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Bars with Good Multiple Hand Positions?

Old 04-22-16, 12:18 PM
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Bars with Good Multiple Hand Positions?

Long days of riding seem much better with good multiple hand positions, and upper body positions. I was wondering what people here have seen, thought of, tried, or come up with.

Last edited by lightspree; 04-22-16 at 12:26 PM.
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Old 04-22-16, 12:27 PM
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Trekking Figure 8 bend bars [& MTB control Levers, R'off grip shifter] ..
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Old 04-22-16, 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by lightspree
Long days of riding seem much better with good multiple hand positions, and upper body positions. I was wondering what people here have seen, thought of, tried, or come up with.
Started with standard drops. Tried trekking bars and woodchippers. Threw them out and went back to drops. Drops give me multiple hand positions for all day riding, but ultimately, it is an individual decision. I'm sure the crowd here has tried every kind of bar made, and will swear by their ultimate choice. You won't know what works or doesn't work for you until you've tried a bunch.
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Old 04-22-16, 01:01 PM
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drop bars and trekking bars are the best 2 I've tried. For drops, I'm partial to the nitto randonneurs.
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Old 04-22-16, 01:18 PM
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Some people carried this experiment to a seemingly logical end a century ago, resulting in bicycles very similar to the modern recumbent bicycle. However in this forum we must reinvent the wheel every few days.

About the best you can do with an upright bike is a drop bar, or a mtb 5 deg straight bar with barends. Gloves, ergo grips, extra top bar padding, ibuprofen may help.

Butterflys are popular with folks who have a mtb frame but want the shorter reach of a road frame. There's mustache/North Road/Albatross etc etc. Rivendell, Velo Orange and Soma sell/make quite a few alternative handlebars designed to accommodate std road or mtb componentry (23.8mm or 22.2mm, respectively). You can spend a lot of money and time evaluating these different setups and end up right where you started. There's only so much you can do to redistribute the load on your shoulders/elbows/wrists/hands.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bicycle_handlebar

A few years back when you could buy an Ice trike frameset for 1300USD, I thought this would be a good alternative:

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Old 04-22-16, 01:23 PM
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Trekking bar is really versatile and the best thing it has going is that MTB components can fit on it so if you are moving from a flat bar MTB/hybrid, its an easy swap.

I have nitto randonneur drop bars which flare out a few degrees on the drops and rise upwards from the stem to the ramps. They are fine, but narrow. I cant tell any difference riding on the tops or on the ramps between the rise on them and a regular drop bar. whats great about them is there are long ramps, and a full C bend.

I just received a VeloOrange Grand Cru Course drop bar. Havent used it yet, but i think itll be great. It flares only a few degrees to the drops, and is a full C bend with long ramps.




A full bend, a few degrees of flare on the drops, and long ramps since I like to ride on the ramps and hoods. Thats my favorite type of bar.

Check out VeloOrange, Soma, and Salsa for multiple types of bars.
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Old 04-22-16, 01:30 PM
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I have seen these (butterfly bars) but have never tried them:




Last edited by dim; 04-22-16 at 01:35 PM.
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Old 04-22-16, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by dim
I have seen these (butterfly bars) but have never tried them:


Mine are almost identical. I am not convinced that the number of positions is either larger or that it matters while riding. HOWEVER butterfly handlebars are such that brakes/shifters and ergonomic grips are close to one another and this makes a big difference for me -- with rapid fire shifters, maintaining cadence is much easier.
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Old 04-22-16, 02:24 PM
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i tried butterfly bars and 3-speed bars, and i prefer drop bars. the good thing about drop bars is the location of the brakes. the brakes on 3-speed and butterfly are unnatural; moving your hands is more natural on drop bars. a lateral movement or a horizontal movement is weird. moving your hands down or away is not weird. body weight away or down with gravity is good.
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Old 04-22-16, 02:33 PM
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^^ +1 Another drop bar fan. The brakes are easy to get to in a panic from most of the positions (and 4 that are all day comfortable).

Ben
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Old 04-22-16, 02:51 PM
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Basically a lot of hand positions is not the only thing you want, you want a lot of good hand positions. Drops are the winner because the ergo position is the palm vertical not horizontal position. I find from the hoods down I only have a few positions, but from the hoods up there are many. Altogether it amounts to the best positions.

Also, unless you are building custom, drops add extension to your position which is good for your breathing, but on a bike with a fixed top tube length, and a relatively fixed stem length, it can be a mater of the bars you choose dictating reach, so that is a factor.

The term "drop" is unfortunate because you can pretty much set bar height as you wish. But a lot of people are scared off the bars by pictures of time trial riders.
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Old 04-22-16, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by mantelclock
Started with standard drops. Tried trekking bars and woodchippers. Threw them out and went back to drops. Drops give me multiple hand positions for all day riding, but ultimately, it is an individual decision. I'm sure the crowd here has tried every kind of bar made, and will swear by their ultimate choice. You won't know what works or doesn't work for you until you've tried a bunch.
Agree.

The part I like the best is being able to use the drops to push into the wind better. I have the tops of the bars about a half inch below the top of my saddle, but I think mos people have them the same height.

A friend of mine uses the ones I think are called bull horns, but I could never use those as I want the ability to change the angle of lean in my lower back. I have Interrupter type brake levers on my drop bars so I can use the brakes from the tops, from the hoods, or from the forward part of the drops.

If you look at this web site, you will see a ton of photos of what most people use. Loaded Touring Bicycles - On Tour Photo Gallery by The Loaded Touring Bike Photo Gallery at pbase.com
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Old 04-22-16, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN

If you look at this web site, you will see a ton of photos of what most people use. Loaded Touring Bicycles - On Tour Photo Gallery by The Loaded Touring Bike Photo Gallery at pbase.com

There's also this website: https://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/..._id=8000&v=4Kr as well as the sticky at the top of this forum.
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Old 04-22-16, 06:15 PM
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if you have mtb or hybrid bars you can still use dropbar-like bars by adding this type of bar end.

Origin8 Pro-pulsion Road Ends - Drop Bar Bar Ends - 24.99


Did you change from Hybrid to Drop Bar Bike | Page 27 | CycleChat Cycling Forum

Cheers
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Old 04-22-16, 06:16 PM
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My latest iteration are trekking/aero bars. A few different hand positions and the ability to rest on the forearms.





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Old 04-22-16, 10:03 PM
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Drops work well. Upside-down touring handlebars (like you might see on a cruiser), with tape instead of grips, can work surprisingly well.


These ones intrigue me, again, using tape:


Looks like you get two great positions: at the ends, wide and swept towards you. In the crooks, tight and away.
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Old 04-23-16, 04:40 AM
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Originally Posted by seeker333
Some people carried this experiment to a seemingly logical end a century ago, resulting in bicycles very similar to the modern recumbent bicycle. However in this forum we must reinvent the wheel every few days.
Recumbent trikes are nice and all if all you want to do is go forward efficiently. But they are also really boring. One of the reasons I like upright bicycles is the feeling of flying on ground (with leaning in corners and all that). You don't really get that on a trike and if you're not careful the whole thing'll just tip over in a decent descent corner.
Sure there are two wheeled bents but I'd still likely have a lot of confidence issues with them (like what do you do when you fall?) and you'd absolutely have to rely on mirrors.

The upright bicycle is just handy when you get everything settled and comfortable. And your back wont get itchy
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Old 04-23-16, 09:24 AM
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I just got some Jones Loop H-bars and so far, so good. I'd previously ridden on a Titec knockoff version of the same concept, but the Jones is a lot better.
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Old 04-23-16, 01:32 PM
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+1 on the Jones Loop bars. Just finished a short 4 day tour on pavement and gravel, flats and hills. Marvelous.
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Old 04-24-16, 07:28 AM
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lightspree, Multiple good hand positions may depend on what style of handle bar you've used the most in the past. In N. America and England it seems that the drop bar is more common on touring bikes and road bikes in general. In Europe, flat bars and trekking bars look to be favored on the touring / trekking bikes. Trekking bars (butterfly, figure 8) are becoming more popular outside of Europe, perhaps because of BMX riders and mountain bike riders starting to tour. I'm happy with four main areas of a drop bar, but concede the trekking bars have more possible positions.

Then there are the variations such as short drop or flared drop bars and different style grips and bar ends for flat bars, not to mention differing widths and so on. My distance roadie has aero bars, so that can also be a consideration. Find a handle bar that addresses the shortcomings of your current bars, without losing the aspects you like...and good luck.

Brad
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Old 04-24-16, 07:42 AM
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I use the butterfly's on my VO Passhunter with a twist

Originally Posted by gauvins
Mine are almost identical. I am not convinced that the number of positions is either larger or that it matters while riding. HOWEVER butterfly handlebars are such that brakes/shifters and ergonomic grips are close to one another and this makes a big difference for me -- with rapid fire shifters, maintaining cadence is much easier.
I have reversed them with the open part to the front along with the controls. I found that the controls were too close the other way (as illustrated above) and seemed to make me ride too upright. With the controls more forward my body is more like drops and in that position my hands are right at the controls. I also added aero bars and that gives me yet another position that is very restful and takes the pressure off my hands and shoulders when I need that in addition to the aerodynamic benefits.
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Old 04-24-16, 07:45 AM
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I have drop bars + Airstryke aerobars on my bikes. The armrests flip up when not in use, giving another hand position.
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Old 04-24-16, 02:08 PM
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I have 2 sets of Jones H-Bars. One on Surly DT and another on a Surly Ogre. I trekked to South Dakota last June and did not suffer from any numbness on arms, fingers, hands. Bottom end maybe. There are plenty of hand positions available unless you have lots of accessories attached. You can see from my pic the junk that one can attach. I had a Spotme on the left side that day for some reason but it most certainly didn't stay there for the whole trip. So for the most part my hands were either near the end of the bars or slid in closer to the shifters. And I used the middle cross bar also. It has the padded green Vet Wrap. I suspect you can place you hands way out on the outer forward bar also. I never did. So lots of hand positions available. Love my Jones Bars. Somewhat expensive.

I love the pic of the bike in the middle of the road. I was between Geraldine, MT and Square Butte, MT. I stopped to get a pic and grab a bite to eat and decided to take a pic of the bike laying in the middle of the road. Well it was 30 minutes later and still laying there when I decided to get going and honestly it was another 25 minutes before a vehicle came be. Gotta love Montana.

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link to my trek last year.

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Old 04-25-16, 07:52 AM
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I was on my phone when I posted in agreement with the Jones bar. Thought I would post a pic. I find that most of my riding with the Jones bar is with my hands on the foremost part of the bar.

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Old 04-25-16, 08:16 AM
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I've found with Trekking bars the secret is to use a long stem (110mm) so the controls are in front of the steerer axis, and also to angle them down to the front, so when you are on the front position you are down and more aero, and the angle of your back changes. Tilted back they don't change much in terms of body ergonomics between the two horizontal hand positions because they are both in the arm arc i.e. the shoulder and back doesn't move so the weight is on the same muscles. Plus it's a weird angle on the side sections when out of the saddle and climbing. for $25 a pair they are worth a try.
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