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Handle it! Upgrading the MATE X eBike with BMX handlebars

You may need to consider a second upgrade when you get a new front suspension fork, and that’s if you ever considered adding BMX handlebars. BMX bars need to be attached using a so-called “loader” and depending on the loader, it may need more steerer tube than you have available, if your steerer fork’s tube was cut to accommodate the original MATE X folding bars. Not only that, the handlebars need to be at a comfortable height for you, so even if you manage to attach a loader to a cut steerer tube, you may find yourself needing more height.

To help explain the parts and the facts, I decided to do a video to bridge the gap between the previous post and this one.

As you can see, there are some things to consider:

  • Get a top-loader, not a front-loader. I first got this advice from a BMX pro, who explained that top-loaders will distribute the grip across a larger area than a front loader, and this is going to ensure a more tight and secure mount for the handlebars. Added bonus is top-loaders give the handlebars more height.
  • If you want to add a single-crown fork, you may be able to find a slim top-loader that will be able to grip the stem, even if it’s previously been cut to fit the original MATE X folding handlebars. But this will not be sufficient if you want to raise your handlebars higher. If that is the case, you may be able to extend the steerer tube using a steerer tube extender (also called a stem riser).
  • If you want to get the double-crown fork, there is basically no way that a short steerer tube, that has already been cut ,will be sufficient. Not even a steerer tube extender will help. The top “crown” or “shoulders” of the double-crown fork will take up too much of the stem to attach anything else. You will need an uncut steerer tube.
  • A good set of spacers with varying height will allow you to rearrange the top-loader and the spacers to adjust the height of your handlebars. And most importantly regarding spacers, you may need to add some above the top-loader. This is to ensure that the steerer tube is about 3mm shorter that the top spacer. This way, tightening the top cap will “pull” the steerer tube upwards and compress the whole assembly from the bottom to the top, to ensure there’s no excess movement or rattling. Once it’s all nice and tight, you can tighten the top-loader around the steerer tube so it does all the hard work of keeping the steerer tube in place, instead of that little top cap.

My shopping list (Yours may vary):

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