Bicycle Mechanics - Quill Stem Issues
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09-06-08, 06:09 PM
Recently I decided to raise my Nitto quill stem a bit. I removed it, regreased it, and reinstalled it. I tightened it by going about a quarter turn beyond the point at which I could no longer move the bars.
Now, about a week later, the stem is emitting a slight click sound when I push or pull on it. Might this mean that I have overtorqued? Or is the stem just settling into its new, more comfortable position? Any way to tell without a torque wrench?
Thanks ahead of time for the help--I just don't want to snap the stem in the middle of traffic.
09-06-08, 06:43 PM
The big item is did you raise it so the line or dot or other marking is showing? The one that is there as a sign for "DO NOT RAISE PAST THIS POINT".
If it's past that point then you're getting clicking because there's not enough support for the stem. If the mark is still below the top of the headset then I'm not sure why it would be clicking. Perhaps another 1/4 turn
09-06-08, 08:28 PM
How close is the fit between the stem and bar? Really snug? I've seen people install 22.0mm stems into 22.2mm steerer tubes. :(
Also try greasing the part of the stem above the wedge. Also lubricate the angled part of the wedge that slides on the stem. DO NOT get any grease on the rough outside part of the wedge!
Could also be your handlebars fretting inside the clamp as well.
Personally I don't think you tightened the stem enough. I'm assuming that this Nitto (Techtronic?) stem is for a threaded headset. Also make sure you have the right size.
But you might as well pull the stem out and put thin layer of grease on the stem shaft that will be inside the fork column, the wedge itself including the slope area, the threads on which the wedge is fastened to, under the stem bolt head, AND on the inside of the headset where the stem will enter and all the way down inside the fork column to about the depth that the stem shaft will reach.
Reinstall but make sure the minimum insertion line does not stick out above the top of the headset.
Then torque the stem binder bolt to about 145 to 180 inch pounds if it's a steel bolt or 145 to a max of 150 inch pounds if it's a aluminum bolt.
Then test the tightness of the stem by placing the bike on the floor and put the front wheel between your legs and tightly holding the wheel try twisting the bars side to side with about 40 pounds of pressure. If the bar doesn't move then it's tightened right. If it does move then retorque adding another 5 inch pounds and retest.
If this is the Techtronic stem the longer stem may have some noise due to the extra length of the stem that other stems don't have. Mine made that same noise until I went 5 inch pounds over the standard torque rating that most stems require.
09-07-08, 06:59 AM
Last time this happened on my threaded stem bike, the headset itself had actually worked loose! That caused a slight clicking noise when the stem was rocked back and forth. Not sure if it's related to your issue but always worth checking alignment while you're there :thumb:
09-07-08, 09:01 AM
Thanks for the answers.
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