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Ridden & Reviewed: Bar Fly Garmin Computer Mount

July 5, 2012

It’s the simple things in life. Like your Garmin mount on your bike.

Yes, I’m one of the people who think that the stock Garmin mount that comes with their incredibly useful computer is both elegantly simple and fairly foolproof. While I have friends that have had issues with their Garmin units falling off, or the rubber o-rings on the stock mount breaking, I’ve experienced nothing of the sort. In fact, I was fairly pleased with the standard mount through mountain, road, and cyclocross riding and racing.

Then I got a Bar Fly.

I’ll be the first to admit, I originally got the Bar Fly primarily because I like the aesthetic of it. Mirroring the placement of units like the SRM power meter head unit, the Bar Fly puts your Garmin 200, 500, or 800 series cycling computer out in front of you, in front of the center of your handlebar, right in front of the nose of your stem. An elegant looking placement–to my thinking–that, truth be told actually serves a few of useful purposes.

The Bar Fly puts your Garmin where you can see it.

I had always mounted my Garmin on my stem, which didn’t really present me with a problem–I run a fairly long 120 mm stem and I run it pretty close to parallel to the ground. As a result, I generally had plenty of real estate on my stem to use the stock mount. But the Bar Fly is perfect for those who run shorter stems and/or a stem at a higher angle. By moving the computer unit off the handlebar (when the stem mount option isn’t feasible) valuable handlebar space is reserved for things like…hands. Score one for folks wanting to run a Garmin cycling computer that don’t have their stem long and low and are having trouble placing it on the bike.

Computer placement is obviously not just about aesthetics. The position of the unit has to allow it to be visible when riding. Certainly a computer off to one side or the other of the stem on the bar is in a somewhat awkward spot. And even on my stem, the unit was directly under my head where I had to consciously look down–taking my eyes completely off the road or the wheel in front of me–to see how much longer I had to ride before heading home or how many more minutes were left in my race at the Driveway. With my Garmin atop my Bar Fly it sits further out in front making it easier to see on the open road and glance at in close-quarter situations. Score one for safety.

The Bar Fly also makes one of my favorite Garmin features work better. If you were at the hydration and nutrition clinic last week with Dave and Trey from Cycle Camp USA you likely got some great tips on when and how to drink on the bike. And, as Trey with Cycle Camp USA knows–and likes to give me some good-natured grief about–I have a timer alarm set on my Garmin to go off every 10 minutes to remind me to drink (admittedly this is more of a problem for me in cooler Fall and Winter temperatures). With the Garmin sitting on the Bar Fly the alarm is much more audible and harder to ignore. Score one for staying hydrated–for me at least.

The Bar Fly sports a simple design.

The Bar Fly mounts with a single allen bolt and is made from a durable plastic. The Garmin computer unit is secured the the bar Fly using he same quarter-turn style system that the stock mount uses, but it actually feels “tighter” and thus more secure. And, the Bar Fly was designed, tested, and is manufactured right here in the good ol’ U.S. of A.

The Bar Fly is a really simple system that provides easy solutions for problems that I didn’t know existed or that I had. I love simple things like that.

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