Straight or Drop Bars

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
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531colin
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby 531colin » 19 Nov 2014, 8:25am

erroneous post deleted
Last edited by 531colin on 19 Nov 2014, 8:28am, edited 1 time in total.

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531colin
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby 531colin » 19 Nov 2014, 8:27am

hondated wrote:Thanks everyone I think I will dig out the butterfly bars and have another go with them. When I tried them before at 57cm they felt wide but I definitely sat up straighter.


Ah!....if the question is really "Can I get to sit up straighter with flat bars than with drops?"
.....then the answer is ...."Yes."

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Mick F
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby Mick F » 19 Nov 2014, 7:15pm

mercalia wrote:straight bars are in a different position to drops
Nope.

The only difference between straights and drops is the shape of the 'bars, not the position.
The position is set by the frame, the steerer, and the stem.
Mick F. Cornwall

reohn2
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby reohn2 » 19 Nov 2014, 7:51pm

mercalia wrote:
reohn2 wrote:
mercalia wrote:depends on how much of a beer belly you have?


It's not the shape of the rider but position of the handlebars.


straight bars are in a different position to drops


But they don't have to be,you simply fit the drops where they're most comfortable for you.
NOT where others think they should be.

....The position is set by the frame, the steerer, and the stem.

All off which can be almost infinitely adjustable.

Not to forget that there's a lot of different styles of drops these days,shallow or deep drop,short or long reach,and various shapes within those styles.And of course there's a few different flat style h/bars too.
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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 19 Nov 2014, 8:01pm

Hi,
Mick F wrote:
mercalia wrote:straight bars are in a different position to drops
Nope.

The only difference between straights and drops is the shape of the 'bars, not the position.
The position is set by the frame, the steerer, and the stem.


If you want to get going you need drops.

If you use straights without forward facing bar end extensions then you will be limted on hand position and might sufer wrist fatique.........the big problem with straights with out extensions will be standing uphill.

If you adopt straights so you can sit up and admire the scenery then you probably not be phased by all the other cyclist of leser fitness passing you.
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Bicycler
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby Bicycler » 19 Nov 2014, 11:55pm

If you aren't going to set the same reach to the normal riding position (the grips on flats and usually the hoods on drops) then you are comparing different reaches and riding positions more than different bar types.

As for this "you need drops to go fast" stuff I don't think it makes much difference for touring. In any case if doing long days in the saddle I'd think more about being comfortable than about the aerodynamic benefits of drop bars. Not that I am against drop bars - they work for me but not for everyone

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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby roberts8 » 20 Nov 2014, 8:00am

I use drops on my touring bike and as it was made and set up by Roberts it is a perfect fit.
My day to day bike is a Rockhopper and as I use it on the road for shopping etc. straights were uncomfortable so I fitted butterfly bars and they are really good with a variety of positions and well worth a try.

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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby Vorpal » 20 Nov 2014, 8:26am

I expect that recumbents and bikes designed to be ridden completely upright (e.g. Dutch town bike style) put less strain on the abdomen. On most diamond frame bikes, however, some core strength is needed to be comfortable for more than a few miles. That means abdominal and back muscles.

It's probably better to talk to a physiotherapist or physiologist who is also familiar with cycling, though.
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hondated
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby hondated » 20 Nov 2014, 9:44am

Thanks again everybody. Just like Roberts8 my bike was built by Roberts for me with drops so I am a bit loathe to fit other bars.Because I have always felt stretched out on it I have fitted a shorter stem but it still seems too stretched out for me. I am now wondering whether I should ditch the B17 saddle as, as you all probably know, there is not a great lot of forward and back adjustment on them.

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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby yostumpy » 20 Nov 2014, 9:47am

My 2d worth.

Flat bars or drops? They are IMHO like totally different animals, ie dog and cat, but both animals just the same.
I can still remember , as a lad, having flat bars, then one day after school, I pestered a lad to let me have a go on his drop bar 'racer' (I was about 11). Whoa! was it different, and it gave we the 'willies' literally. I had a strange tense feeling in my lower...ahem... parts, a bit like walking up to the edge of a cliff.
Later in life I took up MTB' from v.early 90's, and flat bars were the way to go. Many tens of thousands of miles with flats and longish bar ends, but riding in a fairly stretched cockpit. Then I moved and joined the local DA, and bought a proper bike for Audax 'n'stuff with drops. almost 10 years I had the bike and was never 'truly comfy' and often swopped the bars over to flats, but that didn't feel right anymore either. The Bike then died, and a new Bob jackson replaced it, with drops, but that was so comfortable from day 1.
My mind often gets confused tho'. when using flat bars, the primary hand position is on the grips, with all controls accessible from there, so a stem length /seat position is chosen. But with drop bars, the opposite is true, all the controls are at the other end, furthest away from the rider, so the stem/saddle pos has to ammend accordingly. BUT, now the 'tops' position is different from the flat bar position, resulting in a much more upright position , and 'on the hoods' is further away, resulting in a more stretched out pos. This comes right back to bike fitting, and 'how you ride your bike' Some folks (with drops) sit further forward, with a shorter stem, and ride on the hoods all the time, and rarely use the tops , as its too close. Others slide the saddle back a bit with a longer stem, and ride on the tops/ramps, and only use the hood for braking and 'out of the saddle climbing' . I am the latter, why? Prob because I put so may miles n on a flat bar / long cockpit bike, that feels right to me. I read somewhere that to see if the pos it right for you, find an inclne, ride up at a steady pace, but fast enough that you can remove your hands from the bars. Whilst pedaling, and your arms by your side , your position should vary little when you resume your hand position, IE YOU LEAN INTO THE BIKE , but balanced in a forward position, with c of g and stomach muscles doing the work, with little weight on your arms.
So back to the OP, flats and drops are very different things, and the more you stop and think about it, the worse it gets. :(

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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby Brucey » 20 Nov 2014, 10:00am

if you like the saddle but it is already as far back as it will go then a different seat pin with more layback might help.

If you are too far forwards at present, there may be a load on your hands and wrists; it is easy enough to feel like you are 'too stretched out' when this is the case. If it is bad enough, no amount of shorter stem / higher bars will really help that much, not until you are sat bolt upright, anyway.

If you have an underlying issue in your back, neck or shoulders, you may not be comfy on any bike with a standard riding position; if so it is worth seeking some professional expertise in this respect rather than suffering unnecessarily.

cheers
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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 20 Nov 2014, 12:13pm

Hi,
Vorpal wrote:I expect that recumbents and bikes designed to be ridden completely upright (e.g. Dutch town bike style) put less strain on the abdomen. On most diamond frame bikes, however, some core strength is needed to be comfortable for more than a few miles. That means abdominal and back muscles.

It's probably better to talk to a physiotherapist or physiologist who is also familiar with cycling, though.

I disagree, because I am under the opinion that if you sit bolt upright, mucle dynamics are affected as to not giving you full range of their use, so when you need to push harder when pulling away from lights and getting over even a small hill, you end up pulling on the bars, something which only extreme cases would apply if you just adopted a more performance body position.

Also standing means that your hands are closer to the body and its harder to hold body position, just like standing off road on a motorbike you are constantly pulling on the bars going up hill, as they are straight bars too, little need for multy position except when going up hill on a motorbike, which you normally grin and bare at expense to your shoulder / neck muscles.
Its all false to adopt a sit up and beg position then complain at all those aches and pains which would dissapear.
Saying its comfortable will suit those who never have to break a slow jog, but these riders are also plagued by the flat bar hand ache problems, which will always be there if you stop pedaling / coast alot.

If you watch sit up and beg riders they tend to do alot of nodding and clutching at bars straining to crest a hill.
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby ukdodger » 20 Nov 2014, 12:18pm

NATURAL ANKLING wrote:Hi,
Vorpal wrote:I expect that recumbents and bikes designed to be ridden completely upright (e.g. Dutch town bike style) put less strain on the abdomen. On most diamond frame bikes, however, some core strength is needed to be comfortable for more than a few miles. That means abdominal and back muscles.

It's probably better to talk to a physiotherapist or physiologist who is also familiar with cycling, though.

I disagree, because I am under the opinion that if you sit bolt upright, mucle dynamics are affected as to not giving you full range of their use, so when you need to push harder when pulling away from lights and getting over even a small hill, you end up pulling on the bars, something which only extreme cases would apply if you just adopted a more performance body position.

Also standing means that your hands are closer to the body and its harder to hold body position, just like standing off road on a motorbike you are constantly pulling on the bars going up hill, as they are straight bars too, little need for multy position except when going up hill on a motorbike, which you normally grin and bare at expense to your shoulder / neck muscles.
Its all false to adopt a sit up and beg position then complain at all those aches and pains which would dissapear.
Saying its comfortable will suit those who never have to break a slow jog, but these riders are also plagued by the flat bar hand ache problems, which will always be there if you stop pedaling / coast alot.

If you watch sit up and beg riders they tend to do alot of nodding and clutching at bars straining to crest a hill.


But doesnt the performance position, by which I guess you mean holding the drops at their lowest point. Mean that your heart is less able to push blood to your legs because of your posture?

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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby Bicycler » 20 Nov 2014, 12:31pm

hondated wrote:Thanks again everybody. Just like Roberts8 my bike was built by Roberts for me with drops so I am a bit loathe to fit other bars.Because I have always felt stretched out on it I have fitted a shorter stem but it still seems too stretched out for me. I am now wondering whether I should ditch the B17 saddle as, as you all probably know, there is not a great lot of forward and back adjustment on them.

I've no idea where this recent idea of setting reach by moving the saddle has come from but I think it's a bad idea. I'm a great believer in setting the saddle in relation to the pedals rather than the bars. There are various ways of shortening reach which should be explored. There's a large choice of stem lengths with different amounts of rise and also a good range of compact drop bars to allow for shorter reach to the hoods and the drops. When all options have been explored and the only option left is to compromise optimal saddle position in order to bring yourself closer to the bars then IMO that would be time to accept that the bike will never be properly right for you (with drops).

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hondated
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Re: Straight or Drop Bars

Postby hondated » 20 Nov 2014, 1:12pm

Thanks yet again everyone for your responses and advice to my question.
To illustrate where I am with my bike I have attached these photos.
Ok not very aesthetically pleasing or aerodynamic but having ridden it three times now with these bars fitted it has got better each time.
For medical reasons I do need to relieve the pressure on my stomach and these bars are certainly doing that as I no longer need to stretch for the controls.
Does anyone have any idea of what sort of mirror would fit these bars as I just find them to be a boon when cycling.


RB3.jpg

RB2.jpg

RB1.jpg