Originally Posted by Tiktaalik
I recently got an 84 Pinarello which is feeling smallish on me and I want to try to raise the cinelli stem to try to make it fit a bit better. I pulled out the stem a bit looking for the line to say where the minimum length I could pull it out was but I didn't see one. However, there was a line of text that said "minimum length" or something to that effect. My hunch is that at the very least that line of text should be covered, since I don't see any other lines or markings. Would this be the right idea? I've only lifted the stem up about an inch and a bit to reveal that line.
I'm fairly new to bikes so I'm not sure exactly how to size this. It does feel a bit smallish compared to my other bike, which does appear larger. I'm guessing should the stem height sort of line up with the seat height?
If you have the seat at the right height for you (there are threads about that here, or search "bicycle fitting" on Google), the common rule of thumb for handlebar height is for the top of the bars to be 0 to 5 cm or so lower than the top of the saddle. It isn't always possible to get in this range with standard quill stems like the Cinelli, unless the frame is really big enough for you. If you can start out with the 'bar height at teh saddle height, that would be a good thing.
Other common and at least similar to the period of your bike are the Nittos. If you need just a few centimeters of added bar lift either for back comfort or to get in the 5 cm range, look for a Nitto Technomic Deluxe. If you need a big lift, look for a Nitto Technomic. They aren't the same.
Usually the Technomic gives too much lift, and it can really look goofy on small frames, 55 cm or smaller ("giraffe effect"). Problem is, the Technomic is much easier to find! Rivendell sells both of them or at least did, and teh Sheldon Brown site sells only the Technomic. I think the Ben's Cycle Ebay Store has both, as well. You need to play with the bike and a ruler, to see how much lift you might need relative to the Cinelli.
Quality-wise, the Nitto stems are in the same ballpark as your Cinelli.
Another thing to watch out for is that Cinelli stems of your vintage and older have a 26.4 mm clamp diameter, and Nittos come in sizes of either 26.0 or 25.4. A Cinelli 26.4 bar will not fit in a 25.4 mm clamp, and it is arguably not safe to put it into a 26.0 clamp. There were some later Cinelli 26.0 bars made, perhaps you have one of these already. You might have a new handlebar in your future,too. I'd look at Nitto, to maintain the vintage look of your bike.