Wider bars – pros/cons or do I look wide enough?!

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 58 total)
  • Wider bars – pros/cons or do I look wide enough?!
  • jayx2a
    Member

    Anyone running 800’s and finding them ok width wise? I’m currently on 760’s with a 60mm stem but considering dropping to the 50 and going wider.

    But then I need to consider the trees! And also my wingspan. I tried that push up test and I swear I was at around 840 to lift my fat ass up!

    Then I’m not sure if my shoulders are that wide. Here are some embarrassing pics of my current bar width bar the last picture, which is clearly not me!

    https://sportcam.net/CompetitorImage.aspx?ID=10&General=No&EventID=undefined&RaceID=

    Think my elbows and wrists look ok? Maybe I’m not built for super wide bars!

    greyspoke
    Member

    I don’t think losing a bit of bark just in one place hurts the trees much.

    Premier Icon Poopscoop
    Subscriber

    Pic not working?

    I know what you mean by trees op. I’m on 780mm and find of the natural trails I ride really don’t like even that width!

    Thinking of going shorter to be honest. A branch/tree strike to the bars is a nasty crash in the making…

    I’m running 800s and they’re fine, but I’m not 800 wide. Leverage on a 160mm for with a 2.5 inch front wheel is nice, but trees are sometimes an issue. I was perfectly happy with my previous 780s only reasons I’ve not cut them down is that I can’t be bothered.

    Premier Icon ajantom
    Subscriber

    Having run 760mm bars for a few years, I recently put some Surly Sunrise bars on my Krampus, which are an eyewatering 820mm wide.
    I assumed I’d cut them down quite soon, but they’re actually great!
    Caught a couple of trees, but no where near as many as I expected.
    Try it and see.

    *Edit…actually I’ve found brambles and nettles a bigger issue, as you catch more with your hands and forearm. Ouch.

    Onzadog
    Member

    840s and they feel okay. You learn to wheelie and cross the bars to get through tight trees!

    Premier Icon kimbers
    Subscriber

    I ended up with about 775 after shifting the grips in and out a bit

    Still have to be a bit careful round some local trails with tight trees

    Premier Icon orangespyderman
    Subscriber

    I have 800mm bars – I thought I’d chop them down a bit but they’re actually quite nice. Have hit a number of trees and there are clearly certain bits where I have to pay more attention than my riding mates…

    I’ve still not cut them down a year or so after getting them…

    Premier Icon Mary Hinge
    Subscriber

    I am currently on 760s, previously always old skool 685 and didn’t like the wide bars.

    But after a couple of years on 760s I am now keen to go 800 as the 760s feel a bit narrow.

    I am 6’4″ though and broad shouldered.

    I did have a legendary crash a couple of years ago clipping a tree, which I think scared my riding mates quite a bit!! But not repeated even on the same trail.

    Premier Icon Poopscoop
    Subscriber

    @jay

    Use https://postimages.org/ to host on here. No need to sign up and works well for this forum.👍

    Host pic from mobile or pc, then just click on “hotlink for forums” copy tab, then just paste it directly into here.

    Ie:

    Premier Icon Poopscoop
    Subscriber

    Onzadog

    Member
    840s and they feel okay. You learn to wheelie and cross the bars to get through tight trees!

    With my lack of riding skills that’s just never going to happen for me.😁

    jayx2a
    Member

    The pics are on the website as not purchased them due to the prices!

    I have some brand new carbon 800s at home but if I use them I lose money on them if they are too wide. But for the sake of a few lost quid I might try them later!

    -10mm on the stem and +40mm on the bars lol. Will see how it feels.

    Pauly
    Member

    Went up to 800mm bars from 750mm on my new build and managed to break my little finger/knuckle after a bar/hand/tree interface in my local woods on my 2nd ride. Not going to cut them down as I really like how they feel.
    Did find an old pair of bars from my 2005 Rocky Ridge. They were 640mm! How did we manage?!?!

    jayx2a
    Member

    I’m going to see how they feel out of the trees today on the more open trails then hop in to the tighter stuff if they feel comfortable!

    jayx2a
    Member

    Too wide is how they felt!

    Onzadog
    Member

    Normally, went I go to a bike with narrower bars, they feel too narrow but today my other bike with 800s felt fine. Think it’s time to chop the 840s down.

    My local isn’t far from you and I’ve tried, 670, 710, 740, 750, 760, 770, 800 and 810, over the past decade! I’d settled on 750 for my hardtail and 810 for the full-sus (for gnarlier riding elsewhere) but then realised I liked riding it here too and 810 was impossible between some of the trees (had a nasty crash last year trying to thread a gap at speed). Now they’re both at 770 which seems a good compromise. I’m about your height but with long arms and legs.

    jayx2a
    Member

    My usuals are 760 and the Ergon grips add 5mm each side I think so 770’s really.

    Bike bit short with the 50mm so sticking with the 60 for now as don’t really want to spend money on a bigger frame just to run a shorter stem!

    That can wait until new bike next year!

    My usuals are 760 and the Ergon grips add 5mm each side I think so 770’s really.

    Same as mine. My bars are 760, but measure 770 with Ergons. Bars on my other bike (Spesh Enduro from 2015) measure 760. Both feel good, but are a bit of a pain amongst the very tight trees. I can’t think of any good reason why I would want to go any wider. If anything I would probably benefit from going a bit narrower for my local woods. Margin of error is pretty small as it is.

    nickfrog
    Member

    760mm is as wide as I will go, any more and the risk of hitting trees even on familiar trails is too great.

    Premier Icon brant
    Subscriber

    -10mm on the stem and +40mm on the bars lol. Will see how it feels

    I’d advise you to go +10 on the stem and rotate your bars back towards you. Will make it much more stable on steep stuff.

    Wide bars for the win…

    Now while I am here…. Testing poop site. Thanks! Been looking for something simple like this.

    Stevet1
    Member

    I’d advise you to go +10 on the stem and rotate your bars back towards you. Will make it much more stable on steep stuff.

    That’s twice I’ve heard you mention that Brant, whats the logic behind it?

    jayx2a
    Member

    I don’t think I would want a 70mm stem!

    Looking at a longer bike now!

    Premier Icon ta11pau1
    Subscriber

    I’m on 800mm bars but then I’m 6ft 3in,so they’re pretty well suited to me.

    zinaru
    Member

    i have been running jones loops for around the last 8 years and whilst they are only 680mm wide i really like them (wider than anything id tried up to then). earlier this year i decided simply to see what straighter wider bars would feel like as a little experiment so bought some 800mm bars and a 50mm stem.

    i actually really like them although the amount of crashes I’ve had has been crazy. i’ve hit a couple of trees due to the extra width but i suspect the wider bars are somehow giving me more confidence to go faster. then I’m getting into trouble more often. i just need to wise up!

    im convinced wider is better although its clearly something to play around with before getting the hacksaw out or that assuming that gap is wide enough…

    Premier Icon Andy R
    Subscriber

    Onzadog

    Member
    840s and they feel okay. You learn to wheelie and cross the bars to get through tight trees

    The old m/c enduro trick….

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    I’m using 800mm width with a 50mm stem. Makes the steering feel slower, which can catch one out if you’re unused to it, or when you first jump on the bike. I think it’s very much personal choice though, I’ve friends who’re the same height and rough proportions (178cm tall and about 75kg) for who, 800mmm is just way too wide

    I’ve just swapped some Jones 710mm bars for some Stooge Moto’s. I’m not feeling the full width to be honest, but want to make absolutely sure before I get the saw out.
    800mm just looks completely unnecessary!

    philjunior
    Member

    Did find an old pair of bars from my 2005 Rocky Ridge. They were 640mm! How did we manage?!?!

    I found some pics of me just before I fitted some *super wide* 760mm bars back in the late 00’s. I think my previous bars were a “wide back then” 685mm, 760s took some getting used to but I could sort of feel the benefit.

    I seem to be a luddite these days, but if I could be bothered/was getting new bars anyway I might try something wider than the default 780s I run, but I never seem to have my hands off the edge of the grips on them or anything (my dad tried them, and fell off immediately after catching a tree. Luckily he bounces quite well for a 70yo).

    Plus I don’t want to become like the nobheads that cut down some trees on one of the local trails just because they clearly couldn’t make the gap. Yes my bars suffered a few lost end caps there, but it’s the trail. Ride it or get better. 🙁

    Premier Icon Dickyboy
    Subscriber

    I’m 181cm tall with a +8cm ape index & 720mm seems to be the sweet spot for me. Without enough sweep any wider and it just makes my wrists ache.

    zinaru
    Member

    800mm does look crazy wide to me but its a look im warming to.

    i remember decades back loving the scott at4 bars and they were less that 500mm wide (and a nightmare to install especially when you decide only a few weeks after you got them to go super cool and run your thumbshifters flipped and under the bars). i had a cannondale sm1000 back then and these bars with that 13″ high bottom bracket brings me out in a cold sweat… really fast and super twitchy!

    amazing how we learn.

    bonzodog
    Member

    Wide (800) bars killed my upper arms and left me in pain for hours after even a short ride.

    Now on 760 (I think) Salsa bend bars with a bit of sweep. Theyre like a wider Ragley Carnegie.

    I don’t think I would want a 70mm stem!

    Why not? If it’s just a case of making the cockpit a little more comfortable. The shorter stem, wider bar trend only matters if it actually makes you ride better. Otherwise it’s just a look. 770 (effective) with a 60 stem is a pretty “modern” setup anyway for that kind of bike and would have been considered full-on enduro spec only a few short years ago. But if your frame really is too small for you, then sizing up does make sense.

    jayx2a
    Member

    Well you have me thinking – people have said my frame looks too small or I look too big on the bike, either or.. but its all in the riding I guess.

    I can’t actually tell you if i would be more comfortable on a larger frame as I havent tried it. It would allow a shorter stem, but looking at the figures – the next frame size up has 15mm more reach. Shorten to a 50mm, and that reach then becomes an extra 5mm.

    The wheelbase, top tube and seat tube are all longer, but it doesnt really equal a huge gain in reach.

    Premier Icon brant
    Subscriber

    That’s twice I’ve heard you mention that Brant, whats the logic behind it?

    Rolled back bars help when riding steep stuff, in keeping you from falling off the front. Seems lots of people still set up in that 90’s NORBA style “attack position” nonsense with levers pointing down and all that. Idiot journalists wrote all that when copying MBA writers whose tech trails were high speed fire roads. Our trails – rather different – up here anyway.

    YMMV

    jayx2a
    Member

    I see a lot of online journalists saying a lot of things, I know its all about opinion, but a lot of views always come across ‘we are right, you are wrong’.

    Recently I have learnt that we are ALL riding bikes that are too small, you have the wrong bike if you cant run a 50mm stem, 780mm bars are for everyone and a few others.

    I guess i find myself (stupidly) influenced by what I read. I don’t even know why!!

    You could have a look at this

    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/finding-your-sweet-spot-handlebar-width.html

    But you will probably end up far narrower than you think (or is fashionable) so will ignore it completely – but if you do happen to have an open mind and go with it you might be surprised…

    jayx2a
    Member

    That calculation puts me at 792.

    But he then says your range will be within 5% if that so that would be 752.

    So according to that theory I will be running between 752 and 792 and I’m running 770.

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