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  1. #1
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    Handlebars?

    I'm looking at upgrading my handlebars and need some advice. Right now I'm running stock stem/riser bars on my Trek 4500 18.5 SS to complete my SS conversion I thought new bars and possibly a new stem might be a good upgrade. I've looked at OnOne Mary bars and Jones H-bars and was wondering what advantages these types of bars have over standard riser bars. Is the performance benifit worth the investment (I ride mostly singletrack here in Oregon)? Also what's a good stem to run with these types of bars? Which is better for SS wide or narrow? Why?

    I'm sure all these question have been ask before, so if you can't point me to any info source on the subject I'd appreciate it.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by jollybeggar
    I'm looking at upgrading my handlebars and need some advice. Right now I'm running stock stem/riser bars on my Trek 4500 18.5 SS to complete my SS conversion I thought new bars and possibly a new stem might be a good upgrade. I've looked at OnOne Mary bars and Jones H-bars and was wondering what advantages these types of bars have over standard riser bars. Is the performance benifit worth the investment (I ride mostly singletrack here in Oregon)? Also what's a good stem to run with these types of bars? Which is better for SS wide or narrow? Why?

    I'm sure all these question have been ask before, so if you can't point me to any info source on the subject I'd appreciate it.
    Me: I run CF riser bars on my SS.

    My advice: I've ridden the H bars and like them a lot. If I could afford them, I'd buy them because the primary hand position is far more comfortable and seems natural compared to a traditional bar. I noticed a difference when I first got on the bike but I REALLY noticed the difference when I went back to my bike.

    In addition to the more natural position, H bars also give you more places to put your hands. It's sort of like having aero bars on a mountain bike.

    Wider is better than narrower on a SS (any bike, IMO) for a couple of reasons: More control and it opens up your ribs. When you're riding a SS, you'll be out of the saddle more than with a geared bike. Out of the saddle on narrower bars means you'll be above your bars and the bike will be twitchier (is that a word?). On wider bars you'll have more stability.

    Narrow bars means your arms are closer to your sides. This pushes on your rib cage. Wider bars opens your chest cavity more and allows for better/easier breathing.

    Conclusion
    Is the performance benefit worth the investment? It depends on your budget. If I could afford H-bars (I haven't tried Mary's) then I would buy them. In fact unless I have a catastrophic failure, that will be my next bike part purchase. I just don't know when that will be.

    Ken

  3. #3
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    good points

    You make some good points here. H-bars are a little outta my budget too.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ken in KC
    Me: I run CF riser bars on my SS.

    My advice: I've ridden the H bars and like them a lot. If I could afford them, I'd buy them because the primary hand position is far more comfortable and seems natural compared to a traditional bar. I noticed a difference when I first got on the bike but I REALLY noticed the difference when I went back to my bike.

    In addition to the more natural position, H bars also give you more places to put your hands. It's sort of like having aero bars on a mountain bike.

    Wider is better than narrower on a SS (any bike, IMO) for a couple of reasons: More control and it opens up your ribs. When you're riding a SS, you'll be out of the saddle more than with a geared bike. Out of the saddle on narrower bars means you'll be above your bars and the bike will be twitchier (is that a word?). On wider bars you'll have more stability.

    Narrow bars means your arms are closer to your sides. This pushes on your rib cage. Wider bars opens your chest cavity more and allows for better/easier breathing.

    Conclusion
    Is the performance benefit worth the investment? It depends on your budget. If I could afford H-bars (I haven't tried Mary's) then I would buy them. In fact unless I have a catastrophic failure, that will be my next bike part purchase. I just don't know when that will be.

    Ken

  4. #4
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    Jones bars are out for me as well But...

    i'm really enjoying my Mary bars. The hand position is very comfortable. I have never felt nervous about the different hand position on technical singletrack. A lot of people say it isn't necessary, but i put a 1cm longer stem on with the mary bars as opposed to the shorter stem i used with my monkeylite bars. Wider is definitely better for horking up climbs on a SS and that is a benefit of the Jones bars, they are 673mm and the mary's are 645mm. Sometimes i wish the Mary's were a bit wider but you get what you got. The Mary's are also noticeably stiffer than my monkylite bars, but the hand positition outweighs this factor. If you are running suspension, that is less of an issue. All in all, I love my Mary bars, would probably love/prefer the Jones bars but they are just not within my means.

    Matt

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    I tried the Mary bars but I didn't like them. I felt like my wrists were being bent outward. I think it really depends on your personal anatomy as to whether such extreme sweep will be comfortable to you or not. In my opinion, riser bars are silly - the extra bend is totally unneccessary and makes the bar heavier and weaker than a comparable flat bar. I run a Salsa Pro Moto flat bar with 11 degrees of sweep. It's sweet. (Of course, since I ride a 29er, flat bars are even better because they keep the bars from getting too high).

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    i'm happy with my misfit psycles fubar.

    similar specs to the mary, but not as expensive.

    i'm finding the sweep makes the bar feel a bit "spring board"y, but it's a lot easier on my hands. i bought it because i have hand numbness issues. if my hands didn't complain about my old setup, i never would have changed my stock GT riser bar.

    if you like your current setup, why change it?

  7. #7
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    Coincidence? I think not!

    Quote Originally Posted by Thor29
    I tried the Mary bars but I didn't like them. ... In my opinion, riser bars are silly - the extra bend is totally unneccessary and makes the bar heavier and weaker than a comparable flat bar. I run a Salsa Pro Moto flat bar with 11 degrees of sweep. It's sweet. ....
    I tried H-bars and didn't like 'em. I run Salsa Pro Motos as well and prefer them for the same reasons. I ask, "why not run a higher stem and a flat bar?" I can't believe it when somebody comes along and says, "because a riser bar gives you more control." Hand position is hand position and the "more control" argument is boolsheet. The only time it holds water is when a guy can't find flat bars as wide as a riser bar, but that's not even a fair argument because then the hand position isn't the same. I'm talkin' apples to apples. Okay, who got me started?!? Anyway, yeah, the rise in a handlebar just makes it heavier and weaker.

    I ain't into that.

    --Sparty
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    We get old because we quit riding.

  8. #8
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    Good job! Tried 'em all..

    I've tried a lot of different bars.

    The best I ever used were the Mary bars....until I got a set of JJ H bars.

    Both these style of bars place your hands and wrists in a much more natural position when riding.

    Grunting up hills on this type of wide swept bar is fantastic. You can get incredible 'pull' straight up from your hands to your shoulders without having your wrists twisted.

    My recommendation: Jones H bars if you can afford them, or Mary bars for the cheaper option.

    Both are fantastic for SS'ing.


    R.
    It is inevitable ...

  9. #9
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    SushiBars

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainman
    I've tried a lot of different bars.

    The best I ever used were the Mary bars....until I got a set of JJ H bars.

    . . .

    Both are fantastic for SS'ing.
    I Paypal'd my money for a set of H-bars last night for my SS.

    While I'm waiting, what do you think about the H-bars for general geared-and-suspended-XC? Most of the discussions I see on the H-bars are from SS'ers, and I can't say I've seen many pics of H-bars with shifters (aside from Jones' site).

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by anotherbrian
    I Paypal'd my money for a set of H-bars last night for my SS.

    While I'm waiting, what do you think about the H-bars for general geared-and-suspended-XC? Most of the discussions I see on the H-bars are from SS'ers, and I can't say I've seen many pics of H-bars with shifters (aside from Jones' site).
    I think that they would be really good on anything, for any type of bike either sprung or unsprung.

    Your only problem [?] will be finding a place for the shifters. If you follow the Jones recommendations, I can see no hassles..

    R.
    It is inevitable ...

  12. #12
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    I thought the H-bars were it until I put on some Midge bars on for 'cross season. Cross season is over and my H-bars are still sitting there gathering dust. Can't imagine going back but am not quite ready to sell them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FTM
    I thought the H-bars were it until I put on some Midge bars on for 'cross season. Cross season is over and my H-bars are still sitting there gathering dust. Can't imagine going back but am not quite ready to sell them.
    I'll give you ten bucks for those H-Bars. Until then I'm totally happy with my Salsa Pro-Moto 660 mm flat bars, for the same reasons Sparty suggests. Why add weight and detract strength with risers, I ain't buying that argument. THe only argument that holds water IMO, is if you can get a wrist position you just can't find with (lighter-stronger) flat bars. I tried risers for a little while (OK, 2 rides) on the SS I built up in Sept. and hated them. When I found the Salsas were using the same sweep Ross designed back in the '80s I jumped at the chance to try them again. They haven't left the bike, 'nuff said.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mudflaps
    I'll give you ten bucks for those H-Bars...
    You pay for shipping?

    I never like risers either. Good thing we've got choices (says the guy with 5 bars of various styles sitting unused in the garage)

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by FTM
    You pay for shipping?

    I never like risers either. Good thing we've got choices (says the guy with 5 bars of various styles sitting unused in the garage)
    Sure I'll pay for shipping. PM me with your details

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