Change Your Bars, Change Your Life – How to convert your drop bars to flat bars

Change Your Bars, Change Your Life – How to convert your drop bars to flat bars

Everyday we get a ton of emails and calls ranging from what bottom bracket should I use on my 1970 Peugeot to which fenders are best for my custom gravel bike. But one of the top questions we get is “I have this older road bike, I don’t like the handlebars and want to make it more upright and comfortable for commuting and touring.” So we thought it would be a good time to do a step-by-step video and provide some tips and tricks to convert your drop handlebars to upright bars.

Curvy Handlebars: https://velo-orange.com/collections/handlebars/products/curvy-too
31.8 Stem: https://velo-orange.com/collections/stems/products/quill-stem-with-removable-faceplate-31-8mm
Rustines Grips: https://velo-orange.com/collections/grips-wraps/products/constructeur-rubber-grip

50 Comments

  1. WalkWithMeTravel on September 9, 2022 at 3:05 am

    Anybody remember how great Waterford bikes used to be? Putting a flat bar on it makes it look like some of those homeless bikes we have around here.

  2. Fake Me on September 9, 2022 at 3:07 am

    I tired to do the same with my Trek Marlin 6 swap out the flat bar to the drop bar but five local bike shop discourage me not to do the swap because it will be more costly and buy new rode bike instead.

  3. Heather Bayler on September 9, 2022 at 3:08 am

    Awesome and very informative video, thank you! I’ve been wanting to change the drop bars on my 2017 specialized allez e5 for a while. I just ordered the velo orange curvy bar in black and a pair of black leather grips, thank you again! I was almost talked out of doing this but I’m glad I decided to make the modification/customization. Can’t wait!

  4. Cobwobbler on September 9, 2022 at 3:08 am

    I’ve never got on with drop bars and I’ve noticed a lot of people ride with hands “ in the hood”.
    My solution was to flip over the drop bars and take a hacksaw to them. I worked out my hand position, added a bit to mount the original levers and then cut the loop back. It made it more comfortable and could fly through city traffic because you had full brake control. Cheap alternative to new bars and levers and looks individual.

  5. Roger Leon on September 9, 2022 at 3:10 am

    Thank you so much man amazing work
    Please help me I need to change drop bar in a Eurobike xd500 to flat bar thank you

  6. George on September 9, 2022 at 3:11 am

    Q: with those wider bars on a road frame geometry did it make the steering too quick? I have a 2009 Co-Motion Nor’wester Tour (basically Sport Road geo from the 80’s), and I was thinking of flats or using an old Nitto Albatross bar that I have.

  7. Michael Hansen on September 9, 2022 at 3:13 am

    Love the Rustines grips….will you be carrying them again?

  8. Rusellejann Garcia on September 9, 2022 at 3:13 am

    Can u give me bike? Pleasee

  9. ReCycle Spinning on September 9, 2022 at 3:13 am

    Totally disagree. That road bike is designed for you to have some weight over the front wheel. You now have a bike that is a cruiser and you need fatter tires and possibly a seat with springs. Why because all your weight with these bars are for upright position. The weight is mostly in the back.

  10. Chidozie Egbuna on September 9, 2022 at 3:13 am

    How much did this conversion cost?

  11. Lewis McDowell on September 9, 2022 at 3:14 am

    I have a 90s cannondale that I converted to flat bar and grip shifts back in the 90s. Now they have some age and I wanted to replace them. It has 105 derailleurs front and back. However, now the new components seem to be off. I am not sure if we replace the rear freewheel. It is the 2 sproket front main model

  12. Dan Lazaro on September 9, 2022 at 3:17 am

    My comfortable commuter set-up is a size 48 Cannondale CAAD Synapse with a 69cm saddle height and a 130 -17 Stem. Use it more for races to be honest but it’s nice and comfortable for long rides and commuting as well.

  13. David K on September 9, 2022 at 3:20 am

    What touring bars does VO have that will fit a 1970’s UO8, and not cost more than the bike?

  14. ﴾ ﴿ on September 9, 2022 at 3:22 am

    the grips really fit the clown bar lol

  15. Psicólogo Julio Nieto on September 9, 2022 at 3:22 am

    The music is an obstacle. It is too loud. Too annoying.

  16. Louis McG on September 9, 2022 at 3:23 am

    Who knew Kevin Spacey was a bike mechanic

  17. Kevin on September 9, 2022 at 3:28 am

    how long is the reach on that stem?

  18. Alfredo Almeida on September 9, 2022 at 3:29 am

    Compreendo, mas passa de 3 possíveis posições para apenas 1, podendo ser ainda mais incómodo.

  19. Brian Paterson on September 9, 2022 at 3:32 am

    You are a man after my own heart! I did the very same thing. I never really liked the drops, but I love my flat bar.
    Cheers

  20. Charlie Amos on September 9, 2022 at 3:32 am

    Good clear vid !

  21. Anon on September 9, 2022 at 3:33 am

    ugh… I understand the point, but it was such a beautiful bike with drops, to my eye, it is now broken.

  22. David Fraser on September 9, 2022 at 3:33 am

    Good video and I couldn’t agree more. I’ve had my old 10 speed since new in 1987, never really used the drops too much so I put in bullhorns and changed to stem shifters. It’s a big framed bike, so there’s plenty of reach. About 8 years ago I changed it again to similar bars to you, but with thumb shifters and it became a 12 speed. I also now have nice leather bar grips. But I miss my stem friction shifters. My other bike, a 1997 GT MTB is relatively unchanged, but I moved from a flat bar to a wider downhill riser bar. I’m 62 now, my rule of thumb is the handlebars and the saddle are about the same height. Is it just me, or do horizontal top tubes just look more pleasing to the eye?

  23. Duane Fields on September 9, 2022 at 3:34 am

    I need flat bars on my road bike…i know it may sound ultra crazy, but I am considering buying the velo orange crazy bar and flipping it upside down to accept my shimano 105 road bike grips and brakes on the horn downturns. If I kept the bar as it is, it upturns and that will not work. That along with a short stem and a higher stem also. Trek 2200 Carbon.

  24. The Ashrook on September 9, 2022 at 3:35 am

    So I guess it’s easy to convert brake shifters on a drop bar to something different on a flat bar or can I use drop bar brake shifters on a flat bar?

  25. Fivel Rothberg [he, him] on September 9, 2022 at 3:35 am

    Really well produced vid! Maybe this is in another one, but you didn’t address changing the bar end shifters to mountain bike shifters, which is what I’m curious about. Anyone have a good instructional video for that? thanks!!!

  26. Brian Monzon on September 9, 2022 at 3:35 am

    you are a monster bro thanks!!

  27. RollinRat on September 9, 2022 at 3:35 am

    I did the opposite. I like flat bar bikes converted to high up drop bars. I like all the different hand positions for those long rides.
    There are so many funky and unique H’bars and stems now! Something for everyone!
    My favorites are ‘dirt drops’. Nitto RM013 or Ritchey Venturemax. As wide as I can find ’em!!

  28. Bhushan Rele on September 9, 2022 at 3:36 am

    You didn’t really showed how did you installed the breaks and the wiring of it?
    If you can in different video – that will be great 🙏

  29. Chidozie Egbuna on September 9, 2022 at 3:36 am

    Good video. Parts list please in the description.

  30. Penn Ryan on September 9, 2022 at 3:39 am

    Lovely video, thank you for being a clear presenter. The way that I feel about that stem however, reaffirms that I am not a classic bikes guy…………….

  31. jon louis on September 9, 2022 at 3:40 am

    I’m looking to go the other way, my otherwise nice hybrid bike came equipped with horrible straight flat bars, my least favorite.

  32. Ed Arredondo on September 9, 2022 at 3:41 am

    One size up or two on the wheel rubber would also have made for a more comfortable ride. Still a great looking bike.

  33. bradtamzoo on September 9, 2022 at 3:42 am

    I’m interested in converting my Shimano 105 2×11 drop bar to a flat bar bike. Which flat bar/MTB shifters are compatible with my existing 2×11 Shimano 105 deralleurs? Thanks!

  34. Rejep Arzansh on September 9, 2022 at 3:44 am

    why making unnecessary work for yourself ! just turn the original handle bar upright.

  35. Jonathan Manieri on September 9, 2022 at 3:45 am

    Nice conversion, I am thinking about converting my 2022 checkpoint to flat bars.

  36. Ron Bernard on September 9, 2022 at 3:45 am

    I was curious if mountain bike shifters would work on road bike derailers and cassette

  37. Vezzo55 on September 9, 2022 at 3:46 am

    Awesome video….BUT PLEASE ….. Get rid of the annoying music

  38. Medawk on September 9, 2022 at 3:47 am

    Those grips are one of the ugliest I’ve ever seen.

  39. Greg Knipe on September 9, 2022 at 3:49 am

    reluctantly swapping out my drop bars and bar end shifters. spending all my time on the hoods. that’s the sign for change.

  40. JR Namida on September 9, 2022 at 3:51 am

    My Stealth Urban Electric Bike KBO Hurricane came with very heavy alloy flat bars and was very uncomfortable after a short 22 mile ride. The Pavement vibration that flowed through the alloy fork and mib handle bar was horrible. I now have a carbon Fiber fork, and alloy drop bar (until carbon bars arrive), I have the original mtb brakes affixed to the hoods (eBike will not work without tripwire power cutoff connected). I move my hands about to much for mtb flat bars, moustache bars might work, but mtb bars have only one hand position something not good for short rides.

  41. 65 Stang on September 9, 2022 at 3:52 am

    I have a real nice Rocky Mountain Prestige 10CR Carbon Fiber Road bike. I’m now disabled with nerve damage in my back and can’t ride the bike with the drop bars. What would you suggest for parts to change to flats. I need then to ride high enough for me though. I’m 5’7".

  42. Hongzhi Mo on September 9, 2022 at 3:52 am

    My threshold for flat bars is under 40km-50km/day in commuting or touring. Above 50km I would like to have drop bars instantly.

  43. Henry Oddsball on September 9, 2022 at 3:53 am

    That bike is sexy! Team Mack is local to me and I’ve always loved seeing those Waterfords

  44. wayman tang on September 9, 2022 at 3:53 am

    Looking to do this to my road bike as well. It has Ultegra groupset currently. Which Shimano shifters would be compatible? Anybody?

  45. RollinRat on September 9, 2022 at 3:57 am

    He should have used those conversion clamps to make the bar ends into thumbies. Friction shifting on 7-10 speed rocks! Its ultra reliable. It always works until you break the cable or tear the changer off the frame!
    I always thought VO was sorta retro and grouchy!?!
    But I get using what’s in your bin!

  46. Michael Lohn on September 9, 2022 at 3:58 am

    Really nice ride👍👏😍

  47. j_t79 on September 9, 2022 at 3:58 am

    that is one sweet bike!

  48. Eric Schurman on September 9, 2022 at 3:59 am

    I need to do this for my wife’s bike, but she’s got a Campognolo setup (triple in front and 2007 era 9 speed) in the rear. Any recommendations for brake levers and indexed shifters that are compatible with the campy’s?

  49. jim colegrove on September 9, 2022 at 4:02 am

    did you use same tires and rim? I want to change rims but need to remove one gear on rear cluster.

  50. zeddex81 on September 9, 2022 at 4:05 am

    no bar end plugs?

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