Racing a drop bar 29r

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  • 12-23-2012
    pulser
    Racing a drop bar 29r
    Does any one race a drop bar 29r? I have been thinking about building up a ridged 29r with a drop bar and road shifters. I think it would be a fun winter bike and really good for my local short track and cross races. As well as a really good hill climb bike for the opening race for my XC series. Allot of guys do the hill climb with cross bikes. Other then the lack of good brakes is there any other disadvantage? I'm figuring I really don't need good brakes for most of the racing I would use it for.
  • 12-23-2012
    AZ
    Usually need a very short stem with a lot of rise to put the bars where you need them. BB7 road brakes with drop bar brake levers work well, match the levers/shifters to your drivetrain.

    I use one of these stems, but Salsa has some good choices as do others.

    Voodoo Bicycles USA :: Nakisi Stem
  • 12-23-2012
    pulser
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AZ.MTNS View Post
    Usually need a very short stem with a lot of rise to put the bars where you need them. BB7 road brakes with drop bar brake levers work well, match the levers/shifters to your drivetrain.

    I use one of these stems, but Salsa has some good choices as do others.

    Voodoo Bicycles USA :: Nakisi Stem

    I really like flat bars so I don't think I will need a crazy stem. I'm thinking I can get the bars in the right place with an 80mm 0 degree stem. I can go a little shorter on the stem if I need to. I will also use a compact bar so I can shorten the reach as much as possible.
  • 12-23-2012
    pulser
    I have also seen SRAM derailleurs used with campy shifters. I want to try using a SRAM type 2 rear with some Campy 10sp shifters I have.
  • 12-23-2012
    sbsbiker
    As for good brakes...With the cross world going to disc brakes, a monster cross w/ 29er wheels and hydro disc brakes could be a reality in the near future.
  • 12-23-2012
    Tyrone Shoelaces
    2 years ago I converted my Niner A9C into a single speed monster cross racer by putting drop bars on it, Niner carbon rigid fork, and used my R1 brakes with the 321 Labs adaptor. Raced it at 2010 cyclocross nationals setup that way in Bend that year with cross tires mounted tubeless on my Race Golds. Man that thing was light....
  • 12-25-2012
    Sheepo5669
    I tried but wasnt happy with the fit.

    Fit is everything!
  • 12-25-2012
    ferday
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pulser View Post
    I really like flat bars so I don't think I will need a crazy stem. I'm thinking I can get the bars in the right place with an 80mm 0 degree stem. I can go a little shorter on the stem if I need to. I will also use a compact bar so I can shorten the reach as much as possible.

    No, the drop bars will place the drops (which is where off road drop bars are intended to be ridden, that's not an opinion despite arguments to the contrary) far too low for real MTB riding (the reach is hardly the main issue). You'll need a riser stem of some sort, that's not an opinion, it WILL happen to some degree (the ONLY exception is if you ride a negative rise stem and/or a vintage bike currently and enjoy the hard core roadie position). Cross bikes don't need the funky stem because of the geometry.

    You'll also need (to think about) proper drops, compact cross bars are ok but for most MTB'rs they'll be too narrow and deep, and a true off road drop (midge is my favorite) will also have a lot of flare which is crucial to good handling on real terrain (that is an opinion ;) )

    I use avid BB7's with the correct levers and they work just as good as my BB7's on traditional bars.

    It can be raced for sure but only if you set it up properly otherwise it'll be mostly disadvantages. I have thousands of k's on drop bar MTBs....YMMV

    I've abandoned my drop bar MTB's in favour of a purpose built "monster cross" which eliminates some of these issues in exchange for it not being a "true" mountain bike although ill often ride it like one. Have fun, I adore off road drops.
  • 12-25-2012
    shiggy
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pulser View Post
    Does any one race a drop bar 29r? I have been thinking about building up a ridged 29r with a drop bar and road shifters. I think it would be a fun winter bike and really good for my local short track and cross races. As well as a really good hill climb bike for the opening race for my XC series. Allot of guys do the hill climb with cross bikes. Other then the lack of good brakes is there any other disadvantage? I'm figuring I really don't need good brakes for most of the racing I would use it for.

    I started racing on dropbars (first with 26") in 1985. With 700x45 tires in '92. 29" in 2003.

    BB7Road calipers are VERY powerful with road levers.

    ferday has it right on setup. A zero rise stem is useless for dropbars on a mtb. This is my take: Why I Ride Dropbars

    If you are going to ride primarily on the tops or hoods, you are better off keeping your straight bars.
  • 12-25-2012
    pulser
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by shiggy View Post
    I started racing on dropbars (first with 26") in 1985. With 700x45 tires in '92. 29" in 2003.

    BB7Road calipers are VERY powerful with road levers.

    ferday has it right on setup. A zero rise stem is useless for dropbars on a mtb. This is my take: Why I Ride Dropbars

    If you are going to ride primarily on the tops or hoods, you are better off keeping your straight bars.

    Cool thanks for the post and the link. I wasn't going to use an offroad drop bar. But after seeing your site I think I will give one a try. I was afraid the shape would make the hand position at the hoods hard on my wrists. But I see how riding in the drops would work better.
  • 12-26-2012
    limba
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pulser View Post
    Does any one race a drop bar 29r? I have been thinking about building up a ridged 29r with a drop bar and road shifters. I think it would be a fun winter bike and really good for my local short track and cross races. As well as a really good hill climb bike for the opening race for my XC series. Allot of guys do the hill climb with cross bikes. Other then the lack of good brakes is there any other disadvantage? I'm figuring I really don't need good brakes for most of the racing I would use it for.

    They use cross bikes because the bike is lighter and has higher gearing. Sticking drop bars on a mtn.bike won't make you any faster. If it's not set up right it'll make you slower.
    At least you have an expert, Shiggy, to help you but personally I think you're wasting your time. Losing fat from your bike and body will make a bigger difference than using drop bars.
  • 12-26-2012
    pulser
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by limba View Post
    They use cross bikes because the bike is lighter and has higher gearing. Sticking drop bars on a mtn.bike won't make you any faster. If it's not set up right it'll make you slower.
    At least you have an expert, Shiggy, to help you but personally I think you're wasting your time. Losing fat from your bike and body will make a bigger difference than using drop bars.

    The cross races it will be used for are on the same course that we race short track on. They use the same place and just add some barriers. Its vary tight with lots of little climbs and almost no straits. I think if I use a carbon 29er with a carbon fork and light wheels I can build a drop bar bike in the sub 20lb range with gears. I also think it would be allot of fun to ride.
  • 12-26-2012
    Saul Lumikko
    A stem short enough for drop bar MTB use will not be able to rise the bars that high. For me a far better solution was to add spacers below the stem.

    Right now I have 100 mm of spacers. I hastily cut the steerer of my previous fork short, so I don't want to repeat that mistake. I'm still looking for a good setting so I might end up going lower. My stem of choice at the moment is NS Bikes Quark Pro, the handlebar is On-One Midge and I have Cane Creek Drop V levers and Avid BB7 brakes.

    Lower settings were quite good for XC but I wanted a more upright position to make lifting the front end easier for step-ups and to make descends enjoyable.
  • 12-26-2012
    limba
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by pulser View Post
    I also think it would be a lot of fun to ride.

    i agree. Sometimes it's fun just to do something different.

    but you won't be faster unless you really have everything dialed in.

    but Good Luck. Let us know how it goes.
  • 12-26-2012
    Sheepo5669
  • 12-27-2012
    limba
    :D I was going to mention him earlier. Saying it doesn't work, remember John Tomac? If it worked it would have caught on and you'd see other guys doing it. How 'bout that rear wheel too?

    I do think Steve Larsen having little bar ends in the middle of his bar, close to the stem was cool. I always wanted to try that.

    Awesome pictures btw.
  • 12-27-2012
    cpfitness
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sbsbiker View Post
    As for good brakes...With the cross world going to disc brakes, a monster cross w/ 29er wheels and hydro disc brakes could be a reality in the near future.

    sram already has one in the works.

    In the meantime, BB7 road mechanical disc brakes work great on my surly disc trucker with my brifters. I'm 250lbs and did a full loaded tour this spring from NY to Missouri and had no problems stopping 330lbs of bike through the blue ridge mountains.
  • 12-28-2012
    pulser
    When I started thinking about this project this is what I had in mind for the layout. I just want to do it with a Carbon frame rather then Ti. And use intgrated shifters and brakes.
    http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m8...elzo1_1280.jpg
  • 12-28-2012
    limba
    That thing looks awesome!
  • 12-28-2012
    pulser
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by limba View Post
    That thing looks awesome!

    I know it looks like it has about the same saddle drop to bar as my road bikes. I don't know how technical of a trail I would want to do on something like that. But I think I could have some real fun racing short track and hill climbs on something like that.
  • 12-28-2012
    limba
    This is old but you might want to check it out. Maybe there's something useful in there.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/niner-bikes/a...cx-662999.html
  • 12-28-2012
    pulser
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by limba View Post
    This is old but you might want to check it out. Maybe there's something useful in there.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/niner-bikes/a...cx-662999.html

    Yea thats exatly what I had in mind.
  • 12-28-2012
    Coasting
    Get into the Singular Gryphon.Purpose built drop bar steel mountain bike.Designed for tech riding and about as good as it get.Ridden many races with this bike and the longer the race the better it gets.Some nice Salsa bars and Singular steel forks on the front.About as much fun as one person can handle and surprisingly competitive
  • 12-29-2012
    mudge
    I have one of the last year model of the scandium Air 9 frames, Niner carbon fork, Salsa Cowbell 2 bars, Rival shifters, WiFli Rival rear derailleur. Arch EX wheels, BB7 brakes. XT triple with the inner ring taken off, XT front derailleur. I end up w/ a 32x42 crank paired to an 11-34 cassette. Only tricky bit was that the front derailleur adjustment screw wouldn't hold the cage quite far enough out for the shifting to work right. I used the chain on the big ring to hold the cage in place while I attached the cable. Once I turned the cranks enough for the chain to drop to the middle (now inner) ring, the cable tension held the cage in just the right spot. Bingo. Rides very much like a really stiff aluminum cross bike with crazy tire clearance. Oh, to deal with the stem length/bar height issue, I went with a large instead of a medium frame. I have plenty of standover height and don't have to use a 410mm seatpost to make it work due to the longer seat tube (big plus).
  • 12-30-2012
    pulser
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mudge View Post
    I have one of the last year model of the scandium Air 9 frames, Niner carbon fork, Salsa Cowbell 2 bars, Rival shifters, WiFli Rival rear derailleur. Arch EX wheels, BB7 brakes. XT triple with the inner ring taken off, XT front derailleur. I end up w/ a 32x42 crank paired to an 11-34 cassette. Only tricky bit was that the front derailleur adjustment screw wouldn't hold the cage quite far enough out for the shifting to work right. I used the chain on the big ring to hold the cage in place while I attached the cable. Once I turned the cranks enough for the chain to drop to the middle (now inner) ring, the cable tension held the cage in just the right spot. Bingo. Rides very much like a really stiff aluminum cross bike with crazy tire clearance. Oh, to deal with the stem length/bar height issue, I went with a large instead of a medium frame. I have plenty of standover height and don't have to use a 410mm seatpost to make it work due to the longer seat tube (big plus).

    Why didn't you just use a 2x10 crankset?