Archive for Salsa Cycles

Grand Randonneur update

Posted in 'round town, Bicycles, Spring, Surly with tags , , , , , , on May 1, 2010 by jmadams13

Its only been 30 or so miles since I installed the new bars yeasterday, but I have have come to a few conclusions…

1) I got the wrong size.  I had a brain fart at the time and forgot Nitto measures C-C at the end of the drops, which have a nice flare to them.  My old bars were 42cm at the hoods, these measure 42cm at the drops, at 39cm at the hoods.  I have the 45cm version on product watch on QBP

2) Sizing issues aside, I love the gentle rise on the flats.  Was very comfortable in the wrists, as there is a slight inward angle and more natural position.  More-so then a flat bar, or the tops of most drop bars.

3)  I also like the feeling in the drops.  The flare is nice, but not as drastic as dirt drop (the other option I was thinking of trying on the Cross Check) outward sweep, about 13 degrees.  I have always disliked the feeling of the forward curve hitting my wrists when riding in the drops, as I like to climb with my hands on the very end of the drops, and the flare on the rando bars brings the arms out just far enough to clear.  I also have hit the bar end shifter less with my knee at stop lights and dismounting.  A reason I use a down tube shifter for the front derailer (notice I use th Sheldon Brown spelling.)

4)  The non-ergo curve of the drop is a more natural feeling to me.  I never felt comfortable on the ergo section of the curve on my Salsa Bell Lap bars, as I have smaller hands, and have some pinky pain from past pinky finger breaks.  The gentle curve feels right, and is nice and “swooping.”  The same as the curve on Nitto’s Noodle bars.  My personal favorite drop.

5) Because of the flare starting at the top of the drop curve,  the brake levers have a outward angle to them.  Outward at the lever end, and inward at the hood.  I find this to be very natural feeling, as it gives the wrist a inward angle.  Hold your arms out in a fist, and relax the wrist muscles , and notice that they are not perfectly vertical, and the thumbs are kinda angles towards each other.  This is the natural position they (your wrists) want to be in, and this is the position on the hoods the hood angle is in due to the flare.  Of all the aspects of this bar, this is the most the most important reason I wanted to give them a try.  Wrist pain on any ride over 30 miles has kept me from being as efficient as I could be and the reason I have to stop for brakes.  This puts a hamper on wanting to do more serious group and club rides, and keeps the road riding more casual.  Don’t get me wrong, I love a slow and easy stop and smell the flowers ride, actually my favorite kind of ride, but is nice to hammer along with a group once in a while, or take in a long brevet or randonneur with friends.  I have a feeling this hood position will solve that.

All in all, even in the incorrect size, these bars have been the most comfortable bars I have ridden, minus Nitto Mustache bars (but thats a different post for a different day.)  Now I sit and cross my fingers QBP gets some 45cm versions in soon.  More updates to come after a few more miles, and a few more miles in one sitting, not around town errand and pleasure runs.