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  1. #1
    Just Peddlin' Along SaddleBags's Avatar
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    Measuring Stem Length

    I have this heavy Ritchey stem that was OEM on a 04 Fuji that I put on my new build because my 90mm Ritchey WCS was too short. However, I don't know what size it is. It appears to be 120-130mm. I'd like to replace the stem with a lighter WCS stem.

    How do you measure the length of a stem? Is it from c to c (center of steerer tube opening to center of h-bar opening)?

  2. #2
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaddleBags
    I have this heavy Ritchey stem that was OEM on a 04 Fuji that I put on my new build because my 90mm Ritchey WCS was too short. However, I don't know what size it is. It appears to be 120-130mm. I'd like to replace the stem with a lighter WCS stem.

    How do you measure the length of a stem? Is it from c to c (center of steerer tube opening to center of h-bar opening)?
    That's the way I do it. Some have argued that you don't get an 'accurate' measurement because you haven't taken into account the angle of the stem but it's close enough. Besides which if you went to a shop and asked for a 131.4457mm stem, they'd look at you like you had two heads and hand you a 130mm stem while laughing. Who needs that?
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  3. #3
    cyclist/gearhead/cycli... moxfyre's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaddleBags
    I have this heavy Ritchey stem that was OEM on a 04 Fuji that I put on my new build because my 90mm Ritchey WCS was too short. However, I don't know what size it is. It appears to be 120-130mm. I'd like to replace the stem with a lighter WCS stem.

    How do you measure the length of a stem? Is it from c to c (center of steerer tube opening to center of h-bar opening)?
    For the purposes of replacing it with a new stem, it's unfortunately hard to compare different brands. Lots of companies seem to measure their stems slightly differently ... although the common sense way that cyccommute explained is pretty often used, fortunately.
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  4. #4
    Decrepit Member Scooper's Avatar
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    Yep, center of steerer tube opening to center of handlebar clamp. To avoid confusion, though, this stem dimension is usually referred to as the stem extension, not the stem length. Here's a quote from the Rivendell website:

    "Stem length numbers below refer to the FORWARD EXTENSION, MEASURED CENTER TO CENTER ALONG THE SIDE FROM THE CENTER OF THE QUILL TO THE CENTER OF THE BAR CLAMP, not the quill length, which is a constant for a particular model of stem."

    Nitto Technomic Deluxe stems, for example, are 190 mm long (quill length) with extensions from 70 mm to 120 mm.
    - Stan

  5. #5
    Just Peddlin' Along SaddleBags's Avatar
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    Thanks all for the confirmation.

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