better off finding a steel mtb lever that you can bent the clamp to fit... of an aluminum mtb lever that you can ream out, but I have never tried this so I don't reccomend it.
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Old 05-17-10, 06:13 PM
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Or he can just get a 'cross brake lever...
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Old 05-17-10, 06:16 PM
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oooh i have a cross brake lever but the cable doesnt fit in =[
i took it out of my road bike brake lever and it had a square end which doesnt fit into the circle end of my cross lever =[
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Old 05-17-10, 06:19 PM
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So get a new cable.
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Old 05-17-10, 08:14 PM
  #15  
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Better yet if you have aero brake levers set the bars and levers up so the tops and the levers are set up like you'd have with bullhorns. Try it out on a ride before you cut anything. When you've adjusted it to where you like it then hack the drops off just at the base of the aero lever mounts. File off any rough edges and bartape up what's left.

Being a practical person that realized I would not use the drops and that I could easily get as aero as my rotting old body could manage with bullhorn like positioning I did this to a recent build. I'm more than happy with it and it's only slightly less appealing than true bullhorns and TT levers.

If you use the clamp on cross levers on a flop and chop be sure you run with as little free play in the lever as practical. Most cross levers don't have a pivot point and the cable will bend and kink repeatedly at the ball end. This WILL lead to premature cable failure. If you use this style of lever then inspect the cable right by the ball end frequently and keep a couple of spares handy to swap out when you find a broken strand.

There was a thread some months back about someone that had one or both brake cables snap on him right at the ball end thanks to using these levers in a way that was never intended. On the other hand there's at least one brand that has a rolling anchor point which would work well.
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Old 05-17-10, 08:21 PM
  #16  
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https://www.bikeforums.net/singlespeed-fixed-gear/377354-chop-flop.html
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Old 05-17-10, 08:29 PM
  #17  
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Originally Posted by rgoo92 View Post
hah awesome
well here are dropbars similar to mine
https://fatcyclist.com/blogphotos/Ask...5C/dropbar.jpg

here are the types of dropbars i like
https://www.pedalconsumption.com/file...ong_grips3.jpg

not a big difference but id rather have bullhorns than the dropbars that go straight out then drop straight down
im gonna go find me a hacksaw now
Track drops (the second link) look cooler but they aren't comfortable for the road. your hands will be right next to the stem or you have to ride in the drops all day long, and riding in the drops isn't safe if you don't have drop bar brake levers.
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Old 05-18-10, 06:43 AM
  #18  
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Pipe Cutter instead

Even better than a hacksaw is a pipe cutter like this:

https://images.lowes.com/product/017197/017197368776.jpg

Available for about $10. The problem with hacksaws on drop bars is that you can hardly hope to get straight cuts. This tool clamps on to the bar, and rotates a blade in a perfect circle.
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Old 05-18-10, 07:25 AM
  #19  
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Originally Posted by joblue View Post
Even better than a hacksaw is a pipe cutter like this:

https://images.lowes.com/product/017197/017197368776.jpg

Available for about $10. The problem with hacksaws on drop bars is that you can hardly hope to get straight cuts. This tool clamps on to the bar, and rotates a blade in a perfect circle.
On the curved section you will draw a spiral on the handlebar, also yo don't have enough space to turn it trough the bend in the drop.
So hacksaw it is (can be an electric saw if you are precise with it)
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Old 05-18-10, 07:50 AM
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You definitely do not want to waste your time on a tubing cutter to cut the curved section of drop bars.

They use a pair of broad rollers as guides which first of all won't track on curves, and secondly, as they bridge across the inside of the curve will jam the cutter into the outside because the effective diameter of the bar will have changed. Not to mentioned that curved bar sections tend to be ovalized anyway.

You cut handlebars with a hacksaw. If you have zero hand skill you can put a hose clamp on the good side as a safety, but IMO anybody that can't make a decent cut with a hacksaw probably shouldn't be working on bikes in the first place.

Save the tube cutter for plumbing.
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