high hoods = less reach?
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  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    high hoods = less reach?

    I have ridden for the past year or so with my hoods mounted pretty high - so it appears as a seamless transition from the bar tops into the sti hoods. I also just switched from 44cm Bontragers (ctc) to 44cm ITM (o-o), but I really don' t think that the 2cm is causing a reach problem. According to the websites for each company - the reach should be the same.

    However - I feel like I cannot get the heel of my hand onto the bars while I am on the hoods - and feel like I am hanging on with just my thumb and the pad below my thumb. It feels as though my hand wants to come off the bars where they start to make the bend from the tops into the straight section that the hoods sit on.

    WOuld moving the levers down the bar a bit help this or should I be looking for a new bar?

    THanks, I hope this made sense

    Zach

  2. #2
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    reach..

    Reach is just a measurement of the bar. It can't take into account the differences in the hook's bend radius or the angle of the "ramp down" from the top section to the hook bend. Both will affect your choice of brake hood position. If you have the brake hoods real far up on the hook bend then yes, it obviously reduces reach and could indeed leave no room for the heel of your hand, particularly if you have large hands.

    To make sure I've got about the same reach on a new bar, I record a measurement from the saddle tip to a repeatable spot on the brake hood. With Campy ergo levers, I eyeball the center of the knobby top to be about 68cm from the saddle tip. Another method is to use a one inch dowel spanning between the brake hoods, held tightly where the crook of your thumb rests. Measure from the inside of the bar to the inside of the dowel and record the dimension. This measurement also tells if one lever if closer to the center of the bar than the other one. My Easton EC-90 bars produce a 9cm reading while my previous Sals Poco bars were 8cm, so one size shorter stem was required with the Easton bars.

    Whether moving the shift levers down will help your problem can't be predicted. Why not just try it? Keep in mind that the reach will increase, so you may need a shorter stem.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    I never thought about the bend radius of the hooks. That is exactly where the problem seems to lie. I'll have to compare the new bars to the old - I never thought about the different curves that manufacturers use.While on the hoods - my hand wants to rest right where the curve is on the new bars - perhaps that was a straight section on the old bars.....

    THanks,

    ZAch

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