Handlebar Position....

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Edudbor, Sep 25, 2007.

  1. Edudbor

    Edudbor New Member

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    I've got my new bicycle all put together (Yay!) and I'm looking forward to my first ride tomorrow; but I'm still adjusting the fit of a few things. My experience with bicycles is very limited though, and I have a silly question about the handlebar.

    There is a piece (if someone can tell me the name, that'd be great) that connects to the fork and to the handlebar. I've centered the handlebar; but I can also rotate it. It's a road bicycle with the traditional 'curvy' sorta handlebar (if someone can tell me that name for that too; I'd appreciate it). Anyway, I can rotate it up or down and (obviously) that dramatically affects where the breaks are/the position of my body.

    I'm not sure *where* I want it to be though.

    There is a small 'X' design on the bar that is visible through a hole in whatever the metal piece that holds the bar is called. I assumed that I should center the 'X' in the whole for proper alignment - but it 'feels' like the bars are turned lower than what I'm used to (but I don't know if what I'm used to is wrong).

    Can someone let me know what I should be looking for? Should I adjust it to 'whatever feels good for me' or will that just encourage bad riding position?
     
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  2. kdelong

    kdelong Well-Known Member

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    The piece that clamps on the handlebar and the fork is called a stem. The curvy handlebar is called a road handlebar. A long time ago they were called Ram's Horn Handlebars but that has sort of been forgotten.

    Forget about the X on the handlebar. It is for making sure that the handlebars are centered in the stem. There are three common positions on a road handlebars, the top which is the flat area on either side of where the stem clamps onto the bars, the hoods which is on top of the brake handles, and the drops which are the flat areas near the end of the bars below the curve.

    Start out with the drops parallel to the ground and then adjust the bar angle either up or down until you are comfortable. You will probably get a lot of suggestions on bar position, but remember, you have to ride the bike.
     
  3. rudycyclist

    rudycyclist New Member

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    I have been told and feel most comfortable with the hoods of the shifters flat with the ground. Working at a shop, I've seen a lot of positions with them pointed toward the ground but I've tried it and it's uncomfortable and many pros do not use that position. Many experienced riders will probably tell you to keep the hoodles of the bars parallel to the ground. I recommend trying out a few different positions because in the end, like most things with your bike, it's all preference.
     
  4. artemidorus

    artemidorus New Member

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    I have used: 1) flat part of drops parallel to ground. and 2) tip of brake lever in the horizontal plane of the flat part of the drops.
    This works well for me, but as others have said, you may find another way of doing it that works for you.
     
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