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Aero bars - any good?

Gav888Gav888 Posts: 946
edited October 2008 in Road beginners
Hi,

Ive got another post regarding which road bike to get, but today ive been looking at a few flat barred road bikes and they tend to be a bit cheaper than drop bars for some reason?

So this got me thinking, im wondering ifs its worth getting a flat bar bike and fitting aero bars to it. Has anyone done this, if so, how is the bike to ride. Something like these - http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Profile-Carbon-St ... 286.c0.m14

Partly I would do this to save money over a drop bar road bike, but also I like the riding position, from what ive read its more comfortable and quicker.

I cannot find anything in the search, so what are your thoughts on aero bars in general be it on a flat or drop bar bike?

Cheers
Cycling never gets any easier, you just go faster - Greg LeMond

Posts

  • zaneszanes Posts: 563
    So long as you don't have to use the brake in a hurry :wink:
  • BuglyBugly Posts: 520
    would not ride with aero bars in traffic (bicycle or motorised). Also hybrids are not designed as a racing style bike - the geometry and the gearing are not especially well suited to riding in a TT postition.

    It will work - but handling, comfort and visibility are going to be compromised.
  • InfamousInfamous Posts: 1,158
    Tribars were the best thing I ever got for my bike. In terms of speed, they are only slightly faster than drops, but the difference is bigger the faster you go (in my experience). They are a LOT more comfortable than riding on the drops, although you do have to get used to the bent over position.

    It takes a little getting used to, but after a few weeks you will be on them all the time.

    as Zanes says, you are away from the brakes, however it's just a case of getting used to them and picking the right time to get down/get up. The other day, I got up to 40 mph, needed to brake and simply left one hand on the tribars and used the other to brake.
    It will work - but handling, comfort and visibility are going to be compromised.
    Once you are used to them, the handling is no different to normal, only on the tightest of bends do you need to come off them. However, they are more comfortable than the drops and they are a lot softer on the hands than any other position. As for visibility, a normal road bike wont go low enough for visibility to be a factor, you only tend to go as low as you do when on the drops.

    I would myself would go for flat bars with tribars, but if you intend to race, you'll need drops.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Aero bars are great for speed - but what do you want them for ? Not great for riding in traffic - good for time trialling/triathlons/fast riding on quiet roads.
  • I've got a pair of these. Got them from Chain Reaction for £99 so looks like you may get yourself a bargain.

    It takes a while to set the position up to exactly how you want it. I saw someone at a recent TT with a totally different set up to how mine were at the time. I went home, changed the hand position (closer together) brought my elbows in a little more and shaved 30 seconds of my PB.

    They are low weight due to the fact they're carbon and the pads are very comfy indeed.
  • Gav888Gav888 Posts: 946
    I will be using the bike for solo runs, i wont be doing any racing. I have a few routes round here that are nice and long and mainly flat, so I plan to time myself on these routes, one is a shorter route of 10miles so I will probably do a few laps once im fitter :wink:

    Some of them are in heavy traffic but a 40mph limit zone, but there are cycle lanes the whole route, also about 50% of the route is quietish country lanes.

    How would it be if you hit a bump in the tri position, on my mtb it would pull / push the bar quite a bit, i would image in the tri position it would have you off the bike??

    Bike wise, im thinking of fitting the tri bars to something like this - http://www.winstanleysbikes.co.uk/produ ... _Bike_2008 but this is only an idea, I may still get a drop bar bike and still fit tri bars to that, at present im unsure which bike to get and how much to spend..... but above is looking favourable.

    Also, are there any favoured tri bars, searching online there are loads of different styles, is it really what best suites you.

    Cheers
    Cycling never gets any easier, you just go faster - Greg LeMond
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    If it just to do your routes a bit faster - then I'd not really bother. A decent position on aero bars would get you an extra 2mph or so - but you're chasing speed without getting fitter. Eventually you'd end up with overshoes, aero helmet and a full on TT bike.....

    You can get a pretty low position using bar ends - thats what I use when I'm out on the MTB. The tribars wont be great on a flat bar bike - between them and the gears - they'll use all of your bar space - so where to mount lights and computers.

    Just enjoy riding. Once you have a few miles in your legs - you may want to rethink the tri bar thing - I'd not advise a beginner to jump onto them.
  • gkerr4gkerr4 Posts: 3,408
    aero bars - yes - lovely - the chocolate with the bubbles?

    - I used to like the mint-chocolate one best.
  • InfamousInfamous Posts: 1,158
    Gav888 wrote:
    How would it be if you hit a bump in the tri position, on my mtb it would pull / push the bar quite a bit, i would image in the tri position it would have you off the bike??

    Bike wise, im thinking of fitting the tri bars to something like this - http://www.winstanleysbikes.co.uk/produ ... _Bike_2008 but this is only an idea, I may still get a drop bar bike and still fit tri bars to that, at present im unsure which bike to get and how much to spend..... but above is looking favourable.

    Also, are there any favoured tri bars, searching online there are loads of different styles, is it really what best suites you.

    Cheers
    If you hit a bump, you just feel it more. You have more of your body in contact with the bars, so they move around less. Turning sharp corners is the only handling issue, you need to sit up to go round a fast bend.

    As for the bike, you could probably get a drop bar for £300. Carbon bars may not be the best, I think they can crack if you overtighten them. But they are the lightest.

    cougie has a good idea, if you get a flat bar, get some bar ends AND some tribars.

    Also, if in the future you ever intend to race a TT, you could buy a adjustable stem, move you seat forward and get 95% of the speed benefit of a TT frame.
  • OnanOnan Posts: 321
    Gav888 wrote:
    Hi,

    Ive got another post regarding which road bike to get, but today ive been looking at a few flat barred road bikes and they tend to be a bit cheaper than drop bars for some reason?

    So this got me thinking, im wondering ifs its worth getting a flat bar bike and fitting aero bars to it. Has anyone done this, if so, how is the bike to ride. Something like these - http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Profile-Carbon-St ... 286.c0.m14

    Partly I would do this to save money over a drop bar road bike, but also I like the riding position, from what ive read its more comfortable and quicker.

    I cannot find anything in the search, so what are your thoughts on aero bars in general be it on a flat or drop bar bike?

    Cheers

    Drop bars are more expensive because they use integrated shifters. Bikes with flat bars are cheaper because integrated gear and break levers for drop bars are very expensive.
    Drink poison. Wrestle snakes.
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