Can You Put Road Bike Handlebars on a Mountain Bike?

Can You Put Road Bike Handlebars on a Mountain Bike

One way to take your mountain biking to the next level is by putting road bike handlebars on your mountain bike. But what are the things you need to consider before doing so? So, whether you’re looking for more comfort, aerodynamics, or leverage, we’ll see if road bike handlebars are the right fit for your mountain bike.

Can You Put Drop Handlebars on a Mountain Bike?

It is entirely possible to install drop handlebars on an MTB.

To do this, you need to buy a new stem and brake cables that are compatible with the mountain bike drop bars.

Once you have the right materials, you can select the ideal drop bars for you and remove your handlebars from the bike to install the fresh drop bars. [1]

Buying a new stem and brake cables

When installing drop handlebars on your mountain bike, you’ll obviously need to purchase a new stem and brake cables compatible with the mountain bike drop bars.

Here are a few things to consider when purchasing these items:

– Look for a stem that is the correct length for your new handlebars. A stem that is too short or too long can affect your bike’s handling and stability.

– Make sure the stem you choose is compatible with your mountain bike’s fork steerer tube diameter.

– Choose brake cables that are long enough to reach your new drop bar brakes and shifters. It’s also important to ensure these cables are compatible with your mountain bike’s braking system.

– Consider purchasing new shift cables as well to match the new handlebars and stem. This will help ensure smooth shifting and reduce the risk of cable damage. [2]

Why You Should Put Drop Bars on a Mountain Bike

1- Drop bars provide comfort and aesthetics

Drop on a mountain bike provide the rider with both comfort as well as aesthetics. [3]

2- Drop bars allow hands three distinct positions

Drop handlebars provide various hand positions for bikers. They allow hands various different positions including on the bars, in the drops and on the hoods. This feature is essential for bikers on long commutes as it helps relieve the pressure on their hands and provides a comfortable ride.

This effectively helps the riders climb the hills more efficiently.

Furthermore, when climbing uphill, the rider needs to reduce resistance to gain speed. The drops on drop handlebars provide the best solution for this, enabling the rider to crouch and achieve better aerodynamics, which reduces resistance.

Drop bars also provide better control and stability, crucial while riding uphill, and make the riding experience comfortable. [4]

Moreover, it allows a hand position that is natural, which is crucial while riding.

3- Drop bars Reduce resistance and drag

Drop bars on a mountain bike help the cyclist crouch down and reduce drag and resistance. This design allows for a more aerodynamic position and provides a comfortable ride for the rider while pedaling.

The dropped design of the drop bars also allows the rider to place their hands in three different positions, on the bars, on the hoods, and in the drops, providing relief from pressure on the hands.

4- Drop bars provide a strong space to grip the bike

Dropbars allow a firm space to grip the bike which further allows the rider to apply more power to the pedals with each stroke.

Moreover, the brake hoods in these bars provide a comfortable space for the hands to rest, reducing the pressure on them. This feature comes in handy while leaning forward and offers more leverage for pedaling.

The flat center section connected to the stem provides a perfect grip for those who like to ride in an upright position.

The design of drop bars also allows for a natural hand position while riding on the bars or hoods position, offering more comfort than flat bars. [5]

5- Drop bars are best for narrow paths and spots

Their narrow width makes them best for navigating through narrow paths and spots.

Compared to flat bars, which are typically wider, drop bars allow riders to maneuver through tight spaces with ease. This is especially important for daily commuters who deal with a lot of traffic.

With drop bars, they can fit through narrow gaps.

6- The Drops Help You to Ride Faster

Due to all the reasons mentioned above, the result is increase in speed.

Drop handlebars provide a more aerodynamic position for the rider, especially during downhill runs, which can help reduce the drag force that the rider experiences. This drag force is caused by induced aerodynamic effects, which occur when riding at high speeds.

Drop bars also allow the rider to crouch down and reduce resistance and drag, which in turn helps to increase speed.

With multiple hand positions available, drop bars provide more options for gripping the bike, which can help to urge more power on the pedals with each stroke and enable riders to achieve faster speeds. [6]

How To Put Drop Bars On A Mountain Bike?

STEP 1- Choose the Drop Bars that Suit Your

When it comes to selecting drop bars for your mountain bike, the options can be overwhelming. However, there are a few factors to consider that can help you narrow it down.

First, decide on the width of the drop bars. You’ll want them to be slightly wider than your shoulders for optimal comfort and control.

Next, consider the drop and reach of the bars. The drop refers to the distance between the top and bottom of the bars, while the reach refers to the distance from the stem to the furthest point on the bars.

Finally, decide on the material of the bars. Carbon bars are lightweight and provide more shock absorption, while aluminum bars are more durable but may not be as comfortable.

STEP 2- Detach the current handlebars from your MTB

Detaching the current handlebars from your mountain bike is a crucial step in putting drop bars on it. Here are some tips to make it easier:

1. Begin by loosening and removing the brake and shift cables.
2. Loosen the stem bolts and remove the stem from the fork steerer tube.
3. Remove the grips and bar-end plugs.
4. Then, remove the current handlebars by sliding them out of the stem.

Make sure that you carefully store all the bolts and hardware in a safe place, so you can use them again to install the new drop bars.

STEP 3- Apply the new drop bars

Once have selected the ideal drop bars for your mountain bike, it’s time to apply them correctly. Here are the steps to follow:

1. Move the brake levers and shifters from the old handlebars to the new drop bars.
2. Align the stem and new drop bars and fasten securely.
3. Check that the brake levers are in the correct position and align the brake cables.
4. Adjust the angle of the drops to suit your riding style.

It’s essential to ensure the drop bars are positioned appropriately, so you have a comfortable and safe ride.

When you’ve completed the installation, take your bike for a test ride to ensure the brake and gear systems are working optimally.

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