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Who Sands a Nitto Pearl For Their French Steerer?

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Who Sands a Nitto Pearl For Their French Steerer?

Old 01-19-22, 10:29 PM
  #1  
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Who Sands a Nitto Pearl For Their French Steerer?

I'm considering it. This Origin8 fits fine but looks bad. I have a nice NP that will look better and get me a little more extension. Has anybody regretted doing such a thing?


Origin8 Goes both ways.

Nitto. Not French.
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Old 01-19-22, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
I'm considering it. This Origin8 fits fine but looks bad. I have a nice NP that will look better and get me a little more extension. Has anybody regretted doing such a thing?
Origin8 Goes both ways. Nitto. Not French.
Sand away, as long as you're prepared to let it go with the bike or get another french frame for it.
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Old 01-19-22, 10:51 PM
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I sanded a Technomic Deluxe for my Moto. No regrets- it allows me to use Noodles at the height I want them for comfort.
Definitely remove the locknut first and make sure sanding is necessary though, before you grind away.
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Old 01-19-22, 11:08 PM
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Nitto Pearls came as OEM stems for Moto Grand Records in the '73 to '76 ish era.
Maybe you can find one already with the FR diameter quill?
But if not I'd say "sand away", but keep it classy: these are NICE stems.
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Old 01-19-22, 11:16 PM
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I’ve heard Nittos can work in Frenchies without sanding. Just make sure you try it before sanding, because you may get lucky…
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Old 01-20-22, 12:00 AM
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Also worth mentioning the headset top nut may be a little smaller ID than the steerer. So try the stem in the steerer without the top nut as well. Unfortunately, steel headset top nuts are sometimes hardened. You may have to sand it or grind it, because it may just dull a file or reamer.
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Old 01-20-22, 12:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
Has anybody regretted doing such a thing?


.
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Old 01-20-22, 01:20 AM
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Keep the sanding as low on the quill as possible so that you minimize removal of the “pearl” finish. Maybe start by just going up to the minimum insertion line?
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Old 01-20-22, 03:10 AM
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Wait! I'll trade you a nice French stem for it. What's the length?
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Old 01-20-22, 06:56 AM
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I agree with what others have said about checking the fit before getting out the sandpaper--it may fit fine already. But I have sanded a couple of Technomics with good results.

What I have done is to decide first how deeply I want to insert the stem, then protect the inch or two above that line with a couple of wraps of duct tape. Then sand away, keeping the edge of the sandpaper right at the tape line. When you're done, the stem will fit without any sandpaper marks on the exposed portion of the stem.
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Old 01-20-22, 07:16 AM
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The Nitto gets past the locknut.
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Old 01-20-22, 09:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
The Nitto gets past the locknut.
But does it go into the steerer?

If the stem is just a tiny bit tight in the steerer, I think it's acceptable to enlarge the ID of the steererer ever so slightly with a brake cylinder hone, as you would for a seatpost. You don't want to take off a significant amount of material here, though.
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Old 01-20-22, 09:54 AM
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Just sell the Nitto stem and buy a proper 22.0mm stem. When you do something goofy like sanding down the stem, you ruin the resale value of the part. Nobody will want to buy something like that from you. That goes for a lot of other goofy things that people like to do around here. Like jacking the frame with 2X4's, etc.
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Old 01-20-22, 10:00 AM
  #14  
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I sanded a like-new Cinelli 1A for a Macario Professional - no regrets

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Old 01-20-22, 10:49 AM
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I have sanded both steering stems and seat posts, knowing that doing so destroys the original nature of the piece. But the result worked just fine. That said, resale value is absolutely compromised.

As for altering the size of the steering tube - not a chance in the hot place! Replacing a fork is a great deal more difficult and costly than replacing a steering stem.
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Old 01-20-22, 12:05 PM
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I've sanded a Technomic, but as often as not, that .2mm isn't enough to keep a stem from sliding right in.
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Old 01-20-22, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by icemilkcoffee View Post
Just sell the Nitto stem and buy a proper 22.0mm stem. When you do something goofy like sanding down the stem, you ruin the resale value of the part. Nobody will want to buy something like that from you. That goes for a lot of other goofy things that people like to do around here. Like jacking the frame with 2X4's, etc.
I tend not to worry about damaging the resale value of new, modern parts. I view them basically as consumables, like chains or freewheels. Old parts, especially frames, I am pretty strict about not modifying, or even painting

That said, I would gladly buy a 22.0 stem if I could find one in a size range comparable to what you find in a Nitto Technomic. Do you know of a source?
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Old 01-20-22, 03:23 PM
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I have more than once found that merely hand-sanding a stem to fit a French steerer was a LOT of work, ten times more than expected.

The metal surface is fairly resistant to that change of diameter and the file often comes out.

I alter the diameter starting at the bottom, then repeatedly test-inserting to see where the interference scuff next appears. Skill with a file is important.
Idea is to remove a uniform minimum of material.

Prefer using a non-anodized stem in such cases, which are also very laborius but with no visible transition so the stem can be raised/lowered and no finish transition appears.

I was very happy with my Origin8 stem fitment with no sanding required:


Last edited by dddd; 01-20-22 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 01-20-22, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
This Origin8 fits fine but looks bad.
If you're self-conscious about the logo, it takes a minute or two with fine steel wool and oil to remove it.
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Old 01-20-22, 03:48 PM
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I have sanded down a not so nice ITM stem for my PX-10 and I have also used a 2X4 to show a frame or two who's boss.

The bars on this GJ were too narrow for my Rando Bag and have very short drops which are not my preference for long rides. I could use the original stem but was trying to preserve the Motobecane rubber sleeve.


hmmmm
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Old 01-20-22, 04:22 PM
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Heck, it's your bike . I would make that as comfortable as possible , that way you will get the full pleasure out of the bike...and ride it more! Keeping the original bar and stem intact in case you ever want it original is wise. If I remember correctly you just got this bike not long ago and at a good price. It is a very nice bike , my daughter has the Mixte version with the same bar and stem . I am keeping it for her. We would go riding together and she LOVES that bike . I have been tempted to hijack the 1st generation Cyclone derailleurs off for other bikes but I know better , she would not be happy. Way too small for me to ride so it just sits waiting for her.
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Old 01-20-22, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
but was trying to preserve the Motobecane rubber sleeve.
Do you know if those are stuck on with an adhesive? if not, maybe if you can get a little gap to start dripping some rubbing alcohol in, and then start loosening it to slide it off. That's how I get rubber or plastic grips on/off of flat bars.
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Old 01-20-22, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by icemilkcoffee View Post
Just sell the Nitto stem and buy a proper 22.0mm stem. When you do something goofy like sanding down the stem, you ruin the resale value of the part. Nobody will want to buy something like that from you. That goes for a lot of other goofy things that people like to do around here. Like jacking the frame with 2X4's, etc.
Nitto stems are still in production. It’s a piece of hardware, not a relic.
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Old 01-20-22, 05:45 PM
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My stem sanding method is to wrap the stem in duct tape above the minimum insert line, then sit in front of the TV while spinning the lower part of the stem inside a wrap of emery cloth, test fitting every few minutes. Too easy.
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Old 01-20-22, 07:12 PM
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A metal file makes for quick work, followed by sandpaper and fine steel wool. Calipers can be very helpful. The above tip about taping above the max insertion line protects the observable finish.
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