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  1. #1
    Grumpy Old Bugga europa's Avatar
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    A fit of the heresies

    Yup, I'm a heretic. I'm an aging cyclist with enough information to be dangerous, not enough to know what he's talking about (though I can do an excellent impersonation) and this insane belief that in the eighties, we knew how to make bikes for the masses but can now only make bikes for bloody cafe racers

    Yes, you may deduce that I've been reading the Rivendell site - it is really, really sad when you come across sites that preach the dark side and you immediately fall to your knees and start eyeing the siamese cat as a potential sacrifice. Actually, I've had this reaction before, when reading Llewellyn's site, who just happens to be a one man firm making lugged steel frames ... much like Rivendell do only he makes them himself, and is an aussie too

    But I'm babbling.
    No, don't deny it, I'm babbling.

    Those of you who've read a few of my recent threads, and have found them interesting enough to remember some particulars (and please don't feel ashamed if you don't remember me - you are allowed to be normal, even in this forum ), will remember that I have a beloved eighties bike (my Europa, see avatar) that, now that I have finally achieved something resembling fitness and strength (allow me the delusion please), fits like the glove it used to when I was a fit, young man. I also have a nearly new Trek520 which fit last year when I was soft and returning to cycling (and the Europa didn't) but which doesn't now

    I am so glad I didn't shell out for a custom made bike at the time.

    Recently, I asked about bars. As a result of that thread, the UPS are lovingly ferrying a Nitto Noodle (size 46) across your great land and the waters separating it from mine Should be here next week. Incidentally, shipping costs are about the same as the purchase price of the bars

    I'm hoping that'll fix my reach problems.

    But, I keep looking at my Europa with its elegant quill stem.
    I look at Rivendell bikes with their elegant quill stems.
    I know that I would probably like a bit more height on the Trek's bars but now that she's wearing the biggest, highest, nastiest stem that BBB make am unlikely to get it ... and she looks bloody horrible into the bargain. Of course, I could bolt on a stem extension and fit another bolt on stem ... so many bolts when the right quill uses none of them.

    Is it possible to convert a modern stem to the old quill system?
    Is this desirable? We can assume it's probably financial lunacy.

    Richard
    too much time thinking about bikes, fortunately, most of it is while sitting on one of the bikes

    and yes, feel free to hijack this thread ... it probably deserves it.
    I had a good bike ... so I FIXED it

  2. #2
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    We hail from the same Mother ship. We have allies, and all is in place. Just await the signal.

  3. #3
    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    Quill stems are more difficult to work on, have fewer "available" parts for mods (ask DG how long it takes to order one) and I don't think that any are available for the more modern 1 1/8 steering tube diameter.

    Threadless stems are available in dozens (more actually) styles including some very adjustable versions. They can be mounted with 1 or 2 allen wrenches, and dismounted the same way. There are very few modern bikes being made with 1" steering tubes.


    You probably would not want to put a quill in a modern aluminium steering tube. I suspect that it would be very easy to bulge one out.

  4. #4
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maddmaxx
    Quill stems are more difficult to work on, have fewer "available" parts for mods (ask DG how long it takes to order one) and I don't think that any are available for the more modern 1 1/8 steering tube diameter.

    Threadless stems are available in dozens (more actually) styles including some very adjustable versions. They can be mounted with 1 or 2 allen wrenches, and dismounted the same way. There are very few modern bikes being made with 1" steering tubes.


    You probably would not want to put a quill in a modern aluminium steering tube. I suspect that it would be very easy to bulge one out.
    Nonsense. What's harder about working on a quill stem? DG ordered his stem through a slow moving LBS. I could order the same stem online and have it in my hand in 2 days. 1 1/8" quill stems are limited in selection, but you can get them. I have three that I bought in the last 2 years. One is an adjustable. Any quill stem would have to go inside a threaded steerer or an adapter of some sort. They would not be used directly on a modern threadless steerer. I believe I have seen an adapter that would allow a 1" quill stem to be adapted to a 1 1/8" threadless steerer, but I may be wrong. I have not been able to find one now.

    I'm sure there are threadless stems or adapters that would give Europa the fit he seeks, but not the elegant look.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  5. #5
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    Try to find a shop with a die to thread a 1 1/8 threaded fork! Not many.

  6. #6
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    FWIW - from your neck of the woods:

    http://www.kookiebikes.com/components/stems/stems.htm

    As they custom build bikes, they may be able to devise a custom solution for you.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Thrifty1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oilman_15106
    Try to find a shop with a die to thread a 1 1/8 threaded fork! Not many.
    http://www1.mscdirect.com/CGI/NNSRIT...43745&PMT4NO=0
    You will need to thread the steering tube and install a nut in order to apply bearing pre-load and fork retension. I am not familiar with a 1 1/8 compatible quill type stem (not that they don't exist) so a shim/spacer to reduce the steerer tube's inside diameter to accept and enable retension of a "quill" stem.
    Good Luck!!!
    Last edited by Thrifty1; 06-14-07 at 12:14 PM.

  8. #8
    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesDawg
    Nonsense. What's harder about working on a quill stem? DG ordered his stem through a slow moving LBS. I could order the same stem online and have it in my hand in 2 days. 1 1/8" quill stems are limited in selection, but you can get them. I have three that I bought in the last 2 years. One is an adjustable. Any quill stem would have to go inside a threaded steerer or an adapter of some sort. They would not be used directly on a modern threadless steerer. I believe I have seen an adapter that would allow a 1" quill stem to be adapted to a 1 1/8" threadless steerer, but I may be wrong. I have not been able to find one now.

    I'm sure there are threadless stems or adapters that would give Europa the fit he seeks, but not the elegant look.

    The selection of quill stems that do not require sliding the bars out to replace is even smaller than the "available" number of quill stems. It's not so much that they are harder, but the sheer quantity of threadless stems and steerer tubes in the last decade means that finding what you want, where you want it and when seems to be at least an order of magnitude better.

    When is the last time that you heard of a stuck threadless stem.

    Sorry, I confess to being a heathen when it comes to the improvements modern technology makes to the function of machinery as opposed the the classic beauty of the antique. I am even guilty of liking plastic digital watches.

    I'll grant the elegance of the quill stem although I hate the associated headset and threaded steering tube that goes with it. I'll go with the modern everytime.

  9. #9
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maddmaxx
    The selection of quill stems that do not require sliding the bars out to replace is even smaller than the "available" number of quill stems. It's not so much that they are harder, but the sheer quantity of threadless stems and steerer tubes in the last decade means that finding what you want, where you want it and when seems to be at least an order of magnitude better.

    When is the last time that you heard of a stuck threadless stem.

    Sorry, I confess to being a heathen when it comes to the improvements modern technology makes to the function of machinery as opposed the the classic beauty of the antique. I am even guilty of liking plastic digital watches.

    I'll grant the elegance of the quill stem although I hate the associated headset and threaded steering tube that goes with it. I'll go with the modern everytime.
    All three 1 1/8" quill stems I bought have removable face plates.
    Granted that the majority of available threaded stems are 1". Not that many threaded forks were made in that size before the advent of threadless. Most do not have removeable face plates, so the handlebar must be slid out. This is an inconvenience, but not a big problem.

    What the OP "wanted" was a quill stem. No matter how plentiful and available threadless stems are, they won't be what he was looking for. But unless he can find a suitable adapter, that is not going to be a practical solution.

    When is the last time you heard of a quill stem with a stripped or misinstalled spangled nut? Not that it is a frequent problem with threadless, but then neither is a stuck quill on a well maintained bike.

    Availability is the only real advantage I see with threadless stems.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Thrifty1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maddmaxx
    Quill stems are more difficult to work on, have fewer "available" parts for mods (ask DG how long it takes to order one) and I don't think that any are available for the more modern 1 1/8 steering tube diameter.

    Threadless stems are available in dozens (more actually) styles including some very adjustable versions. They can be mounted with 1 or 2 allen wrenches, and dismounted the same way. There are very few modern bikes being made with 1" steering tubes.


    You probably would not want to put a quill in a modern aluminium steering tube. I suspect that it would be very easy to bulge one out.
    Due to the thin wall thickness of modern aluminum steerer tibes, a steel sleeve/bushing and 1 inch quill would be required. You could chuck a steel pipe with an ID compatible to a 1" quill into a lathe and turn the outside diameter to mate with steerer tube's inside diameter. Course threads are preferable on soft (aluminum) metal but an aluminum seerer tube's (thin) wall thickness would/could result in less than optimum deeper course threads. If your steerer tube is steel (or hard metal) fine (shallower) threads should not pose a problem.

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