SQLAB INNERBARENDS TEST
Like Roadie “Hoods” for Your MTB
SQlab is a German company that designs products for the critical connection points between you and your bike. The company started with saddles that feature a semi-custom width programmed to fit any behind. They now make a slew of products, including the new Innerbarends, which offer an extra hand position and are designed to make bar ends cool again. We mounted them to our Intense Recluse test bike to see how they’d hold up (pun intended).
SQlab’s Innerbarends are designed to mount to the inside of the grip, shifter and brake lever to provide an additional hand position for comfort on climbs, long rides, and road sections. The bar ends feature a contoured shape that’s ergonomic but also short and unobtrusive. Each requires a simple clamp with a single bolt for installation. Our pair of Innerbarends tipped the scales at 231 grams and retails for $45. They can be purchased directly from the SQlab website or through any local bike shop. They are also available in an easier-to-install split-clamp design for $55, although that version is not recommended for use with carbon bars.
On the Bars:
These bar ends offer an extra hand position that’s not only comfortable but also a good way to fight fatigue on the trail. There’s something uplifting about shifting your weight around a bit when on a long climb, and these little nubs provide a great way to do it. They feel very similar to the “hoods” on a road bike handlebar, and they provide a comfortable position for climbs and those pesky but necessary sections of road between singletrack. They also don’t protrude like a typical, old-school bar end, which means they are less likely to snag on a trailside tree branch and send you crashing through the woods. These would be a welcome addition to any cross-country or trail rider’s setup, especially if hand fatigue is an issue.
• Sleek design that’s lightweight
• Excellent ergonomics that reduce hand fatigue on long rides
• Bar ends may take a while to get used to and you may receive the occasional sarcastic “Nice bar ends” comment from time to time. Sticks and stones.
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