Which Grip Fits?
Between the image above and the below table you get a pretty good summary of the different diameters of handlebars.
For most people this will not be a concern as the handlebars on mountain bikes, hybrid and flat bar bicycles, beach cruisers and BMX bikes all have the same diameter at the grip area!
31.8 Clamp diameter for modern oversize bars. Interchangeable mountain and road use.
31.7 Deda oversize clamp size (compatible with 31.8)
26.4 Clamp size for old school Cinelli bars.
26.0 The most common size for road bars.
25.8 Used by ITM, Ritchey, and 3T. For road use. Compatible with 26.0 stems/handlebars.
25.4 The most common size for mountain bike bars (previous to the oversize 31.8 clamp). Also used on some Japanese and Taiwanese road bars.
23.8 Grip area of road bar.
22.2 Grip area of mountain bar as well as the clamp size of BMX bars.
Mountain Bike Bars - Flat Bars, Riser Bars, Hybrid bikes
Mountain Bars come in two different clamp sizes - the original 25.4mm, and the newer 'oversize' 31.8. Widths vary widely, many bars are made to be cut down so you can buy it wide and work it down to what you like. Check with the manufacturer of the bar to see if that's an option. A 25.4 mountain bar shouldn't be used in a 26.0 road stem.
Road Bike Bars - the Drop Bar
Road bars now mainly come in two different clamp sizes - the original 26.0, and the newer oversize 31.8. Widths vary and some manufacturers measure the outside to the outside of the widest point of the bar while some measure the center to the center of the widest point. If you are unsure of how they are measured check with the manufacturers web site. A 26.0 bar shouldn't be used in a 25.4 mountain stem.
Cruiser / Commuter Bars - Mustache, High Rise, Randonneur, Multi-Position
Here is where you will see the most variety - and here is where you need to keep in mind not only the clamp size of the stem you have or want to use, but also the diameter of the bar off of the bulge.
Mountain bike brake lever and shifter clamps are designed to fit a diameter of about 22.2mm.
Road bike brake and shift levers (Shimano STI, Campagnolo Ergopower, stand-alone drop bar brake levers) are designed to fit a diameter of about 23.8mm.
This is why you need to be sure to match up what shifters or brakes you plan to use with the grip area of the bar, along with the clamp size of the stem.
BMX Bars - BMX Riser Bars
BMX bars use the same diameter for both the stem clamp area as well as the grip area, 22.2mm. What's the signifigance of 22.2mm? It's actually the same as 7/8", which was how they started out being measured.
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