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.
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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.
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  1. #1
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    Bike too responsive? Handlebar/stem change needed?

    New to the mountain biking world I picked up a used 11 trek marlin on CL and took it out for the first time tonight. It does needs a few tweaks the brakes being the most annoying. The other thing I noticed is the bike seems twitchy, when I am going down a trail I feel like one slight change and its a major change causing me not to be smooth while riding.

    The bike is mostly stock would wider handlebars help? I was eyeballing race face evolves or maybe easton ea50 monkey bars as I wouldn't mind a slight rise as well. Would I need to/should I change the stem if I do?

    thanks guys for any insight.

  2. #2
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    Wider bars, shorter stem...

  3. #3
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    How wide should I go? Also suggestions on stem sizing? I am 5'7 on a 15.5 frame 29er

  4. #4
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    700mm should be wide enough

  5. #5
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    Actually, I think a longer stem reduces steering response -- they move the hand position further from the point of rotation like longer bars would. But you want to choose a stem length based in fit, not handling.

    I shortened my bars by 2" to get between the trees easier plus I'm not a real broad-shouldered guy anyway, and didn't notice much if any difference.

    You can get an idea of the effects of changing bar length by experimenting with placing your hands at different positions on the handlebar -- try all the way at the ends, then move your hands as far in on the grips as possible, then grab it over the shifter controls, etc. If you really want to get serious about your test without spending on a new bar, I suppose you could jam some dowels or sticks in the end of the bars. I bet you won't notice much difference.

    I have been told (and would agree based on my limited experience) that Treks with their G2 geometry do handle differently. I have heard a few people say that they don't like the way G2 handles. Myself, I love it -- very maneuverable in tight twisty stuff.

    Give yourself some time to get used to it. It's like if you are used to driving a car with manual steering then switch to power. It seems unmanageable at first but you soon get used to it and then don't want to drive anything else.

    Stay loose and relaxed -- keep your elbows bent and use a light grip on the handlebars.

  6. #6
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    Shorter stem= more "twitchy"

  7. #7
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    In my experience, narrower bars calm a twitchy front end to a degree. You have less leverage and therefore small motions have less effect on the steering. As DennisF suggests, move your hands/grip inwards on the bar and see how it feels. Some of it might just be adopting to the new bike, too.

  8. #8
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    I recently got a new bike that has flat bars. What are the advantages\disadvantages to running flat bars? Just preference?

  9. #9
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    Okay I will ride it some more and see how I feel.

  10. #10
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    Re: Bike too responsive? Handlebar/stem change needed?

    If ur new. Ride some more before you change anything.

    Sent from my LS670 using Tapatalk 2

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