Cyclocross - Tapered steerer tube
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07-20-12, 01:35 PM
I am in the process of finalizing my cyclocross bike purchase and am wondering if it is worth selecting one with a flared or tapered steerer tube. It seems that that the Jake the Snake and Conquest Pro's latest renditions have it. Any thoughts on paying a substantial amount more for a bike with the taper?
07-20-12, 04:59 PM
How strong of a rider are you? How much leverage do you apply to the handlebars? You have to torque a bike pretty hard to feel noticable flex in the head tube. I would guess 90% of riders aren't pushing the bike hard enough to notice a difference in stiffness/handling between a 1.25" and a tapered steer tube (all else being equal, of coarse). If it's a dedicated race bike, it might be worth it to pay the extra for a frame with tapered steer tube. If it's a commuter/recreational CX, I say put the money elsewhere unless you really like other features of the frame.
07-21-12, 12:30 PM
I was told by a road biking friend that the tapered steerer is noticeably more stable when going fast, that there is less shimmy and shake from the front wheel going down hill, for example. Is it significant? I don't know.
07-21-12, 02:04 PM
My road bike has a tapered steerer, the stiffness at speed and when producing power is noticeable and welcome.
Cannondale also uses a tapered steerer on some of their CX models.
07-21-12, 10:12 PM
I have been told that a tapered steertube can help stiffen the front end resulting in less shudder in braking but I cannot confirm this.
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