Why no Flat bar bikes?

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Why no Flat bar bikes?
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Posted: Jan 2, 2021 at 15:54 Quote
With the cross-over from mtb to road and gravel, the bikes are becoming more dirt oriented. But drop bars on an off-road bike just are very uncomfortable and hard to control for me. I've been looking many places and it seems flat bar bikes with road or gravel geo are non-existant. The closest bikes are Spec Sirrus and Trek FX series but they bill them more as "fitness" bikes. Strange.

Being that for a road/gravel bike, I love the feel of titanium. I was thinking of going custom with Carver but we're looking at 2-3+ months. Spec. has a new flat bar gravel bike but it has an alum frame, which would ride like a rock.

Anyone know of a titanium or carbon bike flat bar road/gravel geometry? Oh, and it would be nice to have room for a suspension seatpost and 50-60mm fork like the Fox AX (need downtube clearance).

Posted: Jan 2, 2021 at 18:47 Quote
suspension, flat bars, short travel fork, wide tire clearance. hmmmmmmmmmm

Posted: Jan 3, 2021 at 6:25 Quote
There are videos on this. From my perspective, flat bars just aren't comfortable for long rides when you stay in the same general position the whole time. Have you tried wider drop bars with less reach and drop?

https://www.google.com/search?q=gravel+bike+flat+bar&safe=off&client=ms-android-samsung-ss&prmd=isvn&sxsrf=ALeKk03qSHeccI4wwmJrzy10pmw8AWloDA:1609683592552&source=lnms&tbm=vid&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjg3e_V-v_tAhXlMn0KHdBMB60Q_AUoA3oECAQQAw&biw=412&bih=733&dpr=2.63#

Posted: Jan 3, 2021 at 20:55 Quote
rahrider wrote:
There are videos on this. From my perspective, flat bars just aren't comfortable for long rides when you stay in the same general position the whole time. Have you tried wider drop bars with less reach and drop?

https://www.google.com/search?q=gravel+bike+flat+bar&safe=off&client=ms-android-samsung-ss&prmd=isvn&sxsrf=ALeKk03qSHeccI4wwmJrzy10pmw8AWloDA:1609683592552&source=lnms&tbm=vid&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjg3e_V-v_tAhXlMn0KHdBMB60Q_AUoA3oECAQQAw&biw=412&bih=733&dpr=2.63#

Coming from a mtb primary riding background, flat bars are ergonomically more comfortable for me. A more neutral wrist position too for operating the brakes and shifters. And not all the upper body weight on the thumb web area of the hand.

I just rode some gravel bikes, Trek FXs, and 29ers. The forward position of the gravel bikes with drop bars was very uncomfortable, just as I last remember when I had a road bike.

Posted: Jan 3, 2021 at 22:29 Quote
holytrails wrote:
rahrider wrote:
There are videos on this. From my perspective, flat bars just aren't comfortable for long rides when you stay in the same general position the whole time. Have you tried wider drop bars with less reach and drop?

https://www.google.com/search?q=gravel+bike+flat+bar&safe=off&client=ms-android-samsung-ss&prmd=isvn&sxsrf=ALeKk03qSHeccI4wwmJrzy10pmw8AWloDA:1609683592552&source=lnms&tbm=vid&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjg3e_V-v_tAhXlMn0KHdBMB60Q_AUoA3oECAQQAw&biw=412&bih=733&dpr=2.63#

Coming from a mtb primary riding background, flat bars are ergonomically more comfortable for me. A more neutral wrist position too for operating the brakes and shifters. And not all the upper body weight on the thumb web area of the hand.

I just rode some gravel bikes, Trek FXs, and 29ers. The forward position of the gravel bikes with drop bars was very uncomfortable, just as I last remember when I had a road bike.

To each their own. I know that I need a bar with a reduced drop, as I don't have the flexibility to reach the drops comfortably. On dirt, a gravel bike should be ridden in the drops, so there should not really be any pressure on the web of the hand and the wrist position is very neutral without any pronation needed. If you can't ride the bike comfortably in the drops and need a flat bar, it is either the wrong frame geo or the wrong bar/stem setup imo.

Interestimgly, I tried a dropper post on my gravel bike and didn't like it. I think you need a wider bar to stabilize the bike when the seat goes down. Turns out I use the seat to help control the bike on descents on my gravel bike whereas I have no use for it on my mtb bikes.

Posted: Jan 3, 2021 at 23:06 Quote
holytrails wrote:
With the cross-over from mtb to road and gravel, the bikes are becoming more dirt oriented. But drop bars on an off-road bike just are very uncomfortable and hard to control for me. I've been looking many places and it seems flat bar bikes with road or gravel geo are non-existant. The closest bikes are Spec Sirrus and Trek FX series but they bill them more as "fitness" bikes. Strange.

Being that for a road/gravel bike, I love the feel of titanium. I was thinking of going custom with Carver but we're looking at 2-3+ months. Spec. has a new flat bar gravel bike but it has an alum frame, which would ride like a rock.

Anyone know of a titanium or carbon bike flat bar road/gravel geometry? Oh, and it would be nice to have room for a suspension seatpost and 50-60mm fork like the Fox AX (need downtube clearance).


Specialized has a flatbar version of it's diverge gravel bike

Posted: Jan 4, 2021 at 1:39 Quote
rahrider wrote:
holytrails wrote:
rahrider wrote:
There are videos on this. From my perspective, flat bars just aren't comfortable for long rides when you stay in the same general position the whole time. Have you tried wider drop bars with less reach and drop?

https://www.google.com/search?q=gravel+bike+flat+bar&safe=off&client=ms-android-samsung-ss&prmd=isvn&sxsrf=ALeKk03qSHeccI4wwmJrzy10pmw8AWloDA:1609683592552&source=lnms&tbm=vid&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjg3e_V-v_tAhXlMn0KHdBMB60Q_AUoA3oECAQQAw&biw=412&bih=733&dpr=2.63#

Coming from a mtb primary riding background, flat bars are ergonomically more comfortable for me. A more neutral wrist position too for operating the brakes and shifters. And not all the upper body weight on the thumb web area of the hand.

I just rode some gravel bikes, Trek FXs, and 29ers. The forward position of the gravel bikes with drop bars was very uncomfortable, just as I last remember when I had a road bike.

To each their own. I know that I need a bar with a reduced drop, as I don't have the flexibility to reach the drops comfortably. On dirt, a gravel bike should be ridden in the drops, so there should not really be any pressure on the web of the hand and the wrist position is very neutral without any pronation needed. If you can't ride the bike comfortably in the drops and need a flat bar, it is either the wrong frame geo or the wrong bar/stem setup imo.

Interestimgly, I tried a dropper post on my gravel bike and didn't like it. I think you need a wider bar to stabilize the bike when the seat goes down. Turns out I use the seat to help control the bike on descents on my gravel bike whereas I have no use for it on my mtb bikes.

Just by the nature of the geo of gravel bikes being with the bars lower than the seat height theres more weight on the hands/upper body. After riding the gravel bikes today I know I dont want a gravel bike. They're just too uncomfortable. I'm just going to have to go 29er. I'd like to find a carbon rigid fork to fit the 29er but can't find anything with a tall axle to crown height for the frames I'm looking into.

I'm sold on titanium although carbon is okay too. Definitely aluminum is out. I think the carbon Spec Sirrus really would suit me well but out of stock with no ETAs. So I'm looking into building up a 29er to be an upright road bike, preferrably with rigid fork or the Fox AX, or other 40-60mm travel forks.

Posted: Jan 13, 2021 at 15:25 Quote
There are some, but flat or alt bars on a gravel bike is not really what gravel riding is about. If you want a gravel bike with a flat or an alt bar then I'd find the frame you like and then build it up flat bar / alt bar to your specifications. The thing to be mindful of is that the reach on the gravel frame will be more like the reach on a road bike so you will want to adjust the stem length accordingly. Also, if you go alt bar, I've read that alt bars are best mounted with the bar ends pointing slightly downward. Check out Russ on the Path Less Pedaled vlog to see what he'd done when swapping to alt bars.

Posted: Jan 24, 2021 at 8:02 Quote
I ride a Knolly Cache Ti with more progressive gravel geometry (ie MTBish long reach short stem). The key is wide drop bars and a dropper post. My bike has Ritchey WCS VENTUREMAX XL Dropbar 520 mm vs 440-460 most gravel bike have.

Posted: Feb 6, 2022 at 8:22 Quote
I bought this flat handlebar bike for my younger brother's diamondback cobra 20, and they look awesome. I "tested" them with some bunny hops before I gave the bike back to him, and they held my 210lb self up fine, so I'm sure they'll be great for him. I think the rise is perfect for his setup. He seems to like them too!

Posted: Jul 4, 2022 at 7:24 Quote
Handlebars can be had cheap, just replace to suit as needed

Posted: Jul 4, 2022 at 7:40 Quote
An idea would be to get hold of a good frame that'll take a tapered steerer, as FOX only recently brought out a gravel fork. You can couple that with a suspension seatpost for even more comfort.

Don't know how long the steerer is though, but could possibly even use some spacers and an XC stem with some MTB bars of your choosing.

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