Friday, August 20, 2010

Vivian, Vivian, Vivian

I'm having issues with Vivian, my main commuter, a '92 Bridgestone XO-2.  It has bar end shifters and despite two years of nearly daily riding, I have yet to get used to them.  I bump them, hit them, knock them around and I generally just can't stand them.  The X0-2 originally came with thumb shifters and I'm not at all interested in those.  I have the original mustache bars on the bike which I like OK, but I wouldn't shed a tear to switch to drops or something else.

 The fact of the matter with this is bike is that I shift it about one time every six months, literally.  Well, I take that back.  I'm not counting the 5,387 times a week I knock the shifters around.  I *intentionally* shift about once every six months.  My commute is very flat and aside from occasional meetings downtown, which is also a pretty flat ride, that's all the territory this bike sees.

I'm thinking of maybe stem shifters.  Seems like they are inexpensive, easy to install and would work with my current bars or most any other.  I'd change out the stem if I go this way, something I've been planning to do for awhile anyway.  The stem that's on her isn't exactly a looker.

Anyone have any thoughts or advice?


  1. Is it just bumping them that's annoying you? I find the BE shifters on the drop bars are pretty much out of the way and I'm wondering if it might be the type of bars they're on. I like the reach for BE's as it is more stable than reaching for stem-shifters and not as much of a reach as down-tube shifters (my second choice).

    If you do change them, I think Vivian would look very classy with some silver stem shifters. Yet another lovely bicycle (sigh).

  2. They aren't in the way while I'm riding, just the rest of the time. When I get it out of the garage, when I hang it in the bike room at work, when I lock it up on bike racks, etc. Do not like.

    I put a new stem and some stem shifters on yesterday and they look very nice. I think I'm going to switch to drop bars and hook it all up today. If I don't like them, I'll try something else.

  3. Oh and I'm thinking of doing something besides the VO Elkhide for wrap. It's very comfortable but for the last two years every single time I look at the bars I'm reminded of sausages.