Mountain biking extremists may already know their preferences but if you are just getting into the sport, there are a lot of decisions to be made. One of them is choosing between a 31.8 vs 35mm handlebar. Again, if you are an expert, you probably have already heavily research your decision. But those just starting out are probably utter confused and overwhelmed. Afterall, the difference doesn’t seem that great, so how much is really affected? The truth is that even with just a small measurement difference, your ride can be quite altered.
Handlebars of both sizes come in carbon options. Here is how they stack up in comparing length and weight.
Carbon is the lighter option here, and is reflected in the length vs weight categories.
|Acros Popular Bar||780 mm||190 g|
|BEAST Components 31.8||800 mm||203 g|
|Levelnine Pro Team||785 mm||242 g|
|NEWMEN Advanced 318.25||800 mm||240 g|
|Race Face Sixc 3/4″||785 mm||220 g|
|Ritchey WCS Carbon 2X||710 mm||183 g|
|SQlab 311 FL-X||740 mm||198 g|
|Syntace Vector Carbon High35||780 mm||265 g|
|Truvativ Atmos Carbon||760 mm||190 g|
Although not quite as light as carbon, aluminum is still a decent option.
|Chromag Fubars FU40||800 mm||330 g|
|Levelnine Race||720 mm||280 g|
|Newmen Evolution SL||760 mm||280 g|
|PRO FRS 31.8||800 mm||345 g|
|Renthal Fatbar||800 mm||315 g|
|Ritchey Comp||740 mm||380 g|
|Spank Oozy Trail 780 Vibrocore||780 mm||270 g|
|Spank Spike 800||800 mm||330 g|
|SQlab 3OX MTB 31.8||780 mm||335 g|
|Truvativ Hussefelt Comp||700 mm||347 g|
For those that want a 35 mm handle, these charts will help you understand a bit more about the dimensions.
Now becoming a more popular option, carbon gives you a lighter weight for your bike.
|Acros Popular Bar||780 mm||190 g|
|BEAST Components 35||800 mm||194 g|
|Bontrager Line Pro||750 mm||222 g|
|Chromag BZA 35||800 mm||235 g|
|OneUp Components 20||800 mm||220 g|
|PRO Tharsis 3Five Carbon||720 mm||130 g|
|Race Face Next R||800 mm||215 g|
|Renthal Fatbar||800 mm||225 g|
|Specialized Roval Traverse 35mm SL Carbon handebars||800 mm||227 g|
Strong and durable, here is how aluminum performs.
|Chromag Fubars OSX||800 mm||312 g|
|ethirteen Plus||800 mm||280 g|
|Levelnine Team||800 mm||316 g|
|PRO Tharsis 3Five 35||800 mm||250 g|
|Race Face Aeffect||780 mm||335 g|
|Race Face Atlas||820 mm||320 g|
|Race Face Turbine R||800 mm||300 g|
|Renthal Fatbar 35||800 mm||305 g|
|Renthal FatbarLite 35||760 mm||270 g|
|Thomson Elite 35||800 mm||250g|
Obviously, the main difference between 31.8 vs 35mm bars is the size, but what else makes these two options so diverse?
Weight is a tricky category to compare 35mm and 31.8mm handlebars because it also has to do with the material, either carbon or aluminum. Overall, however, you can expect 35mm handlebars to be slightly heavier than the alternative. This makes a lot of sense because with thicker diameter comes more material, which will then weigh more.
Right now, the current standard for mountain biking is a 31.8mm handlebar. As a result, there are more bikes that offer this choice. When you have more choices, you have more competition and as a result, lower prices.
What’s more, you can find 31.8mm bars just about anywhere. From your local bike shop to an online retailer, and even to a large used bike selection, there are many 31.8mm options to be found.
You can still definitely find 35mm options but your choice may be limited. You may have to special order a handlebar in this size from your favorite bike shop, especially right now as there are multiple supply chain issues.
Those that want to purchase a bike that is already put together can definitely find affordable mountain bike options. As soon as you want to add your own modifications, that is when the price quickly skyrockets.
No matter how you ride your mountain bike, at some point it will need to be repaired. It’s no secret that mountain biking injuries Trusted Source Mountain Biking - Active & Safe Mountain biking, riding specially-designed bicycles off-road and over rough terrain, is a popular sport in British Columbia. activesafe.ca are more common than road biking injuries and when you fall over, there is a good change your bike will be injured, too. Thus, a clamping area is important. This allows you to keep your bike upright while you or a specialist looks at it.
Thanks to its larger size, a 35mm handlebar will have a larger clamping area. While this is definitely a bonus, because the standard is still 31.8mm, most repair shops are perfectly fine with a smaller clamping area.
The stiffer your bike the more responsive it is. If you are going downhill and need to navigate between two trees, you want to have the most control possible over your bike.
35mm handlebars really stand out in this category because they are much stiffer. With the thicker material, there is less flexibility so you can move exactly how you want to.
Just be a bit careful if you switch handlebar sizes as the extra stiffness can take a bit to get used to.
Those who go on longer journeys, such as if you need a mountain bike for hunting, may find a stiffer ride a bit harder to navigate as you will need to keep your arms at constant attention. However, stiffness is largely a personal preference and with both diameter options, you quickly adapt.
The length of handlebar won’t change, even if the diameter does. You can still find both diameter sizes in a range of lengths, from 750 to 800mm.
There’s a bit of disagreement within this category. 35mm handlebars are thicker and thus should be a bit stronger than a thinner bar. They can also hold a bit of extra weight, which may be a bonus if you are a heavier rider.
However, mountain bikes, regardless of the thickness, are meant to be durable. All of their components combines will ensure that you have a solid ride and no matter your size, your bike and its handles won’t spontaneously fall apart.
If you are concerned about durability, such as if you are looking for the best gravel handlebars, then there are a number of specific options you can look for.
Don’t know whether you need 31.8 or 35mm bars? Then if you prefer tougher riding patterns and desire more control over your bike – 35mm handlebar is an obvious choice. But a lighter and more affordable 31.8mm handlebar can reduce road vibrations thus going lighter on your joints.
Getting out on your bike is an extremely healthy activity Trusted Source Cycling Benefits: 12 Reasons Cycling Is Good for You Cycling is a low impact exercise that can help you manage your weight as well as prevent health risks. It’s good for beginners and advanced athletes alike. www.healthline.com and the best ride on your mountain bike will be determined by how comfortable you feel. You want to be in control as you speed along rough terrain which is why it’s important to outfit your bike with all the necessary modifications. From your seat to your pedals to your handlebar, finding the right option may take a bit of time. We hope you now have a better understanding of what makes a 31.8 vs 35mm handlebar so different. The measurement refers to the diameter and while the 31.8 handlebar is still the industry standard, there are becoming more options for both sizes.