Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

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itaa
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Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby itaa » 21 Dec 2017, 3:00am

I always thought I wanted a road bike, I finally got one to test the concept out, Turns out I don't like road bikes at all since I barely ever drive on tarmac and I don't like at all the position when using the bike.. I like the bike itself, it's rather light and nimble, however... the gear changes /brakes/position= sucks so bad :(

I got the bike for £26 it was in fairly good shape however the components on it are just super basic- however all works and gears shift just fine.
I ''think'' I want a Hybrid bike now , to have something as light/nimble as a road bike but still fairly fast.
I had my eyes on Boardman Hybrid team ( roughly £250 for a good used one)..However I don't really want to spend any money now since I already got 2 bikes ( this one and a MTB) .. Or I could just convert this road bike to a hybrid myself?

So the plan was to take this bike and convert it to flat bars + new brake levers/gears + new tyres+ some new cables,new brake pads,new pedals.

-Is this a good idea to drop money on such a basic ''crap'' bike and try to convert it in something I can use? (we are talking about probably £40 investment) Or I should just sell it on and buy another bike which has much better stuff on it?
-What else do I need to convert it to a flat bar?
I will get a flat bar itself and this shimano ST-EF51 brake/shifter set
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Shimano-7-Sp ... WPh0p#rwid

I might need some new cables , what else ?

itaa
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby itaa » 21 Dec 2017, 3:03am

pics of the bike

Image
Image
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SimonCelsa
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby SimonCelsa » 21 Dec 2017, 5:08am

Looks like quite an aggressive set up there.

Have you thought about maybe trying an adjustable stem to get the bars a bit higher and hence make your position a little more elegant?

They are not the most aesthetic piece of kit but I've used them in the past and they've transformed the ride. You may need to change cables as well if you go for the longer stem.

https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/stems/90-sy ... amp-black/

Just a thought, all the best

Simon

niknakmb
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Joined: 26 Sep 2016, 7:12pm

Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby niknakmb » 21 Dec 2017, 6:27am

I had the same problem, I got given an old road bike and restored it.
Then I didn’t like the position so I converted it to flat bars and now I love it.ImageImage

tim_f
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby tim_f » 21 Dec 2017, 8:25am

The Ebay page says "For V-Brake" so they will pull the wrong amount of cable for the dual caliper brakes on your road bike.

hamster
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby hamster » 21 Dec 2017, 8:44am

As said, that is a very aggressive racing postion - I bet you feel like you are falling over the bars. Those shifters are ghastly! Personally I would fit a shorter stem and flip it so it rises, you may find that solves things. Drop bars are definitely a shock at first, especially if set up like that. They need to be in a position where it is comfortable to use the drops.

Every time I have run flat bars on a distance bike I have eventually converted back to drops. The ability to change hand positions, get a bit flatter when riding into the wind etc wins out for me in the end.

pwa
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby pwa » 21 Dec 2017, 9:10am

Yep. Cheapest and easiest option is to get a shorter stem with an upward angle (maybe from SJS Cycles) to get bars higher and less of a reach, then cycle with your hands on the top of the brake hoods most of the time.

niknakmb
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Joined: 26 Sep 2016, 7:12pm

Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby niknakmb » 21 Dec 2017, 9:43am

I kept the drop bars etc, just in case I fancy changing back, never say never!

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Si
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby Si » 21 Dec 2017, 9:46am

What others have said .....riser or adjustable stem. If you still dont like the bars after that then your next cheapest option might be a north road bar as this will allow you to keep the same brake/gear levers.

amediasatex
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby amediasatex » 21 Dec 2017, 10:17am

I don't think it's the type of bars that are the issue, it's where they are, even if you replaced those drops with flats there's a lot of saddle-bar drop going on there!

I think a great many people have been put off drop bars over the years by them simply being in the wrong place from following the fashion of a racing setup :-(

hamster
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby hamster » 21 Dec 2017, 11:30am

One other point - that saddle is as far back as it will go, which makes things even worse on reach.

Firstly set the saddle set-back so your body is in balance over the bike, then get the bars in the right position. Slamming the saddle forward is the wrong way to correct reach, but there is no point in trying to solve reach before saddle setback. 531Colin on this forum has some good posts on getting saddle setback right.

Brucey
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby Brucey » 21 Dec 2017, 11:38am

cheapest option is to flip the extant stem the other way up.

A shorter, taller stem (system EX make some that work well) will also help. If you fit flat bars to the extant stem they still may not be high enough. The frame looks like it may be a size too small, really.

BTW if you have a bike with skinny tyres and an upright riding position, it can be an unfortunate combination; if you are sat in the saddle like a sack of spuds, you are at some greater risk of flat-spotting a rim in a pothole, IME.

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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The utility cyclist
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby The utility cyclist » 21 Dec 2017, 11:47am

tim_f wrote:The Ebay page says "For V-Brake" so they will pull the wrong amount of cable for the dual caliper brakes on your road bike.

Those models are canti compatible so are fine, there's two positions for the cable head.
Go for the flat bar, people are ignoring the fact the OP has said he doesn't like the gear changers (fakey/repluca suntour command shifters)
Get the shimano sti's a flat bar and an angled stem if the one in situ doesnt give you enough of an angle (doubtful) and this not only resolves the bar height but importantly the crap gears. Just flippung the stem won't resolve the issues!

Don't worry about changing tyres, they're fine, raisung your position up a bit will have no effect on their abilities as you aren't creating a sit up and beg position as mentioned above.

PH
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby PH » 21 Dec 2017, 11:52am

itaa wrote: I barely ever drive on tarmac and I don't like at all the position when using the bike.. I like the bike itself, it's rather light and nimble, however... the gear changes /brakes/position= sucks so bad :(

As you barely ride on Tarmac it's the wrong bike whatever the bars. Sell it and start again, put it down to a learning experience.

whoof
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Re: Converting from Dropbars to Straight - Worth it?

Postby whoof » 21 Dec 2017, 11:54am

Brucey wrote:BTW if you have a bike with skinny tyres and an upright riding position, it can be an unfortunate combination; if you are sat in the saddle like a sack of spuds, you are at some greater risk of flat-spotting a rim in a pothole, IME.

cheers

And also your undercarriage as an upright position removes any 'suspension' that would have been be provided by some of your upper body weight being taken on your arms.

The bike doesn't seem to be set-up greatly for you. Someone has cut the fork steer and not put in many spacers, the stem is flat and you have deep-drop bars.
As other have said turn the stem the other way up (or possibly buy a new one) you might also consider some shallow-drop bars, be careful you get the correct diameter stem/bar combination. As for those gear levers perhaps you can find some second hand downtube ones as you appear to have braze-ons on the frame which are currently occupied by some barrel-adjusters.