1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
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    710mm handlebar on a 26" scott

    My new 26" scott has a 710mm handlebar. It looks like a circus wagon! I think such an oversized bar is crazy. It is installed with a 90mm stem, and I think that the 29" has the same width of the handlebar.
    In my older bikes I had 580-600mm, now I will shorten the bar to 660mm. What do you think is optimal for XC / XCM? Or do you guys ride with >700mm bars on 26"???

  2. #2
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Give it a little time to win you over.

    My most recent bike shipped with a wide bar. They're in vogue right now. Their proponents believe that wide bars make bikes more stable at speed.

    Other things equal, a wider bar is likely to go with a shorter stem.

    Bear in mind also that you can experiment to your heart's content without cutting your bar.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  3. #3
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    I run 785mm bars on my hardtail. Couldn't go back to less than 700mm.

  4. #4
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    I just went to larger 685mm bar on my HT. I haven't tested yet on trails yet.

  5. #5
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    Bar size has nothing to do with wheel size.

    Bar size corresponds with the size of your body and/or personal preference.
    Put a mountain biker in a room with 2 bowling balls and we'll break one and lose the other - GelatiCruiser

  6. #6
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    I've never seen a 29er with a narrower bar than 700mm. All my friends who have these wide bars get stuck on trees in the woods. it feels so strange.... but a wide bar gives an open chest + acts as a lever: perhaps allows you to perform better on rough terrain, but width has to have its limit!

  7. #7
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    My 'small' Scott Scale 29er has a 720 mm handlebar. I used to ride a medium Scott Aspect that I loved prior to switching to the Scale. I intended to trade it in/sell it but decided to keep it to setup as bike for my wife. Took it for a spin tonight just to feel the difference. OMG that bike feels so different now with it's 'comfortable' upright geometry. Felt like I should have a basket on the front of the bike. The now narrow feeling 670mm handlebar certainly contributed to that upright feeling.

    Give the wider bars a chance before you cut them down.

  8. #8
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    I have 585mm flat bars and and 120mm stem. Very old school. I have a 660 mm bar and 100mm stem laying around, but I have never had the desire swap over grips and shifter/brakes. One of these days I guess I should try it, but I never feel the need. I just don't feel like my set-up is lacking.

    I also have a road bike and that is narrow set-up. There is all this talk about "opening the chest", with wide bar, but road bikes are very narrow and you need all the lung capacity you can so why are they so narrow. I can see the idea of control in slow speed stuff since the road bike is harder to control at low speeds. At speed however the road bike comes into is own.
    Joe
    2003 KHS Alite 4000 26" Hardtail - XC, All mountain, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  9. #9
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    I ride a 750mm bar on a 26" bike and i love it. I wont switch back to anything narrower.

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