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  1. #1
    Senior Member Jed19's Avatar
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    Cannondale Stems (Mountain Bikes)

    Hello Guys,

    I have a Cannondale killer V900 mountain bike that I bought new in 1994. I am trying to raise the handlebar so as to help with my post-ride sore lower back.

    The mechanic at my lbs has told me to look for a one and a quarter inches, 30 or 40 degrees, 90mm or 40mm threadless stem. The steerer on the bike came with a one and a quarter inches measurement. It has been a problem finding a stem with the old measurement, as the newer standard in steerers and stems are one and an eight inches and also one inch.

    Can somebody please help with a solution with this problem?

    I am also thinking another potential solution is to consider suspension forks. I am concerned about going this route because of the expense. Also, does the installation of a suspension fork necessitate my scrapping the bike's cantilever brakes for new brakes? I am no luddite, and I understand that linear pull brakes are superior to cantilevers, but I really do not want to spend a lot of money on this bike.The local bike store has given me an estimate of $140 to convert the brakes.

    Could somebody also suggest two or three suspension forks that I should consider? I am about 210 pounds, and I think I prefer the coil forks. My basic conditions for a suspended fork are (i)Low or no maintenance (ii) Reliability (iii) Coil, instead of air (iv)Strength and (v) Fun

    Most of my riding is pavement and a little x-country and the ocassional century or two, thrown in.

    Thanks for your help and advice.

    Lucas

  2. #2
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    I understand that linear pull brakes are superior to cantilevers,
    I would tend to not agree with that. I weigh alot more then you and and have ridden alot of trails in alot of differant places and the only advantage of linear brakes is in the set-up. conventional cantis are more then powerful enough and totaly acceptable and there is no reason to upgrade unless you want to.
    I am afraid I cannot be of much help on the stem issue,but there are tons of online retailers that list alot of differant stems
    http://www.bikepartsusa.com/view.phtml?f_c=Stem&f_q=

  3. #3
    Senior Member mtbikerinpa's Avatar
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    Marzocchi makes some really durable forks. I paid 200 for my Z.4 air and it has gone 3 yrs or everyday and racing without any degradation in the oil( I check periodically). If you are really set on coil, they make some good coils too, all the way up to fly off your house grade.
    Manitou Blacks are pretty good too, and pretty adjustible. While the Marzocchis are better in my book, Manitou is making some pretty good deals now.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member Jed19's Avatar
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    Thanks for your reply. I also feel that cantilevers are pretty sufficient for the kind of cycling I do. The lbs is trying to convince me to upgrade my brakes, but I think I just found the courage to resist them.

    There is the additional issue of whether suspended forks require linear pull brakes. Tell me it a'int necessarily so.

    Once again, Thanks.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Jed19's Avatar
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    Thanks Aviation Mechanic, I really do not know which is better for me, air shox or spring shox.

    I do know I want comfort, low or no maintenance, durability and reasonably priced.

    I am about 201 pounds, and I do mostly pavement, x-country and the ocassional century or two.

    What do you think?

    Thanks.

    Lucas

  6. #6
    Senior Member mtbikerinpa's Avatar
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    The coil units are reputed to be smoother feeling than the air units due to less seal drag, but I have seen very little difference between the coils my friends have and my air unit. The cool thing with the air forks is you can raise the spring pressure virtually at will. Road all day, nice and stiff. Rock gardens? softer. Plus with little effort my 165 lb bf can ride my stuff normally set for 125-130. The drawback is air units tend to cost a little more. I still got my Marzocchi for 200 bucks on sale, so shop around.

    On the brakes, I did and always will like the feel of a well tuned center pull. I used to run those until I decided to move up. I tried sidepul (V-Brake) for a while but was uunimpressed. Then I found disc. Almost all suspended forks have disc brake mounts on them now. I would highly reccomend using it if you get one. They are almost no maint (pads last about 3k miles) and the lever feel is superbe. If you dont want to do a ton of stuff to it, avid makes a pretty good mechanical brake that runs on cables.
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  7. #7
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=LUCAS]Thanks for your reply. I also feel that cantilevers are pretty sufficient for the kind of cycling I do. The lbs is trying to convince me to upgrade my brakes, but I think I just found the courage to resist them.

    There is the additional issue of whether suspended forks require linear pull brakes. Tell me it a'int necessarily so.

    Order a fork with cantilever bosses. It's not like there not made anymore.

    I run a softer\ less carbon pads front to get a better grip. Good pads help, in wet mostly you'll notice.

    Its hard to run center pull cantilevers because the forks will not have a cable stop.
    This means stem mounted cable stops (lousy).
    My friend does have an old RST with a brace, unusual.

    V-brakes don't require cable stops.

  8. #8
    Senior Member mtbikerinpa's Avatar
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    Originally when I went boingy I found an old bolt on hanger. The fork had a crown I could bolt to and it worked ok. When I went to the Marzocci however it wouldnt work, so I had to try other things.
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  9. #9
    The Red Lantern Rev.Chuck's Avatar
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    For your stem look to places that sell tandems. They often come with 1 1/4 steerers.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Jed19's Avatar
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    Thank you Reverend, I think I'll check the tandem sellers and see if they can find a stem for me.

    Is there any difference whatsoever between a mountain bike style tandem stem and one that I need to mount on my Cannondale?

    Regards

  11. #11
    Senior Member Jed19's Avatar
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    Jeff Williams, What fork(s) would you recommend?

    Regards

  12. #12
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    [QUOTE=jeff williams]
    Quote Originally Posted by LUCAS
    Thanks for your reply. I also feel that cantilevers are pretty sufficient for the kind of cycling I do. The lbs is trying to convince me to upgrade my brakes, but I think I just found the courage to resist them.

    There is the additional issue of whether suspended forks require linear pull brakes. Tell me it a'int necessarily so.

    Order a fork with cantilever bosses. It's not like there not made anymore.

    I run a softer\ less carbon pads front to get a better grip. Good pads help, in wet mostly you'll notice.

    Its hard to run center pull cantilevers because the forks will not have a cable stop.
    This means stem mounted cable stops (lousy).
    My friend does have an old RST with a brace, unusual.

    V-brakes don't require cable stops.
    Good point. Of course stem mounted cable stop won't work with suspension fork. When fork is compressed, cable will go slack.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by LUCAS
    Thank you Reverend, I think I'll check the tandem sellers and see if they can find a stem for me.

    Is there any difference whatsoever between a mountain bike style tandem stem and one that I need to mount on my Cannondale?

    Regards
    Drop handlebars have a different clamping diameter than flat bars. A stem designed for use on tandem with 1 1/4 inch headset and flat bars is no different than mtb stem you need. Stock stem on flat bar tandem was probably actually a mountain bike stem before it got shipped to tandem builder. However, most tandems usually have drop bars and stems that don't match your handlebar diameter.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Have you considered a handlebar with some rise in it? You can gain up to 3" of height that way which is probably more than you need. Cost is about the same as replacing the stem - actually less because you are talking about a 1 1/4" stem. QBP has some moderately priced sport bars in their catalogue that should be adequate for what you are doing. You'll have to get your bike shop to order them for you. Don't forget to budget for all new cables and housings because the ones you have are going to all be too short.

    You might also check with Santana tandems. Their bikes all have 1 1/4" stems. I don't know if they stock anything with the amount of rise you are looking for or not. The handlebar would probably be cheaper because the good folks at Santana aren't at all shy about pricing on stuff that's hard to find anywhere else.

    I don't think that you really want to mess with replacing the fork. Your choices boil down to finding an 1 1/4" fork which is going to be expensive or buying a 1 1/8" fork and buying some kind of a reducer headset combination to go with it. A suspension fork will also slacken your head tube angle and slow your steering. That's probably not going to be desirable on a bike that's used mostly on the street.

  15. #15
    The Red Lantern Rev.Chuck's Avatar
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    Since you are using an mtb bar make sure the bar clamp is 25.4 mm
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  16. #16
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qmsdc15
    Good point. Of course stem mounted cable stop won't work with suspension fork. When fork is compressed, cable will go slack.
    No ****! I skipped the whole entry of suspension on mtb. Musta been a pain.
    I do have a cable stop that bolts onto the fork crown, a cast Alu 'horn' bmx part I believe.
    When I ran it on my solid fork, having the brace solid\ mounted on the frork\ low yolk, seemed to greatly improve the amount of pressure I could put on the rim compared to any headset\ stem mounted cable stops.
    Possibly better than the v-s front.
    I had a look around the web for the part to show....no go.

    The major reason I use the v-s is they have a very narrow profile\ don't stand away from the frame like cantilevers do. Less likely to be smacked off or bent, possibly damaging the bosses.

  17. #17
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LUCAS
    Jeff Williams, What fork(s) would you recommend?

    Regards

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=57152

    http://www.mtbr.com/reviews/

    Marzocchi is a very good company.

    Avoid forks by component companies. Go with a designer whose major focus is suspension. Marzocchi, Rockshox, Manitou.

    Avoid RST, Suntour etc. I have not ridden many different types so I'm not partial to any specific one. Use the search funtion and you'll find lots of info\ opinions.

  18. #18
    Senior Member mtbikerinpa's Avatar
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    Agreed, Zoom and Suntour make decent other stuff but kmart grade shocks. Well, mabe not that bad...but still.
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  19. #19
    I couldn't car less. jeff williams's Avatar
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  20. #20
    Senior Member mtbikerinpa's Avatar
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    Great scott thats cheap.
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