38cm bars... going too far?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.

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spartacus
Posts: 401
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:53 pm

by spartacus

I know aero and stuff, but even with 40 it seems a little less ideal climbng out of the saddle. I'm trying to decide if 38 is worth trying or if it's a dumb idea. Please advise. Am 5'11 riding a 56cm frame.

Geoff
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by Geoff

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by Weenie


CustomMetal
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Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:14 pm

by CustomMetal

It depends on your shoulder width... my hoods are 36cm apart and I climb and race on them. My drops are 42cm for control when descending. I use the enve aero bars to get the flare.

They key thing though is that my shoulders are only 38cm wide
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Hexsense
Posts: 2125
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2015 12:41 am

by Hexsense

Why do you need the bar to help climbing?
Most people actually put their hands on bar top when they climb, that's a whole lot narrower than 38cm apart.

If you have such special requirement, do what you feel comfortable with. Most people using 38cm bar or narrower only pull up the bar in drop for sprinting.

spartacus
Posts: 401
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:53 pm

by spartacus

I just mean leverage for out of the saddle.

bikewithnoname
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Location: Paris

by bikewithnoname

I'd suggest getting some cheap Alu bars (Spesh short reach are agood option) and testing it out. Personally it just feels wrong to be narrower than 42cm for me, but different strokes for different folks
"We live in an age when unnecessary things are our only necessities." Oscar Wilde
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Mcdeez
Posts: 251
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2020 3:40 pm

by Mcdeez

Mesure you shoulders.

You wont get faster

Hexsense
Posts: 2125
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2015 12:41 am

by Hexsense

Leverage for power output is over-rated. See track sprinters, they use 32cm bar and generate 2000+ watts.
Wider is great for comfort and control though. None of those are required in track sprint.

c60rider
Posts: 767
Joined: Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:12 pm

by c60rider

Like many of the trends of recent years narrower bars is yet another tiny marginal gain if you're after every fraction of a watt. Probably such a fraction as to make no measurable difference. Narrower bars don't do much for comfort for me and some of the pros just look a bit strange with narrow bars. Marc Hirschi and Adam Hansen are two that come to mind. If you want to be aerodynamic just move your hand position to get your elbows tucked in but it's not going make much difference.

bas
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2016 3:58 am

by bas

Not necessarily more aero to use narrower bars if it causes you to round your shoulders and your head sits slightly higher and in the wind more


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pmprego
Posts: 1348
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2019 3:16 pm

by pmprego

Hexsense wrote:
Fri Jan 29, 2021 9:47 pm
Leverage for power output is over-rated. See track sprinters, they use 32cm bar and generate 2000+ watts.
Wider is great for comfort and control though. None of those are required in track sprint.
I get the control part. Not the confort part. When I moved to narrower bars (in line with my shoulders) I was way more confortable.

Hexsense
Posts: 2125
Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2015 12:41 am

by Hexsense

Well, it's relative. I'm more comfortable on 38cm and 40cm bar than 36cm and 42cm. So, there is a range that work best for each person.

My post assuming the OP is about to go down one size smaller than what he used to. That can potentially reduce comfort because he already said 40cm is less than ideal for him.

spartacus
Posts: 401
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:53 pm

by spartacus

40 is good but less comfortable than 42 overall. I had 42cm bars on my "B" roadbike and 40cm bars on my "A" road bike. I sold my "B" road bike and have a new road bike that I am going to buy new bars for. Lots of people act like you're throwing away your mad aero gainz by not using the smallest possible bars so I was wondering if normal people aka weight weenies people think it's worth potentially compromizing (slightly?) on comfort for said mad aero gainz.

TobinHatesYou
Posts: 7974
Joined: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:02 pm

by TobinHatesYou

5’10” with 37cm shoulders. I ride 38cm bars and only notice it as a hindrance when underbiking on my cx/gravel bike.

efixler
Posts: 33
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2019 11:43 pm

by efixler

pmprego wrote: When I moved to narrower bars (in line with my shoulders) I was way more confortable.

Sounds like you found the right size!

by Weenie


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