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Tri bars

pippip Posts: 170
I was wondering do they work or are they just a gimmick.I`ve got a pretty good race bike ,light and very firm(bit like the wife but thats another story)and i average around 30 kph for about 40 k`s.I`ve got some tri bars and i`m undecided whether to fit them or not.Will they help my performance?????


  • MGMG Posts: 470
    They certainly do work!! However, initialy they will feel odd. The steering will feel super sensitive and youl maybe have second thoughts. Everyone goes through this, stick with it, train, commute and turbo with them and soon enough theyll feel natural.

    Also you may feel a slight loss of power when starting out with the bars, again this is normal and the more you use them the more conditioned you become.

    Trust me, they do work and they will (after training with them for a bit) definately knock a few minutes of your 40km time.

    When setting the bars up use a mirror for a side on view. Idealy youll want a flat back and your arms (from shoulder to elbow) should follow a line down through your forks.

  • GGBGGB Posts: 482
    I recently purchased some Tri bars from Ebay - only cheap but thought would try them out and see if I got on with them before spending £££ on some -

    They are great - I find it much easier to go faster for longer and find them quite comfortable too - they take a bit of fiddling with to get them right for you but definately worth it IMO.

  • pippip Posts: 170
    Just fitted some and tomorrow i`m doing a 40k,er so i`ll see if they make any difference to my time
  • nivaghnivagh Posts: 595

    If you're still not convinced, find a local hill and time yourself rolling down it on the top of your bars, on the drops and on the tri bars.

    I'll eat my laptop if the tri bars aren't the fastest configuration. Maybe.
  • ironkavironkav Posts: 259
    Ive read though that tri bars can cause a lot of discomfort on a road bike due to the over stretching of the person. On a triathlon specific bike the angles of the frame are different, and its much more comfortable and stress free on your body.

  • pippip Posts: 170
    Did the hill thing and they are much more efficicient than crouching on drops,but i did find them a tad uncomfy when i used them for more than 15 mins.Ididn`t do my best time but it was windy and swirling around in all directions,so i`ll give `em another go on a windless day and see if my time improves
  • GGBGGB Posts: 482
    I think you have to adjust the tri bars a lot to get them to suit you - i.e adjust the handlebar height if you can and adjust the angle and legnth of the bars- I was pretty lucky with mine and have no problems on them for reasonably long periods of time. Am still not 100% sure if they are set correctly but only time will tell.

  • ironkavironkav Posts: 259
    So am i right or wrong that tri-bars are not best suited for road-bikes.

    If I am wrong, Im heading for wiggle.. else Im going to wait til I purchase a tri specific bike

  • jon_gjon_g Posts: 318
    they arent really ideal for road bikes, but so long as you get them set up correctly they will be quicker as long as you train on them! and they are only an advantage if you actually use them in a race. like over 80% of the time on your bike you should be on them
  • ironkavironkav Posts: 259
    Hey J-ong

    Have you a road bike with tri bars?

    Did you adjust the angle of the seat or make any other changes?


  • jon_gjon_g Posts: 318
    i do have a road bike with aerobars on (although theyre not currently on my race bike as thyere on my turbo bike).

    i did the usual stuff, i turned my seatpost around and slid the saddle forward on the rails (not all seatposts can be flipped around though, but you will be able to slide the saddle forward anyway) and raised the seatpost. i also dropped my handlebars. basically i set myself up to be as comfortable and aero as i can be while on the aerobars. so my position off the aero bars is completely wrong, but i dont mind as the only time im off them is when i'm braking to slow for a corner.

    read recently that if the best aerobars for a road bike are actually the 'shorty' style ones, the ones that are leagal for drafting races as they allow you to stay in your optimum road bike setup but still get aero
  • ironkavironkav Posts: 259

    sounds like a plan. however I think Ill try it out on the turbo trainer bike I am building and test out angles, adjustments there first before touching my race bike.

    Quick q. Why turn the seat post around?

    Thanks for advice.

  • BopomofoBopomofo Posts: 980
    Why turn the seat post around

    Brings the seat a lot further forwards. See my post about converting my Dolan: my seat post wasn't reversible so I bought a forwards post.

  • JulesJules Posts: 987
    I'm just playing with the setup of the new bike. Should I therefore in theory be lowering the stem as far as possible, ie taking all the spacers out, to get as low as possible on the bars?
  • ironkavironkav Posts: 259
    Brings the seat a lot further forwards. See my post about converting my Dolan: my seat post wasn't reversible so I bought a forwards post.

    SO in theory you are now closer to the handle bars similar to a tri specific bike.?

  • BopomofoBopomofo Posts: 980
    Jules & ironkav... to my simple mind just doing one of these things would not be correct. Dropping the bars is good BUT you are going to be closing up your hip angle and kneeing yourself in the gut/chest. To open this angle you need to move your seat forwards. Now your bars may be too close, so perhaps you need a longer stem, or to do a 'full' TT cockpit like I did, where I had done the measurements to make sure it moved the bars forwards a bit.

    In general, us triathletes like low bars and a forwards seat position, but there's only so far a road-geometry frame will let you go before you need to do something more drastic - like fit a new seat post, or indeed buy a TT bike.
  • ironkavironkav Posts: 259
    I suppose this goes back to my original thought of frame restrictions due to angle differences, length etc.

    I will give your other thread a good read.

    Im sure ill be back with more questions.

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