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Bar Ends - why does no-one use them any more?

HebdenBikerHebdenBiker Posts: 787
edited February 2010 in MTB general
When I started MTBing in 1994, every bike had bar ends. They made climbing a doddle and provided extra hand positions for long days out.

When I got back into the sport last year, I fitted my new Gary Fisher with a pair of X-Lite Stubbies. I seem to be the only rider on the trails that uses them.

SO..... Where did bar ends go, and why? :)
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Posts

  • RevellRiderRevellRider Posts: 1,794
    Simple answer I'd guess is fashion. They aren't 'cool' anymore :(
  • Hmmm I expect you're right, but as I'm not cool at all I'm going to carry on using them 8)
  • stubsstubs Posts: 5,001
    I have a pair which go on the Hardtail bars when I am doing marathon type rides that are mostly on bridleways, fire roads and tarmac. As you say they give a nice variety of hand positions to ward off hand ache. Also they are mustard when your climbing.

    On the bouncer I dont use them because I have quite wide bars and would be worried about hooking them round a tree.
    Fig rolls: proof that god loves cyclists and that she wants us to do another lap
  • Still using them! got a lovely pair of KCNC ones on my Trek
  • perceypercey Posts: 53
    seen many a injury with bar ends, they have been known to do some damage in the chest, leg, or even worse the crown jewels, have been on the recieving end a few times in the early days
  • XC hardtail, straight bars with bar-ends - it's all you need. Pass them all on the hills with a big smile on your face.
  • senojsenoj Posts: 213
    I have them, as said great for climbing out of the saddle,but look uncool,one of my mates loathes them..another reason for me to keep them on :D
  • I seem to have flushed out all of the bar-end users :D And I thought I was the only one 8)
  • stubsstubs Posts: 5,001
    percey wrote:
    seen many a injury with bar ends, they have been known to do some damage in the chest, leg, or even worse the crown jewels, have been on the recieving end a few times in the early days

    I have never seen anyone speared with a bar end. Cant think why they would be any more dangeous than an unadorned handlebar. If a curly bit on the end of the bar is dangerous then a cyclocross bike must be a deathtrap
    Fig rolls: proof that god loves cyclists and that she wants us to do another lap
  • NorthwindNorthwind Posts: 15,475
    If you were going to get hit with a bar end, you'd have been hit with the bar instead- it's like saying car bumpers are dangerous because they're always hitting things, IMO.

    Wider bars do make bar ends less relevant, since the greater leverage means you can honk more effectively than you could with oldschool skinny bars. But you don't get the advantage of the different hand position. Still, I can't say I've ever missed them offroad, I've got a set on my commuter but they just don't seem all that relevant on an mtb.
    Uncompromising extremist
  • I have a set on my commuter, a converted stumpy HT, which i do find handy on long trips to give the hands and wrists a well needed position change and to help with the hills....

    Wouldn't think they'd be very handy on an off road bike though as the majority of the time i'm changing gear or braking so they'd never get a look in...and yeh i think i'd be more worried about getting hooked on a bush.
    Northwind wrote:
    We couldn't break the columns down
    No, we couldn't destroy a single one
    and the history books forgot about us
    and the bible didnt mention us
    Not even once
    your sig just made me listen to a bit of Regina, nice choice ;)
  • gaz047gaz047 Posts: 601
    northwind "Wider bars do make bar ends less relevant, since the greater leverage means you can honk more effectively than you could with oldschool skinny bars."

    totally agree mate, i have barends on my ht and used too on my anthem (both flat bars) and swore by them, especially on enduros where comfort really makes a difference.
    however, cause my low risers on the trance x are pretty wide i've got plenty of leverage (and honking ability) and have enough room to rest my hands in a couple of positions.

    if they work for you then use them, don't worry what others might think
    if it ain't rainin.....it ain't trainin
    Stick your 'rules' up your a%se
  • -Liam--Liam- Posts: 1,831
    Was a barend user. Hooked themselves(lol) in the undergrowth 2 weekends on the trot last year so they was taken off. 2nd time i was travelling at a rate of knotts and did myself some nasty injuries. Since learnt to climb properly as well. Its your legs that get you up hills, not where your arms are!
  • gaz047gaz047 Posts: 601
    hi liam,
    just wondering,
    what do you mean by climb properly?
    and if people find them comfy and feel they offer better leverage then its a good investment (for them)?
    if it ain't rainin.....it ain't trainin
    Stick your 'rules' up your a%se
  • -Liam--Liam- Posts: 1,831
    Your arms and shoulders should be relaxed as you sit at the front of the saddle using the power in your legs rather than using the leverage in your arms to pull you up. Using your arms probably means you aren't making best use of your legs.
  • -Liam--Liam- Posts: 1,831
    I will say that i do miss the extra position and find myself resting my arms over the gear levers purely for the different position it provides on long rides if possible.
  • gaz047gaz047 Posts: 601
    if your resting your hands on the bar ends, will your arms and shoulders not be in a similar state as if your hands are on the bars ie on a fireroad climb? if the climb is technical, then you'll be using your arms and shoulders anyway whether their on bar ends or bars (imo)?

    liam wrote
    find myself resting my arms over the gear levers purely for the different position it provides on long rides if possible.

    funnily enough i do the same, so its not just me then!!
    if it ain't rainin.....it ain't trainin
    Stick your 'rules' up your a%se
  • I use them because I like them.
  • colintravcolintrav Posts: 1,074
    When I started MTBing in 1994, every bike had bar ends. They made climbing a doddle and provided extra hand positions for long days out.

    When I got back into the sport last year, I fitted my new Gary Fisher with a pair of X-Lite Stubbies. I seem to be the only rider on the trails that uses them.

    SO..... Where did bar ends go, and why? :)


    I'll say this I could used them the day ... they defo come in handy .. I might take the ones of my old ride and fit em on
  • turnerjohnturnerjohn Posts: 1,249
    I still use them..ace for climbing...although thats on straight bars...look bit weird with risers !
    Oh on the damage front, stacked it years ago right onto one...cracked a rib and hurt like hell...not put me off using them tho lol
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,692
    i tried bar ends off road for a while but found i hardly ever used them as i like to cover my brakes all the time, even when climbing (to help me deal with the inevitable stall moments)

    i had a set of cane creek ergo grips on my flat bar road bike and they were superb, but again, i wouldnt have used them off road.

    perhaps as mentioned above they became less necessary as bars got wider.
  • using bar ends on climbs is similar to the standing / seating whilst climbing scenario. you are using 2 different muscle groups. on flat bars one set of muscles get used, switch to bar ends and your elbows come further in so you use a different set of muscles whilst the other set gets a respite. with regards to hooking things, try smaller bar ends like ergons, more chance of the peddle hooking things than them tiny things. bar ends rock.
    Cotic Soul rider.
  • bike-a-swanbike-a-swan Posts: 1,235
    i used to swear by them , then they gradually got on my nerves as i started moving my hands wider on the bars in tricky bits. I keep meaning to put some back on for long rides. Maybe inboard of the grips, that probably works out about the same position on my risers as they would have been at the ends of my flats..
    Rock Lobster 853, Trek 1200 and a very old, tired and loved Apollo Javelin.
  • i used to swear by them , then they gradually got on my nerves as i started moving my hands wider on the bars in tricky bits. I keep meaning to put some back on for long rides. Maybe inboard of the grips, that probably works out about the same position on my risers as they would have been at the ends of my flats..


    that's why i use ergons and grip shifts, loads of room on the bars and i use carbon wide risers.
    Cotic Soul rider.
  • seatalteaseataltea Posts: 594
    Fitted a pair from Decathlon only yesterday to my new Muddyfox Milano Hybrid for commuting, they make a huge difference when climbing real Pennine hills out of the saddle.

    Already fitted to my Boardman HT Pro (which climbs like a rocket and is soon to be fitted with X0 gripshifters) and the currently in pieces Rockrider 6.3.

    If I don't use them it feels like I am only partially using the muscles I have available to help climb, they are a no brainer in my area.

    You've gotta love Decathlon, for £11 I got ergonomic foam grips and 130g alloy bar ends.

    Fashion ? do me a favour why would I care what anybody thinks, I'm an adult.

    As for injuries, I had a handlebar end without a bar end cut a neat little circle into my inner thigh last year during a MTB marathon just like a cookie cutter, if it's going to happen you can't avoid it.
    'nulla tenaci invia est via'
    FCN4
    Boardman HT Pro fully X0'd
    CUBE Peleton 2012
    Genesis Aether 20 all season commuter
  • .blitz.blitz Posts: 6,588
    Yup still using them. They work well with flat narrow bars and steep head angles.
  • bike-a-swanbike-a-swan Posts: 1,235
    that's why i use ergons and grip shifts, loads of room on the bars and i use carbon wide risers.

    I can't get on with ergons or grip shifts on a mountain bike. for a hybrid or flat bar tourer the ergons are fantastic, but they irritate me whenever i've tried them on a mtb.
    Rock Lobster 853, Trek 1200 and a very old, tired and loved Apollo Javelin.
  • El CapitanoEl Capitano Posts: 13,671
    IIRC, barends were designed for ex-roadies to have their hands in a similar position to that of riding road bars. (I may be wrong).

    Still use them on the XC race bike, with flat bars. Gives you an extra hand position when enduro racing. Agree about the 'light touch' on the handlebars when climbing, however when I'm out of the saddle stopming on the the pedals, pushing a large gear, I prefer my hands to be on the bar ends. Never had any issues with them hitting various parts of my body in crashes.
  • Paul 8vPaul 8v Posts: 5,458
    If I'm in the gym on the bike really going for it I find my hands moving to the position which is simular to bar ends so they might be the right thing for me, I'm an out of the saddle rider when it comes to the steep stuff I just don't think it'd look right having the bar ends with riser bars.
  • colintravcolintrav Posts: 1,074
    I cannablised the ends of my old bike and put em on my new bike ... they has some visable rust on them and took a wire scourer to them and they cleaned up very nice I must admit ..


    And it was sheer bliss today .. on par with a cream pie

    Here is a couple of pics I took

    dsc00124ut.jpg


    dsc00125vg.jpg

    i cut the end of grip off so i could get em on ..

    B4 ^ and after v

    dsc00127vt.jpg


    dsc00126a.jpg

    I know the bolts has some visable rust will replace them when I get paid ..
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