Flat bars on a road bike

amaferanga Posts: 6,789
edited September 2009 in Workshop
I've decided to convert my girlfriends road bike to flat bars, basically so she will start using it more. It's not something I'd ever do for myself, but she just doesn't like road sti's with the result being that she prefers to ride her Halfords Carrera over the nice road bike I put together for her :?

I've got some brake levers that'll work with the road brakes, but I'm not sure what the best (read cheapest) option is regarding gears. It's 9-speed Tiagra at the moment. I believe that mtb shifters won't work perfectly with the front derailleur. I read somewhere that you can get away with them for a double/compact though. Is this right? If so then all I need do is get some 9-speed mtb shifters. Otherwise I'd be looking at getting some R440 shifters, but I think these might need special front and rear derailleurs. Is this right?

More problems but still living....


  • I ran R440 shifters with tiagra front (double) and rear mechs for a while and it worked perfect. Don't know why they say they only work with a certain front mech.
  • maddog 2
    maddog 2 Posts: 8,114
    mtb shifter will be fine for the rear mech, as mtb and road mechs are the same in terms of cable pull.

    It's the front shifter that's the issue. A mtb shifter pulls to much cable for a road FD. You can get round this on a double/compact chainset by using the limit screws i.e. use the low limit screw to limit the overshift.

    The R440 front shifter would be the ideal situation though, as it pulls less cable and this is easier to setup and use. AFAIK they work fine with road FDs, although Shimano do say they should be matched with a R440 FD so I can't confirm this absolutely. Again, with a double/compact you'll be fine I suspect. It's just the triples that need to be fully spot on compatibility-wise.

    R440s come up on ebay quite often, with many riders going the other way, from flats to drops.
    Facts are meaningless, you can use facts to prove anything that's remotely true! - Homer
  • amaferanga
    amaferanga Posts: 6,789
    Thanks for the replies. I did a quick ebay search and found some (nearly) new R440's for £22.50 so snapped them up!
    More problems but still living....