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French Stem & Bars

Old 06-26-16, 01:53 PM
  #1  
vtchuck 
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French Stem & Bars

76 PX-10: 120mm Peugeot branded allen bolt stem & Phillipe bars. Stronglight headset

I measure the bars at 25mm and the stem at 21.9mm.

Problem is the stem is too long.... I need something more like 80mm. I've moved the
seat about as far forward as possible.

Seems like the later French and Japanese stems were 22.0 mm.

Am I limited to 21.9mm or can I squeeze a 22.0mm?

I think I know the answer.... and its not going to make happy as it entails a long & expensive search,
but I though I'd ask before I started down that road.

TIA for your advice
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Old 06-26-16, 02:08 PM
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22.0mm is the nominal, 21.9mm is the actual
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Old 06-26-16, 02:27 PM
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French stems were nominally 22.0. Everyone else Japanese and Italians included were 22.2mm. Both 3TTT and Cinelli sold french sized 22.0 stems BITD, but they were rare then and exceedingly rare now. (ie $$$$ on ebay) At any rate the question is whether or not you want to try to track down an actual 22.0 stem or shoehorn in a 22.2. (21.9 doesn't exist.) The other question is the handlebar as 25.0 bars are not going fit into any new stem. I'd recommend you replace both.

FYI, 3TTT Mod 1 Record Strada stems were a bit undersized and even the normal ones would often fit into frenchie steer tubes. If they didn't they are easy to sand down since they are polished but not anodized. Velobase is wrong BTW as 3T stems always used a 26.0 clamp size.

I put an adapter stem with a threadless VO stem and bar on my PX10. I totally do not trust vintage cast french stems. Another option I considered was getting regular Cinelli bar and stem, and sanding down the stem. (it's only .1mm... )

Last edited by Salamandrine; 06-26-16 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 06-26-16, 03:04 PM
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Thanks for the input. I may be measuring the bars incorrectly....may be larger in the center raised section under the clamp. If not, I'm thinking a shim might help?
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Old 06-26-16, 03:13 PM
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its not going to make happy as it entails a long & expensive search.
it needn't be expensive, but it might take some work.

- you could buy a cheap donor bike and swap stems.

- you could use a normal quill stem and sand it down 0.1mm if it doesn't fit the headset or steerer.

- you can shim the clamp area if your replacement stem is too big for the bars.

- or just check the iso thread atop the c&v main page, asking for a shorter french stem.
.
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Old 06-26-16, 03:25 PM
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Unless you have your heart set on a vintage stem look, sand down a modern one.

Took me 10 minutes to get one to fit
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Old 06-26-16, 03:41 PM
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Pretty sure I have an 80mm French Atax stem. I'll have to re-measure. 120mm would be about right for me if you wanted to swap.
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Old 06-26-16, 04:02 PM
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+2 @juvela & @Salamandrine

Around 1974 Philippe-ATAX introduced the "Course Forgée" model forged aluminum stems. They had their brand name PHILIPPE in a recessed "cartouche" on both sides of the stem. Philippe also made these stems branded for Peugeot and Motobecane.

Peugeot started using these stems on the 1974 PX-10s and Motobecane 1975 Le Champion model.

They were made in lengths from 70mm to 120mm with 22.0mm and 22.2mm quills. They took a 25.4mm bar which was odd because 25mm diameter bars where still the French standard. I have several of these stems I'll measure them to see what size bars they take.

In my opinion, these were the most elegant looking stems from the era and quality wise on a par with 3TTT and Cinelli!


Here's a link to the 1982 ATAX-Philippe catalog:

Atax_1


French and other metric standard bike manufacturers like the Spanish and some Belgian makers too used stems that were 21.9mm (usually called 22.0mm - probably by the inexperienced Americans and it's use stuck).

Metric steerers are nominally 22mm inside diameter but it was difficult to draw production tubing to accurate dimensions using the equipment available back in the day! Also you can't put a 22.0mm stem into a 22.0mm hole!

Along that same line of logic, "inch" size Nitto stems are marked 22.2mm but of the 15+ I have, the quills measure 22.1mm!!!

Nitto did make 22.0mm stems for the French market but Nitto stems marked 22.2mm will fit into a lot of French steerers because they may be slightly oversize.

I found this out the hard way when I sanded down a new Nitto "22.2mm" stem to fit a 1980's Peugeot frame that I was in a hurry to build and ride. Silly me, I laid out a metric headset and BB without measuring the frame assuming that it was all metric. WRONG! It was all Imperial (Inch) sized threads with a 22.2mm steerer!


Before trying to fit the stem, take a fine tooth file and make a small chamfer around the top of the steerer to remove any burrs and make insertion easier. Next clean all of the gunk out of the inside of the tube and hone it with a brush or brake cylinder hone. Some rolled up sandpaper will work too. This will make adjusting the stem height over time a lot easier and prevent scratches to the quill.

Last, before inserting the stem, take a glop of grease and smear it around inside the steerer also on the stem quill. This will prevent the stem from getting stuck!


Note: Philippe bars are listed as 25.2mm and/or 25.3mm diameter at the "swell" (center) - see catalog in the link above.

verktyg

Chas.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg
Atax_4.jpg (79.8 KB, 52 views)
File Type: jpg
PhillipeAtaxForged.jpg (16.0 KB, 53 views)
File Type: jpg
PhillipePeugeot1.jpg (73.6 KB, 54 views)
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Old 06-26-16, 04:06 PM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
French stems were nominally 22.0. Everyone else Japanese and Italians included were 22.2mm. Both 3TTT and Cinelli sold french sized 22.0 stems BITD, but they were rare then and exceedingly rare now. (ie $$$$ on ebay) At any rate the question is whether or not you want to try to track down an actual 22.0 stem or shoehorn in a 22.2. (21.9 doesn't exist.)
Neither Howard Sutherland, Edition 3, page 14-11 nor our Chas. seem to be in concurrence with this statement.

https://www.bikeforums.net/17772294-post9.html
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Old 06-26-16, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by juvela View Post
Neither Howard Sutherland, Edition 3, page 14-11 nor our Chas. seem to be in concurrence with this statement.
Jeez. Are you really going to get that hung up on semantics. In my many years as a pro mechanic I never once heard anyone refer to a french stem as 21.9. They are called 22.0. That is to say the nominal size is 22.0mm. OF COURSE they are 21.9 in reality.

27" wheels aren't really 27" in diameter either.
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Old 06-26-16, 04:57 PM
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looks like you got one from scozim.

but if you do have to sand one down, don't make the same mistake i've done with a seatpost. i was using my rougher of two files, and i didn't take into account the fine sanding needed for aesthetics after i test fit it. after fine sanding the file marks, it was almost too small to fit properly.

i hate sanding stuff (it always takes me a long time), but i hate an unpolished look more.
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Old 06-26-16, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by vtchuck View Post
76 PX-10: 120mm Peugeot branded allen bolt stem & Phillipe bars. Stronglight headset

I measure the bars at 25mm and the stem at 21.9mm.

Problem is the stem is too long.... I need something more like 80mm. I've moved the
seat about as far forward as possible.

Seems like the later French and Japanese stems were 22.0 mm.

Am I limited to 21.9mm or can I squeeze a 22.0mm?

I think I know the answer.... and its not going to make happy as it entails a long & expensive search,
but I though I'd ask before I started down that road.

TIA for your advice
If it helps any I purchased one of these quill stems recently on a whim and they fit perfectly to the French 22.0 sizing. It isn't original but it looks pretty nice and no sanding is required. Here is the link. Also you can use any standard sized bars with this stem instead of being limited to the French bars.


J L Vintage Classic 70 80's Quill Stem 25 4mm 80mm 22mm Threaded | eBay
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Old 06-26-16, 08:19 PM
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Originally Posted by greg3rd48 View Post
If it helps any I purchased one of these quill stems recently on a whim and they fit perfectly to the French 22.0 sizing. It isn't original but it looks pretty nice and no sanding is required. Here is the link. Also you can use any standard sized bars with this stem instead of being limited to the French bars.


J L Vintage Classic 70 80's Quill Stem 25 4mm 80mm 22mm Threaded | eBay
That's a great find! They look fine aesthetically for vintage bikes, imo. I've filled two or three quality 22.2mm stems for my various Peugeots but would have been happy with one of these.
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Old 06-27-16, 07:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
Jeez. Are you really going to get that hung up on semantics. In my many years as a pro mechanic I never once heard anyone refer to a french stem as 21.9. They are called 22.0. That is to say the nominal size is 22.0mm. OF COURSE they are 21.9 in reality....
+1, when you have standardized male and female parts that engage via a clearance fit, standard practice is to use a common size nomenclature for both parts, based on the nominal dimension of one of these parts, typically the male. Example: For a 1/4" bolt and washer, the 1/4" dimension is the nominal outer diameter of the bolt while the washer has a clearance hole larger than 1/4" but is still referred to as a 1/4" washer.

Having said that, it appears that the french stem and steering tube standard may have changed. Sutherland's, 4th edition, states that French stems are 22 mm but there is a double asterisk referring to a note that states "Older French and Spanish stems may be 21.9mm". This implies that the 22 mm was originally the nominal dimension for the inner diameter of the steering tube but eventually became the nominal dimension for the outer diameter of the stem quill. I'm wondering if this might be explained by the adoption of ISO standards in the early 1980s?

Last edited by T-Mar; 06-27-16 at 07:51 AM.
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