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Old 03-22-09, 03:56 PM   #1
jomoj
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bar options on an m-type brompton?

hi
I recently bought an off the shelf 09 Brompton M3 - I chose the M over the S for the wider gear range but I'm really not a fan of the M bars for the riding position and less importantly the aesthetics. I've seen some of the weird and wonderful mods from people like Littlepixel but was wondering if at the cheaper end of the scale I could just fit some cut down 2" riser bars to get a slightly improved position. has anyone tried this and how did it affect the ride, handling etc.?

or would it make more sense to buy an S stem and sell on my M stem and bars?

cheers
Joe
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Old 03-22-09, 04:49 PM   #2
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You certainly could do that though your riding position will naturally be lower which is probably a good thing; The M type stem is basically straight and quite short though - perhaps too low with normal risers; The 'S' type stem is a bit longer, as it's intended for straight bars and it has a slight curvature too that gives you a bit more cockpit space and a more forwards riding position.

The only thing I can think of that might hinder the fitting of conventional riser bars is that they will undoubtedly have a 5-10 sweep to them (m-type bars have practically no sweep) that may interfere with the fold - i.e. it may get in the way of the clip that holds the stem to the forks when folded. My 'weird and wonderful' setup ended up like that for this reason - so that the bars could be moved when folding so it would clip properly, just as much as my desire to fit other bars and more flexible bar positions.

Just so you know—an Aberhallo stem adapter only costs about 19.00 GBP (from here) and all you need are those, you bars of choice and a Cheap QR seatpost clamp so you can flip them up when you want to fold the stem - so it's not really a crazy-expensive modification.
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Old 03-23-09, 02:54 AM   #3
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You could always buy the S type stem and bars to convert your bike:
http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/category-...-Parts-619.htm

I dont like the look of the M bars... they look too much like these
http://www.freefoto.com/images/21/02...Childs+Bicycle
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Old 03-23-09, 03:24 AM   #4
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hello, thanks for the replies, that stem adapter looks like a possibility. I'm a little nervous about fitting a QR to the stem but I wondered if there is a way to extend the stem nipple so that it will clip into the fork clip and leave room for a stem such as that permanently attached? I guess if you could get a kind of long nut of the right thread you could fit it over the top then screw in a threaded piece of rod (or decapitated bolt) and attach the nipple to that...?

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Old 03-23-09, 07:20 AM   #5
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was thinking if I could extend the stem ctach with something like these:

then fit a stem adapter then a flat / riser bar...?

Have been quoted 80 for an s-stem as well, perhaps that would be simplest option! I jsut love a bit of tinkering...
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Old 03-23-09, 08:44 AM   #6
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I thought about doing exactly that as a fix too - I think it's totally doable; you could probably fabricate a 'long nut' by joining (loctite-ing) 3-4 nuts together then taping around them - it doesn't need to be particularly weight-bearing. The little lozenge bit on the end can be bought as a spare from SJS cycles. I'd thread-lock the whole thing so it doesn't loosen with vibration.
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Old 03-23-09, 12:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PDR View Post
You could always buy the “S” type stem and bars to convert your bike:
http://www.sjscycles.co.uk/category-...-Parts-619.htm

I don’t like the look of the “M” bars... they look too much like these
http://www.freefoto.com/images/21/02...Childs+Bicycle
I guess you might think I am reliving my childhood by the intentional purchase of my own Brompton for it's unique handbars that resembles the old Sting-Ray bikes of the 1960s. I rode road bikes for many years because I thought they were the only bikes for an "adult." With the reissuing of the old style bikes like the "paper boy" single speed bikes of the 1930s to the 1950s, simple "three speeds" of before 1980's arrival of the Mountain bike, and the like seem to be here to stay and enjoyed by both young and old. Here is an comparison of a old 1970 Manta-Ray (a teen's Sting-Ray) and my Brompton placed side by side on Flickr (more photos of these bikes are not listed here):

http://www.flickr.com/photos/world-of-folding-bicycles/265082469/in/set-72157594325178229/


http://www.flickr.com/photos/world-of-folding-bicycles/265082480/in/set-72157594325178229/

I have discovered that the upright riding position along with the wider sprung saddle works for me. I do wish that I was not so keen on pleasing others when I was younger. I would have been more comfortable on bikes if I was as I am now.
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Old 03-23-09, 04:25 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by LittlePixel View Post
I thought about doing exactly that as a fix too - I think it's totally doable; you could probably fabricate a 'long nut' by joining (loctite-ing) 3-4 nuts together then taping around them - it doesn't need to be particularly weight-bearing. The little lozenge bit on the end can be bought as a spare from SJS cycles. I'd thread-lock the whole thing so it doesn't loosen with vibration.
it seems possible to get the long nuts in question down to size m5 but I'm guessing the stud for the catch is a smaller thread than that. Might just bite the bullet and get an s stem.

It does make me wonder if Brompton couldn't engineer a slightly more adjustable / variable stem and bar arrangement
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Old 03-23-09, 06:04 PM   #9
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I wonder whether it would be cheaper to order a new S type, then sell the M type when it's ready, than to buy a new stem.
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Old 03-24-09, 08:51 AM   #10
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just ordered an s-type stem and have an old flat bar and stubbie bar-ends to fit when it arrives. Then I'll be looking for buyers for a nearly new M-type stem and bar

Have got an idea for a nice aftermarket stem adapter than someone with a better workshop than me could knock up too...

cheers
Joe
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Old 04-03-09, 03:53 PM   #11
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Thought I'd found a neat and relatively cheap solution by buying some tioga R60 risers. High 60mm rise and an almost identical sweep to the M-bars - if anything slightly flatter.

Anyway, I took the M bars off and tried threading the risers through the clamp, got it nearly all the way round the 2nd bend but could get it no further despite greasing, cajoling and cursing. It would have looked mint as well in all back and given a slightly lower bar height.

Back to the drawing board anyway, I may resort to the aberhallo stem thing and a shallow riser or flat bar though it won't be quite as elegant. The tioga bar was the highest rise one I could find although there are plenty that go to 50mm. The problem is if they start bulging before the bend then its going to be tricky to thread them through. Damn you brompton and your esoteric stem design!
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