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  1. #1
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    adjustable stems

    Hello , I have noticed that expensive bikes never bring adjustable stems, only the cheaper models. Are adjustable stames actally a bad thing? does they intefiere in stability and handling somehow?

    best regards

  2. #2
    Conquer Cancer rider Boudicca's Avatar
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    My hybrid has an adjustable stem. I have adjusted it precisely once; after I started riding a road bike and wanted to get the two rides a little bit more alike.

    If you have a decent fit on the bike to start with, I can't see a reason for an adjustable stem.
    Zero gallons to the mile

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    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    I don't exactly call a $1000 Cannodale a cheaper model and I have an adjustable stem on mine. I'm sure the weight weenies would rather not have one, other than that I don't see a difference.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

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    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maltess View Post
    Hello , I have noticed that expensive bikes never bring adjustable stems, only the cheaper models. Are adjustable stames actally a bad thing? does they intefiere in stability and handling somehow?
    I don't think they affect handling significantly. Adjustable stems aren't as stiff, so the handlebar doesn't feel as solidly connected with the front wheel. They are also heavier and look clunkier. That's three things that are at odds with a high end bike.
    Last edited by Retro Grouch; 12-03-07 at 04:17 AM.

  5. #5
    jcm
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    In my opinon, there is nothing clunkier looking than the modern threadless stems that "expensive" bikes come with, and nothing sleeker than the old school 22.2mm solid stems. I have two adjustables on two different bikes. They were installed so I could define my setup, as a temporary measure. Eventually, I'll replace them with Nitto Technomic stems. I haven't noticed any handling issues. They are definitely not as ugly as typical threadless units because they are well sculpted. But, beauty is in the eye of the beholder...

  6. #6
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    I have changed all three of my bikes over to Kalloy adjustable stems to
    enable me to set the bars where "I" want/need them to be for really
    comfortable fit & positions. I think they are money well spent.
    My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
    I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

    Originally Posted by krazygluon
    Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

  7. #7
    Senior Member Ornery's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boudicca View Post
    My hybrid has an adjustable stem. I have adjusted it precisely once; after I started riding a road bike and wanted to get the two rides a little bit more alike.

    If you have a decent fit on the bike to start with, I can't see a reason for an adjustable stem.
    Kinda makes you wonder why the seatpost is adjustable, eh? Yeah, with a quick release to boot!

  8. #8
    cab horn
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ornery View Post
    Kinda makes you wonder why the seatpost is adjustable, eh? Yeah, with a quick release to boot!
    It's adjustable so people can remove it when they lock their bike up so it doesn't get stolen.
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

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    Senior Member Ornery's Avatar
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    Yeah, that's it, not stolen!

    The seat tube ought to simply project past the top tube, and be cut to finished length, with seat attached directly to it. Voila, no seat post even needed!
    Last edited by Ornery; 12-01-07 at 05:30 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member bktourer1's Avatar
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    I went with an adjustable stem when I changed to trekking bars for touring.

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    I have a Trek 7.3 and I Think the handdlebars is a little low for me, That,s why I,m interested in adjustable stems. Is problably a personal choice, but it came to my attention that comes very often with cheaper models.

    The Jamis new allegro line is introducing a very interesting handlebar that you can set at desired height

  12. #12
    cab horn
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ornery View Post

    Yeah, that's it, not stolen!

    The seat tube ought to simply project past the top tube, and be cut to finished length, with seat attached directly to it. Voila, no seat post even needed!
    TT and some road bikes already do this. If you want to call me a liar, i'd suggest you do it to my face.
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

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    All the adjustable stems I have had weigh heavier and loosen up eventually.
    Riding a bike with a loose stem is about god awfully annoying.
    Fixed stems work just fine and feel more stable to me. It's not like they cost quite a bit either way. That is unless you want a carbon fiber stem.

  14. #14
    Sometimes knows stuff. rmfnla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jcm View Post
    In my opinon, there is nothing clunkier looking than the modern threadless stems that "expensive" bikes come with, and nothing sleeker than the old school 22.2mm solid stems.
    Quote Originally Posted by jcm View Post
    I have two adjustables on two different bikes. They were installed so I could define my setup, as a temporary measure. Eventually, I'll replace them with Nitto Technomic stems. I haven't noticed any handling issues. They are definitely not as ugly as typical threadless units because they are well sculpted. But, beauty is in the eye of the beholder...
    Don't tell me; you're a UNIX user, right?
    Today, I believe my jurisdiction ends here...

  15. #15
    `````````````` CaptainCool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DataJunkie View Post
    All the adjustable stems I have had weigh heavier and loosen up eventually.
    Riding a bike with a loose stem is about god awfully annoying.
    That's my experience. My 7.2FX came with an adjustable stem, and after a year of commuting, it would loosen up after less than a week. Tried grease, tried loctite, no better. Finally replaced it with a used Salsa. Loose handling just sucks.

    Maybe it was just a bad model of stem. I notice that they now issue that bike with a fixed stem.

  16. #16
    . blickblocks's Avatar
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    Majority of adjustable stems are garbage. There are some excellent ones out there though. I wouldn't mind having a Look Ergo. Too bad it's $200.

  17. #17
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blickblocks View Post
    Majority of adjustable stems are garbage. There are some excellent ones out there though. I wouldn't mind having a Look Ergo. Too bad it's $200.
    The "Kalloy" brand are a good alternative to the mega buck Look stems.
    My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
    I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

    Originally Posted by krazygluon
    Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

  18. #18
    Gorntastic! v1k1ng1001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by operator View Post
    TT and some road bikes already do this. If you want to call me a liar, i'd suggest you do it to my face.

  19. #19
    Gorntastic! v1k1ng1001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blickblocks View Post
    Majority of adjustable stems are garbage. There are some excellent ones out there though. I wouldn't mind having a Look Ergo. Too bad it's $200.
    I think this is the best cheapie out there. It's lighter than your buddy's carbon fiber stem, has a four-bolt faceplate and it usually costs less than $30


  20. #20
    Senior Member barba's Avatar
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    That isn't adjustable is it? Well, besides flipping it over.

    The adjustable stems are heavy (if that matters to you), and are probably not necessary for most folks. If you leave a spacer or two above the stem, you can raise the bars by either flipping the stem or swapping the spacers. That is generally plenty of adjustment- again assuming the steerer tube hasn't been cut too short to begin with. Personally, once I get my seat and handlebars where I like them, the last thing I want to do is "adjust" them.

  21. #21
    Gorntastic! v1k1ng1001's Avatar
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    I thought we were just discussing stems in general at this point.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Ornery's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by operator View Post
    TT and some road bikes already do this. If you want to call me a liar, i'd suggest you do it to my face.
    Don't see anywhere I called ANYBODY a liar, but I will say plainly, the main reason seats (and stems) are adjustable, has NOTHING to do with keeping them from being stolen.

  23. #23
    Gorntastic! v1k1ng1001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ornery View Post
    Don't see anywhere I called ANYBODY a liar, but I will say plainly, the main reason seats (and stems) are adjustable, has NOTHING to do with keeping them from being stolen.
    The only one who takes operator seriously is operator. Can I suggest the the ignore function?

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