Best mtb handlebar setup for touring....

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Best mtb handlebar setup for touring....

Postby Wingnut » Sun Sep 06, 2009 10:17 pm

Hi there,

I'm new to this site and in the process of converting my mtb hardtail into a touring bike. Not sure whether I should keep my current setup of Ritchey WCS stem/Easton Carbon flat bars with ODI grips & Bontrager bar ends or should I get a multi position bar like the BBB one below?

Any experienced advice out there?

Image
"It never gets easier, you just go faster..." - Greg Lemond

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by BNA » Sun Sep 06, 2009 10:29 pm

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Re: Best mtb handlebar setup for touring....

Postby il padrone » Sun Sep 06, 2009 10:29 pm

These 'trekking bars' are pretty versatile for touring, giving a range of hand positions. Be aware that they will place your brake/control grip position closer to you, so you might find it necessary to get a longer stem. I've personally been happy for many years now with this sort of bar/bar-end combination:

Image

But sometimes I do think multiple hand positions are a bit over-rated, as last year I toured quite a lot on this bike and was perfectly comfortable with no arm/wrist problems. The diagonal hand position is the key I think.

Image
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Re: Best mtb handlebar setup for touring....

Postby Wingnut » Sun Sep 06, 2009 10:57 pm

I've got a 130mm stem & was considering using the multi position bars, then double wrapping them with cork tape & some gel strips underneath.
"It never gets easier, you just go faster..." - Greg Lemond

"Because technology alone is a poor substitute for experience." - Richard Sachs
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Re: Best mtb handlebar setup for touring....

Postby Nobody » Sun Sep 06, 2009 11:04 pm

il padrone wrote:Image

I see you're managed to keep a Girvin Flex Stem going. One of the side bolts stripped out about a month ago on mine. Has this ever happened to you? Do you know where I could get another NOS stem? Too bad you can't get anything similar new these days. I'm not really interested in going over to a suspension fork as I just want something to take the edge off and don't want the complexity and maintenance problems.
Softride still do a similar stem, but only do a 150mm length. I need a 120-130mm. Maybe I can just get a different shaped bar, but then that might make MTB riding harder...

[Sorry for the hijack Wingnut.]
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Re: Best mtb handlebar setup for touring....

Postby il padrone » Sun Sep 06, 2009 11:22 pm

Oh, the Girvin :oops: ! Wondered if someone might ask about that.

It's still somewhere on a bench in Jessie's Bike Barn. I dropped it there a looong time back as the bushings were wearing and it had sideways play. Asked him to do up some brass bushings. I found another adjustable stem in the meantime to fill the gap. Actually found it was quite good to ride with, without the suspension effect. Jessie didn't get back to me.... I forgot I about it over summer....now time's gone by and I haven't felt the need for the Girvin. Too much of a leap now to chase him up about it :oops: :( :roll: :mrgreen:

No, I don't know of any source for NOS Girvin stems.... except maybe Jessie's Bike Barn :? :roll:
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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Re: Best mtb handlebar setup for touring....

Postby Nobody » Sun Sep 06, 2009 11:26 pm

:lol: Thanks Pete. Looks like I'll continue riding (fully) rigid on the front then.
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Re: Best mtb handlebar setup for touring....

Postby hartleymartin » Mon Sep 07, 2009 8:55 pm

I started using alloy north-road bars, and have stuck with them, but was seriously looking at BBB Multibars until funds dried up (hopefully getting paid again tomorrow morning). With handlebars it's really up to personal preference. I've changed so much stuff on my touring bicycle, that now I am sure the only things original from when I first bought it for the princely sum of $25 are the frame, forks and crankset.
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