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Choosing The Best Handlebars For Your Dirt Bike or ATV

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Handlebars from Rocky Mountain ATV/MC

Few parts come in as many usable variations as dirt bike handlebars. You get to decide among multiple brands, colors, sizes, styles and bends. Most handlebars are universal (though sometimes only with applicable sizing adapters), so your options are pretty wide open regardless of your bike.

If you’re looking to upgrade your handlebars for a different feel or look – or even if you need to replace them due to bending your previous bars – you’ll find a great selection at Rocky Mountain ATV/MC. We carry dozens of different bends for both 7/8" and 1 1/8" handlebars that come in several great colors to enhance your bike’s existing look. We carry major brands like Renthal, ProTaper, Mika Metals, Tag, Fasst and many others.

You can browse our selection on this page, or you can utilize the filters on the left side of the page to narrow the selection down to meet your preferences. If you already know what you’re after, dig in and get yourself new handlebars. If you need a bit of guidance, feel free to check out our guide provided below.

Handlebar Diameter

Dirt bike handlebars come in two diameters: 7/8" and 1 1/8". The smaller size (7/8") is older and is sometimes considered the standard size. The larger size (1 1/8") was introduced in 1991, and handlebars in this size are often called “fat bars” or simply oversized bars. Fat bars measure 1 1/8" in the clamp area but taper to 7/8" at the handles so that they fit standard grips.

There are several advantages to using oversized bars. They tend to be stronger and are less likely to bend. Many of them don’t use crossbars, which is a style that some riders prefer. However, unless the bike is built specifically for fat bars, they require sizing adapters. They’re also more expensive than equivalent 7/8" bars.

Dirt Bike Handlebar Bends

There are three primary measurements for a handlebar:

  • Height: The vertical distance from the handlebar’s center (clamp area) to the handle
  • Width: The distance from tip to tip (or handle to handle)
  • Pull Back: The horizontal distance from the handlebar’s center (clamp area) to the handle when measured toward the rider – also called the sweep

Handlebar brands name bends according to types of machines that often run them (e.g. Kawasaki, CR, ATV), famous riders who used them (e.g. Carmichael, Windham, Stewart), or riding style that makes good use of them (e.g. MX race, Woods). However, the bend that you choose is completely up to your preferences.

Picking the Right Bend for You

There are numerous methods of identifying a good bend for your personal tastes, and there is no correct way to choose. A simple method is to analyze what you feel would be more comfortable based on your existing handlebar bend.

Another method encourages you to do 20 pushups, sit on your bike with your eyes closed, and position your hands where you imagine the handlebars should go (both straight and in a turn).

The “right” bend for you is whatever feels most comfortable. However, you might want to note that if you sit down a lot (such as in more casual trail riding), you might gravitate toward a handlebar with plenty of pull back, while if you stand a lot (such as if you race motocross), you might want a straighter bar.

There are numerous different bends. Fortunately, we’ve made it easy to quickly scan the width, height and pull back of all the bends we carry in a single location – our handlebar measurements page.

Altering Sizes

Height

Height is one of the three primary measurements of a bar’s bend. Choosing a bend isn’t the only way to influence the height; you can also utilize risers. Getting the right height is particularly important if you’re tall. Fortunately, many bends come in “high” versions that are specifically designed to accommodate taller riders.

Keep in mind that if you set your handlebars too high, they will be uncomfortable while sitting, but if they are too low, they can limit your range of motion.

Width

Some riders who race in the woods cut a small piece off each end of the handlebar to make it narrower. This makes it easier to avoid hitting trees. However, bars that are cut too far will not handle as well. In general, you should use handlebars that are as wide as your shoulder, and the manufactured size works fine.

Pull Back

When you clamp your handlebars, you can pull them toward you before tightening the clamps. While limited variation is fine, beware of excessive modification as it can position the handles awkwardly for your wrists.

Flexibility

Handlebars were traditionally made of steel. However, many modern handlebars utilize an aluminum alloy. Aluminum handlebars are just as strong as steel but offer significantly more flexibility.

Flexibility is important as it can make your ride more comfortable and even reduce arm pump. When shopping for a handlebar, be sure to pay attention to details in the product description that mention impact absorption and flexibility. Some handlebars – such as the Fasst Flexx – are specifically engineered to maximize flexibility.

If you bend your handlebars in a crash, replace them. Bent bars do not handle as well (or as predictably), creating an uncomfortable and possibly even dangerous riding condition. Avoid bending the bars back into their original shape as it compromises the structural integrity of the bars; they can more easily break. Instead, do the safe thing and replace them entirely.

Latest Dirt Bike Handlebars Reviews – You could win up to $500 for reviewing products!

  • Tusk Universal Big Bar Clamp and Bar Kit

    Tusk Universal Big Bar Clamp and Bar Kit

    Frank in ID

    Tusk Chub bar.

    Great price for a quality bar. Just wish they offered them in another taller height. I’ve used these in multiple bikes and it’s aleays an improvement over the stock bars.

    Read All Reviews
  • ProTaper Contour 1 1/8" Handlebar

    ProTaper Contour 1 1/8" Handlebar

    DYLAN in UT

    Pro taper makes the best bars in my opinion

    Very durable, in finish and crashing. They don’t rot in the sun (at least in orange) and they don’t break easily. My bike came with big bars so install was as simple as picking the tallest bars they offered, 6’2” isn’t always easy.

    Read All Reviews
  • Mika Metals 1 1/8" Oversize Handlebars

    Mika Metals 1 1/8" Oversize Handlebars

    Travis in CO

    Great bar overall

    You can feel more flex than a twin wall for sure. I like softer bars and like a crossbar and this seems to be the flex-iest oversized bar with a crossbar. Kinds feels like a fatbar. Bar is of very nice quality and is the same length as the twin wall it is replacing. The shape of the bar is easy on the eyes too, looks good! However, ODI grips didn’t slide on the left side, even with prying them wider and tapping with a hammer. I’m ok with that because I like glue on grips “renthal tacky.” I just wasn’t able to move grips around as quick when testing different bars. The crossbar pad is really low quality which is a shame because it looks nice. The shiny metallic backing is already separating from the cover layer and dirt has/is quickly pealing it aver more and more. This started after first race, bummer. I went with STV bend.

    Read All Reviews
  • Tusk T-10 Aluminum 7/8" Handlebar

    Tusk T-10 Aluminum 7/8" Handlebar

    KYLE in NY

    Look good new, scratch easily

    Look great out of the box. I chose to trim down each end by 3/4" for woods riding and wish there were markings on the ends to help with this. I wrapped electrical tape carefully around the end as a guide so not a big deal. I don't like that the black scratches off very easily. Just dry-fitting controls and bark busters marred the finish notably. Overall, for ~half the price of Pro-Taper and Renthal, I'm happy! Will see about bend resistance

    Read All Reviews
  • Fly Racing Aluma-Steel 7/8" Handlebars

    Fly Racing Aluma-Steel 7/8" Handlebars

    William in GA

    Great product at an even better price

    Overall good quality and fitment color looks great on my bike everything back in place just as before very pleased

    Read All Reviews
  • Fasst Flexx 1 1/8" Handlebar

    Fasst Flexx 1 1/8" Handlebar

    GREG in MT

    Amazing

    They're expensive but in my opinion worth every penny. These on my new KTM 300 xcw are just about magic.

    Read All Reviews
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