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Be careful with those adjustable stems ...

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Be careful with those adjustable stems ...

Old 03-25-20, 04:02 PM
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UsedToBeFaster
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Be careful with those adjustable stems ...

I just had one fail. The teeth that bind them together some how came loose under minimum pressure. A stem failure is really a bad thing, fortunately it was low speed.
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Old 03-25-20, 04:14 PM
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noodle soup
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Originally Posted by UsedToBeFaster View Post
I just had one fail. The teeth that bind them together some how came loose under minimum pressure. A stem failure is really a bad thing, fortunately it was low speed.
my shop sells a buttload of bikes with those stems, and I always talk to the buyers about that problem.
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Old 03-25-20, 04:21 PM
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Not just the failure but the type of failure ...

Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
my shop sells a buttload of bikes with those stems, and I always talk to the buyers about that problem.
What's very disturbing is the type of failure. The stem was in the Honeymooner's D$#K position (i.e. +45 degrees) nice and tightly screwed in. It failed by dropping to the Retiree's position (i.e. -45 degrees) and is STILL tightly screwed in! Go figure how that happened.

I haven't torqued the stem in 1 month and its been solid till now.
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Old 03-25-20, 04:38 PM
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noodle soup
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Originally Posted by UsedToBeFaster View Post
What's very disturbing is the type of failure. The stem was in the Honeymooner's D$#K position (i.e. +45 degrees) nice and tightly screwed in. It failed by dropping to the Retiree's position (i.e. -45 degrees) and is STILL tightly screwed in! Go figure how that happened.

I haven't torqued the stem in 1 month and its been solid till now.
the bolt underneath is important too.

I really hate those stems.
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Old 03-25-20, 05:49 PM
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what brand of stem

lots of em on ebay and some are really cheap. the latest one from Ritchey seems bullet proof. two locking bolts; one on each side:

https://us.ritcheylogic.com/us_en/bi...djustable-stem
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Old 03-25-20, 05:53 PM
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These make sense to have in the shop for fit issues but maybe not so much on the road for daily use.
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Old 03-25-20, 06:04 PM
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Had a buddy take his first spill because of one of these on his old fuji road bike. I would never trust one of those for spirited riding, forget about 50mph descents. Stems are too cheap for me to take that kind of risk. Agree that they might be ok for short term experimentation.
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Old 03-26-20, 09:38 AM
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Was it Look that made those really nice adjustable stems. You would see them at the track a lot back in the day. I would love to own one.
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Old 03-27-20, 07:18 AM
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Adjustable stems are the result of about three decades of bike manufacturers and bike retailers selling bikes to recreational cyclists with handlebars much lower than than the bike seats. I don't know how they managed to pull it off, selling bikes that did not fit their customers, but they did.
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Old 03-27-20, 07:24 AM
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Don't like 'em at all... One piece for the win!
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Old 03-27-20, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by MKahrl View Post
Adjustable stems are the result of about three decades of bike manufacturers and bike retailers selling bikes to recreational cyclists with handlebars much lower than than the bike seats. I don't know how they managed to pull it off, selling bikes that did not fit their customers, but they did.
They are quite common on comfort bikes, but not many drop bar bikes use them.
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Old 03-27-20, 12:15 PM
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Here it is


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Old 03-27-20, 08:15 PM
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Wow, you couldn't pay me to ride with that stem. Didn't even know those were a thing.
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Old 03-27-20, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Rides4Beer View Post
Wow, you couldn't pay me to ride with that stem. Didn't even know those were a thing.
Track Sprinters like them because it is easier to dial your position in. The look heavy.
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Old 03-27-20, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
I really hate those stems.
+1.

I always word folks up about the dodginess and ridiculous weight, and tell them to use it to figure out what angle fixed stem they want and ditch it.
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Old 03-28-20, 12:36 AM
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Being scared of an adjustable stem is like being scared the wheels fall off or the seat post sliding into the frame for no reason, or whatever. Im sure lots of garbage is available, but there is nothing inherently wrong with the concept, outside of possible bad engineering and manufacturing. Obviously a one piece stem is lighter and stiffer and cheaper, but its only better if it fits.

Reminds me that no one seem to care, or even praise, most wheels come with all sorts of adapters to make them fit several types of frames. Imo the same principle apply. Simple is better. A hub that is designed to fit one system, is likely to have fewer parts and have the rotor, flanges and free wheel in the most optimal place.

Last edited by Racing Dan; 03-28-20 at 12:56 AM.
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Old 03-28-20, 04:04 AM
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Disgust is more apt than fear.
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Old 03-28-20, 06:28 AM
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Originally Posted by colnago62 View Post
Track Sprinters like them because it is easier to dial your position in. The look heavy.
But once they know their position, why not switch to a fixed stem? Their positions can't be changing that often, and you don't usually get into track cycling with no idea of your position anyway.
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Old 03-30-20, 05:23 AM
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colnago62
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Originally Posted by Bah Humbug View Post
But once they know their position, why not switch to a fixed stem? Their positions can't be changing that often, and you don't usually get into track cycling with no idea of your position anyway.
Probably some do. Some have needs that are not met by the standard stems available.
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Old 03-30-20, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by UsedToBeFaster View Post
I just had one fail. The teeth that bind them together some how came loose under minimum pressure. A stem failure is really a bad thing, fortunately it was low speed.
UsedToBeFaster: Thanks for starting this thread. Read it the other day, and immediately switched out the adjustable stem I had installed and went back to the original solid stem that the bike came with. Hadn't been having any issues, but your comment, plus those that followed, convinced me the stem was a weak point that presented an unnecessary risk.
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