Do you use Aerobars?



DownTick

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Apr 26, 2004
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Question - Do you use Aerobars? If so, why? If not, why?

I ride a Cannondale R3000 and really love the bike. But, as I gain experience and increase my athletic ability, I feel like I may gain speed, power and comfort by adding clip on aerobars, such as the Syntace XXS. The only real reasons I have not added them yet is because I am concerned that braking may be too delayed and shifting gears may become too much of a chore because the levers are not within reach while using the aero bars.

The main reasons that I want to install the aero bars are because my wrists start to hurt in the drop-down bar after an hour (I usually ride for 2+ hours) and I am not the most wind resistant cyclist. I am 5' 7.5" tall (gotta get that extra 0.5" in there...) and a muscular 185 lbs. I will certainly continue to loose weight but I will never be a stream-lined 150 lb. rider.

Thanks
:)
 

skydive69

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Aug 23, 2004
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DownTick said:
Question - Do you use Aerobars? If so, why? If not, why?

I ride a Cannondale R3000 and really love the bike. But, as I gain experience and increase my athletic ability, I feel like I may gain speed, power and comfort by adding clip on aerobars, such as the Syntace XXS. The only real reasons I have not added them yet is because I am concerned that braking may be too delayed and shifting gears may become too much of a chore because the levers are not within reach while using the aero bars.

The main reasons that I want to install the aero bars are because my wrists start to hurt in the drop-down bar after an hour (I usually ride for 2+ hours) and I am not the most wind resistant cyclist. I am 5' 7.5" tall (gotta get that extra 0.5" in there...) and a muscular 185 lbs. I will certainly continue to loose weight but I will never be a stream-lined 150 lb. rider.

Thanks
:)
I don't use them because I ride inches from people's wheels at high speeds. I think safety and control are sacrificed with aero bars. I don't want anyone on my butt sporting aero bars. They are great for time trials, and perhaps solo rides.
 

grampy bone

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Jul 18, 2004
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I don't use aerobars. My height is 5'8 1/2" (Yes, I have to put in my 1/2" also) and 195, so our build is similar. I have tried the aero bars and they feel nice, but they made the front end of my bike feel a bit heavy/bulky. When my wrist or hands get fatigued, I usually grab the top of the shifters in the palm of my hand like they are knobs and rest my arms on top of the bar. It makes the bike unstable (like aerobars do), but keeps the pressure off the wrist and hands. Also, its cheaper than buying aeros!
 

pkonz

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May 4, 2004
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DownTick said:
Question - Do you use Aerobars? If so, why? If not, why?

I do use aero bars but on a bike specifically designed for them. Simply attaching a clip-on on a road configured bike may make it imbalanced ie too much weight forward. Dan Empfield does a brilliant job discussing the technical aspects at http://www.slowtwitch.com/mainheadings/techctr/bikefit.html 'why must seat angles match front end configs?' In fact I road a Giant TCR with clip ons last summer and the bike did feel front heavy and twitchy. I now ride a Cervelo Dual with a steep seat tube angle and aerobars and its much more balanced and comfortable. Hardly ever miss the drops but don't do any significant peleton riding.
Peter
 

Scott'sTrek1000

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Jul 28, 2004
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I tried them. I am 5'8" (ok, 5'71/2") and about 175lbs. I actually liked them. I purchased them pretty early in getting into riding (newby, 6 months ago) and had no feeling of "heaviness" in the front end but I can agree that you lose much control over steering, braking...etc... I actually took them off due to peer pressure. I found that I was the only person in my group that was using them. After I took them off, I realized that I was using them as a crutch. As soon as I would get a bit tired, I would rest on the aerobars, now finding out that I was sacrificing true riding experience and gain. When I took them off, I felt it harder to ride at the same distance I was with the aerobar. I don't know why but it's true. I would avoid them. I would concentrate more on why your wrists are hurting, versus attaching aerobars. Are you putting too much weight on your wrists? Is your seat too high? Are your bars too low? Look at those questions first. It sounds like you have a heavy torso, as I do. I was having discomfort while riding. I felt like I was putting too much weight down on my arms. Extending my stem height fixed it. Good luck.
 

DownTick

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Apr 26, 2004
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pkonz said:
DownTick said:
Question - Do you use Aerobars? If so, why? If not, why?

I do use aero bars but on a bike specifically designed for them. Simply attaching a clip-on on a road configured bike may make it imbalanced ie too much weight forward. Dan Empfield does a brilliant job discussing the technical aspects at http://www.slowtwitch.com/mainheadings/techctr/bikefit.html 'why must seat angles match front end configs?' In fact I road a Giant TCR with clip ons last summer and the bike did feel front heavy and twitchy. I now ride a Cervelo Dual with a steep seat tube angle and aerobars and its much more balanced and comfortable. Hardly ever miss the drops but don't do any significant peleton riding.
Peter


Thanks for the info. That is a very good article. It seems that he is suggesting that changing out your handlebars for full aerobars/tri-bars on a road bike is not a good idea, but that adding a clip-on or shorter bar made for a road bike position would make sense, for some people. From the artice - "The problem with sticking full tri bars on your “perfectly fit” road race bike is that the bike is too long for these bars or, if you prefer, the clip-ons are too long for the bike. You’ll notice that your shoulder angle is greater than 90 degrees. You’re too stretched out. The solution? Don’t get full aero bars. Buy a shorter bar made just for a road bike position. There are several out there. Cinelli makes two, the Spinaci and the Corna. Profile Design makes a very popular model called the Jammer, and a souped-up version called the Jammer GT."

The aeorbar that I am considering is the Syntace XXS. This is the lightest aerobar that I have found, only 328 grams. I guess that the decision the use the aerobars resides with each individual, i.e. their comfort level on the bars, the issue of the added weight, perceived benefits from the addition of another riding position, solo/peleton riding, etc.

In my opinion, the addition of 328 grams to the handlebar area seems minimal and the bars need only be used when riding alone. Certainly riding on them in a peleton or in traffic would be too dangerous. Assuming that the only riding on the aerobars would be during solo rides and the added weight is only 328 grams, what is the downside to adding the bars?

Thanks again
:)
 

bmonkey

New Member
Oct 4, 2004
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I use them, for a couple reasons: for solo rides, it's fun to get down into an aero postion and just crank, TT style (and isn't it all about the fun?). For long rides, it is nice to have another position to get into--seems to take a little pressure of my back. I know that's a bit of a crutch (almost literally), but still, when your butt and back start to complain at mile 60, I'll take it.

I've only been riding more seriously for six months, and when I upgrade my bike next year, I'm still debating about whether I should put them on it. My reasons for not doing so would be: I plan to do more group/club riding, and I don't use these while drafting; most road riders don't seem to use them (so there is a little peer pressure there); I could save a little weight. But I know I'd miss them!
 

wardie2000

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Jun 9, 2003
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Do you use Aerobars? If so, why? If not, why?

They are illegal in road races. The small extensions which you could put on the bar were legal for a short time in RR's but too many crashes were caused as a result, so those are also now banned.

But for TT's they make a huge difference.
 

pkonz

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May 4, 2004
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Probably not a problem at all as long as you don't do what I tried to do and try and change a road configured bike to a tri or with steep seat angle and get too far forward on the aerobars. That's what made it front heavy and twitchy for me, body position, but if you keep em short and don't try and get too aggressive they should be ok.
Peter
 

vault

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Feb 17, 2004
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A good question to ask your self is how much group riding,racing, tt do you do? If all you do is group ride there isn't much point to the aerobars. If most of you rde consist of longer solo rides aero bar are nice to have to change postitions and for myself (as metioned earlier) they make the ride more interesting and enjoyable which means I look forward to riding again. If you decide to go on a group ride take them off or don't use them.
 

Dr.Hairybiker

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Aug 23, 2004
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I'm just a solo, non-competitive, ride for the fun of it (albeit hopelessly addicted) rider. I probably ride about 5000-7000 miles a year average. I spend probably half my time on aero-bars. I love them. When I get down into them, it just feels right. Your hands are clenched out in front of your face, the stress is off your forearms and wrists, you're much more aero, and I can usually push at least one gear larger than I would if I was on the hoods, and I feel more stable than in the drops. It feels like being on a missile. I say hell yes to aero bars. But I can also see where it would be easy to get killed with them if I was in a pack.
 

Tri-Dude

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Oct 9, 2004
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In triathlon everyone uses them, but I hate them, every little movement and the bike wobbles, the brakes/ gears are not easily to hand.


BUT with no drafting you knid of need them!!!:(
 

szbert

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Oct 12, 2004
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No, but I do eat Clif Bars on long rides.



DownTick said:
Question - Do you use Aerobars? If so, why? If not, why?

I ride a Cannondale R3000 and really love the bike. But, as I gain experience and increase my athletic ability, I feel like I may gain speed, power and comfort by adding clip on aerobars, such as the Syntace XXS. The only real reasons I have not added them yet is because I am concerned that braking may be too delayed and shifting gears may become too much of a chore because the levers are not within reach while using the aero bars.

The main reasons that I want to install the aero bars are because my wrists start to hurt in the drop-down bar after an hour (I usually ride for 2+ hours) and I am not the most wind resistant cyclist. I am 5' 7.5" tall (gotta get that extra 0.5" in there...) and a muscular 185 lbs. I will certainly continue to loose weight but I will never be a stream-lined 150 lb. rider.

Thanks
:)
 

Jaguar27

New Member
Sep 19, 2003
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DownTick said:
Question - Do you use Aerobars? If so, why? If not, why?

I ride a Cannondale R3000 and really love the bike. But, as I gain experience and increase my athletic ability, I feel like I may gain speed, power and comfort by adding clip on aerobars, such as the Syntace XXS. The only real reasons I have not added them yet is because I am concerned that braking may be too delayed and shifting gears may become too much of a chore because the levers are not within reach while using the aero bars.

The main reasons that I want to install the aero bars are because my wrists start to hurt in the drop-down bar after an hour (I usually ride for 2+ hours) and I am not the most wind resistant cyclist. I am 5' 7.5" tall (gotta get that extra 0.5" in there...) and a muscular 185 lbs. I will certainly continue to loose weight but I will never be a stream-lined 150 lb. rider.

Thanks
:)

That's the only problem with aero's, the controls are too far away...

I had a similar problem, my Palms would get really painfull (I ride a Cannondale too, not that the brand has anything to do with it)..I found that alternating between wearing gloves and not wearing them during periods of the ride helped a lot, also, I rotated the Bars upwards slightly so when I ride on the brake pods it takes some weight off my hands/arms/wrists, also, have you considered narrower Bars? If your hands aren't so far apart you will decrease the parachute effect on the wind resistance, they will bring your hands more in line with the width of your shoulders...you will automatically become narrower...

Oh, you should also be in a position where your elbows are slightly bent, this will absorb some of the road shock...

I'm no expert, this is just what I've learned after about 2600 miles of road biking...just thought I'd pass it along...
;)
 

chris_gr

New Member
Sep 26, 2003
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DownTick said:
Question - Do you use Aerobars? If so, why? If not, why?

I ride a Cannondale R3000 and really love the bike. But, as I gain experience and increase my athletic ability, I feel like I may gain speed, power and comfort by adding clip on aerobars, such as the Syntace XXS. The only real reasons I have not added them yet is because I am concerned that braking may be too delayed and shifting gears may become too much of a chore because the levers are not within reach while using the aero bars.

The main reasons that I want to install the aero bars are because my wrists start to hurt in the drop-down bar after an hour (I usually ride for 2+ hours) and I am not the most wind resistant cyclist. I am 5' 7.5" tall (gotta get that extra 0.5" in there...) and a muscular 185 lbs. I will certainly continue to loose weight but I will never be a stream-lined 150 lb. rider.

Thanks
:)

I ride with them on a steep angle tri-bike and they are great. On a road bike I would suggect the shorter ones (like the xxs) and ride in the "Slam" position as discribed by John Cobb. I personally like the Syntace stuff. The Jammer GT's look good and cost less.
 

DownTick

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Apr 26, 2004
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Thank you to everyone that replied with suggestions. I appreciate it!

I am going to borrow a pair of clip-on aeorbars from a LBS and see how I like riding with them.

:)
 

Gilders

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Nov 1, 2003
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Bought Profile Airstryke (sp) clip-on aerobar earlier in year. Fitted it onto normal roadbike and then spent the whole of the following ride twitching all over the road. Took it off after just that one ride and it's now enjoying its new home under my bed...
 

bmonkey

New Member
Oct 4, 2004
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Gilders said:
Bought Profile Airstryke (sp) clip-on aerobar earlier in year. Fitted it onto normal roadbike and then spent the whole of the following ride twitching all over the road. Took it off after just that one ride and it's now enjoying its new home under my bed...
Like most things, it takes a couple rides to get used to them. Yeah, it's a little scary at first, but remember your first day on snow skis? I find that I use them only in certain conditions--when alone, on flats, without a lot of traffic.