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Hand position on drop bars?

Old 11-21-18, 11:32 AM
  #1  
jackb
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Hand position on drop bars?

Just curious. What is the hand position you use/like the most on you drop bar road bike, Hoods? Bends?Tops? Drops? I ask because I notice that on different bikes I prefer different positions despite the bike similar bike fit on all three bikes. On my Domane I favor the bends and tops. On my Mazama touring bike I prefer the hoods. On my Spcialized Lanster single speed I also like the hoods. the only time I am on the drops is to fight a headwind or when I come down a steep, fast hill.
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Old 11-21-18, 12:01 PM
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specifics?

Are the set ups quite different from each other? or all the same?

Being in such a variety, what is the style of drop bar bend in each case..?






.

Last edited by fietsbob; 11-21-18 at 12:04 PM.
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Old 11-21-18, 12:06 PM
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Drops, almost exclusively. I used to be ramps/hoods 90% of the time, but evolved away from that over the last year or two.
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Old 11-21-18, 12:06 PM
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I spend much more time on the hoods than any other area. I do change positions frequently and use pretty much the whole handlebar, just not as much as the hoods. I also change position in each one of the specific areas, forward or backward, side to side, straightening, bending the arms and just sort of rolling my shoulder hands or wrists. I have spinal and shoulder issues and even just making small adjustments helps to minimize the stress/fatigue factor. Along that same line I use a more relaxed set up on my bikes. Like bikes themselves, what you like and are comfortable with are very personal. I think for most people that is an ongoing adaptation from bike to bike.
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Old 11-21-18, 12:08 PM
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I'm about 50/50, hoods and drops between three bikes with three different fits - a road bike that's about perfect, a single speed that's a bit more aggressive (smaller frame and lower stack), and a gravel bike that's a bit less aggressive.

I probably end up using the drops just a bit more on the road bike. I'm more likely to climb in the drops on the road bike or gravel bike than the single speed, and more likely to hit rollers in the drops on asphalt vs. gravel. Always drops for descending, unless on ice.

Tops? Never.
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Old 11-21-18, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Fahrenheit531 View Post
Drops, almost exclusively. I used to be ramps/hoods 90% of the time, but evolved away from that over the last year or two.
That's awesome

I always feel weird in a paceline when I notice that I'm in the drops and everyone else is on the hoods. For a lot of riding, the drops just seem more comfortable.
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Old 11-21-18, 12:34 PM
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Drops unless it's a slow ride with no to little activity from other obstacles
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Old 11-21-18, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Are the set ups quite different from each other? or all the same?

Being in such a variety, what is the style of drop bar bend in each case..?
.
The OP was the one asking the questions.
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Old 11-21-18, 01:15 PM
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Hoods almost exclusively...or down on the clip-on aero bars, which is easier on the wrists (but only when safe to do so).

l rode on the drops more with my last bike as it had compact bars...haven't gotten around to buying them for this one yet.
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Old 11-21-18, 01:36 PM
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OP obviously a Roadie , I'm Not.

Several, varies, that's why they were chosen..
Bike touring , has my day long upright ish posture favoring..

Randonneur bend bars,
the last long tour I had a custom fabricated stem ,
combining 2 narrow ones,* to be as wide on the top, as my road bike
(road, Nitto, From an early MB1.. drops parallel, bottoms flare
(bar end shifters)


previous..
(Specialized badged Nitto) set they were narrower... drop flares , bottom parallel
sizing is across the bottom, so a 46 bottom but 38 top..


Now I mostly use trekking bars or straight bars ,
With Ergon Grips/bar end shifters ...
with IGH Drivetrains.. not derailleurs..

* having them come apart was an advantage in packing the bike
in an airline carton, to fly across the Atlantic , to tour , over there..


carry on kids..




....

Last edited by fietsbob; 11-21-18 at 01:45 PM.
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Old 11-21-18, 01:39 PM
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Hoods 99% of the time.


-Kedosto
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Old 11-21-18, 01:43 PM
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Yes
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Old 11-21-18, 02:08 PM
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80% hoods, 15% the flats and 5% on the drops...just the way I roll I guess
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Old 11-21-18, 02:48 PM
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At a cruising pace I'm usually down grabbing the tips. I like bars with long tips. On one set of bars I actually bought some Control Tech 20mm bar extensions because they were too short.
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Old 11-21-18, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I see the older road bikes...the bar is higher....the newer compact road bikes...the bar is very low.
So, I think with newer compact geometry, you are forced to ride on the Hood. No way I can bend low enough to hold it in the Drop position on these compact geometry frame.

For this reason, I like the older diamond frame with horizontal top tube...I can get the handlebar quite high.
Compact geometry has nothing to do with stack height. Bars today tend to be lower because that's the modern "look". Which is also why most riders have their hand glued to the hoods. My vintage bikes have almost all had shorter head tubes than my modern bikes.
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Old 11-21-18, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by delbiker1 View Post
I spend much more time on the hoods than any other area. I do change positions frequently and use pretty much the whole handlebar, just not as much as the hoods. I also change position in each one of the specific areas, forward or backward, side to side, straightening, bending the arms and just sort of rolling my shoulder hands or wrists. I have spinal and shoulder issues and even just making small adjustments helps to minimize the stress/fatigue factor. Along that same line I use a more relaxed set up on my bikes. Like bikes themselves, what you like and are comfortable with are very personal. I think for most people that is an ongoing adaptation from bike to bike.
+1 without spinal and shoulder issues, but with hand issues.
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Old 11-21-18, 08:56 PM
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I use them all, and adjust my position regularly on long rides. Often I don't even put my hands on the bars, but rest my forearms on the tops of the bars. This makes me a little more aero, and gives my hands a little break (which is necessary on rides longer than 100 miles). The reason to run road bars is to offer a variety of positions for a variety of riding positions.
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Old 11-22-18, 02:23 AM
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Hoods for “just riding along.” Sometimes on tops if sighting is more important than access to brakes.

Hoods or tops for climbing. Hoods if out of saddle.

Drops for descending. I hit a pothole on a fast downhill on the hoods once and my bars bent down. Very nearly came off. Drops 100% ever since.

Drops or “invisible aero bars” when riding hard on the flat. Sometimes hoods for a change of position.


I have bullhorns on my single speed, and they just aren’t versatile enough.
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Old 11-22-18, 05:32 PM
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Hoods 60% of the time
Tops 20% of the time
Drops 20% of the time
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Old 11-22-18, 11:47 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I see the older road bikes...the bar is higher....the newer compact road bikes...the bar is very low.
So, I think with newer compact geometry, you are forced to ride on the Hood. No way I can bend low enough to hold it in the Drop position on these compact geometry frame.

For this reason, I like the older diamond frame with horizontal top tube...I can get the handlebar quite high.
Are newer bikes using actually lower bars, or is there just less spacer height and so it seems like the bars are lower?

I ride 63-65 cm road bikes. With traditional horizontal top tube geometry, the stack height is close to the seat post height which is the bike measurement.
the same stack height on a modern frame can be had woth a 58cm seatpost.
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Old 11-23-18, 10:55 AM
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For me it depends on the bike.
X4, I'm virtually always in the drops. It feels weird on the hoods as the brake levers are on the downward portion of the bars. When I'm on the hoods I have this uneasy sensation of going over the front of the bike.
Ti Mega tube, I have a set of Cinelli Spinacholi (?). I'm getting to really like these things. In this case I rest my forearms on the top of the bars and I rest my hands on the Spinocholi's.
Carbon Cross, virtually all the time on the hoods.
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Old 11-23-18, 12:30 PM
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I generally ride on the Tops, or the 'shoulders' where the top starts to bend forward, or drops if heading into a strong wind. Never on the hoods since my bars are deep drops, and the brake levers are waaaay out front. In fact my old Fuji doesn't even have hoods!

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Old 11-23-18, 12:39 PM
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Mostly the hoods, but I'll mix it up, especially on long rides. Usually I'm in the drops on descents or when riding into headwinds.
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Old 11-23-18, 07:01 PM
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Generally on the hoods is where I spend most of my days (that or the playground) but since many of my bike use Ergo top section bars I also will spend some time there because it is also comfortable. I am not often in the drops but I am not a flexible person especially these days. If I had any vintage style bars I don't know where I would want to keep my hands, I generally dislike those bars because of the positioning. I know they worked for Merckx but as much as I love Eddy, I am not him and will never even be an iota close to him.
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Old 11-23-18, 07:45 PM
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80% drops most rides, 100% on commutes. If the fit is right drops should be comfortable.
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