Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Techie Tuesday: R&R Handlebars

The old ones (Performance Bike Shop Forte') broke under the Syntace C3 aerobar clamps. Hope the new ones (Ritchey SuperLogic Evo Carbon) won't. PBS stood by their Satisfaction Guarantee, so aside from all the labor, only a $60 hit to my pocketbook. Nothing wrong with the Forte' bars for normal use, but not up to aerobars.

PBS's house brand bars Forte was bucking under the aerobar clamps

Brake cables run in the bar's cable hides, and shifter cables run along backside of bar. Each cable was trial fitted, taped into place using 3M electrical tape, and then function tested before any bar tape was applied.

L and R brake cable swapped so front brake and 10-gears are in my right hand. Shifter cables also swapped and then crossed under the downtube. This gives the rear deraulleur cable a straight path from headtube to end of chainstay.

MagicShine mount attaches along side of the stem. Yeah, there's a LOT going on here. Old bars had cables threaded through them, so every last cable had to be unthreaded. The brakes and drivetrain then had to be readjusted after installation. What a massive PITA.
Another angle
Pretty clean. The cables are trimmed to within a mm of their lives. I doubt I can flip the stem without recabling at this point, but I loathe messy cabling and the drag it creates. MagicShine is ~ right in front of toptube and  battery pack strapped to top of toptube.
Clean cockpit. Slip the Garmin into it's mount and we're wheels-up in 30 seconds.

Not wanting to take any chances on the new bars, I used the same trick on the aeorbars I used on my perpetually sliding Easton seatpost - I shimmed the clamps with 1500 Wet-or-Dry sandpaper, turning the grit side to the main bars. This dramatically reduces the amount of clamping pressure needed to keep the aerobars from moving. I especially like that this also comprises a compressible shim, so the take-up on the tightening is more gradual, and easier to judge.

The spray bottle hanging off the left handlebar is to keep the bike from tipping over when standing straight up so I can even up the aerobars. Nice trick. When you get aerobars where you want them,  roll the bike into a doorway, place a level across the ends, and mark their height. No matter what happens with handlebars and stems, it makes a great starting point for adjusting the aerobars.

I rode the bike up to Beals Point a couple of nights ago, and am very happy with the bars. The aren't noodley like the Forte, but are still soaking up a lot of road chop. The reach is perfect, but the drop is a lot less, and I need to push the drops forward and out to get more room in the cockpit. With aerobars, you seldom need deep drops, but a middle position is nice for climbing into a wind in a position where you can still breathe well.

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