Thursday, February 10, 2022

Trek Marlin 7 Handlebar Update - Ritchey Kyote

Taking comfort up a notch with Ritchey's Kyote bar.

I've owned the Trek Marlin 7 hardtail for more than a year. After dialing in the perfect seat, the next step was to gain more comfort in the cockpit. Also, it's become apparent that I can no longer tolerate flat bars for prolonged periods. Priorities were: seeking a comfortable hand position, more forward reach (if at all possible), with more rise - all without compromising leverage required to snake through the woods.

whatbars.com - curvy Ritchey Kyote compared with existing flat bar.
I used whatbars.com to help confirm the bar switch on my Clem-entine so I felt confident applying the same process on the Trek. First, I researched several handlebars before leaning towards Ritchey's Kyote handlebar. The Kyote's price and reputation, confirmed with online reviews and YouTube videos, sold me. Then, whatbars.com was proof that the Kyote bar's forward curves and sweep put my hands along a similar if not slightly forward reach, seemed ideal, all while possibly using the existing stem. 

Voila! The Kyote bar looks like it should work.

Our son talked me through the replacement, even teaching me how to use a torque wrench! We agreed to cut the bar one inch on each end for starters (he did that), then with further testing I may want the bars shortened further. 


I'm pleased with how nice these new bars look on my bike!

There's no question the Kyote bars will be a huge improvement. I'm sure there will be further adjustments once spring mountain biking season rolls around. At least the difficult portion of the project is finished. Currently, we're navigating snowy bike paths on studded tire bikes!

8 comments:

  1. I like reading these posts of yours where you are altering things to get the bike right for you. I did the same with my Koga, though I haven't got your technical abilities! My husband can't understand why I need to adjust things so much; he bought his bike off the internet and off he goes - perfect with barely any adjustments! So annoying!!

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    1. Thanks Lizzie! When I was younger, I never needed to alter original setups but age has forced me to, of course. Nowadays I enjoy the research process while trying to keep the cost minimal. Does your husband go on longer adventures or just to the corner grocery?

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  2. I like the look of those bars quite a lot and can see how they're addressing some issues in a nice simple way. Tweak away, I love it too as you know :)

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  3. I always have to tweek my bikes to get them as comfy as possible, to me thats part of the fun of biking.

    The What bars site is good and I would have used something like that if I had known about it , although it does have the bars I have bought..

    The bike looks good with the new bars.

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    1. I've been monitoring for months what I needed to adjust so I feel confident these bars should do the trick. Love the design process but still dislike bike mechanics, unfortunately. I need to be in the right mood with plenty of time. Whatbars is helpful for comparison with current bars, but isnt necessarily good at suggesting alternative bars. There are plenty out there not yet in their database.

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  4. Love the looks of those and I bet they are comfortable.

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    1. Switching between bikes, this one always felt awkward and uncomfortable, though I could settle in for a 1-2 hour ride. But what if I decide to tour someday on this bike? The improvement should be magical.

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