I just listened to the Levers live show. It certainly fleshed out some of the previous info Neil's provided. I'll be re-checking my setup. As many would have seen, I run stripped down barkbusters on my trials bike - one of a very small number who do so. I thought I might put my thoughts and experience out there. Pros: * Prior to using guards I broke a lever every 30-40 hours I guess (I chuck my bike and save myself if there's any doubt). In the 3-400 hours since guards I've not broken a single lever. * Prior to guards I received a couple of painful but not serious rib injuries from falling on the ends of the bars. Since guards I've fallen on the ends a couple of times and received only very minor bruising. I think the bigger surface area has helped - it wont in all cases though. * Reduce or prevent dirt getting into the open grip ends. * Protect the throttle from getting twisted open when it hits the ground or another object. * Has saved my hand from being squashed into trees a couple of times. I'm pretty sure one of these would have ended somewhat badly without the guard, it was a solid smack. Cons: * They take a bit of tinkering to get setup so they clear master cylinder, hose etc. I found I need to adjust the mounts so the clamp block sits under the hose connector screw. Otherwise it can hit the hose and shear it (voice of experience). * I guess there's more weight on the front, but I certainly don't notice it. * Makes the bars slightly wider. * There is probably an increased risk of injuring your hand/wrist if you go over the bars, but in all my excursions over the front it's been the lever that has been the main culprit, not the guards. I set both lever and guard so they can rotate with a good firm twist. * Other trials riders look at you somewhat askance. I've seen a couple of horrible injuries from brake lever penetration. Edit: I realised the other ugly incidents were actually from the ends of un-plugged handlebars, not levers. These with intact levers, the thought of falling on a lever after the ball end has snapped off just does not bear thinking about! For me they're worthwhile. I like having the added confidence that when I chuck the bike it wont get broken, makes it easier to focus on saving myself. I do have some reservations about the added risk of wrist injury, but I spent a fair bit of time researching this and there seemed far fewer instances of injury than injury prevention. Run them fairly loose and I consider the risk reasonably low. So overall I consider the upside as well outweighing the downside.
Posted by Peter Mack at 2022-02-25 04:44:14 UTC