Niner Flat Top RDO Bar

by 0

handlebars-1As you might expect, Niner only makes 29in bikes and, as well as producing a huge range of bigger wheel bikes, it sells some 29in-specific accessories too, like forks and handlebars.

So what makes a handlebar 29in-specific? A low height, and enough width to wrestle those big wheels around. This is what Niner has made in the Flat Top bar. Cunningly, although it’s a flat handlebar, there’s still 5mm of height adjustment. On one edge, the handlebar runs completely flat across its width. Flipped over, the bars dip 5mm from the central bulge to the tapered width, which lets you get the bars even lower. Either way up, there’s a comfortable 9° of sweep.

The 780mm width is going to be wide enough for all but the raddest of downhill dudes and is probably too wide for anyone riding somewhere there are trees. I compulsively cropped these down to 760mm, thus negating all of the Niner engineers’ work in getting a sturdy carbon bar that wide. The regular carbon bar comes in a 710mm width (for £139), whereas if you want the width without the price, the alloy Flat Top comes in 710 and 780mm wide for a more reasonable £49.00 and a bearable 90g penalty.

The Flat Tops did sterling service for most of 2013 without needing a second thought: a great endorsement for handlebars. After nearly a year of riding and a couple of foreign mountain trips, they’re still going strong and the five-year warranty is barely getting started.

Overall: Great, low and wide bars, though for a fearsome price. Get the alloy ones for similar performance for a more wallet-friendly ride unless you absolutely must have carbon and coloured bits.



Review Info

Product:Flat Top RDO Bar
Tested:by Chipps for 9 months


Singletrack Editor

Chipps wasn’t around for the dawn of mountain biking in the UK, but he likes to claim that he arrived in time for second breakfast (about the time he shows up for work, then…) starting in the bike trade in 1990 and becoming a full time mountain bike journalist at the start of 1994. Over the subsequent quarter century, he has seen mountain bike culture flourish and diversify and bike technology go from rigid steel frames to fully suspended carbon fibre (and sometimes back to rigid steel as well.)

His riding style is best described as ‘medium, wheels on the ground, trail riding’ though he’s been spotted doing everything from endurance downhill racing to 24 hour cross country racing. He favours mid-travel trail bikes and claims to be wheel-size, gear, brake and tyre agnostic. In fact, his garage spans most bicycle flavours, taking in steel hardtails, carbon trail bikes, even a mountain bike tandem, along with road, touring and gravel/cyclocross bikes.

While he’s happy to chat about bikes all day, his real interest is in the people and places that bikes can introduce you to and he talks as fondly about the trails he’s ridden and riders he’s met as the bikes that took him there.

Leave a Reply