Gallery: Dom’s Raleigh Gran Prix w/DIY Bars

Dom's Raleigh
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Dom's Raleigh
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[Dom sent us these photos of his Raleigh Gran Prix outfitted with his modified handlebars. —ed.]

This is a Raleigh Gran Prix from the mid 80′s. The inspiration for the handlebar was more function than form to begin with. The original equipment drop bars and long top tube were just too much of a stretch to be comfortable for urban stop and go riding. By flopping the bar I narrowed the stretch and by chopping the bar I got the micro handgrip positions I wanted.

After a few months of riding with pass through brakes traditionally mounted on the horizontal I wanted something completely unique. At the same time I was in contact with Dynacraft, the mass market distributor. After a meeting in Minneapolis with David Castrucci, Dynacraft, US president and Les Heinen factory rep. I was told my design was not patentable, which I began to understand was true.

I went home to brainstorm while I had two weeks awaiting an answer weither Dynacraft wanted to produce bikes with this handlebar concept. So that weekend I set about molding an elbow out of modeling clay and wire. I knew this elbow modification was the direction I would pursue. The hardware store supplied prototype parts for the elbow modification. I bought the Tektro reverse levers and put everything together by Monday morning, shooting an e-mail to David and Les with a patentable design.

For the next two weeks I worked on my patent application and currently have a patent application pending with the USPTO. I am very much into “repurposing” drop bars as DIY for urban riding.

Dom

More information on the handlebar mod

2 Responses to “Gallery: Dom’s Raleigh Gran Prix w/DIY Bars”

  • voyage says:

    I’m happy to learn an old Raleigh is still on the road rather than dumpstered!

    Flipping and chopping drop downs has been done for decades and the extensions (if I understand this) may make the practice sensible and safe and marketable. And save an old bike.

    To ally concerns, some photos of the product applying thumb shifters, even bar ends would help.

  • dominic says:

    thanks for making response Voyage. The pictures have bar end reverse brakes and work great on this prototype which is really a 3 piece handlebar. Bar end shifters would be a natural if and when this handlebar is manufactured as a one piece. Right now I am debating wether to convert my Masi with drop bars and nice campy shifters to a Rev 2 and thumb shifters. Wait and see…..

 
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