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Bike Handle bar Height Adjustment

I have a DRT 1.1. I need to raise the handlebar height. Since stores are closed I cannot bring for it to be done. I wanted to see if I can do it myself? If so how do I do it?

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Re: Handlebar Height Adjustment

@LinP Thanks for reaching out!

We're going to tag some of our cycle folks here in the community to see if they can weigh in. @REI-AliciaG , @REI-CassidyT , @REI-JacintaH , @REI-JebM , @REI-JessieD , @REI-MeganR , @REI-ReinkeM any insight you can lend here?

Thanks for your patience as we track down the answers you need.

Hope this helps!

At REI, we believe a life outdoors is a life well-lived.
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Re: Bike Handle bar Height Adjustment

Hi @LinP,

Thanks for this great question! Our bikes are typically built with the handlebars/stem installed at the highest position available. That being said, there are still some things you can do to change the height, many of which you may accomplish at home. However, before going this route, I would first recommend two things:

  1. We typically recommend riding your new bike for at least a few hours to get used to the feel before making any big changes.
  2. If at all possible, have a bike shop assess the basic fit (frame size) of the bike for you, including the seat height. If there is a large difference between your seat height and handlebar height (seat high, handlebar low), moving to a larger frame size may actually fix the issue and result in a more comfortable ride.

Below are a few common options to change the handlebar height on your bike. Here is a video on handlebar setup for MTB style bars that also helps explain some key setup concepts and may help you adjust without changing parts.

  • Move the stem to the highest position (you will see 0 spacers above the stem). This is likely to be how your bike was already built, but it is good to check.
  • Select and replace your handlebar with one that has more “rise.” This will bring the grips up higher.
  • Select and replace your stem with one that has a steeper rise/angle. That will bring the handlebar higher, but may also result in the bars being slightly farther away if the stem is longer—you’ll need to be careful not to change the length too much.
  • Install a part called a “stem raiser”. These dramatically raise the handlebar height. Note: Generally speaking we do not recommend using stem raisers because they negatively affect how the bike rides: both steering and general handling. This option may work for casual riding on pavement, but is not suitable for mountain biking use.

If you would like to go with one of the options above and have more questions about how to tackle this at home, you can reach out to cyclinghelp@rei.com to connect directly with certified bike technicians like myself who can provide detailed instructions and/or help over the phone. Here are two links that provide videos and instructions on handlebar and stem replacement:

I hope this helps and thanks again for your great question!

Happy trails,

At REI, we believe a life outdoors is a life well-lived.
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