Choosing the right handlebar will notably improve your riding experience.
Shop our selection of the best Carbon and Aluminum Handlebars below or click on the “Learn More” tab to, well, learn more!

Carbon or Aluminum Bars?

eMTB and MTB handlebars are available in carbon or aluminum.

The main Carbon bar benefit is often listed as “they’re lighter” – which tends to be true. But there’s more to the story which makes Carbon Fiber the go to for most eMTB and MTB riding.

Carbon handlebars¬† damp the trail vibrations as it is a woven material modifies the stress flow and doesn’t produce the same shock loads through your hands.

Brands like OneUp Components and Tag Metals (who ironically make excellent carbon fiber bars…) utilize unique layups in their carbon bars to further improve the damping capabilities.

OneUp Components Carbon Handlebar Rise Detail

Detail image of the OneUp Carbon Handlebar’s unique transition from 35mm clamping surface to the bar ends. This is designed to maximize strength and power transfer in the needed angles while providing additional compliance where possible.

Tag Metals Ovaltech Carbon T1 Handlebar Detail

Detail image of Tag Metals T1 Carbon Handlebar’s OvalTech design. Like the OneUp shown above asymmetrical material allows for additional compliance without hindering strength and power transfer where needed.

Aluminum handlebar technology has come a long way and quality bars from Renthal and Tag Metals are available in a variety of widths to minimize trail vibration.

Handlebar Width

Understanding the right handlebar width is important for your riding.

Too wide and it’s hard to input power for direction changes.

Too narrow and it tends to be “nervous” with exaggerated handling.

Ideally your handlebar width puts you in a power position where you can excerpt force onto the bike. Think of pushups, too wide is hard, too narrow is difficult, just right, is well, just right.

Trimming Your Bars

Most eMTB and MTB Handlebars will have a minimum trim width. This is due to a variety of factors (such as materiel layups as shown above) and should be observed.

Most riders will find that trimming “some” doesn’t change the handlebar’s personality notably. However, if you’re going to have to trim to the minimum it might be worth looking at a narrower handlebar to start out with.

This is because when we trim the handlebar we’re changing the leverage ratio. On aggressively stiff bars losing this leverage ratio can create a pretty harsh ride.

On a side note: I have seen it published that some bars don’t need to be cut as they work for everyon, or some verbiage close to that. That is ridiculous. We don’t all wear the same size shoes so how on earth would everyone need a fixed bar width? (I saw it on a bar spec’d on a consumer direct brand – not sure if its’ still floating out there or not – but clearly an excuse not to dial your client in!)

Dive in a bit deeper and learn more about handlebars on a couple popular BikeCo blogs:

Choosing the Right Handlebar

Handlebar Setup

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