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bartek. 01-16-20 03:48 PM

Stem choice nightmare on the market
I thought there is no easier to pick up component than stem. I was wrong.
I am in need of 110 mm both -6 and -10 degrees. Requirements: stiff and alloy

Zipp Service Course SL is my choice of -6 deg stems. This time the faceplate is too wide for the 3T Scatto! Not much other choices these days such as 3T ARX II is 1 bolt steerer tube when APTO has problems with correct torquing and I would be scare to ride it on track. FSA or Ritchey might be an option but never seen on track maybe there is a reason.
For -10 degrees there is a PRO Vibe which is stiff but comes with non-standard body shape that requires its own top cap (I need more steerer) or special PRO thin spacer that looks super ugly in connection with wider one on the top.

I can't believe this is all my choices in 2020. What am I missing?
In fact I may need to find used 3T ARX (2 bolts for steerer) for -6 and go with the PRO with special spacer that will be frustrating to forget to take it with me on the velodrome ;-)

'02 nrs 01-16-20 06:09 PM

tried a google search?

brawlo 01-16-20 06:29 PM

Thomson do 10

carleton 01-16-20 07:35 PM

Amen to Thomson.

Thomson X4 4-bolt 0 or 10 MTB stem is the way to go. I'd shy away from the X2 road stem. It uses 2 bolts to fasten. Fine for most people, but if you have a strong standing start, you might break it. I did mine. I got a new faceplate no questions asked from Thomson at no charge.

The X4 will also work with Nitto 25.4 bars if you use a 25.4 to 31.8 shim spacer. I've done this with great success. Very fiddly to get installed, but solid as a rock after.

Here is one of my builds using Thomson. I used Thomson on very bike that would accept it. The only bikes that wouldn't were the Felt TK1/FRD and the LOOK. I liked the Thomson so much, I contemplated installing a standard fork just so I could use a Thomson.

Oh, and as you can see, their seatposts were tops as well.

I used their seatpost collars to make this: The unslippable seapost on the frame I designed. I asked for an extended seat tube where the seatpost collar sits. This way, I could affix double Thomson seatpost collars. Never budged 1mm.

Thomson stems and seatposts on both bikes.

About Thomson: They are an aerospace engineering company...that makes bike bits on the side for fun:

That's why the quality is so high.

carleton 01-16-20 07:54 PM

Thomson is one reason why I advocate so hard for high-end frames to be designed to take round seatposts. I have never had a Thomson seatpost tilt or slip on me.

Same for accepting standard stems. Their X4 stem was used by the AUS and GB teams by the sprinters. It's unmatched for strength. My only gripe is that it comes on only 0 and 10 degrees.

Perkins in the London Olympics riding a Thomson X4:

McBTC 01-16-20 08:27 PM

FSA, Opera, Richie, Easton...

topflightpro 01-17-20 07:32 AM

Second the X4. In the Fairwheel Stem test, it was bested only by the Pro Sprint stems. The older 3T with the four faceplate bolts also tested well.

From my perspective, the older Easton EA90 (with the full faceplate) also seems pretty stiff and is a solid design - bolt the top two face place bolts all the way then torque just the bottom two. I believe it comes in a 6 or 10. It looks like they redesigned it though, so not sure how stiff the new version is.

DMC707 01-17-20 11:13 AM

This 3T is a 4 bolt face and is narrow enough

but agree on the Thomson stuff -- anything they make is first rate -- using Thomson for my seatpost nub (just a regular cutdown road post inserted in the seat mast ) -- it doesn't slip

And the reason for the extended seat mast is for the exact reason @carleton stated -- slipping seatposts suck --- and if mine does , it will only slip an inch or so and I can ride through that

Sadly -- had a moment of "adulthood" and the car is long gone now :twitchy:

pah 01-18-20 08:39 AM

Love the matching paint job!

Super D 01-18-20 10:00 PM

I've got a friend running a 150mm KNCN Arrow stem, seems to be holding up well. Anyone try one over a long period of time? Stiff, durable, or doo-doo? :)

pi03k 01-19-20 12:24 PM

Originally Posted by Super D (Post 21290202)
I've got a friend running a 150mm KNCN Arrow stem, seems to be holding up well. Anyone try one over a long period of time? Stiff, durable, or doo-doo? :)

I've got 130mm kcnc arrow. I don't like it because it needs 3mm allen key. It's easy to round the screw head.
Regarding stiffness I prefer full one piece plate like Pro Sprint, Thompson.

bartek. 01-20-20 10:21 AM

Thanks for the interest!
I totally forgot about Thomson! This is a great option. I may consider X4 over X2 due to safety concerns. However, my use in this case would be an opposite to the massive sprints described above. I need the -10 degrees stem for mass starts in use with 3T SuperErgo Ltd carbon handlebar. I haven't ridden this handlebars on track yet but they doesn't feel that tough as Scatto's or other classic track bars. So, I'm a bit concerned if this stem wouldn't be too massive for this handlebars. I also know at least 3-4 people which faceplates cracked riding on the street (I don't know any other with similar experience with other stems). I'm still considering this stem as it's super beautiful but just sharing my concerns. I have never used it myself.

As of this, I think more about an old version of the Pro Vibe 7s that stiffness is somewhere between X2 and X4 (based on only stem stiffness test available) with almost 31g weight reduction compared to the X4.
Another option is the old Easton EA90 which looks nice but not much data, not even on materials used.

Is my thinking correct? :)

Originally Posted by McBTC (Post 21287661)
FSA, Opera, Richie, Easton...

FSA and Richey do some 6 degrees. I don't like FSA due to the proprietary top cap, same as the new PRO Vibe.
Easton discontinued 10 degrees and now makes only 0/7 options. However, I agree the old EA90 with full faceplate looks promising!
Opera? I don't know this brand. Google directs to Aliexpress which is not a good sign.

topflightpro 01-20-20 02:28 PM

Here is the stem test I referenced.

Stem Review - Fairwheel Bikes Blog

taras0000 01-21-20 04:19 PM

Opera is a Pinarello brand.

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