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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    GA
    Posts
    22

    Advice on handlebars...

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    I recently got into a wreck and kinked my handlebars. I've been looking for handlebars at the local bike shops around town and no one seems to have women specific bars or bars small enough for me to use. I measure between 36 and 38 cm. I guess I need to get them online. Any suggestions on what handlebars work better for women? What's a good online store where I can purchase them? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    4,364
    A good bike shop should offer to order you some.... The brands they carry often *have* a 36 even if the shop doesn't regularly stock it.

    What are you looking for?
    Inexpensive? - Ritchey does aluminum bars in a 36 that are pretty reasonably priced - the Biomax

    Salsa has several bars that come in smaller sizes

    Specialized has some bars in smaller sizes too
    "Sharing the road means getting along, not getting ahead" - 1994 Washington State Driver's Guide

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    GA
    Posts
    22
    I'm looking for moderately priced bars... up to $100. The local bike shops did offer to order some for me but I figured I'd do a little research first.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    100
    I had 38cm FSA Wing Pro (short reach/shallow drop) installed on my LHT and they are really really nice.

    http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/135...p=195%20FSAWP4

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Central Indiana
    Posts
    6,043
    I'm between a 36 and a 38, too. I have the FSA Compact Wing Pros in a 38, but prefer my narrower Deda 4 Girls. They're also a 38, but Deda measures outside to outside, rather than center to center.

    I had trouble finding the Dedas new and ending up buying them on TE used. You might check out eBay if you decide to go that route. Other brands/styles I considered were the Salsa Poco and Salsa Short and Shallow, and the Biomax. The Dedas, however, were about as narrow as I found.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Everett, WA
    Posts
    191
    As Indysteel mentioned, be sure to check whether the width measurements listed are center to center, or end to end. I had been using a Ritchey bar that was a 38 center to center. When I ordered my 3T bars for the new bike, I ordered a 38 as well and the package was marked as a 38, but I could tell after ther first ride that they were narrower. Turns out those were measured end-to-end; they are really only a 36 center-to-center.

    ETA: the 3T Ergonova bars I mentioned are also a great short reach/shallow drop style, if you like the flatter top (I do). The Ergonova Pro would be within your price range at MSRP.
    Last edited by malaholic; 08-15-2010 at 11:10 AM. Reason: Adding info on 3T bars
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    So Cal.
    Posts
    501
    I second the Ergonova bars from 3T. I love mine (but I got the carbon version). Some 'ergo' bars have a bump at the bottom of the drop- those drive me crazy- they hurt my palms. The 3T has no such wonky wiggle, just a nice gentle sweep from the levers. My second choice was the FSA Wing pro and it was a close call between the two. When I found the 3T on sale, I bought that one.
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Central Indiana
    Posts
    6,043
    I like the looks of those Ergonova bars. I'm not sure how I missed them when I was on my bar hunt. I might have to try them out if and when I'm in the market again.

    Edited to add: 3T's website says that they measure bar width center to center. Several retailers, e.g., Competitive Cyclist, states the same. At least one retailer, however, indicates just the contrary. Weird.
    Last edited by indysteel; 08-15-2010 at 04:40 PM.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    1,632
    I was very curious about the measurements malaholic described on the Ergonova -- I did try a similar 3T handlebar on a Cervelo and I found it so comfortable (probably not my size, just testing the bike). So, I sent the question about how they measure to 3T. This is the response, which I found very interesting and wanted to share here:

    "The ERGONOVA has a 2 cm flare at the drops. This means a 44 cm bar is 42 cm at the hoods, because the bars are measured across the center of the drops. The Pro Team and LTD all have the same nominal shape and dimensions.

    The flare allows the drop to be reduced in depth without closing the form of the drop and restricting the grip shape. ERGONOVA has exactly the same drop shape as ERGOSUM but the flare reduces the drop compared with ERGOSUM. (It also has a shorter reach.)

    A little back ground; ERGONOVA is designed for enhanced comfort. When designing it, we consulted with sports scientists and coaches, and orthopedic surgeons specialized in sports medicine. They suggested riders should choose a slightly narrower bar than is traditional.

    Their reasoning goes like this: stand upright and hold your arms out in front of you, with shoulders relaxed. Your hands fall naturally at the width of your shoulders, or slightly wider. This is the traditional sizing for your bar.

    Now bend forward as if to touch your toes, keeping your shoulders relaxed your hands now naturally fall closer together. This bent condition more closely resembles your position on the bike. The traditional sizing, on the other hand, means your shoulders are held in a wider stance than is natural. This wastes energy.

    The traditional argument for a wider stance is that closing the arms at the shoulders constricts the lungs and inhibits breathing. But if you study the skeleton, you will see that the shoulder joints are well above the rib cage and do not constrict the lungs.

    The traditional 'wisdom' on sizing is disproved by sprint and endurance track riders, some of whom have larger physiques than most road riders. Yet they are now tending to use bars as narrow as 34 cm, without constricting their breathing. Look also at road riders' TT position they produce max power over an extended period with their arms completely closed at the elbows. Triathlon riders maintain this position for several hours, yet they can run straight after dismounting the bike, without any ill-effect on oxygen uptake from their lungs.

    As a result, we recommend you specify the same size ERGONOVA as your 'traditional' size. The 2 cm reduction in width at the hoods will, in our view, enhance your all-round riding comfort.

    This recommendation may not suit every rider bar choice is particularly personal, regardless of the 'science'. If this is the case, you may prefer to consider the more traditional ERGOSUM bar from our range."

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Central Indiana
    Posts
    6,043
    Thanks for posting that. So, if I understand correctly, 3T does measure center to center at the drops, not the hoods, and the drops are 2 cm wider than the hoods. I'm glad they answered your question, but I wish they more clearly explained that on their website.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    1,632
    Quote Originally Posted by indysteel View Post
    Thanks for posting that. So, if I understand correctly, 3T does measure center to center at the drops, not the hoods, and the drops are 2 cm wider than the hoods. I'm glad they answered your question, but I wish they more clearly explained that on their website.
    +1. The other thing I wish was more clear in their web site is the width of the top of the handlebar. The carbon versions look wider than the aluminum ones. If the aluminum had the same width at the top than carbon versions of the Ergonova, I would have ordered this bar already for my current bike.

 

 

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