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drop style vs BullHorn
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Hi, I'm new to triathlon and am currently shopping for a new bike. Since I dont have a big budget, I'm considering buying a Cervelo One or a quintana Roo Kilo. I'v notice on those two bikes and others that some have drop style handle bar and som other (most triathlon bikes) have Bullhorn type. What are the Pro's and Con's? You cant change gear while climbing with bullhorn, and what else? Why do people choose them? Feel free to comment my choice of bike and which I should take.

Thank's for your help.




Richard

"You're only young once, but you can be immature forever" - Larry Andersen
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Re: drop style vs BullHorn [rferron] [ In reply to ]
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Many things to comment on here, so I'll try to hit on all of them.

First, you CAN shift while climbing on bullhorns, just use normal STI type levers (though cable routing can be a bit problematic). You can even shift climbing with shifters on the end of the aero-bars, just don't try to do it standing up.

Second, drop bars are a viable option with any normal road set-up, but become semi-useless in steep geometries (how steep also depends on how much drop you have between the saddle and the bars). What happens is that you can't get to the drops without hitting you forearms (quite painfully) on the bar tops. Bullhorns can provide a position very close to that of drops without having to contend with bar tops being in the way (better for flat courses). Also, if you opt for bullhorns that are relatively flat, giving a position cose to brake hoods on a road set-up.

As for which bike to take, my advice is to take each for a test ride, and see which is more comfortable for you.

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Re: drop style vs BullHorn [rferron] [ In reply to ]
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It's explained very well here. http://www.slowtwitch.com/...chctr/headtubes.html

Read all Dan's other articles in the Slowtwitch tech section and you'll have a good understanding of the geometrical differences between tri and road bikes. This forum is a little bias towards steep tri angle bikes but realize that many people, including some of the top pros ride shallow angle road bikes.

In a nutshell, because of a shorter head tube on a tri bike, it's not adviseable to put drop bars on because the drops are just too low. On a road bike this works because the headtube is longer.

The main advantage of a drop bar is that it gives more variation of places to grab. I also feel that it's a lot safer, particularly on high speed ascents where you hands are on the drops right near the brakes rather than riding aero bars.

Most people will suggest a newbie to get a road bike first. The Cervelo One is a compromise between a tri and road bike geometry designed with a beginner triathlete in mind, so it's probably not a bad choice. With the drops and mildly steep geometry you could still use it for roadie type group riding as well as for tris.
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Re: drop style vs BullHorn [rferron] [ In reply to ]
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my opinion: three questions concerning what type of riding are you going to do.

Will you ride with groups, (even small ones)?

Are your normal riding areas and races flat (florida) or hilly (colorado)?

Are you going to have a road bike also?

Riding in groups the drop bar is nice because of the ability to stay in control. In the drops you can draft well and have fingers resting on the brakes.

I ride in very hilly areas and am very happy with drop bars on my Litespeed Saber (aggressive TRI geometry like the QR). For decents and aggressive cornering you can not beat the drop bar. TRI geometry isn't the way to go for good cornering/handling... that said I'd also say that a TRI Bike is much more preferable when you get in a straight line and down on the aero bars. Then you can't beat it. I'll deal with the handling issues to have the straight-line speed.

Many experts don't consider that the average man gets one bike and has one set up to do ALL his riding on. If you can afford to have a road and TRI bike then maybe the more TRI specific you'd want to go. But I ride my Saber to work, to spin, to hammer, to climb, to descend, to Starbucks...

The comfort of changing positions, the cornering, the climbing with STI, and ability to ride in packs are all enhanced. The downside is a little extra weight.

Good Luck!
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Re: drop style vs BullHorn [spode] [ In reply to ]
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Thank's to all of you.

Spode, I think you touch a good point with your questions. First, I dont have a road bike. Second, I might try a couple of group rides but since I never tried, I dont know yet how I will like it...but still want the posibility to choose. Third, I'm gonna compete in the Montreal Ironman in which the bike section is on circuit Gilles Villeneuve and completely flat. This race could then justify bull horns with gears on the handlebar but since I'm ganna climb in training and since it's my first tri bike (so that I dont really know my needs yet), I think I will go with drop down bar which will be a lot more versatile. I cannot really afford to have both and change according to the training or race.

By the way, the article helped a lot to see the advantage of bull horns.

Thank's to the three of you

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Richard

"You're only young once, but you can be immature forever" - Larry Andersen
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Re: drop style vs BullHorn [rferron] [ In reply to ]
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"the bike section is on circuit Gilles Villeneuve "

Kinda cool riding on a Formula One circuit even if it is on a bike and not a Ferrari.
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Re: drop style vs BullHorn [rferron] [ In reply to ]
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The previous posters put it pretty well. The reason most pros ride bullhorn is that it is more aero. I think it was timetrial.org that said it will save about two minutes in a 40K time trial. If you go with more of a rode bike definetly stick with the drop bars. If you go with a tri bike though you may consider staying with the bullhorns. Before you decide for sure though, you need to get fitted on one or the other. You may find one type of bike fits much better than another. This should be your deciding factor.

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Re: drop style vs BullHorn [Ze Gopha] [ In reply to ]
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If you go to the Vision Tech site the aero difference between bullhorns/clip-on aerobars vs dropbars/clip-on aero bars is minimal. The one piece units are faster but only by about thirty seconds over 40 kms. http://www.visiontechusa.com/visionaero.asp
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