Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

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LittleGreyCat
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Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby LittleGreyCat » 3 Mar 2019, 4:53pm

I mentioned adjustable stems in another thread but that got lost in the noise, so I thought I would ask specifically.
I am tinkering with handlebar position, and an adjustable stem looks to be a logical bit of kit for fine tuning position as it can effectively raise and lower the bars, and shorten and lengthen the stem. Sample of makes from Amazon link below.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/stem-adjustable-Sports-Outdoors/s?page=1&rh=n%3A318949011%2Ck%3Astem%20adjustable

Does anyone use these?
Pos and cons?

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Mick F
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby Mick F » 3 Mar 2019, 5:50pm

My Moulton came with one.
It was a good idea - note the word "was" - as has soon as I got the position correct, it was a waste. I swapped it for a proper real solid one asap.

Mine is one for a 1" steerer and going spare sitting in a box in the shed.
If you wan't a 1" one, drop me a PM and I'll post it to you FOC.

This is the one I have going spare.
Not the frame, just the stem. :lol:
original.jpg
Mick F. Cornwall

grufty
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby grufty » 3 Mar 2019, 5:52pm

NVO spacerless stem? It's only height adjustable though.
Last edited by Graham on 3 Mar 2019, 9:59pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: corrected - as below

LittleGreyCat
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby LittleGreyCat » 3 Mar 2019, 8:01pm

grufty wrote:NVO spacerless stem? It's only height adjustable though.


I already have a height adjustable stem/steerer although it does take spacers.
Do you have a link for the item? Internet search isn't forthcoming.

My thought is that I can move the stem up and down between the fixed positions dictated by the spacers, then fine tune by moving up or down (which will effectively shorten the stem) for fine tuning.

LittleGreyCat
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby LittleGreyCat » 3 Mar 2019, 8:03pm

Mick F wrote:My Moulton came with one.
It was a good idea - note the word "was" - as has soon as I got the position correct, it was a waste. I swapped it for a proper real solid one asap.

Mine is one for a 1" steerer and going spare sitting in a box in the shed.
If you wan't a 1" one, drop me a PM and I'll post it to you FOC.

This is the one I have going spare.
Not the frame, just the stem. :lol:
original.jpg


Thanks - very generous!

I think mine is 1 1/8" and I might need a little more reach but I will check and measure.

grufty
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby grufty » 3 Mar 2019, 9:01pm

grufty wrote:NGO spacerless stem? It's only height adjustable though.

Sorry, my mistake, should be NVO . nvocomponents.com

gregoryoftours
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby gregoryoftours » 3 Mar 2019, 9:15pm

Littlegreycat those ones on Amazon look ok, just make sure you get the correct handlebar clamp size as well as steerer clamp size. More modern bars are more likely to be 31.8mm diameter, others 25.4mm or other road bar diameters like 26mm. I would personally avoid stems that only have 2 bolts securing the bars to the stem. Plenty of people do continue to use these stems once they've got their desired position although it is better to replace with a fixed stem once you know what you want. Adjustables can develop play and creaking over time, despite keeping them tight. They are also more likely to flex and are heavier. The way they are hinged means that you fairly rapidly lose a lot of the forward reach when you tilt the angle up. Also the angle markings that printed on the stem are of no use when buying a fixed stem to replace because they indicate the angle of rise from the hinge, not from the centre of the steerer which is where fixed stem angle is measured from. You would have to do your own trigonomic calculation.

zenitb
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The "Delta" extender has been great on our tandem..

Postby zenitb » 3 Mar 2019, 9:39pm

The "Delta" extender has been great on our tandem.. :) Lots of adjustment range..if you google for "Delta Stem Raiser" its around £25..
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zenitb
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby zenitb » 3 Mar 2019, 9:45pm

Aside from the "Delta" on the tandem all my other bikes have some form of raiser...see pics. Really bike shops should be offering this sort of thin to older/less flexible riders from the get go. Watch out for cable/hose lengths..I usually have to extend them...

PS the Dawes Galaxy in the last pic has been lowered a bit now..I was experimenting!!
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zenitb
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And finally...

Postby zenitb » 3 Mar 2019, 9:52pm

my BTwin road bike...and stem collection

I wouldnt worry about "wasting" money on stems / extenders littlegreycat...buy a load and try them out. What did Loreal say? "you're worth it!!" !! :)
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AndyK
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby AndyK » 4 Mar 2019, 10:26am

LittleGreyCat wrote:I mentioned adjustable stems in another thread but that got lost in the noise, so I thought I would ask specifically.
I am tinkering with handlebar position, and an adjustable stem looks to be a logical bit of kit for fine tuning position as it can effectively raise and lower the bars, and shorten and lengthen the stem. Sample of makes from Amazon link below.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/stem-adjustable-Sports-Outdoors/s?page=1&rh=n%3A318949011%2Ck%3Astem%20adjustable

Does anyone use these?
Pos and cons?

Looking at that Amazon list...

Avoid the Chinese companies with random made-up names (CYSKY, UPANBIKE et al); stick to established brands. Yes, I know they probably come out of the same factories, but whether they get the same quality of materials or levels of quality control is another matter. An adjustable stem has to take a lot of stresses and you really don't want it to fail. Buy from a company with a reputation to worry about.

In that list, ETC is the house brand of UK distributor Moore Large and I've generally found their stuff to be functional and reliable. Ditto for System EX, the house brand of another UK distributor, Extra(UK).

Ritchey, BBB and Deda Elementi are established names and will be good quality.

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Mick F
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby Mick F » 4 Mar 2019, 11:05am

AndyK wrote: An adjustable stem has to take a lot of stresses ...............
I'm not sure about that.
Why would they take more stresses than a fixed stem at the same angle?

The only one I have any personal knowledge of has teeth on the mating faces and lugs on the inside. Once the bolt is tight, the stem "is at one" with itself. The bolt doesn't need to be super-tight as the teeth and lugs provide all the locking mechanism required.

Aren't they all like that?
Mick F. Cornwall

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Sweep
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby Sweep » 4 Mar 2019, 12:07pm

AndyK wrote:
LittleGreyCat wrote:I mentioned adjustable stems in another thread but that got lost in the noise, so I thought I would ask specifically.
I am tinkering with handlebar position, and an adjustable stem looks to be a logical bit of kit for fine tuning position as it can effectively raise and lower the bars, and shorten and lengthen the stem. Sample of makes from Amazon link below.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/stem-adjustable-Sports-Outdoors/s?page=1&rh=n%3A318949011%2Ck%3Astem%20adjustable

Does anyone use these?
Pos and cons?

Looking at that Amazon list...

Avoid the Chinese companies with random made-up names (CYSKY, UPANBIKE et al); stick to established brands. Yes, I know they probably come out of the same factories, but whether they get the same quality of materials or levels of quality control is another matter. An adjustable stem has to take a lot of stresses and you really don't want it to fail. Buy from a company with a reputation to worry about.

In that list, ETC is the house brand of UK distributor Moore Large and I've generally found their stuff to be functional and reliable. Ditto for System EX, the house brand of another UK distributor, Extra(UK).

Ritchey, BBB and Deda Elementi are established names and will be good quality.


Add to the list Humpert/Ergotec?: they do a rather broad range of adjustable stuff - I think I'd trust them.

I think Koga Miyata used to (maybe still do) fit their stuff on their rather pricey and well regarded world traveller bikes.

https://www.ergotec.de/en/detail-1/locations.html

edit

I have had a 1 inch threaded Kalloy (about whom I claim to know very little) adjustable on an old Ridgeback of mine for 20 years.

I know some folk think them ugly but I have had no issues at all with it.

And have since acquired another two on old frames.
Sweep

Brucey
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby Brucey » 4 Mar 2019, 12:37pm

adjustable stems are heavy, flexy, and fail often.

They are a good idea if you are trying different riding positions out or you have a bike which has multiple users, but they are otherwise a less than ideal solution.


FWIW I have an adjustable stem on my carrier bike; sometimes I need to move the handlebars out of the way of a large front load... :shock:

cheers
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Sweep
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Re: Adjustable Stems - recommendations?

Postby Sweep » 4 Mar 2019, 12:52pm

Brucey wrote:adjustable stems are heavy, flexy, and fail often.

They are a good idea if you are trying different riding positions out or you have a bike which has multiple users, but they are otherwise a less than ideal solution.


FWIW I have an adjustable stem on my carrier bike; sometimes I need to move the handlebars out of the way of a large front load... :shock:

cheers

mmm brucey, you know how much I value your opinions, and very definitely your expertise and knowledge (way way way beyond mine) but:

Have never been under the impression that weight mattered much to the average person on here.

And a certain amount of "flex" isn't necessarily bad is it? Folk have spent large amounts of money trying to introduce it haven't they?

I must say that I have no concerns at all about my kalloy failing - despite 20 years of abuse - or definitely no more than any other bit of the bike - possibly because it's a rather plug ugly (but oo you are awful, I like you) thing.

edit

It's essentially this I think:

https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/stems/80-ka ... 4mm-clamp/

though my three examples have very probably got a more vintage patina.

edit edit - very recently bought a bike for £2.01 more than that list price which enclosed a vintage pretty much unused example of same.
Sweep