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  1. #1
    Senior Member Steev's Avatar
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    One Really Stuck Stem

    OK, let me start by saying that I have searched and from pages and pages of threads I've come away with the advise to:-
    1. Ensure the quill is loose
    2. Liberally apply either ammonia or brand X penetrant then keep hauling on it.
    3. Whack it from various ends and angles.
    4. Heat it.
    and an opinion from Jobst Brandt that nothing will help and it needs to be drilled out.
    Assuming that I've tried all but heat and drilling and the stem is still stuck fast, what do I do next?
    I should add that its an expander wedge rather than a quill and I'm willing to sacrifice the stem but hopefully not the fork, at least until some decent deals on a new fork come up.

  2. #2
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    Did you loosen the bolt sufficiently? Back it out several turns and then whack the head of the bolt - straight down. If that doesn't work try dynamite.
    My bikes: 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2015 Cannondale Supersix EVO carbon 105 on order

    Life is like a 10-speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use. ~ Charles Schultz

  3. #3
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    did you use the 10% ammonia from ace( that's where I got mine ) and let it soak for a week?

  4. #4
    surly old man jgedwa's Avatar
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    I think you must have already done this, but I will throw it out there anyway:

    Engage the bolt in the wedge, but make sure it is not at all tight. Then wack down on it. As hard as you can. Protect the stem with a piece of wood (or something) if you need to protect it.

    Also, if the wedge is stuck, and not the stem specifically, since many wedges are steel, this might be a better application of penetrating oil than amonia.

    jim
    Cross Check Nexus7, IRO Mark V, Trek 620 Nexus7, Karate Monkey half fat, IRO Model 19 fixed, Amp Research B3, Surly 1x1 half fat fixed, and more...
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  5. #5
    Gammal cyklist Reynolds's Avatar
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    You've got to rotate the stem, even slightly. If it moves, even by 1º, it will come out sooner or later. Don't try to lift it at first, just try to move the bars sideways while holding:
    a) the wheel between your knees
    b) if it's not enough, the fork crown in a big vice between two wooden blocks
    Penetrating oil and hitting from various angles with a soft mallet will help.
    Once you get the stem to move, put more oil on it and keep moving it in greater angles, little by little. When it's looser, get a helper to pull the bars up while you turn them back and forth.
    I've taken out a couple of tough stems this way. Wouldn't heat it if I wanted to keep the fork.
    Last edited by Reynolds; 10-22-08 at 06:14 PM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member CrankyFranky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steev View Post
    OK, let me start by saying that I have searched and from pages and pages of threads I've come away with the advise to:-
    1...loose?
    2...ammonia or penetrant?
    3. Whack it?
    4. Heat??.
    (5)Jobst Brandt ...nothing will help?
    ...an expander wedge rather than a quill and I'm willing to sacrifice the stem but hopefully not the fork
    Hmmm, nobody mentioned: cutting off the stem squarely, after removing bolt - leave an inch or so stub. Then, put an nice stout cylindrical metal (steel) piece down the bore of the former stem and give it a really good knock, straight down, maybe with a 6 pound hammer.
    If this doesn't move the wedge, nothing will, except maybe a small nuclear (nuculer?) 'splosion.

    Then, vicegrip the stem stub out.

    Kill that sucker!
    69 Raleigh Sports, '72 Atala Record, '82 Stan Pike

  7. #7
    Senior Member CrankyFranky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steev View Post
    OK, let me start by saying that I have searched and from pages and pages of threads I've come away with the advise to:-
    1...loose?
    2...ammonia or penetrant?
    3. Whack it?
    4. Heat??.
    (5)Jobst Brandt ...nothing will help?
    ...an expander wedge rather than a quill and I'm willing to sacrifice the stem but hopefully not the fork
    Hmmm, nobody mentioned: cutting off the stem squarely, after removing bolt - leave an inch or so stub. Then, put an nice stout cylindrical metal (steel) piece down the bore of the former stem and give it a really good knock, straight down, maybe with a 6 pound hammer.
    If this doesn't move the wedge, nothing will, except maybe a small nuclear (nuculer?) 'splosion.

    Then, vicegrip the stem stub out.

    Kill that sucker!
    69 Raleigh Sports, '72 Atala Record, '82 Stan Pike

  8. #8
    surly old man jgedwa's Avatar
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    And take heart. Stuck stems are usually not fatal. Be glad the seatpost is not stuck. ...You have tried the seatpost, haven't you?

    jim
    Cross Check Nexus7, IRO Mark V, Trek 620 Nexus7, Karate Monkey half fat, IRO Model 19 fixed, Amp Research B3, Surly 1x1 half fat fixed, and more...
    --------------------------
    SB forever

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