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  1. #1
    Senior Member PatrickGSR94's Avatar
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    Why does my stem have no clamping screws?

    I've looked on a few different bike parts dealer websites, and every stem I've seen all have clamping bolts/screws where the fork steerer tube fits through. So how come mine doesn't have such screws? Is mine special or weird or something?

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    Not weird, just different. It does have a clamping screw, It's the screw running across the stem just forward of the fork. It tightens a pair of wedges which pinch against the fork. Thomson used a similar design for a number of years, but abandoned it because carbon fiber fork makers claimed it could damage the fork.

    BTW- this isn't a new design. Some 50 years ago Italian bike maker Legnano was using a similar system to hold seatposts, rather than the standard slotted tube and pinch bolt. You'll also see it on antique bikes much older than that, and Park tool has used a similar system to control rotation on repair stand clamps since the late sixties or early seventies.
    Last edited by FBinNY; 05-13-12 at 09:38 AM.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
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    My 1994 C'dale M700 came with a steel stem with a screw like that.

  4. #4
    Senior Member vredstein's Avatar
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    What's old is new again

    Like others have mentioned, it's an old design, and in this case, a new implimentation from Chris Bishop as shown at NAHBS.
    http://redkiteprayer.com/category/machine/page/2/
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  5. #5
    bike whisperer Kimmo's Avatar
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    Dude, how can you miss a), your stem clearly does have a clamping bolt, and 2), it is definitely special.

    This style of stem is way sexier. Addresses the aesthetic shortcoming of threadless, like bam!

    Carbon steerers are pretty cool too. I'd jam a short ally sleeve inside one to run one of these, and think no more about it. Dunno why fork manufacturers can't do the same... it'd make sense no matter what stem you're running, and permit the use of star nuts, which have to be a tad lighter than compression plugs - that would mostly make up for the weight of the sleeve.

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    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
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    Thomson Elite stems have a variant of that design where a shaped plug fits into each side, and the two plugs tighten toward each other:http://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...5&category=793

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    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kimmo View Post
    Carbon steerers are pretty cool too. I'd jam a short ally sleeve inside one to run one of these, and think no more about it. Dunno why fork manufacturers can't do the same... it'd make sense no matter what stem you're running, and permit the use of star nuts, which have to be a tad lighter than compression plugs - that would mostly make up for the weight of the sleeve.
    You just described the fork that came with my Calfee.
    IIRC, it is an Alpha-Q, but Calfee puts a finish on it to make it match the frame.

  8. #8
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    uh-



    As said, puts weird stresses on carbon steerers which is why they've largely been phased out for clamps at the back with bolts running both directions.

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  9. #9
    Senior Member PatrickGSR94's Avatar
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    Come on guys I'm still a n00b to some of these bike parts and functionality. I know that bolt was there but didn't realize it was the clamping bolt.

    I'd like to switch out the stem and bars for something with a little more rise. The amount I have to lean over with weight on my hands gets really tiring after awhile, and not good for my back. So I just wanted to make sure a different stem with the rear-facing clamping bolts would still work.

    Also planning on switching out the RockShox to a 1-1/8" threadless height-corrected rigid fork hopefully in the near future.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by PatrickGSR94 View Post
    Come on guys I'm still a n00b to some of these bike parts and functionality. I know that bolt was there but didn't realize it was the clamping bolt.
    Don't take it personally. You asked a question and we answered it.

    There's no sin in being a newbie, nor in not knowing how something works. I assure you that even the most knowledgeable person on this forum started out not knowing anything, and had to learn everything from scratch.
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  11. #11
    bike whisperer Kimmo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PatrickGSR94 View Post
    Come on guys I'm still a n00b to some of these bike parts and functionality. I know that bolt was there but didn't realize it was the clamping bolt.
    What else was it going to be for?

    I'd like to switch out the stem and bars for something with a little more rise. The amount I have to lean over with weight on my hands gets really tiring after awhile, and not good for my back.
    Before you go fiddling with where the bars are, it's worth ensuring your seat position is optimised. Sometimes just altering the tilt slightly can make a surprising difference.

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