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Trick to perfectly straight handlebars?

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Trick to perfectly straight handlebars?

Old 07-03-19, 04:18 PM
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I'm OCD about this; approximation won't do . Here's how I do it:

Angle bars and wheel about 45 degrees. Lay straightedge on edge along center of stem, making sure that straightedge extends beyond the ends of the stem. With one eye closed and standing over the straightedge, look to see if the front and back ends of the straightedge line up with the center of the tire in front of and behind the stem.

Takes me me a minute or so, and I never need to readjust on the road.
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Old 07-03-19, 05:38 PM
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Depends on which eye I use to verify. Each look different. I swapped a stem the night before a 5 day 350 mile ride and already had my handlebar bag mounted up and on the car rack. When I was done with the trip and took off the bracket I had a WTF moment. I was WAY off. Oh well, did not seem to any impact
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Old 07-11-19, 02:19 PM
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Line them up parallel with the fork crown. Even with a unicrown you can still do it.
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Old 07-12-19, 02:18 AM
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Leaving the handlebars slightly off center and to the left makes up for the crown in on the roads here in North America where we do it right.

Others may need to offset the handlebars left.

I do it by holding the tire between my knees and line up the snug stem with the tire or top bar before tighting.

Last edited by xroadcharlie; 07-12-19 at 02:37 AM.
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Old 07-12-19, 12:21 PM
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twist your saddle the other way to compensate. sorry couldn't resist, it's Friday
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Old 07-12-19, 03:41 PM
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Seriously, use a "line beam" laser pointer down the middle of the tire, and down the middle of the stem, then adjust stem to taste. Best $10 an OCD type can spend. Me? I couldn't care less about a few degrees of skew.
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Old 07-12-19, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by ronin4740 View Post

Thank God the seat post on the Giant TCR I'm riding isn't round or I'd be losing sleep over the nose of the saddle being something other than true (though I think it's even easier to fix with a plum bob!)
I figured out a few years ago that all my seats should be angled to the left. More comfortable. So I set them so the nose is just to the left of the left edge of the brake cable. (Centerline top tube routing like was common in the '80s.)

I do my stems like easyupbug (post #4 ). On a build, I simple do not tighten fully until the wheel is on. Before that I don't care.

Oh, quill stems are far easier to align, especially long ones. 180 quills are a piece of cake.

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Old 07-12-19, 04:08 PM
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There is no trick to it--it simply is not possible!!
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Old 07-12-19, 05:15 PM
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Been working in shops since 1983 and have yet to get a stem straight. I just cannot do it. On my own bikes I simply let live, but on a customer's bike I let them line it up!
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Old 04-22-20, 05:13 PM
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I found sometimes the stem can be a hair crooked but the bars straight due to the bore for the bars not being perfectly perpendicular to the centerline of the stem, that being said I like to line the bars up parallel with the front axle/hub best i can.
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