The best urban bike has a FLickable Cock[pit. To do combat on the street scene in American cities your life and safety are at stake. So often we have to act quickly to poor road conditions. Whatever is thrown up be it bumps, glass, holes, clueless pedestrians and obnoxious drivers a handlebar and it’s components either work for you or against you. The “Duluth Cock[pit” was introduced recently and now with the addition of Cane Creek hooded brake levers on the Masi a new cock[pit is ready for the streets. The name is “Urban Junkie Cock[pit.” With the vintage Campy dual left hand shifter this design is the quickest responding Detroit Handlebar set up of all the geared field bikes. Let’s take a look at the before and after set up. Oh, and with naming rights going to all of the field bikes as a bonus today and belatedly the name for the original Masi/Detroit handlebar is the “Moose Lake Cock[pit” named after the Wisconsin Lake where I have been a guest and have many memories of biking and running in the surrounding hills.
Your urban bike ride is only as good as your handlbar choice. Arm yourself with the knowledge that you can change out from what you have to what is best for you even if it means starting over. That’s exactly what I did when I developed the patent pending design for the Detroit Handlebar. People have asked what makes my handlebar different than a chop and flop? A chop and flop bar end becomes perpendicular to the road and will not accept bar end brake levers or shifters when choping just the drop end. The REV2 modification that is a prototype 45 degree bar end becomes horizontal to accept bar end components, The REV2 modification also adds a grip surface for these components.
125 years of racing handlebar design can be looked at as a good start for the next 125 years of urban handlebar design. The Detroit Handlebar might be the first to be patented for an upright posture but hopefully it won’t be the last. An urban handlebar has features that can’t be found on a racing drop, a riser bar or a one hand grip bar. I started saying in the beginning of this post that urban bike riders need a Flickable Cock[pit. The upright posture and hand grips for an infinity of hand positions is what makes a Detroit Handlebar FLickable.
As field tested this bar is responsive on a 22lb bike or a 35lb bike. Every movement of the bike in response to variable road conditions naturally enforces hand repositioning and the form of the bike rider posture. This is the X factor that makes a Detroit Handlebar so far ahead of any one hand grip bar, those bars leave riders aching.
While I don’t personally have anything against racing handlebars I know they are not for everyone. The fact is racing bars were popular 40 years ago during a “bike boom” that went bust after three years. My educated guess for this bust is the demographic was high school boys and the product offerings were cheap heavy imports that required upgrades just to make the bike functional. Two common complaints then were uncomfortable seats and uncomfortable handlebars. It’s not funny that those are still the most common complaints. Racing handlebars are not FLickable nor do they allow urban riders infinite hand positions in an upright posture. Racing bars give the rider an aerodynamic posture that is great for the open road, but marginally useful on the street where transportation cycling is the norm. So there we have it. The Detroit Handlebar in many disguises is what makes urban bike riding fun.