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My handle bar hurts

Old 12-02-05, 10:02 AM
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jasongilbert
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My handle bar hurts

I would like to know if any readers have had experience elliminating discomfort caused by having the wrong handle bars.

My Trek 7500 came with slightly raised handle bars for a more comfort/touring ride. I like to be down a little lower and aesthetically prefer straight bars, so I switched them out. The new bar is straight but for a very slight angling back. I also put on bar-ends.

It is uncomfortable. My hands rest on the bar in a way that causes them to turn in towards each other like duck feet (no offence to any ducks on the forum) and roll outward so that most of the pressure is on the outside edge of my hands. After even a short ride my right hand hurts like I've "pinched" a nerve. I notice that my shoulders and neck are also sore. This soreness could be because of riding in the cold or because of the effect of low tempurature on my front suspension.

It could also be that my hands are now too close together. The new bar is slightly shorter than the old, the bar-ends take off a little more, and keeping the outside of my hand from rubbing on the (cold!) bar ends means coming in a little further still. Perhaps that is my only problem, but I would welcome any other feed back.

thanks
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Old 12-02-05, 10:06 AM
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I just put on a set of these and I love them. They're the most comfortable grips I've ever used.
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Old 12-02-05, 10:32 AM
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Did you change your saddle angle? Lowering/changing the handlebars may require adjusting saddle angle for greater comfort.
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Old 12-02-05, 11:15 AM
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I'll give both of these a try. thanks
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Old 12-02-05, 11:17 AM
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Finding "the right" handlebars can be a hunt-and-peck process.

"Straight" handlebars usually aren't. They normally come with either a 3 degree or a 5 degree sweep. If your's are the 5 degree variety, a 3 degree handlebar (Race Face or Profile Design) may be enough to make the difference.

Width can make a difference too. I normally cut about 3/4 inch off each end of handlebars for my personal use. From your description I'd suspect you'll want to keep the full width. You might even try takeing off the bar ends to see if the extra 3/4" of width makes you more comfortable.

You also might want to fool around with the height of your bars. Low ones will put more pressure on your little fingers. Height changes with threadless stem systems can be costly but once you get it figured out right it's worth it. I recommend writing down the drop from your seat to the handlebar so that you can repeat that dimension on any new bike.
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Old 12-02-05, 03:24 PM
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Specialized makes a body geometry version of a hand grip with a soft bump. I also am using Cane Creek (?) bar ends, which are like two small rubber shapes for a different grip. My problems were mostly eliminated, but for very long rides, in which case an occasional release of the grips and hand manipulation helps (one at a time!).
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Old 12-02-05, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch
Finding "the right" handlebars can be a hunt-and-peck process.
Ya got that right!


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Old 12-02-05, 04:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Bikepacker67
Ya got that right!


Have you got another image of that bag? It seems huge.

And are those solar panels or speakers?
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Old 12-02-05, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by MMACH 5
Have you got another image of that bag? It seems huge.

And are those solar panels or speakers?
This should help explain...

And ya, those are speakers. $20 at radio shack
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Old 12-02-05, 04:23 PM
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Whoops, you asked about the bag...
They are actually three cheapo camera bags (two small ones, one larger) that I have zipped-tied together.

The two small ones hang over the stem, and the large over the bar itself.

I'll get some better pics for ya if you like.
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Old 12-02-05, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Bikepacker67
Whoops, you asked about the bag...
They are actually three cheapo camera bags (two small ones, one larger) that I have zipped-tied together.

The two small ones hang over the stem, and the large over the bar itself.

I'll get some better pics for ya if you like.
I'd like to see them.

I do like the non-traditional bar set-ups...

These images are from last month. I've since repainted the bars and added the RX grips. And that is a saddle wedge strapped under the top tube.

Full Size

Full Size

Full Size
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Old 12-02-05, 05:32 PM
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Funny enough, the palm of my hands and my wrist do not hurt anymore ... how so?





Removed the bar tape, use full finger gloves at all times, and wrap my fingers around the bar. Never dumb palms again.
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