Convert your speed bike into a comfy upright city cruiser
After putting new upright bars on my bike last year, my boyfriend had been fantasizing outloud for a while about how much nicer his bike would be if he didn’t have to hunch over his drop bars. I decided to be nice and finally install some fancy new upright bars for him. Its REALLY easy.
Here is how:
1. Gather supplies
- Allan keys and screw drivers. (Some bikes are fancy and you wont need a screw driver!)
- new handle bars
- grips (optional for now, recommended eventually)
- new brake cables – because the ones from your drop bars will likely be too short.
- new brake cable housing
- new brake levers
- tin snips or something to cut the cable and cable housing
New/used parts cost about $30 from Our Community bikes.The handle bars and brake cables were new; the brake levers and cable housing was used.
2. Detach the brake cables from the brakes
3. Remove old brake and grip tape from one half of the handlebar.
If the grip tape is in acceptable enough condition for you, save it to make some custom grips for your new upright bars!
4. Loosen the screw on the front of the stem if you have a quill stem (the older kind). Slide the handle bars off of the stem.
If you have a newer kind of stem, remove the plate holding the handle bars on and they will come off easily without having to be slid off.
5. Slide new handlebars onto the stem and tighten the front stem screw.
6. Attach brake levers to new bars.
7. Make sure the brake cable housing doesn’t have any inward-pointing barbs.
8. Thread brake cable housing to the back brake and trim it.
Remember allow for enough length so that your handle bars can move freely. Do the same for the front brakes. Remember typically front brakes are on the left-hand side and rear brakes are on the right hand side.
9. Thread the brake levers and brake cable housing with the brake cable.
10. Attach the brake cables to the brakes.
11. Thread the cable through the cable clamp nut.
12. Hold the brakes closed while pulling the cable tight.
This is probably the hardest part. Extra hands will be useful!
13. Tighten the nut and trim the cable.
14. Test brakes to make sure they are tight enough.
Ta dah! You are now done!