Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Classic & Vintage
Reload this Page >

Are moustache bars any good?

Notices
Classic & Vintage This forum is to discuss the many aspects of classic and vintage bicycles, including musclebikes, lightweights, middleweights, hi-wheelers, bone-shakers, safety bikes and much more.

Are moustache bars any good?

Old 09-14-10, 07:05 PM
  #1  
jonwvara
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
jonwvara's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Washington County, Vermont, USA
Posts: 3,715

Bikes: 1966 Dawes Double Blue, 1976 Raleigh Gran Sport, 1975 Raleigh Sprite 27, 1980 Univega Viva Sport, 1971 Gitane Tour de France, 1984 Lotus Classique, 1976 Motobecane Grand Record

Mentioned: 75 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 724 Post(s)
Liked 579 Times in 309 Posts
Are moustache bars any good?

A guy I know at a bike shop that specializes in good old bikes told me that he loves moustache bars, because they allow him to sell a lot of conventional flat bars or drop bars. The says that people order moustache bars from Rivendell because they're so cool-looking and Granty, try them for awhile, realize that they can't be comfortable with them, then bring the bike to the shop and have him install something else.
Yeah, he's kind of a cynical guy, but does he have a point? Who here uses moustache bars and thinks they're just great? Who thinks they're not so great? I haven't ever tried them, but I admit that I'm curious. They DO look kind of cool.
jonwvara is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 07:25 PM
  #2  
custermustache
Senior Member
 
custermustache's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Plano, TX
Posts: 790

Bikes: 1968 Falcon San Remo 1973 Raleigh International, 1974 Schwinn Suburban, 1987 Schwinn High Sierra, 1992 Univega Ultraleggera, 2007 Dahon Vitesse DH7G

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Used them, didn't really work for me. I have a set of nashbar moustache bars I need to put on CL pretty soon.
custermustache is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 07:38 PM
  #3  
grinningfool
Senior Moment
 
grinningfool's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Somewhere between Bangor and Augusta
Posts: 277

Bikes: 2014 Surly LHT, 2003 Giant NRS 3, 1991 Trek 700, 2006 Cannondale Six 13 Team, 1985 Miyata 210

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
I have a set, didn't care for the handling. It felt awkward, but I suppose if you only had one bike you'd get used to it. I can comfortably switch back and forth between flat bars and drop bars, but I couldn't get used to the moustache bars. YMMV.
grinningfool is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 07:39 PM
  #4  
stien
neits
 
stien's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Cape Cod, MA
Posts: 1,667
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
I'd only (and do) have them on a cruiser. Anything else is drops.
stien is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 07:42 PM
  #5  
DiegoFrogs
Senior Member
 
DiegoFrogs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Scranton, PA, USA
Posts: 2,563

Bikes: '77 Centurion "Pro Tour"; '67 Carlton "The Flyer"; 1984 Ross MTB (stored at parents' house)

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 168 Post(s)
Liked 88 Times in 56 Posts
Tall stems with short reach are the key to using moustache bars. It helps if you have a too-small frame.
DiegoFrogs is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 07:44 PM
  #6  
gomango
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: STP
Posts: 15,221
Mentioned: 73 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 819 Post(s)
Liked 247 Times in 139 Posts
I had them on my XO-1.

They rocked, and I also have them on this:



Great fire road/fishing/winter bike.

My oldest son rides it constantly, and the bars are just fine he reports.
gomango is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 07:46 PM
  #7  
Grand Bois
Senior Member
 
Grand Bois's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Pinole, CA, USA
Posts: 17,414
Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 442 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 22 Times in 21 Posts
They require a taller stem with shorter extension than you would use with drop bars. They work for me. These are Nittos.



This one is almost unrideable for me with a short stem with longer extension. These are steel cheapies from Nashbar. Maybe if I was 40 years younger.....

Grand Bois is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 07:55 PM
  #8  
Johnny Alien
I drank the Kool-Aid!
 
Johnny Alien's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Harrisburg, PA
Posts: 562

Bikes: Rivendell Roadini, Rivendell Charlie Gallop Protovelo, Rivendell Clem L

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 1 Post
I like them but they got horrible reviews from magazines back in the day as well so apparently it's a like em or hate em thing.
Johnny Alien is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 07:58 PM
  #9  
roccobike
Bike Junkie
 
roccobike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: South of Raleigh, North of New Hill, East of Harris Lake, NC
Posts: 9,622

Bikes: Specialized Tarmac, Specialized Roubaix, Giant OCR-C, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR, Stumpjumper Comp, 88 & 92Nishiki Ariel, 87 Centurion Ironman, 92 Paramount, 84 Nishiki Medalist

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 68 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 35 Times in 26 Posts
I've never owned a set, so they must not be any good.
__________________
Roccobike BF Official Thread Terminator
roccobike is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 09:15 PM
  #10  
Dylansbob 
2k miles from the midwest
 
Dylansbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Washington
Posts: 1,981

Bikes: ~'75 Colin Laing, '80s Schwinn SuperSport 650b, ex-Backroads ti project...

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 524 Post(s)
Liked 916 Times in 439 Posts
I loved the fairly flat Nitto-made version. I hated the two inch-ish drop nashbar and origin8 ones. I suppose it really depends on the the bike. I'm in the process of setting up a set on on my '71 Raleigh GS, unfortunately the set I have are a set of XO-takeoff mtb shifter sized. I've played around with multiple locations for the thumbies and I still can't get anything quite as ergo as barcons.
Dylansbob is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 09:25 PM
  #11  
jtgotsjets
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 1,755

Bikes: Miele Azsora, Kuwahara Cascade

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
I really like them. I have the Dimension version. I wouldn't put them on a road bike, but for a more all-around type bike, they're great. No need for the drops when I'm getting groceries, but nearly as many hand positions as drops, the wide stance is nice for stability and accelerating from a stop. Just a good design in my opinion.

It probably also helps that I felt a little scrunched up when I had drops on my bike—the moustache bars let me stretch out to a perfect riding position. Could have also solved my problem with a longer stem (original plan), but decided on m-bars for all the reasons above.
jtgotsjets is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 10:00 PM
  #12  
Roll-Monroe-Co
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 2,308
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 62 Post(s)
Liked 14 Times in 12 Posts
I may be silly, but I had a bike with flipped north roads and one with m-bars. I like the m-bars, but nothing has ever been as comfy and natural feeling as the flipped nort roads.
Roll-Monroe-Co is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 10:22 PM
  #13  
3speed
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 3,473
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 363 Post(s)
Liked 28 Times in 22 Posts
I don't know if it makes any difference but I've spent most of my time on a BMX or mountain bike. I've recently gotten into cruisers and road bikes and put a good number of miles on both this summer. I would never put mustache bars on my road bike. Gotta have drops. However, I wouldn't want anything else on the vintage 3 speed that I use for casual rides with my girlfriend. They look cool and are really nice and relaxed and have a nice comfortable wide stable feel. I think it mostly depends on the application.
3speed is offline  
Old 09-14-10, 10:22 PM
  #14  
illwafer
)) <> ((
 
illwafer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: San Diego, CA
Posts: 2,411
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
no. they are awful.
illwafer is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 05:12 AM
  #15  
randyjawa 
Senior Member
 
randyjawa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada - burrrrr!
Posts: 11,551

Bikes: 1958 Rabeneick 120D, 1968 Legnano Gran Premio, 196? Torpado Professional, 2000 Marinoni Piuma

Mentioned: 209 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1327 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1,582 Times in 875 Posts
I've played around with multiple locations for the thumbies and I still can't get anything quite as ergo as barcons.
Try doing something like I did on my Legnano "Nocostalotti". These Barcons, work and, in my opinion, look great. The bike is comfortable and the bars work well for around town riding. I should add that the article on my Legnano does not have the final installment installed just yet.

Legnano_Consv_Ful.jpg Legnano_Consv_Han&.jpg Legnano_Consv_Han&.jpg

Legnano_Consv_Bra&.jpg Legnano_Consv_Han&.jpg

I have tried moustache bars on a few of my bikes but the jury is still out, for me. Why? Because every time I build up a bike with these bars, someone comes along and buys the bike from me. The M bars do add considerably to the vintage aesthetic appeal.
randyjawa is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 05:16 AM
  #16  
KonAaron Snake 
Fat Guy on a Little Bike
 
KonAaron Snake's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 17,230

Bikes: Two wheeled ones

Mentioned: 42 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1254 Post(s)
Liked 338 Times in 171 Posts
Originally Posted by gomango
I had them on my XO-1.

They rocked, and I also have them on this:



Great fire road/fishing/winter bike.

My oldest son rides it constantly, and the bars are just fine he reports.
This is a work of art...one of my very favorite bikes on the site. Just needs a IGH!
KonAaron Snake is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 05:19 AM
  #17  
KonAaron Snake 
Fat Guy on a Little Bike
 
KonAaron Snake's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 17,230

Bikes: Two wheeled ones

Mentioned: 42 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1254 Post(s)
Liked 338 Times in 171 Posts
Originally Posted by DiegoFrogs
Tall stems with short reach are the key to using moustache bars. It helps if you have a too-small frame.
That's pretty much how mine are set up...I have a Surly Karate Monkey with mustache bars (though different from the Nittos) and I use it as a townie. Overall, I'm not wild about the bike...some of which are the bars and a lot of which is the frame. I' going to either be selling that bike or radically changing it to something more comfortable. What gomango did with that Miyata looks like it would be PERFECT for my 29r wheels.
KonAaron Snake is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 05:42 AM
  #18  
gomango
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: STP
Posts: 15,221
Mentioned: 73 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 819 Post(s)
Liked 247 Times in 139 Posts
Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake
That's pretty much how mine are set up...I have a Surly Karate Monkey with mustache bars (though different from the Nittos) and I use it as a townie. Overall, I'm not wild about the bike...some of which are the bars and a lot of which is the frame. I' going to either be selling that bike or radically changing it to something more comfortable. What gomango did with that Miyata looks like it would be PERFECT for my 29r wheels.
Hi Aaron,

Thanks.

My kids give me grief about this bike when I ride it.

Probably referring to my grandpa like pace!

They are all legs, and wickedly fast.

Our oldest son led a group this summer on a 50+ mile Luce Line ride out to Watertown, and he toyed with us.

The bike works great on gravel roads and class 5 paths, not so red hot on paved roads.

That being said, it will be a blast to ride during the inevitable Minnesota winter.

Oh, we also have Blackburns for the front and rear, as well as Ortliebs, and seems to handle those well.
gomango is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 05:45 AM
  #19  
highwaterkid
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 13
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I have 2 friends who ride with them and swear by them. They say they're so comfortable cause it keeps you seated in a pretty upright position.
highwaterkid is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 05:55 AM
  #20  
rhm
multimodal commuter
 
rhm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: NJ, NYC, LI
Posts: 19,847

Bikes: 1940s Fothergill, 1959 Allegro Special, 1963? Claud Butler Olympic Sprint, Lambert 'Clubman', 1974 Fuji "the Ace", 1976 Holdsworth 650b conversion rando bike, 1983 Trek 720 tourer, 1984 Counterpoint Opus II, 1993 Basso Gap, 2010 Downtube 8h, and...

Mentioned: 572 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1902 Post(s)
Liked 548 Times in 326 Posts
I had a really cool mustache bar on this bike I built up in the early 80's. The frame was too small for me but it was a nicely made racing frame from Argentina that the bike shop was tossing. With the seat up pretty high and the frame generally too small for me, the mustache bar was great. It was like having all the hand positions of a drop bar, but without the variety of postures that go with them. That bar, by the way, had no drop at all; on one plane it was perfectly flat. I think it was a St. Etienne or something.

More recently I got a Nitto, I think, to use on a bike I was building; and ran up against the problem of 7/8" diameter. All my recent builds involve IGH's, so I haven't been able to use the mustache bar at all.
rhm is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 06:33 AM
  #21  
nlerner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 16,776
Mentioned: 460 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3603 Post(s)
Liked 5,847 Times in 2,352 Posts
I have one bike with Nitto M-bars, a 70s French frameset of unknown origins:





On that bike I like them a lot, but I agree with the need for a short, tall stem, and a relatively short top tube is probably key, too.

Neal
nlerner is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 06:50 AM
  #22  
KonAaron Snake 
Fat Guy on a Little Bike
 
KonAaron Snake's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 17,230

Bikes: Two wheeled ones

Mentioned: 42 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1254 Post(s)
Liked 338 Times in 171 Posts
Originally Posted by rhm
I had a really cool mustache bar on this bike I built up in the early 80's. The frame was too small for me but it was a nicely made racing frame from Argentina that the bike shop was tossing. With the seat up pretty high and the frame generally too small for me, the mustache bar was great. It was like having all the hand positions of a drop bar, but without the variety of postures that go with them. That bar, by the way, had no drop at all; on one plane it was perfectly flat. I think it was a St. Etienne or something.

More recently I got a Nitto, I think, to use on a bike I was building; and ran up against the problem of 7/8" diameter. All my recent builds involve IGH's, so I haven't been able to use the mustache bar at all.
Hi RHM...I'm a little confused by this comment...I have a Sram 9sp IGH working with mustache bars. Wouldn't you also be able to use the older style SA shifters with them? Isn't it just a clamp? Granted the positioning would be odd.
KonAaron Snake is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 06:58 AM
  #23  
rhm
multimodal commuter
 
rhm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: NJ, NYC, LI
Posts: 19,847

Bikes: 1940s Fothergill, 1959 Allegro Special, 1963? Claud Butler Olympic Sprint, Lambert 'Clubman', 1974 Fuji "the Ace", 1976 Holdsworth 650b conversion rando bike, 1983 Trek 720 tourer, 1984 Counterpoint Opus II, 1993 Basso Gap, 2010 Downtube 8h, and...

Mentioned: 572 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1902 Post(s)
Liked 548 Times in 326 Posts
Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake
Hi RHM...I'm a little confused by this comment...I have a Sram 9sp IGH working with mustache bars. Wouldn't you also be able to use the older style SA shifters with them? Isn't it just a clamp? Granted the positioning would be odd.
Yes, you are certainly right about an old SA trigger shifter; bend the clamp a bit, change the nut and bolt, and no problem. And now that bar-end shifters are available for modern Shimano and Sturmey Archer hubs, those too become an option. Aside from that, I believe there are 7/8" mustache bars out there somewhere, which would be a nice solution, I've just never found one. What's the shifter on your Sram?
rhm is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 07:05 AM
  #24  
Grand Bois
Senior Member
 
Grand Bois's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Pinole, CA, USA
Posts: 17,414
Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 442 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 22 Times in 21 Posts
You can get them in both 22.2 MTB and 24 millimeter road diameters.
Grand Bois is offline  
Old 09-15-10, 07:07 AM
  #25  
rhm
multimodal commuter
 
rhm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: NJ, NYC, LI
Posts: 19,847

Bikes: 1940s Fothergill, 1959 Allegro Special, 1963? Claud Butler Olympic Sprint, Lambert 'Clubman', 1974 Fuji "the Ace", 1976 Holdsworth 650b conversion rando bike, 1983 Trek 720 tourer, 1984 Counterpoint Opus II, 1993 Basso Gap, 2010 Downtube 8h, and...

Mentioned: 572 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1902 Post(s)
Liked 548 Times in 326 Posts
Originally Posted by Grand Bois
You can get them in both 22.2 MTB and 24 millimeter road diameters.
That is what I've heard, but not what I have experienced. Can you remind us who makes the 7/8" (=22.2 mm) one, or give a link to one for sale somewhere?
rhm is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2023 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.