Woodchipper set up for Fargo- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Woodchipper set up for Fargo

    I'm trying to get some input on how everyone is setting up their bars. I did some searching on the net and this forum for a starting point and found that 25 degrees at the drops is pretty comfortable and like the reach for the brifters while in the drops, but this moves the hoods way too far forward making them unusable to me. I know I could move the brifters back towards me but this seems like it would increase the brake reach while in the drops. When I was building this bike I bought the bars and brakes used off of bikepacking.net from a guy that rode the Divide. They were already wrapped and I left them alone. Thoughts? Also, these are Woodchippers. Any difference with Woodchipper 2's? Thanks!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Woodchipper set up for Fargo-20150520_155255.jpg  


  2. #2
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    that is one of the reasons I don't care for dirt drops. could never find the perfect spot for the brifters. either good on the hoods or in the drops but never both

  3. #3
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    Brake reach is tough with the woodchipper. I've had mine for about a year, and I've run them a million different ways, so I'd definitely say it's worth playing around.

    I started with the levers pointing down like you've got. I ran them like that for a long time, because I was worried about reach:


    But a few months ago I moved them higher up on the bar:


    And this is where I am right now - the extensions are angled down at 25deg, and the levers are high enough that the alignment lines on the bar are covered:


    I find that I'm happier with the levers higher up. With the levers low on the bar there's no room to use the hooks, so I end up pushed back to the extensions. With the levers up high I can really dig into the hooks, and brake reach is as good or better.

    No brifters for me so I don't know about that. But I spend most my time in the hooks, for standing climbs I'll slide down onto the extensions a bit, hoods are nice and useable for cruising along, and the bar top and the end of the extensions can be handy too.

  4. #4
    Mmmmm...tacos....
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    Thanks! I'll have a go at some experimenting.

  5. #5
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    It's funny, because everytime I make a big change I think "This is amaaaazing! I finally understand the woodchipper!" But sometimes that feeling only lasts a ride or two, and other times it becomes my new default...until the next change.

    For that second picture, one day I rotated the bars way out so that the extensions were pointing down at 40~45deg (basically so that the tops were flat). And that was the first time I'd ever really been able to use the hooks or the hoods, so I thought it was fantastic. I ran it like that for 2+ months (I think I moved the levers up a little bit more) and was really happy with it.

    But eventually I realized that with the extensions pointed way down I didn't have a good position for standing/mashing, and with the singlespeed I was struggling more than I thought I should be. So a few weeks ago I went back to experimenting again, and ended up with the 3rd photo. And so far I'm really happy with that, but who knows how long it will be before I change my mind again.

  6. #6
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    I don't have this bike anymore.... but here is how I settled in for mixed terrain, single track, dirt road:

    Salsa Fargo, Woodchipper Setup by Mike, on Flickr

  7. #7
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    I've never owned a Fargo, mostly because I think the bars are too much of a compromise but the Soma Gator bars have me wondering if I should give it a shot. MTB levers and shifters, some stoker dummy levers and two layers of tape might make for a killer BP setup.

    Gator Handlebar | SOMA Fabrications

  8. #8
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    ^ If someone is interested in the Gator, this is a handy comparison to the Junebug (which I think is pretty similar to the midge): Soma Feed: The Gator Bar Can Swallow the Junebug Bar!

  9. #9
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    I don't know why Salsa didn't announce the Cowchippers, but they look like a good alternative to Woodchippers.

    Angry Catfish has pics on their Facebook page.

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  11. #11
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    And Guitar Ted also recently did some pretty positive reviews of the Gary Sweep OS from Origin8: Origin 8 Gary Sweep OS Bars: At The Finish |

  12. #12
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    I found with my woodchoppers on my Fargo that I just needed more time to get used to them. 90% of my riding time is spent in the drops, with the hoods as more of a rest position. I prefer them now.

    That said, I used to have Surly's open bars on my former Troll, the 40mm rise version flipped, and that put the bars in roughly the same position as the woodchippers on the Fargo. Definitely not a brifter type bar, but an option nonetheless.

  13. #13
    Mmmmm...tacos....
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    Thanks for all the input. A nasty chest cold for a week has kept me off of the bike but now it's time to mess around and get some experience taping bars!

  14. #14
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    I set mine up this way and have not adjusted them since, I still love the woodchippers

    Salsa Cycles

  15. #15
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    I just recently bought a Fargo Ti complete. It is my second Fargo (first was the gen 1 version) and my 7th drop bar mtb. I have used the original Gary drop bar, the Midge, and the original WTB dirt drop bar. The original WTB bar was really great, but the midge always felt right to me personally. I always ran them high so at least 90% of my riding was spent in the drops allowing me to easily navigate technical single track with no issues. I had looked at the Woodchippers when they first came out but really disliked the way the bar kneed in and then flared-out widely in the drop extensions. So when I purchased the Med. Fargo Ti I was curious regarding the Woodchipper bar and "factory" stem set-up with a 90mm 0degree rise Thomson X4 stem. Distance from the middle of my saddle to the drops was 28.5" so the reach was exactly where I would want them based on my ergonomics.

    Set-up as-is with the factory specified 0 degree rise stem the bars are way to low though, and the result is that it favors riding on the top flats or on the hoods. When I picked the bike up from the shop the drops were angled down at 40-45 degrees which as someone already mentioned made riding on the hoods or across the tops a very comfortable set-up for cruising along. So this low bar with hoods set high is great for casual riding on the hoods with several usable hand positions transitioning to the top flats. In my personal opinion though both of these hand positions are sketchy on single track, and with the drops angled down steeply they are totally useless. Since I prefer riding in the drops I immediately adjusted the bar rotating it until it was about the same angle as the top tube which I assume is close to the 20-25 degree angle. This angle seems pretty comfortable to me, but now the hoods are far less accessible and the drops while usable are still way too low thanks to the 0 degree rise 90mm stem. I think by moving to a 35-40 degree 110mm stem I can get the needed height while keeping my reach the same, and this should bring the drops into the sweet spot for my riding style. Although I hate to have to re-wrap newly taped bars I think the levers probably need to be moved up a bit to balance things out and make the hoods more usable. Since I don't ride the hoods much though I may just leave them alone.

    From a positive perspective I was surprised by the various hand positions available with the Woodchipper, and that is a plus for the bars for sure. Overall though I cant say I like the bend of the woodchipper and much prefer the on-one Midge bend for riding single track. I think the flare of the Woodchipper is too dramatic and the overall width across the flared drop extension ends is more than I prefer. Looking at the new Cowchipper it physically reminds me of the midge with longer drop extensions, so maybe that's the better choice. At this point though, other than a stem change, I am going to hold with the Woodchippers and the Fargo to see how they work out and will report back once I change stems.

  16. #16
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    This thread reminds me that I got an Origin 8 Gary Sweep OS (terrible name) a couple of weeks ago for my Gryphon.

    And I love it. As far as I'm concerned, this is what a dirtdrop should be.




    Tons of hand positions like the Woodchipper, but the drops just feel "right" like the midge. And the brake reach is just so much more natural. With the Woodchipper I was honestly futzing with it every week or two for a whole year, but I haven't changed the Sweep since I installed it.

    Anyone else who thinks the Woodchipper's drops are just fundamentally weird might want to give this one a try. And Guitar Ted did a bunch of reviews of it on his site and on ridinggravel.

  17. #17
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    That Gary OS looks pretty good. I used to love the early Gary bar, but I had to modify the bar-end shifters to get them to fit and the bar was really almost like a modified moustache bar. I am going to see how the woodchipper works out when sitting up at the proper height for me. If its still funky then I am going with another bar. Btw- Love the Green Gryphon. I owned a medium framed first gen Gryphon and then later bought a second large framed Gryphon which was just too big a hoss for me.

  18. #18
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    ^ I never tried the old Gary, but I know that it was super flattened out (like you said, almost a moustache bar). This one is nothing like that.

    Guitar Ted has better photos of it, but it's very much in the vein of the Midge or Woodchipper.

    It's so hard to describe these things, but it has a wide top like the Woodchipper (and unlike the midge), and the levers are nicely canted in to help with brake reach from the drops like the midge (and unlike the woodchipper). The ends don't flare out like the woodchipper so I'm not constantly losing my endcaps on trees. It has a lot of reach, but I'm using the same stem I did with the woodchipper, and I feel less stretched out than I used to because my grip is so much more stable.

  19. #19
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    Thanks for the input. Those Gary OS bars do look good..-

  20. #20
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    ^ obviously everyone will be different. But I was actually pretty happy with my woodchipper setup when the new bar arrived, and I almost debated just leaving the woodchipper on there. But I figured I should at least try the Gary Sweep, and it was instantly like a whole 'nother level of comfortable.

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