The conventional wisdom (just read it again in Greg Lemond's book) is that, when your hands are on the tops, the handlebar should obscure your view of the front hub. I've found this works pretty well for me. How it looks from the side, which is what I assume you're talking about, is another matter and would depend on how the rider is built. I happened to be looking at a bike custom made for me.
I just took another look at this same bike - a line drawn from the center of the front hub would hit the handlebars at their furthest forward point. Where you put the brake levers on the bars is yet another variable. And this bike has a Rivendell "Dream" handlebar, much like the Cinelli model 64 and other short reach bars of yore, which are increasingly hard to find these days.
Generally speaking, riding position has gottten further stretched out in the forward direction over the last few decades, so I imagine an authentic "classic" fit would find the brake hoods a few centimeters closer to the saddle than a more modern one.
Steve "the old wisdom works for me" Freides
> I must have been paying too much attention to little things on my ride this
> morning, but I noticed that this bike I just built (Weigle) positioned the
> brake hoods directly over the front hub and it felt 'right'. I checked my
> bikes when I got home and all of my bikes that seem to ride just right have
> that same hoods over hub positioning. Anybody else care to comment? Lou
> Deeter, Orlando FL