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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 3:25 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
Hey,

Looking at older racing photos, you see people of the generation of Rik Van Looy up to Tom Simpson riding bikes with bar end shifters, but by the 1970s they seem to have died out (except for cyclcocross).

Why is this? Were bar ends somehow inferior to downtube shifters, or was it just a fashion thing?

Johnny


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 3:50 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2013 5:12 am
Posts: 14
Location: Indiana
Downtube shifters are lighter and provide a quicker crisper shift due to the shorter cable length but obviously that could be debated.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 7:16 pm 
rider | rBoTM Winner
rider | rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2008 1:42 pm
Posts: 5132
Location: Wakefield, Yorkshire
Fashion.

Bar end levers were used by many 'roadman sprinters' because they could change up a gear (or two) in the gallop without having to take a hand from the bars. (eg Van Looy, Reybroeck, Michael Wright).

I used them for a few years - see my avatar.

Not that I class myself in anywhere near the same league as those mentioned above.

Although Ian Cammish did describe me as a 'legend' once.

Or was it a 'leg end' :?


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 7:42 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2011 8:41 pm
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Location: Cumbria
Fashion :). We tried everything to distance ourselves from members of the CTC :)

shaun on iPhone


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:11 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2007 2:04 pm
Posts: 3364
Location: Completely in the dark, thanks to me good mate Terry....
Johnsqual wrote:
Hey,

Looking at older racing photos, you see people of the generation of Rik Van Looy up to Tom Simpson riding bikes with bar end shifters, but by the 1970s they seem to have died out (except for cyclcocross).
Why is this? Were bar ends somehow inferior to downtube shifters, or was it just a fashion thing?

Johnny


Bar-ends kept going for much longer than that on touring bikes (as I well remember from the Dawes brochures of my teens!) - they still pop up now & again but have lost a lot of ground to STI and Ergopower levers.

David


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:17 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
David B wrote:
Johnsqual wrote:
Hey,

Looking at older racing photos, you see people of the generation of Rik Van Looy up to Tom Simpson riding bikes with bar end shifters, but by the 1970s they seem to have died out (except for cyclcocross).
Why is this? Were bar ends somehow inferior to downtube shifters, or was it just a fashion thing?

Johnny


Bar-ends kept going for much longer than that on touring bikes (as I well remember from the Dawes brochures of my teens!) - they still pop up now & again but have lost a lot of ground to STI and Ergopower levers.

David


Interesting. I'd have thought bar ends would be the most sensible choice for touring bikes since there's so much less to go wrong with them.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:33 am 
Old School Grand Master

Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 1:55 pm
Posts: 8219
Location: New Forest, UK
I agree, they are still around especially for tourers. Also, let's remember that they popped up as the ideal solution for aero bars, so are fairly normal TT kit unless you have the electric stuff.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 5:43 pm 
rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:28 pm
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Location: Mansfield Woodhouse, Nott's.
Hmmm!

I was told years ago from an old chap that bar end shifters was used in many early roads races
so they could keep their hands on the bars at all times due to the terrible road surface.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:45 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:31 pm
Posts: 1112
One of the odd results of the use of barends for TT bikes is that they now seem to have become elite kit.

It looks like Shimano used to do 105 barends, but now they only have Dura Ace ones - at Dura Ace prices :( Same goes for SRAM, it appears.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 18, 2013 10:12 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Wed Jul 25, 2007 2:04 pm
Posts: 3364
Location: Completely in the dark, thanks to me good mate Terry....
Johnsqual wrote:
One of the odd results of the use of barends for TT bikes is that they now seem to have become elite kit.

It looks like Shimano used to do 105 barends, but now they only have Dura Ace ones - at Dura Ace prices :( Same goes for SRAM, it appears.


Campag too - I think their bar-ends are only available in Record.

Must admit, when I posted my earlier comments about bar-ends for touring bikes, I'd forgotten all about TT bikes.

Personally I found them too much of a faff for CX - I once used a left-hand one for the front mech as a slight weight-saver (rear mech was on a Chorus Ergo lever) but it used to get knocked out of sync (being friction not index) when lifting or lowering the bike for the running sections.

David


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