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So I'm still a little new to this road stuff. On the long rides (50+ mi) my arms/shoulders seem to get more sensitive to vibration as the ride goes. I'm already running 25mm tires at a decent pressure.

Switching from an alloy to a carbon bar was very noticeable in mtb. Will I get the same benefit on my road bike?

What about these Richey Carbon/Alloy matrix bars I have seen?
http://www.ritcheylogic.com/dyn_prodfamily.php?k=299957
Will I get that vibration dampening without paying that high carbon price? (like the Easton EC90's)
 

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Cycling induced anoesis
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I'll say upfront that I think CF bars/ stems are marketing hype. They cost far more than alloy, (from my admittedly limited research) fail more often and sometimes weigh more. I know your question was focused on vibration damping (and that I have no experience with), but considering the disadvantages and what you might do to minimize your discomfort, I'd pass on the CFoption.

Some remedies you could try are.. keeping the upper torso relaxed, arms slightly bent at the elbows and a slightly loose grip on the bars, changing hand positions frequently. Gel tape (some double wrap it) and good quality gloves also help.

Although your discomfort seems minimal and after longer rides, this is when fit deficiencies can surface, so check that your saddle is at least level (I ride mine slightly tipped up at the front) and I find that it sometimes helps to have KOPS set back about 1cm. I'm offering both as considerations, because you may know already that one or both don't work for you.

I'd try the options listed before spending money on such a questionable remedy. I'm sure you'll find someone singing the praises of CF stems and bars, but you probably would as well after shelling out the money for them. :eek:
 

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old school drop out
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I have carbon bars on one bike, and aluminum bars on the other. I can tell no difference in vibrations between the way they ride. I can however, feel a significant difference in the tires that I'm running - some ride nicely and others do not. Not all 25mm tires ride particularly well. In fact some ride significantly worse than some 23mm tires. Other 25mm tires do ride well.

If you're feeling vibrations that bother you try a lower PSI in your tires, or a different tire.
 

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Höchstgeschwindigkeit
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Call it placibo but when I was rolling on my old Trek 5.2 I swapped out to a carbon flat bar and noticed less road vibration. I also like a carbon bar better because I sweat a lot and have seen and heard some horror stories when the aluminum bar snaps in half from corrosion.
 

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mimason said:
Call it placibo but when I was rolling on my old Trek 5.2 I swapped out to a carbon flat bar and noticed less road vibration. I also like a carbon bar better because I sweat a lot and have seen and heard some horror stories when the aluminum bar snaps in half from corrosion.
Aluminum bars that have been anodized or otherwise coated shouldn't corrode from just sweat, I wouldn't think.
 

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Höchstgeschwindigkeit
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mcsqueak said:
Aluminum bars that have been anodized or otherwise coated shouldn't corrode from just sweat, I wouldn't think.
Two guys I ride with had this happen to them. Nice high end stuff. I make it a point to inspect and clean my bike regularly so neglect does not cause a failure. That said I would not and will never ride an aluminum bar or stem more than 2 years. I ride hard and a lot and a few hundred bucks of insurance goes a long way to keep me off the pavement. I have a carbon 3T bar and alu stem. The stem will be replaced next February or March.
 

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Au contraire

mcsqueak said:
Aluminum bars that have been anodized or otherwise coated shouldn't corrode from just sweat, I wouldn't think.
Actually, in practice there are all kinds of nicks and scratches on a bar from general handling. I corrode out anodized bars in about 5-6 years. It starts with flecks of oxide when you retape the bars, and eventually it's pretty rough looking. Same thing happens to my wife, so it's not just my bad body chemistry. All that salt sits under the bar tape, even if you regularly wash it off the outside, and does its work.
 

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Wow, very interesting to hear that can happen even with anodized/treated bars. I'll make it a point to look for that kind of wear every once and awhile then.
 

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It's been a noticeable difference on my mountain bike, just for the record. Also, I'd like the numbers where carbon bars fail more than aluminum ones, as quoted by the first response.
 

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I thought there was a hugh difference when I install carbon bars and stem. I thought it felt like when I went from an aluminum frame to a carbon one.
 

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Cycling induced anoesis
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jaysc said:
It's been a noticeable difference on my mountain bike, just for the record. Also, I'd like the numbers where carbon bars fail more than aluminum ones, as quoted by the first response.
Reread my post. I said "from my admittedly limited research" which clearly implies it's not a controlled study. However, feel free to use the available search function (or google) as I have to find the info you seek.
 

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No Bonk Zone
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Look for high TPI (threads per inch) tires.
Somewhere in the 120-150 TPI range should be good for a training tire. Though I'm not sure what's available in the 25mm segment, just know that these higher TPI tires will usually give you a more supple ride over your basic 30-60 TPI variety.

HTH
 

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PJ352 said:
Reread my post. I said "from my admittedly limited research" which clearly implies it's not a controlled study. However, feel free to use the available search function (or google) as I have to find the info you seek.
I'm not sure why you're defensive here. Maybe it was the way I stated what I did? I just meant to say that it would be interesting to see the actual numbers. I've heard both sides of the story, so getting some sort of factual data from multiple sources would be interesting.

OP, just to back up something else that PJ said, you may really want to concentrate on the way you hold the bike (and subsequently, the bars). Again learned from mountain biking, the way you hold the bars can make all the difference in the world. It's not nearly as pronounced of an effect on the road, but it's still there. Also, I'll second good squishy bar tape and gloves.
 

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Cycling induced anoesis
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jaysc said:
I'm not sure why you're defensive here. Maybe it was the way I stated what I did? I just meant to say that it would be interesting to see the actual numbers. I've heard both sides of the story, so getting some sort of factual data from multiple sources would be interesting.

OP, just to back up something else that PJ said, you may really want to concentrate on the way you hold the bike (and subsequently, the bars). Again learned from mountain biking, the way you hold the bars can make all the difference in the world. It's not nearly as pronounced of an effect on the road, but it's still there. Also, I'll second good squishy bar tape and gloves.
Not being defensive, more matter of fact. I've read about a number of incidents where CF bars have failed (as in, snapped) and very few (if any) where the same has occurred with alloy bars. Hardly a controlled study, so I offered it in that vein.

I think it would be very difficult to get any type of factual data on this issue, so IMO the best anyone could do is read/ research and baed on their findings draw some conclusions, thus my suggestion to search here on RBR and on the internet.

For the record, I'm not anti-CF. I ride a full CF frameset, and would choose a full CF fork over an alu/ CF because I've read of more failures occuring with the latter. It's possible that the (seemingly) higher number of CF bar failures may be due to user error (incorrect torque settings), which are far more critical than when assembling alu components. But as I initially posted, all things considered, I think CF fares poorly from a price/ performance standpoint.
 

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I have had two bars break while riding. The anodized aluminum one sheared off completely right at the stem with no warning (Cinelli Altera) and the carbon one went soft with ample warning after a small pile up during the roll out and I was able to complete the race but not sprint (Zipp SL2).
 

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Squirrel Hunter
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Measure?

Are your bars the proper width and reach? Often times folks will get their bike fit and change out stems to get the appropriate reach. Rarely will people pay the extra bucks for a pair of bars that are the proper width for their body and simply keep whatever comes stock on the bike. Fit is far more important than component shopping.

Also as others have mentioned, relax your grip and bend your arms.
 

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mcsqueak said:
Aluminum bars that have been anodized or otherwise coated shouldn't corrode from just sweat, I wouldn't think.
It's easy to scrape through anodizing. It also happens where the bar is clamped at the stem, which happens to also be the area of highest stress. Between the fatigue loading and sweat corrosion it's really not favorable. The solution IMHO is to remove the bar on occasion and inspect this joint.

David
 

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I don't think I was able to feel a difference when I switched from the stock Cannondale alu bar to a Easton EC90.

The biggest difference was when I switched to a full carbon 3T fork. That damped alot of the front end buzz.
 

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OP, when I first started road biking, my shoulders, lower back, and tendon in my right elbow would definitely start to complain on longer rides. As soon as I finished my ride and got off my bike, though, all my pain and discomfort would immediately vanish. As I continued to ride and build endurance, this discomfort slowly but surely went away to the point where it no longer was an issue for me. (Now I have a different kind of pain-leg muscles burning when I try to sprint up hills :cryin: ) Have no idea if this is your situation, but for me I think it was a question of developing a certain level of fitness, conditioning, and muscle tone. The reason I mentioned above that the discomfort stopped immediately after I got off the bike is because this led me to believe that the pain I was experiencing was not serious or causing long-term damage.

But, hey, I ain't no doctor...just telling you my experience.

All the best, man. Whatever you decide, I hope it works out :)
 
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