Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner
1 - 20 of 25 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just got some miles in on my 9Iron, the sickness has begun to takeover me and tell me I need to upgrade already. (I worked in the industry for 12 years or so, been about 10 yrs removed.) I am looking at carbon riser bars, I see people online going 760-780mm but not sure if I need to go that wide, I'm a 38" chest, not that wide at all of a guy, so to me that seems excessive.

Looking at some Truvativ 680mm, the stock bars on my bike are are roughly an inch smaller. I'm not bombing massive hills, going crazy since 33 years of skateboarding has taken it's toll and so has 40 yrs on and off on a bike. Suggestions?
 

·
WillWorkForTrail
Joined
·
4,989 Posts
I suggest you buy a bar that's wider than you think you want, and ride it some at full width, slide the grips in a little, try a little narrower, and maybe even try it as narrow as you think you want. I'd be willing to be you'd settle on at least 720. Something to consider.

The widest bar I had prior to my most recent bike purchase was 730 on an XC bike. My single speed has a 690 on it. After riding my new bike a couple times (it came with 780s) I was about ready to have those cut down, and the mechanic at the shop asked me to give it another month or so. I did, and now I'm looking for wider bars for my SS, and the 780s are staying as they are. I probably won't go to 780 on the SS because it's a different bike, but 690 isn't going to cut it long term for me.
 

·
g=9.764m/s2
Joined
·
808 Posts
The general rule has been long stem/narrow bars - XC: short stem/wide bars - Trail. Then it comes down to comfort. My shoulders are close to yours and with a 40-50mm stem I prefer 760 bars... better for narrow trails as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,390 Posts
I suggest you buy a bar that's wider than you think you want, and ride it some at full width, slide the grips in a little, try a little narrower, and maybe even try it as narrow as you think you want. I'd be willing to be you'd settle on at least 720. Something to consider.

The widest bar I had prior to my most recent bike purchase was 730 on an XC bike. My single speed has a 690 on it. After riding my new bike a couple times (it came with 780s) I was about ready to have those cut down, and the mechanic at the shop asked me to give it another month or so. I did, and now I'm looking for wider bars for my SS, and the 780s are staying as they are. I probably won't go to 780 on the SS because it's a different bike, but 690 isn't going to cut it long term for me.
100% agree with this...ride it for a month or so. I've ridden for 30 years and used to immediately cut my bars to traditional XC short lengths to clear the tight trees around here. Truth is, there are very few spots where bars need to be that narrow. Last couple of bikes I've left bars stock and now prefer them at about 760mm.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
4,927 Posts
It's all down to personal preference, comfort and how much of a fashion victim you are... I joke with the last point there.

I like wide bars, my SS has 780mm on it and my trail bike has full-on gonzo, tree banging 820mm bars.

Like others have said: start wide and cut off little bits att a time, it's much easier than glueing pieces back on.... I joke again with the last point.
 

·
Elitest thrill junkie
Joined
·
39,167 Posts
Just got some miles in on my 9Iron, the sickness has begun to takeover me and tell me I need to upgrade already. (I worked in the industry for 12 years or so, been about 10 yrs removed.) I am looking at carbon riser bars, I see people online going 760-780mm but not sure if I need to go that wide, I'm a 38" chest, not that wide at all of a guy, so to me that seems excessive.

Looking at some Truvativ 680mm, the stock bars on my bike are are roughly an inch smaller. I'm not bombing massive hills, going crazy since 33 years of skateboarding has taken it's toll and so has 40 yrs on and off on a bike. Suggestions?
Has nothing to do with chest width directly.

Has everything to do with TT and stem length. Modern bikes are meant to run fairly short stems, like 35-60mm, which isn't "short" anymore. While it does have something to do with your overall size, it's not tied to your chest-width or push-ups or any of those myths. The modern "skinny to wide" range is more like 750-820 or so. I like 780 for my 29er XC, fat bikes and enduro 27.5, although one of my fatbikes is running 810 and I like that too. These bars are nice because they give you much more control over the front wheel, meaning it's much harder for an off-camber rock or root to throw your front wheel sideways and stop you. You also get more leverage for out-of-the-saddle efforts. I feel that the "tight trees" aspect is more psychological than real, just like some people don't like exposure on the side of a trail, as I ride in some very tight trees and it's just not a problem. You can weave around, turn the bars to make it through, etc. Otherwise, I find the bigger bars to be safer, as long as you are putting your hands on the edges. If you find that you want to move your hands in, then you should cut off the excess.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,754 Posts
Doing trail riding, I started at 760 and went down a cm on each side until I arrived at 700...and I like it. 5'9" average proportions. More DH and I'd go wider.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Oh *****, you know it's all about the look!!!! Thanks, I'm pretty sure 700 will or a tad less will work for me, about the same I had my BMX cruiser set up that I rode trails on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,634 Posts
700 sounds narrow.

Your bike is likely going to be larger than the bike you last owned. It's got a longer, more stable wheel base and perhaps a slacker head angle than what you owned (maybe the bike you mentioned has a steeper head angle but I haven't looked it up).
Then compromise control/handling with a narrow bar.

It's a good recommendation to try a few bar widths and see if you enjoy it. My mountain bike bars are wider than my dirt bike bars by 1/2" or so. Been a while since I've measured but I think the dirt bike bars were cut down to 30.5 or 31".
My (used) full suspension stumpjumper had wider bars than stock, and are sort of wide, but I got used to them and they are okay. I believe a 60mm stem. New hard tail has slightly more narrow bars and a 50mm stem. Can't remember, bars may be 20mm less than other bike. It feels different but now I'm used to it. It's not something I notice when switching between the two because of other positional differences.
But if you can get some cheap bars and ride 'em to see what you like I think it will be helpful with your 'forever' upgrade, considering you want a carbon bar I assume you only want to pay that price once.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,384 Posts
I have a Renthal Carbon Lite bar cut to 740mm with a 40mm rise, would sell for $80.

I have a wide wing span and have settled on 760mm bars personally.

I think your correct width depends on several factors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,613 Posts
I know....I'm just a parrot, but get them wider than you think you need and cut them down if you want. Just be aware that some bars have a minimum width that you can cut them down to and plan accordingly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
946 Posts
...I feel that the "tight trees" aspect is more psychological than real, just like some people don't like exposure on the side of a trail, as I ride in some very tight trees and it's just not a problem. You can weave around, turn the bars to make it through, etc...
I respectfully disagree. When you're riding hard/fast on really rocky, ledgy, rooty, off camber trails that also happen to have tons of tight trees (like here in central Texas), you will rack your knuckles. I'm "only" riding 760 bars on both of my bikes, and my pinky knuckles almost always look like this.

Finger Skin Joint Wrist Organ


Not saying I'd go back to my old Easton EC90, 580mm bars from the 90's. I love the 760s and won't go narrower. But unless you have the maddest of skills, or are riding slow-ish, you will impact trees in the conditions I described.
 

·
Elitest thrill junkie
Joined
·
39,167 Posts
I respectfully disagree. When you're riding hard/fast on really rocky, ledgy, rooty, off camber trails that also happen to have tons of tight trees (like here in central Texas)
Yup, rode there. Not a problem. This is just one Texas spot, I've ridden a lot over Texas though, DFW, Austin, SA, etc. Yep, the rocky and ledgy stuff too. I've just never found it to be a big problem. I've noticed I've tagged trees when my hands are not positioned correctly (at the end of the grips) and there's also the width factor, the longer the bar, the less susceptible I find it to being knocked off line, such as by brushing some vegetation. More stability. Obviously in these conditions you need to be able to make quick course changes, which is why I do not favor a slack HT for this kind of riding.

 

·
Elitest thrill junkie
Joined
·
39,167 Posts
Rad. I wanna ride with you someday to see that mega flow. I suspect I'll keep up, but will have bloodier knuckles. ;)
The whole Return-of-the-Jedi speeder-scene rush is real.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,959 Posts
I don't think there can be a 'formula' for your perfect bar width, just for where to start, maybe. Once you have the rise and sweep figured out, get a bar that is maximum width, and proceed to trim it down, in needed, over a series of rides through different trails.
Oh, and start out by riding more open trails, or something like CCSS experienced will happen, no doubt. I tore my shoulder out pretty good riding one of our 'Tunnels' trails named "Rocking Horse". I'd stuck some wide bars on the ss bike and was zipping down that trail pretty fast when I hit one of the trees that make for the "Tunnels" experience, and super manned it a good 15 ' before landing just ride, and still wrecking my shoulder.

The wrong bar cost me thousands of bucks in that incident. (Plus a certain lack of skill).

All of which has caused me to consider bar width preference to be a high personal matter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,384 Posts
The width of the bar is even bike dependent. At least some of the push towards silly wide bars was due to bikes just being way too short front to back until very recently. So people would spread their arms way out so they didn't feel too close to the bars.
Anyways, I rode 740mm bars at 5'11" for years and thought I was set, but just recently noticed my hands were consistently way out on my grips so I bought the same bars in 760 and it feels perfect again.
My wife went through the same process, starting on narrow bars and slowly finding herself more comfortable going wider.

Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk
 
1 - 20 of 25 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top