I love getting happy emails from students but happy emails from halfway around the world from riders I have never meet?! That is cool! Feels great to be helping riders all over the planet. Here is the email:
Low, wide bars.
I am 5 ft 8, broad shouldered and ride a medium Ibis Mojo.
Until last week I had an 80mm stem, 670mm bars set at (XC) saddle height.
I had thought this a great setup.
However after pondering your suggestions for a while I finally made the change:
60mm stem, bars 1.125″ below saddle, and 725mm width.
No downsides, no oversteering, just way way better stability, agility smoothness and control.
My local trails have heaps of close trees and rocky banks, however the increased stability combined with greater agility means the extra width is not an issue.
And with more practice things will only get better.
My bike loved cornering before (low BB etc) however it settles into a turn much more quickly and is just plain way more fun.
Downhill braking is much nicer, and climbing is uneffected.
And the front end is way better planted over the rough stuff.