Checkpoint: I’ve been running the Gary Sweep OS bars every chance I could get between cold snaps and being sick since the introduction which you can check out HERE. One thing I wanted to cover regarding the comments on that first post is that this bar doesn’t compare to any of the previous drop bars for off-road. The Gary Sweep OS is really its own design, but if I were pressed for a comparison, it would be to the Salsa Cycles Woodchipper bar, but it is a pretty distant relationship. The Woodchipper has some very distinct differences from the Gary Sweep OS that make the two bars very different to ride. Suffice it to say that the Gary Sweep OS is different and making references to other bars won’t really give you any idea how this bar fits and feels. It is that different.
The set up on my Salsa Cycles Vaya was achieved with decent results. The image here to the right shows how I was able to set the levers up so that I could easily brake from the drops, yet still have a reasonable hoods position. The “ramps” to the hoods are slightly tilted downward away from the rider, but not too severely to cause me concerns. This allowed me to achieve an extensions angle that didn’t point down toward the ground ahead of the rear axle, which is something I see with many set ups using the Woodchipper. All these features of the Gary Sweep OS resulted in several useable positions, which is the idea behind using a drop bar in the first place.
One thing concerning the ergonomics of this bar that, at once was a negative and a positive, was the length of the ramps, which I was on the fence about in my last post. On one hand, the longer ramps extend the reach to the levers/hoods. Of course, a shorter stem would negate any extra length. I did find that this longer ramp section supported my arms a few inches behind my wrists so that I could support my weight on part of my arms as well as my wrists and hands creating a pseudo “time trial” position. So, both a positive and a negative there. You would have to decide if the ramps would work for you, but I am getting along with them so far. Speaking of “so far”…..
So Far…. I’m impressed with this offering from Origin 8. It ticks a lot of the ergonomic boxes for a comfortable, versatile alternative drop bar, and I am finding the ride quality, so far, to be quite nice. Mounting levers in a useable way from the drops still yields a useable position on the hoods which adds to the versatility factor. The extensions sweep is not too radical, and by the way, bar end shifters will fit the ends of the extensions here, which is good. The extensions are long, which I like, but if you wanted shorter lengths you can always cut them down to taste. The ramps are maybe an acquired taste, but I am growing to like them. Stay tuned for a final word on these bars soon in my “At The Finish” post coming soon.
NOTE: The Gary Sweep OS bar for this review was purchased by Guitar Ted and this review is not being subsidized, paid for, nor is a bribe from Origin 8. I will strive to give my honest thoughts and opinions throughout.