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Removal and Installation of Mountain Bike Handlebars

We’ll start with “how to remove a handlebar” in case you are replacing one. If you are just installing a new handlebar, you may skip to the second section.

Removing a Handlebar

On a mountain bike, removing the handlebar is simple.

If you will be installing an entirely new handlebar later, the first step is to remove everything from the current bar. You will want to remove the grips, shifters, and brake levers.

Then you will loosen the clamp bolts on the stem’s faceplate. If the faceplate is removable, you can pull the handlebar out now and you are done.

If the faceplate is not removable, you will have to slide the handlebar out to one side. Now you are done.

[If you just need to remove the bar temporarily, like if you are replacing the stem, you don’t need to remove the shifters, brake levers, or grips.]

Installing a Handlebar

First, loosen the clamp bolts and remove the faceplate from the stem, if that’s not already done.

Second, apply a thin layer of grease or installation compound to the stem/bar interface.

Third, place the new handlebar into the stem. You can either set it in or slide it in, depending on the type of stem you have.

Making sure the handlebar is centered, tighten the stem’s faceplate to hold the bar lightly.

Next, install the shifters, brake levers, and grips.

Now you can determine the perfect position for the bar by holding onto the grips and rotating the bar until it is most comfortable for you. Once you have done that, snug down the stem bolts.

Then just make sure your brake levers are adjusted, and everything should be set.


Here is a video about how to replace a flat handlebar, typically found on a mountain bike.

And another: