Raising Handlebars

KMC1993
KMC1993 Posts: 101
edited May 2013 in Workshop
Hi,
I need to raise the handlebars but have no idea where to start. I think they are thread-less but not really sure what that means. Can they be raised or do you have to buy a new stem?

Comments

  • nicklouse
    nicklouse Posts: 50,675
    flip the stem or change it.

    bit a picture or link to your exact bike model would help ID it.

    headset info can be found on Parktools.
    "Do not follow where the path may lead, Go instead where there is no path, and Leave a Trail."
    Parktools :?:SheldonBrown
  • Flipping the stem is the only simple cheap thing you can do, assuming any spacers you have are all under the stem.
  • lotus49
    lotus49 Posts: 763
    KMC1993 wrote:
    Hi,
    I need to raise the handlebars but have no idea where to start. I think they are thread-less but not really sure what that means. Can they be raised or do you have to buy a new stem?
    Might we ask why you want to raise them?

    If you are new to road bikes it is likely that you just need to get used to them.

    I see you are new here but of course I have no way of judging what your level of knowledge of bike fitting is but most people seem to find that the bars feel low when they start but that's just because they aren't used to it. You would generally expect the bars to be considerably lower than the saddle for most people on a bike that fits them.

    If you are a beginner then don't start making big adjustments willy nilly until you have at least a basic understanding of what you are doing.
  • KMC1993
    KMC1993 Posts: 101
    I am new to road cycling yes. Currently the handlebars are 5 inches below the saddle which just seems a bit extreme to me, is this the sort of distance you should have? If so I will just leave them and get used to it.
  • declan1
    declan1 Posts: 2,470
    Try and get used to it if you can. My dad's handlebars are 6.5 inches below the saddle and he has no problems at all (not saying you won't).

    Road - Dolan Preffisio
    MTB - On-One Inbred

    I have no idea what's going on here.
  • wiggofan
    wiggofan Posts: 30
    Not trying to hijack the thread but my question is so similar I'm reluctant to start a new one.

    Due to lower back problems I need the saddle/handlebar height as near as possible (can withstand a VERY slight bar drop). The threadless headset of the road bike I'm interested in has all its spacers below the stem so no scope there to raise the bars. I'm looking to raise by at least 4 inches.

    Is there anything (or combination of things) that isn't too expensive or too much hassle that will give me the 4 inch plus rise I'm looking for? Any suggestions really appreciate.

    PS It was so much simpler when I was a kid with threaded headsets :(
    No longer a Wiggo fan
  • gloomyandy
    gloomyandy Posts: 520
    You might get a more sympathetic hearing for these requests over on the ctc forums. Having higher bars is not uncommon among touring cyclists so they have come up with a number of ways of doing just that. A search of those forums will probably turn up answers.
  • declan1
    declan1 Posts: 2,470
    wiggofan wrote:
    Not trying to hijack the thread but my question is so similar I'm reluctant to start a new one.

    Due to lower back problems I need the saddle/handlebar height as near as possible (can withstand a VERY slight bar drop). The threadless headset of the road bike I'm interested in has all its spacers below the stem so no scope there to raise the bars. I'm looking to raise by at least 4 inches.

    Is there anything (or combination of things) that isn't too expensive or too much hassle that will give me the 4 inch plus rise I'm looking for? Any suggestions really appreciate.

    PS It was so much simpler when I was a kid with threaded headsets :(

    Have a look at endurance bikes. They have very tall headtubes so you can have an equal bar/saddle height without too many spacers.

    Road - Dolan Preffisio
    MTB - On-One Inbred

    I have no idea what's going on here.
  • sungod
    sungod Posts: 16,888
    wiggofan wrote:
    Not trying to hijack the thread but my question is so similar I'm reluctant to start a new one.

    Due to lower back problems I need the saddle/handlebar height as near as possible (can withstand a VERY slight bar drop). The threadless headset of the road bike I'm interested in has all its spacers below the stem so no scope there to raise the bars. I'm looking to raise by at least 4 inches.

    Is there anything (or combination of things) that isn't too expensive or too much hassle that will give me the 4 inch plus rise I'm looking for? Any suggestions really appreciate.

    PS It was so much simpler when I was a kid with threaded headsets :(

    depends on the current stem what the effect would be, but if you fitted something like a cinelli pista track stem flipped that gives a fair bit of rise, if it's not enough there are adjustable stems that allow a lot of rise

    adding a lot of rise you do need to also watch stem length, more rise shortens the effective length so you may need a longer stem than expected

    there's a handy stem calculator here that will allow you to check the effect wrt to your current set-up...

    http://alex.phred.org/stemchart/
    my bike - faster than god's and twice as shiny
  • lotus49
    lotus49 Posts: 763
    KMC1993 wrote:
    I am new to road cycling yes. Currently the handlebars are 5 inches below the saddle which just seems a bit extreme to me, is this the sort of distance you should have? If so I will just leave them and get used to it.
    It certainly doesn't sound unusual. It might help if you are able to post a photo of yourself seated on the bike so we can see.

    This isn't something to beat yourself up about so if you really cannot get on with low handlebars then don't suffer for no reason but most experienced roadies do have the seat considerably higher than the bars. If you are used to riding a hybrid or MTB it will feel like a long way down at first.

    There may be particular reasons for having higher bars for example a lack of back flexibility. This is fairly unusual though so it would be worth at least giving it a couple of weeks as they are and seeing how you get on.
  • night_porter
    night_porter Posts: 888
    There is always a solution because someone has always had the same problem before you. Try this http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/humpert-ahea ... prod29875/

    Not pretty but comfort keeps you on your bike rather than not...

    NP
  • wishitwasallflat
    wishitwasallflat Posts: 2,927
    Don't want to complicate things and it is a genuine question cause I too can't take much seat to bar drop due to old back problems -

    Is it safe to have that much steerer (with or without the extension device) above the frame? Four inches plus seems a lot to me does that not upset handling and make the steerer vulnerable to undue stress? Are steerers not meant to be largely inside head tubes?

    As I say genuine question not stirring it - e.g. I got a Sectuer so I could get the geo I needed without extreme adaptations. Would it not be wiser to take whatever financial hit there may be - sell the bike with the geo that doesn't work for you and get something like a Secteur with a tall head tube for just this issue?
  • night_porter
    night_porter Posts: 888
    Whilst it may not look pretty but I doubt that it would cause undue stresses, after all the steerer tube would still be in the frame as before. Also it is worth noting that before ahead systems people had lots of post showing without any problems.

    I think the op was asking for a "cheap" solution and selling the bike and taking the hit doesn't sound very cheap to me.

    NP
  • KMC1993
    KMC1993 Posts: 101

    I think the op was asking for a "cheap" solution and selling the bike and taking the hit doesn't sound very cheap to me.

    NP

    yep definitely wanting a cheap solution and going by the majority of responses the best thing to do is just get used to it. I will accept that as it means i dont have to spend any money :D
  • Schoie81
    Schoie81 Posts: 749
    KMC,

    I think i'm in a similar boat to you - been MTBing for 2 years but got a brand new road bike last week. The riding position feels very alien and very uncomfortable - but i've taken the stance that its one of the differences between road bikes and MTBs and if I can't get used to it then road bikes probably aren't for me. I've only done a couple of rides and it is getting to seem a bit more normal now. confidence and experience i'm sure will help, but will only come with time and miles in the saddle.

    I'd say "stick with it", for a while at least, see how you go.
    "I look pretty young, but I'm just back-dated"
  • whoof
    whoof Posts: 756
    Sorry to raise another issue, but is your saddle at the correct height? I do see quite a few people riding with the saddle so high they will probably be singing soprano at the end of the journey.
    Please see below for advice.
    http://www.bikeradar.com/fitness/articl ... ght-14608/

    It could be that yuor saddle it to high rather than your stem too low or a combination of both.