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Not because I'm fast.....
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748 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Maybe I am the only guy who didn't know this information I am about to share, but it's a revelation to me so please no flaming. There has been mucho discussion over the last few months regarding the proper set-up of dirt drop bars including the Midge in regards to bar height, stem length, rise, etc. with lots of pictures posted of individual set-ups.

One bit of set-up advice that I don't remember seeing was the angle of the hook/drop extension for optimal wrist/hand positioning while riding in the drops. Now I have seen a lot of set-up pictures and the angles of the drops vary almost as much as our individual gearing choices. For someone like me who was new to flared dirt drop bars, it made sense to me to have the bottom of the hook level (horizontal) with the ground, similiar to the way I have set up my road drop bars in the past. So I set up the Midge bars and rode a bit and riding in the drops was just OK in my opinion, but needless to say I was not that overly impressed.

Then I stumbled upon a little write-up of the Midge bar by Matt Chester on 63xc.com that included some history of flared drop bars along with some additional set-up advice. The advice was that the end of the hooks should be angled so they basically point toward the rear dropout which puts your hands/wrists in a very neutral position without experiencing flat spot pressure points on your hands when riding in the drops. Frickin revelation for me to say the least (Thanks Matt). I rotated my bars forward, jumped on the bike to bomb some fireroads near my house and the bars felt incredible. Climbing, descending, with the wrists in a neutral position makes all the difference. So for those of you who made the same mistake as me and set the bars up with the hooks level to the ground, rotate those bars forward, point the ends at your rear dropout and you will be very very happy indeed :D

Here's a link to the article for those interested:
http://www.63xc.com/mattc/midge.htm
 

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Squalor
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1,573 Posts
2Far -

On what bike are you using the Midges?

I seem to remember you being pretty tall, so I was wondering how you got the bars up high enough? Custom frame? 40 degree stem? Bars still low?

I have the Midges on my ss 29er and the WTB DDs on my CrossCheck. I have a 81cm saddle height and the bar tops are still a little below my saddle on both bikes with lots of spacers and rising stems.

I guess I just NEED a custom frame :D

BTW - you're right on with your setup pointers IME...

LP
 

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Not because I'm fast.....
Joined
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748 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
lanpope said:
2Far -

On what bike are you using the Midges?

I seem to remember you being pretty tall, so I was wondering how you got the bars up high enough? Custom frame? 40 degree stem? Bars still low?

I have the Midges on my ss 29er and the WTB DDs on my CrossCheck. I have a 81cm saddle height and the bar tops are still a little below my saddle on both bikes with lots of spacers and rising stems.

I guess I just NEED a custom frame :D

BTW - you're right on with your setup pointers IME...

LP
Hey LP,
I have the Midges on a 62cm cross check. Yeap, I'm, 6'5" and really need a custom frame too. My saddle height is about 43" and the top of the Midge bar is at 41 1/4" from the ground. I am currently using a Raceface stem that is 130x15deg. I also have the same stem in 140x15deg that I have yet to try. Supergo was blowing them out for $15 so I picked up two. I have a good amount of spacers on the steerer tube and the Raceface stem has a really small stack height of 39mm so I am able to get the bars up a little more so than if I was using a salsa stem (53mm stack height) or a Thomson (43mm stack height) of the same length and rise. It's not ideal, but it is the best compromise I could find without going to a really high rise stem. I tried a Salsa 135x40 deg and 130x25deg, but both shortened the cockpit way too much for my liking.

I really want a M. Chester frame....bad!
 

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