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Old 09-22-06, 06:52 PM   #1
Plainsman
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Looking for torque recommendation:Stem to handlebar

I have one of Nashbar's inexpensive aluminum road bike stems (OS) and an aluminum Airborne handlebar (OS). Nobody at Nashbar can tell me how tight to torque the bolts for the four bolt face-plate. As I'm brand new to this, feel doesn't help me much, as I usually just tighten things until my muscles give out (not a safe practice for a road bike I understand ) Thanks to you all, I do finally have a torque wrench though (help was MUCH appreciated). Any suggestions?
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Old 09-22-06, 07:20 PM   #2
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http://www.parktool.com/repair/readhowto.asp?id=88

Barnett's says:
< 6mm thread diameter: 120 - 145 in-lbs
> 6mm thread diameter: 205 - 240 in-lbs
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Old 09-22-06, 07:25 PM   #3
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I have 3 stems at the moment (2 Cinelli stems and a cheap no brand stem) and they all state the torque to be in the range 7 to 9 Nm (approx 62 to 80 pound-inches). Don't know if this is of any help
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Old 09-22-06, 07:27 PM   #4
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I recommend "good and tight"
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Old 09-22-06, 07:30 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by I_bRAD
I recommend "good and tight"

+1.

If it's not good enough, you'll figure it out. Make sure you tighten in an X pattern to keep the tension even across the faceplate.
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Old 09-22-06, 07:31 PM   #6
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+2
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Old 09-22-06, 07:40 PM   #7
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If it's not good enough, you'll figure it out. Make sure you tighten in an X pattern to keep the tension even across the faceplate.
Agreed. Snug them all up and then tighten each a bit at a time to get even clamping.
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Old 09-22-06, 08:01 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackjack51
I have 3 stems at the moment (2 Cinelli stems and a cheap no brand stem) and they all state the torque to be in the range 7 to 9 Nm (approx 62 to 80 pound-inches). Don't know if this is of any help
5 or 6 ft/lbs. That's not very much. I'd definitely exceed that if left to my own subjective devices. Kind of makes me think twice about the "good and tight" advice.
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Old 09-22-06, 09:30 PM   #9
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Just took a look at a Ritchie Pro stem I have on one of my road bikes: 5Nm (~45 in-lbs) stamped on the side of the stem; same for the bar clamps.

Profile Design H2O: 6.77 Nm (60 in-lbs) as specified in the destructions.

Nashbar various stems: 85 in-lbs (9.5 Nm) (specified in instr.)

Hope this helps -

- Wil
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Old 09-23-06, 01:41 AM   #10
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Depends on the number of bolts, which also tends to translate to bolt size. On my two-bolt stem I use 100 in-lb. Four bolt stem is more like the 75 in-lbs recommended above.

Use a 1/4" torque wrench for this small stuff. Larger wrenches are graduated in ft-lbs, and a 1/2" wrench is too big (inaccurate) to use below about 10 ft-lb (120 in-lb).

Wish I had one graduated in Nm.
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Old 09-23-06, 07:02 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch
5 or 6 ft/lbs. That's not very much. I'd definitely exceed that if left to my own subjective devices. Kind of makes me think twice about the "good and tight" advice.
Right. You only need enough torque so that the bar won't move. The main concern with overtightening is the damage you could inflict on the aluminum handlebar. Damage that could be invisible until the bar fails.
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Old 09-23-06, 10:13 AM   #12
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Thanks all, I'm going to start on the low end (60-75 in/lbs), and if the bar doesn't move call it done!
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