What width bars do you use..!?

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  • What width bars do you use..!?
  • loum

    GW does make a good point here.
    If wider bars are used to bring your weight forward, then bending the elbows achieves the same but with more control (your arms aren’t locked) and the option to take your weight backwards on the bike too when that’s needed.
    Of course, we’re all different shapes and sizes so I expect they suit some people more than others.
    685 and 720 to answer the OP 🙂


    685 on my hardtail
    600 on my rigid bike.

    At some point I’ll upgrade the stem and bars on the hardtail and move them to the rigid.


    In a few years time we’ll all be laughing at these super wide bars like people laughed at flared trousers in the 80s. You mark my words…..

    Often pondered on the handlebar width debate which seems to be in vogue at the minute.

    Personally, I cut down 685mm bars to 665mm because they felt too wide for general XC and I’m 6’3″ with proportionally wide shoulders and arms in proportion also.

    Cleverly, I bought a frame that was the right size, so I didn’t need to run wide bars to get my weight forward for more front wheel traction.

    Anyways, in your position, I wouldn’t want to run 665mm on an all mountain rig purely because in today’s fashion it just wouldn’t seem right.

    Things you need to really consider:
    Advantage of wider bar is really more steering leverage and not getting knocked off line on fast tricky descents.
    The disadvantage is threading between the trees.

    I guess the faster and trickier the riding, the wider you should go with the bar.

    Noting that World Cup DH Pro’s generally run 29″ bars and motocross bikes which are heavier, faster etc. generally are around 30″ in the handlebar.

    No one needs a 30″+ bar for leverage, they need to get in the gym and build up some muscle.

    In my opinion, anyone running more than 30″ on an all mountain rig has taken fashion one step too far. Chances are they also wear ‘carrot’ shaped trousers with elastic bands in the ankles. What’s that all about? I stopped wearing trousers with elastic bands when I was a toddler.

    Premier Icon Northwind

    Gold star for Rusty Shackleford!

    Mine all have 710mm on now. Just seems to be the right width for me. I thought the DH bike would keep slightly wider bars but I just kept sawing off 10mm at a time til they felt right, and not coincidentally, they were 710. I’m a pretty narrow guy though.

    My riding position’s pretty constant, so nowt to to with frame size or getting my weight forward (when I want to get my weight forward, I just do it, I don’t need hardware to do it for me). 710 just gives me a nice comfortable, flexible arm position as a starting point.

    adrianmurray – Member

    Noting that World Cup DH Pro’s generally run 29″ bars

    That doesn’t seem to be true… Freecaster or Dirt TV did a paddock walk last year and 30 inches or more was the norm.

    I knew GW would weigh in with his usual brand of unhelpful sarcasm.

    Let’s assume for one minute that at least some of the people on this forum know how to ride a bike well. I, for one, have been bending my arms at the elbow for some time. With that in mind, do you really think your post is a revelation? Bending your arms more gives you a more aggressive riding position, but having your arms bent 90 degrees for any length of time isn’t sustainable, and unless you’re built like Jason Statham, it’s probably not a very stable riding position. Wide bars just allow you to be in a more aggressive position without tiring.

    If you want to be difficult and use older technology, by all means do it, feel free to post your experience up on RetroBike. But don’t present your outmoded opinion as fact.


    😆 Who mentioned 90deg? or any exact angle FFS! 🙄
    Here’s a FACT for you..

    any decent mtb riders’ elbows won’t remain fixed at any set angle while they ride.

    and another few..

    * Fitting wide bars will not instantly make every riders position more aggressive.

    * Fitting wide bars will not instantly relieve arm strain/fatigue.

    * Fitting wide bars to bring your body further forward will actually restrict forward and rearward body positioning (and weight distribution).

    We’re all different sizes/shapes and have differing positions/styles of riding our many and varied bikes.
    Do you have any idea what width bars I have on each bike? or more importantly how far apart my hands are while riding relative to my shoulders width? nevermind any of the rest of my bikes set-ups? or for that matter, my riding style?
    all the above differing variables for each and every rider make “list your bar width” threads like this utterly pointless but feel free to continue typing your reasoning as to why 750mm bars are perfect for your XC bike! bear in mind tho, the more shite you type the more difficult it becomes for me not to mock you! 😉


    Mine are 12 inches on the right and 15 on the left, shorter on the right so you can skim car mirors when in town.

    745mm cut down to 720mm but I’m a pretty small guy. It’s alright proportional, innit?


    711mm and perfect


    I don’t know the exact measurement but they are definatly broad, broad, broader than broadway.

    I have a 50mm stem and 730mm bars on my full suss and it’s perfect!


    * Fitting wide bars will not instantly make every riders position more aggressive.

    but how else can a obtain the all important attack position?


    wide bars are like soooooo 2010.. high bars are where it’s at kids..

    Premier Icon mattjg

    660mm USE Atoms

    Tried wider, didn’t work for me, and I have widths shoulders for my (average) height.

    I had assumed that people reading my post would have the wherewithal to determine that 90 degrees was merely used as an example – a point I’m sure GW did actually grasp. To pick me up on it as though I’d quoted some sort of rule-of-thumb just seems like an attempt to subvert the conversation.

    I wasn’t talking about changes “instantly” (two can play at that game) making everyone ride faster. But I strongly believe wider bars can help a majority of people. Ref: Of everyone that’s tried wider bars, very few have gone back to <700mm. Sure there will be the odd person with different body geometry/riding style/whatever, but from my own experiences and from what I’ve read on here, those people are the exception not the rule.

    While individual posts within these bar width threads are a little bit irrelevant without context, it’s interesting to note trends (in the traditional sense of the word). I suspect if we viewed the same thread from two years ago, the results would be very different. Some people want to try new things, and people can see from reading this that they won’t be doing something completely stupid by buying 750mm bars.


    I had 700’s on for a while until I rode a bike with 660s… Now I have cut my bars down. The only thing I have found is that, going back to wide bars feels weird. No need to do the hobble wobble going between trees anymore.

    Premier Icon Northwind

    o96192083 – Member

    meh, 915…

    But don’t worry, after you realise they’re ridiculously wide you can cut them down to… Oh, only 750mm.

    Premier Icon DezB

    I can’t help wonder how many people, perfectly happy with their bars, have read that wide bars are better, so bought new bars just because they thought they should… or because they thought it would improve their riding 😆
    Yardsticks may well be “better” for me on my bike, but until I need new bars, the current ones are staying on.

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