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Flat hoods are where it's at.

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Flat hoods are where it's at.

Old 10-10-11, 02:16 PM
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ilovecycling
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Flat hoods are where it's at.

I recently installed some PRO Vibe carbon bars (the round bend version) on my bike and when positioning the hoods I was sort of forced to set them perfectly parallel with the ground because I wanted the top of the hoods to have a flat transition with the top of the bars and I also wanted the bottom of the drops to be at a very specific angle relative to the ground.

Anyways, I noticed that now when I climb out of the saddle the front end is much more stable. The front end is less wobbly and I feel less fatigued after a longer climb because my hands sit a little lower relative to my waist. What seemed like a subtle change made a huge difference. I always thought having the hoods tilted up slightly seemed like a logical thing to do, but it turns out having them flat is definitely the way to go. It's kind of like having your saddle pointed nose down in that it seems like that's how it should be, but it's more harmful than helpful.

Anyone else experience something similar?

(pic just for reference)

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Old 10-10-11, 02:19 PM
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Btw, it's no less comfortable when seated and holding the hoods. I thought my wrists would have to bend more, but this is not the case. The bike is just more stable when holding the hoods whether on or off the saddle.
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Old 10-10-11, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by ilovecycling View Post
...Having them flat is definitely the way to go. Anyone else experience something similar?
Yep, that's the way I like my SRAM hoods as well. Very comfy and stable standing or sitting.
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Old 10-10-11, 02:23 PM
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I think this is how most people run their hoods, no?
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Old 10-10-11, 02:24 PM
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I loves me some flat hoods. After riding Campy levers and Ritchey Curve bars for most of the summer, I'm converting my commuter to a similar setup. Feels good, man.
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Old 10-10-11, 02:27 PM
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laundry day
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Old 10-10-11, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Cpt.America View Post
I think this is how most people run their hoods, no?
some bar/hood combos don't let you get that flat top without some weird angle of the drops. So, it depends on what is more important to you
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Old 10-10-11, 02:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Cpt.America View Post
I think this is how most people run their hoods, no?
I don't really know. That's kind of why I posted this. I wanted to know if I was the only one who came to this conclusion. Most pictures I see of people posting their bikes online have the hoods at least slightly tilted up. Some are just plain wrong with wacky bar positions and 5 spacers above the stem, but I want to say most people think their hoods should be tilted up to some degree.

Originally Posted by DropDeadFred View Post
laundry day
When is it not laundry day?
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Old 10-10-11, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Cpt.America View Post
I think this is how most people run their hoods, no?

A lot of the traditional shaped bars seem to have people setting them up with a slight pitch down before transitioning to the flat hood. I guess it works for some people, but it puts my hand in a really uncomfortable position. I'm on the 7S rounds as well and absolutely love the shape, especially the really thick top of the bar.

examples of the classic bend bar and how people set them up:
http://blog-imgs-45.fc2.com/p/o/n/po...l_view_600.jpg
http://www.flickr.com/photos/16892400@N03/4503840413/
http://media.photobucket.com/image/3...0/IMG_0882.jpg
http://livedoor.2.blogimg.jp/inoueka...5/25672d0f.JPG
http://www.teamvelocycling.com/pyori...valmis1000.jpg
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Old 10-10-11, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by BeeSeeBee View Post
A lot of the traditional shaped bars seem to have people setting them up with a slight pitch down before transitioning to the flat hood. I guess it works for some people, but it puts my hand in a really uncomfortable position. I'm on the 7S rounds as well and absolutely love the shape, especially the really thick top of the bar.

examples of the classic bend bar and how people set them up:
http://blog-imgs-45.fc2.com/p/o/n/po...l_view_600.jpg
http://www.flickr.com/photos/16892400@N03/4503840413/
http://media.photobucket.com/image/3...0/IMG_0882.jpg
http://livedoor.2.blogimg.jp/inoueka...5/25672d0f.JPG
http://www.teamvelocycling.com/pyori...valmis1000.jpg
Yes, these bars are amazing! I only paid $65 for the carbon version. It was on clearance sale (they only make a unidirectional carbon version now) for $130 and then I got 15% off. There was a promotion going on for a free Vibe 7S stem on top of that. I bought two of these bars for my two bikes and got two stems which I sold on eBay. Ended up paying right around $65 for these $300+ dollar bars. I'd rock the aluminum version without hesitation if I didn't get these for such a good deal. Amazing bars. I like them much better than the 3T Ergonova Team bars they are replacing...and I really liked those bars too!
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Old 10-10-11, 03:01 PM
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I love me some flat bars too... rented a bike with bars like those in the pictures linked above and it killed me for a week. Don't know if maybe I just wasn't used to it or what.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:03 PM
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Mine are very slightly down. I don't like the angle of the drops when I have them totally flat.
http://imageshack.us/f/225/img3373nq.jpg

Long term solution is k-wing bars. I think probably springtime on those...
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Old 10-10-11, 03:07 PM
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Welcome to the pre- and post- Lance era.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:12 PM
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Me likey some flat hoods.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:50 PM
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Since the first time I replaced and wrapped my own bars (FSA Wing Pro's), I have had flat hoods. Honestly didn't think there would be another way to set things up comfortably.
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Old 10-10-11, 04:10 PM
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let's not forget that it just plain LOOKS better...
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Old 10-10-11, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by carpediemracing View Post
Welcome to the pre- and post- Lance era.
Honest question: why do you think this trend has something to do with Lance?
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Old 10-10-11, 05:47 PM
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Lance always had his shifters pointed up a fair amount, and I imagine a lot of riders that got into the sport during his prominent years figured it was the way they were supposed to be setup:

2002: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_C3Jeq-tHoT...+Armstrong.jpg
2009: http://www.zimbio.com/pictures/4seeK...ance+Armstrong
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Old 10-10-11, 05:48 PM
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this is my bork that has a traditional bend handlebar.
i initially planned to have them flat, but this ended up feeling better. no hate.
the transition is pretty much flat on my k-wing compacts on la mia altra bicicletta


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Old 10-10-11, 05:49 PM
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i dont think that theyre up...its that his bars are down so he compensated
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Old 10-10-11, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by BeeSeeBee View Post
Lance always had his shifters pointed up a fair amount, and I imagine a lot of riders that got into the sport during his prominent years figured it was the way they were supposed to be setup:

2002: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_C3Jeq-tHoT...+Armstrong.jpg

2009: http://www.zimbio.com/pictures/4seeK...ance+Armstrong
hm. not a lot of post showing. i guess he rode a relatively large frame compared to other pros?
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Old 10-10-11, 06:13 PM
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He's something like 5'9" or 5'10" and road a 58cm frame, so he definitely road a larger frame than most other pros his size or even the recreational rider.
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Old 10-10-11, 06:26 PM
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It just depends on the bar shape. Some are just not possible to make flat like that.
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Old 10-10-11, 06:32 PM
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Originally Posted by BeeSeeBee View Post
He's something like 5'9" or 5'10" and road a 58cm frame, so he definitely road a larger frame than most other pros his size or even the recreational rider.
kind of interesting. i'm about 6ft, and i have a 58 and a 56, and i prefer the fit of the 56. obviously there's more to it than height, but still - AFAIK pros go a size or two down.
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Old 10-10-11, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by BeeSeeBee View Post
Lance always had his shifters pointed up a fair amount, and I imagine a lot of riders that got into the sport during his prominent years figured it was the way they were supposed to be setup:

2002: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_C3Jeq-tHoT...+Armstrong.jpg
2009: http://www.zimbio.com/pictures/4seeK...ance+Armstrong
I don't follow. That's basically the opposite setup: traditional bars with the hoods hiked up on the bar. This creates a sharper transition from bar to hood (looks like about 90 degrees in the first pic).

I wasn't paying close attention at the time, but I don't think compact handlebars started showing up until 07 or 08--well into/past the Lance boom. But cdr is much more of a student of the sport than I am, so hence the question.
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