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Powerlite Powerbend Bars Question

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when did they start making the chromolly powerbend bars? I remember the powerbends in the mid 80's but i remember aluminum. I have a set of chromolly ones i would like to put on my '83 GT but would like to find out if they had the cromo versions back then. thanks for the help!

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I would guess it was a bit earlier... 82/81 or even earlier?? This is only based on foggy old school memories of when I think I remember them being around bitd. I also would like to know for sure, if anybody can drop science on this.

 

Also... were there two different cross bar diameters - one being earlier than the other?

 

And finally... how wide would uncut powerlite powerbend cruiser bars have been?

 

sb

:18:

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I remember Powerlites being pretty early...they did have a thinner diameter crossbar in the early days. I also think they knurled the newer ones as well.

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the info is helping.... the ones i have are knurled, but also have a thinner diameter crossbar. i already assumed my bars are newer ones but was wondering about he older ones. thanks for any more info!

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Well, I see some people lurking around that would probably know the answers to all our questions... hopefully they will chime in. It would be nice to raise the bar a bit and start to get real encyclopedic with our old school knowledge around here.

 

I have a favorite interview from V. And it is about "V"... Vorris Dixon, that is. It is stuffed with info and I always find some random relevant morsel of knowledge in it. Whether it be an oblique reference to the crazies from BXC (KS / WI teams from bitd) who had their private label frames made by Vorris or as in this case Powerlite bar info.

 

Anyway, the pertinent info to this thread is that early on Vorris began making the powerlite powerbend bars. He got the gig because he figured out a way to bend the bars cheaper than another motorcycle oriented bend shop that had been doing the work.

 

I again, give full credit for this info. to the interviewer from the Vorris interview on V. I have not used a cut and paste style quote because that may not be kosher.

 

An exact date is not given for Vorris producing those bars but it sounds like it was quite early... possibly earlier than any of our estimates so far.

 

Still not sure about era of changes regarding cross bar diam. and knurling.

 

Still don't know uncut lengths of og bars.

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I love powerlite bars, used to race them back in the day !!!

 

I have 7 sets of old powerlite bars varied sizes

 

Chrome and Alloy, no knurling, thinner crossbar than the newer ones / mini no cross bar - not sure of the year either, but I am sure they are early - mid 80's

 

Jon W

 

 

I have some of the VDC powerlite bars as well, - Mini bars, still have the original vdc decal on, you also get the powerlite chequre decal, the interesting thing is if you look closley at the powerlite decal, it actually says (Powerlite appoved bars)

 

Which shows the bars were approved by powerlite, (but made by vdc)

 

Powerlite vdc bars -

DSCF0001.jpg

 

Powerlite Alloy Bars

 

powerliteminibars.jpg

 

Powerlite Chrome Bars

 

813.jpg

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We bent the fork and frame tubing in the back of the Peddlepower store using hand benders. The "Power" bend came about one afternoon when we were messing around with the benders. We were looking at the angle that the bars swept back and figured out that if we could get the bars a little straighter maybe it could help with getting your elbows out a little. Then the light came om, me and Jeff D. started bending the end of the handlebars out to create the "Power" bend. There was no science involved just a couple of kids that had a hunch. The bars came out around 1981 or so. I don't remember the dimensions H x W x L

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Alloy or Chromo or both?

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Cromo Powerlite - powerbend/powergrip bars (Same design as advertised in BMXAction September 1982)

 

It says Powerlite "Introduces"... so I'm assuming the bars were fairly new to be released at this point.

powerlite_powergrip.jpg

bars_1982.jpg

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I was visiting with Mark Rink recently about the bars, and the CW ones.

 

He said that the CW bar was really his Dad's design, but he did not think it would sell.

 

He said the Powerbend came about when his dad screwed up on the bender, and thought it might work out and it did.

 

I really don't know myself.

 

My earliest cruiser bars measure 29 3/4 with current AME tris installed. Think they were 29 1/2 or so without grips. There is no knurl, and the crossbar has a small diameter. This set of bars has a killer sharp VDC like bends in them.

 

I have later ones that with grips mounted, squeak in under the ABA's 28 inch bar limitation. And they have the knurl, and the bends are less sharp thoughout the bar.

 

The mid school are easily spotted with the fat X bar.

 

After learning to ride with them, as a kid I absolutely dig em.

 

The trick was leaving your pinkies off the ends. You pull with three fingers, and forget the pinky.

 

The one riding pic should show the over the ends grip.

 

A.G.

 

P.S. I kinda got lost answering the question. My unknurled Pro size bars measure 28 1/4 with new AME tris on em. Betcha the bars measure 28 exact. They were definately out before 83.

PowerlitesBoss Jr 039.JPG

Andybmx6resize.jpg

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Jeff and I came up with the idea, but Powerlite was Steve's baby. After Steve poopoo'd the idea Jeff took the bars to CW. Jeff now is Nuetech and has a patented TUBLIS tire and A.P.E. Curved handlebar ends for MX bikes that eliminate arm pump (Arm Pump Eliminators)

141_0805_19_z+nuetech_arm_pump_eliminator+handlebar2.jpg

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Makes sense.

 

I have to admit, the powerbends are it for me.

 

When I could not find any Powerlite bars I bought some Fly bars that are like em, but a little flatter.

 

Regards,

 

A.G.

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We bent the fork and frame tubing in the back of the Peddlepower store using hand benders. The "Power" bend came about one afternoon when we were messing around with the benders. We were looking at the angle that the bars swept back and figured out that if we could get the bars a little straighter maybe it could help with getting your elbows out a little. Then the light came om, me and Jeff D. started bending the end of the handlebars out to create the "Power" bend. There was no science involved just a couple of kids that had a hunch. The bars came out around 1981 or so. I don't remember the dimensions H x W x L

 

 

 

team 97 who is this? mark

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Well, I see some people lurking around that would probably know the answers to all our questions... hopefully they will chime in. It would be nice to raise the bar a bit and start to get real encyclopedic with our old school knowledge around here.

 

I have a favorite interview from V. And it is about "V"... Vorris Dixon, that is. It is stuffed with info and I always find some random relevant morsel of knowledge in it. Whether it be an oblique reference to the crazies from BXC (KS / WI teams from bitd) who had their private label frames made by Vorris or as in this case Powerlite bar info.

 

Anyway, the pertinent info to this thread is that early on Vorris began making the powerlite powerbend bars. He got the gig because he figured out a way to bend the bars cheaper than another motorcycle oriented bend shop that had been doing the work.

 

I again, give full credit for this info. to the interviewer from the Vorris interview on V. I have not used a cut and paste style quote because that may not be kosher.

 

An exact date is not given for Vorris producing those bars but it sounds like it was quite early... possibly earlier than any of our estimates so far.

 

Still not sure about era of changes regarding cross bar diam. and knurling.

 

Still don't know uncut lengths of og bars.

 

 

Ok heres the truth, Voris Dixon (before VDC frames etc) Had a machine shop bending chromoly , steel etc. In the beginning peddlepower and other upstarts didnt have tube bending access. So powerlite and others would get 60 or so feet of certain size chromoly etc,we would then cut each piece to certain lengths for frames bars or whatever. We would then take all the cut parts over to voris in the beginning and then pick them up a day or two later after making the needed bends. Then at powerlite on kramer blvd, the pieces get set into a wooden puzzlepiece,and then welded !! then sent out to get painted or chromed etc, then back for stickers and shipping.After powerlite got rolling we got our own Powerbender and all was done in house except the painting of them. Voris was one of my dads best freinds and a very cool guy! but in no way did he make or produce powerlites,he only started VDC frames later on!Anyone knows where voris is let me know , my dad would love to say hi, mark rink

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Wow!!! Now here's the guy we've ALL been waiting for! Welcome to the site and get ready for some questions. Glad you made your way over here and look forward to reading the upcoming threads.

 

I grew up off Taft and Cambridge and would ride over there all the time to drool over the parts and frames. I still haunt the old complex and drop in on the thrift stores. I missed a 24" 3 bar by about 4 hours one day.

 

So, can you remember how the serial #'s worked? It's a riddle to most of us. I have a 24" Pro model that has 01224 stamped on the squarish brake bridge. Any ideas?

 

Thanks!!!

 

Greg

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We bent the fork and frame tubing in the back of the Peddlepower store using hand benders. The "Power" bend came about one afternoon when we were messing around with the benders. We were looking at the angle that the bars swept back and figured out that if we could get the bars a little straighter maybe it could help with getting your elbows out a little. Then the light came om, me and Jeff D. started bending the end of the handlebars out to create the "Power" bend. There was no science involved just a couple of kids that had a hunch. The bars came out around 1981 or so. I don't remember the dimensions H x W x L

 

 

 

team 97 who is this? mark

 

 

Hey Mark, this is Glenn

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when did they start making the chromolly powerbend bars? I remember the powerbends in the mid 80's but i remember aluminum. I have a set of chromolly ones i would like to put on my '83 GT but would like to find out if they had the cromo versions back then. thanks for the help!

chromolly was Very early.. the aluminum bars were usually the JR bars... at least 81... u used to cut the chromolly and never remember not having chromoly... truck used to come once a week with about 100 or so 40ft long 4130chromolly tubing.. i used to have to cut it lol... Hope this helps.. Mark Rink

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Wow!!! Now here's the guy we've ALL been waiting for! Welcome to the site and get ready for some questions. Glad you made your way over here and look forward to reading the upcoming threads.

 

I grew up off Taft and Cambridge and would ride over there all the time to drool over the parts and frames. I still haunt the old complex and drop in on the thrift stores. I missed a 24" 3 bar by about 4 hours one day.

 

So, can you remember how the serial #'s worked? It's a riddle to most of us. I have a 24" Pro model that has 01224 stamped on the squarish brake bridge. Any ideas?

 

Thanks!!!

 

Greg

Greg did we go to school together? some of my best friends live on corner of taft and cambridge in the golden circle.. mark rink

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