Trek X-Caliber handlebar cut or replaced?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Idea! Trek X-Caliber handlebar cut or replaced?

    I just recently purchased a Trek X-Caliber 8 this month, but the handlebars are extremely wide for my taste. I ride sigletrack trails with dense trees and constant obstacles in the way. Is it better to replace my Bontrager Low Riser, 31.8mm, 15mm rise handlebars or could I get away with cutting a few inches off the bars? How much cutting would be a good fit?
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  2. #2
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    Only u can know how wide u need your handlebars. U can always cut handlebars shorter but how much is up to u.

    I would say ride it more because last I saw stock bars are rather narrow to begin with. Take the time to get used to it. Then see if u really want narrower bars. I ride trails that are densely wooded with obstacles and all that and I got a wider bars not narrower. Narrow bars can make a 29er difficult to control on the rough stuff.
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  3. #3
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    I am going through the same thing...but I bought some riser bars instead that are actually even longer then the Bontrager low-Rise.

    My opinion is to get a set of grips with locks on both ends and move them in/out over a couple different rides. Determine what the ideal width is for you and then cut the bars to that.

  4. #4
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    Ride for a few weeks/months first. There are advantages to wider bars and you might have more room between trees than you think. Stop in some of the gaps and see if you have a few inches or a few feet. The gaps might feel narrow.

    Or they might not. We have some gaps that are just a few inches either side of the bars if you come straight through the gap here. I cut mine down from 700 to 660 after ~ 8 or 9 months and I love them. If your bars are alloy, then just cut the ones you have. If you don't like them cut, go look for a different pair.

  5. #5
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    Had the same problem with my Camber Comp, dremel with carbon fiber wheel 1.25" on each side and never looked back.
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  6. #6
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    Trek X-Caliber handlebar cut or replaced?

    You should be able to cut aluminum bars with a tubing cutter made for plumbing.

    Take off 1/2" from each side, then ride it and see what you think. You can always go shorter but you can't add it bAck.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by tigris99 View Post
    Only u can know how wide u need your handlebars. U can always cut handlebars shorter but how much is up to u.

    I would say ride it more because last I saw stock bars are rather narrow to begin with. Take the time to get used to it. Then see if u really want narrower bars. I ride trails that are densely wooded with obstacles and all that and I got a wider bars not narrower. Narrow bars can make a 29er difficult to control on the rough stuff.
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    ^ This give it time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sickmak90 View Post
    You should be able to cut aluminum bars with a tubing cutter made for plumbing.

    Take off 1/2" from each side, then ride it and see what you think. You can always go shorter but you can't add it bAck.
    ^ This is what I would do a cutter is cheap and comes in handy.
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  8. #8
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    one of these little guys Shop Kobalt 1/8-in to 1-1/8-in OD Copper Tube Cutter at Lowes.com

    will work perfectly on the bars. if you have the same bar that comes on the lower end superflys it's fairly wide, 690 or 700mm if i remember right. chances are you will have 10mm lines on the bars when you remove the grips. i'd start with just 10mm off each side as that makes a pretty substantial difference

  9. #9
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    The stock trek bars are almost as narrow as I'd go on a 29er. My Cobia came with 690mm wide Bontrager Flat bars. I ride in tight trees and obstacles, but once I rode the narrowest sections slow, I got used to my new 735mm wide bars and I can clear even the narrowest tree sections.
    It takes time to get used to wider bars, and when you get used to them you will wish you never cut them down.
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  10. #10
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    Re: Trek X-Caliber handlebar cut or replaced?

    Stick with the wider bars for a while, they take some getting used to. If you absolutely positively can't get used to them, cut them down no more than 1/2" at a time with a pipe cutter. Its much easier than a hacksaw

  11. #11
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    Just to repeat what one guy suggested above, as I did this recently myself: on many lock-on grips they have end caps that can be removed so you can slide the grip all the way down the bar and lock the grip in place with extra bar sticking out the end. Try this before you do any cutting. You may decide that you don't want to cut, or you wil cut but you will have found exactly where to cut.

  12. #12
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    I wish I could try bigger bars, but damn I love sliding through narrow trees without braking and losing speed. Have no problems handling corners with shorter bars and slightly longer stem. But if I rode on faster trails where narrow trees didn't exist I would def go longer bars.

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