Recently I had an unpleasant experience with a frozen aluminum stem in a steel frame, involving hours of banging with mallet, messing around with ammonia, yanking on it with all my might . Now that I finally have that stem off, I am trying to find a stem which won't be prone to this sort of problem. I am not quite ready to spend >$100 on a steel stem, so I was wondering if people could advise about good, somewhat cheaper stem.
Are frozen stems kind of an anomaly, and are most people able to install and later adjust their aluminum stems without difficulty? I know greasing the **** out of it helps avoid the frozen stem, but I DID grease the **** out of mine and it still stuck very quickly after installation. The stem in question was a pretty old used model, so maybe new aluminum ones aren't so bad?
I was looking at some of the cheaper stems on ben's cyclery, and both the Nitto Deluxe and the Nitto Pearl are described as being made from "Cold Forged alloy" ... this is probably a stupid question but does that mean an aluminum alloy? I mean I am pretty sure all aluminum parts are an alloy of some type since they are stronger than aluminum foil, but are there better and worse alloys? Anybody have any problems with Nitto stems freezing in their steel frames? I would really like to go a couple of years, maybe even the rest of my life without having to deal with a frozen stem.