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Trek 5500 US Postal 58cm - longer steerer tube?

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Trek 5500 US Postal 58cm - longer steerer tube?

Old 07-06-21, 03:58 AM
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rr99
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Trek 5500 US Postal 58cm - longer steerer tube?

Hi guys!

I have recently acquired a beautiful Trek 5500 (USPS) in size 58cm.
I'm 5'11 (180cm) with a 33.56 inseam (85cm).
I have 2 cm spacers below my stem (see the attached photo). The current height of the steerer tube is 22cm.
I have bought the bike that way.

However, the current geometry is making the bike a living hell to ride. I was thinking about extending the steerer tube by welding an additional part, but I have read that that option is not safe at all. Long story short, should i opt for a new fork with an uncut steerer tube so I can use a 4-5 cm spacers below the stem?
There's currently one on eBay with a steerer tube height of 26,5cm.
Would the bike look funny with a 4cm spacers or perhaps this frame size is too big for me?

I'll appreciate your honest opinion.

Thanks! 🚵




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Old 07-06-21, 04:53 AM
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Change the stem for one with greater angle. A +17 might be a good start. Use this site to see how the higher stem angle will effect reach.

Stem Comparison Tool | yojimg.net

All that said, most of the time when people complain about low back pain it's because their low back is weak. Start with a stem and some back exercises before you go hunting unicorns. One last thought, I wouldn't do anything to extend the current steerer tube. IMO, that is just begging for trouble.
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Old 07-06-21, 07:30 AM
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Originally Posted by nomadmax View Post
Change the stem for one with greater angle. A +17 might be a good start. Use this site to see how the higher stem angle will effect reach.

Stem Comparison Tool | yojimg.net

All that said, most of the time when people complain about low back pain it's because their low back is weak. Start with a stem and some back exercises before you go hunting unicorns. One last thought, I wouldn't do anything to extend the current steerer tube. IMO, that is just begging for trouble.
nomadmax,

Thanks a lot for your response. For instance, if I change the fork and install one with a longer steerer tube, will the drop from saddle to handlebar be less painful?
Additionally, the top tube size is 56cm and the current stem lenght is 9cm which is short for me. I would like to replace it with a 11cm deda newton stem.

My previous road bike was Merida Scultura (56cm) compact geometry, with a slight larger head tube (17cm). It was perfect for me.
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Old 07-07-21, 05:30 AM
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Originally Posted by rr99 View Post
nomadmax,

Thanks a lot for your response. For instance, if I change the fork and install one with a longer steerer tube, will the drop from saddle to handlebar be less painful?
Additionally, the top tube size is 56cm and the current stem lenght is 9cm which is short for me. I would like to replace it with a 11cm deda newton stem.

My previous road bike was Merida Scultura (56cm) compact geometry, with a slight larger head tube (17cm). It was perfect for me.
I don't think you completely understand the rabbit hole you're trying to go down. Here are a couple things you'll need to know before you can source another fork.

From your current fork:

Axle to crown measurement
Rake
Trail
Steerer tube diameter
Steerer tube diameter @ crown race
Steerer tube composition (aluminum or carbon, carbon will require a compression plug in lieu of a star nut)

If you're buying used you'll have to hope it's in the condition the seller says it is and has never had an impact. If you're buying new your choices may be limited. As far as spacers go, I won't use more than 35mm on a steel or aluminum steerer tube and no more than 25mm on carbon. The internet is filled with people who have, up to this point, used more spacers safely. However, I never shed a tear when my hair went but I'm taking these teeth to the grave. As I said, in my opinion I wouldn't entertain replacing the fork, stems come in all lengths and angles and you can certainly save a lot of heart ache and money by heading that direction. I hope you get it sorted out to your satisfaction.
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Old 07-07-21, 10:26 AM
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Those bars and their adjustment is not my favorite setup. At 76, I've come tp prefer a compact bar set up like this, note the vertical brake levers: https://www.bikeforums.net/19145009-post3.html
I ride about the same drop as you show. I think changing your bars and their setup will have a larger effect on your comfort than changing the stem. Right now, I'm running these bars: https://www.competitivecyclist.com/f...pact-handlebar
They have the modern and stiffer 31mm center section. Looks like your current stem might be 27mm, in which case you'd need a new stem anyway.

That's a beautiful classic carbon bike. I ride a '99 5200, purchased new. I never saw a reason to buy another single bike. My only quibble with the 5500 is that they came new with a cassette which was too small for most riders. Back then, the more you paid for a bike, the smaller the stock cassette.

I confess to be bothered about that perfectly normal road bike being a "living hell to ride." If that's the case, you'll not be looking forward to a very comfortable aging process. Whatever's wrong with you needs physical therapy. The bike does not need therapy beyond a new bar setup. If you've had spinal fusion or similar, I take it all back. Change out the bars anyway.
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Old 07-07-21, 11:16 AM
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Geometry of that bike is sort of old style vintage steel bike. (horizontal top tube)

Even at a 58 cm it might be too big for you. But the position of the STI's on that bar will never be comfortable to me. I'd go more with what Carbonfiberboy shows and that is going to require a different drop bar profile. You might look at short reach drops while you are at it.

If you think you need to have higher bars, then also look at riser drop bars. They can get you 1 to almost 2 inches higher on that stem you currently have. But you might also need a shorter stem. So who's to say. You just need to spend more money! Even old bikes that seem inexpensive can quickly cost more than a new bike.

Adding steerer tube extenders and overly angled stems to your bike will just make it look gross to me. I'd sell or throw away any bike I had to do that to. I don't really like the look of bikes with stems that are much from horizontal. But I know that is just my personal likes and dislikes and doesn't matter for strictly fitting purposes.
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Old 07-07-21, 12:42 PM
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You could get a steeper angle stem and some compact bars. Not a fan of the extenders, either, but many people use them.
https://northwestbicycle.com/product...hoCg6AQAvD_BwE
https://www.chainreactioncycles.com/...E&gclsrc=aw.ds
https://www.slowtwitch.com/Gravel/Th...Bars_7280.html
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Old 07-07-21, 01:50 PM
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As far as the handlebars go, I don't even see 130mm of drop and no more than about 75mm reach in your photo. They may come shorter and shallower than that but not a lot, at least road bars anyway. There are several companies that make riser bars for road bikes, Specialized is one @1.5cm higher and others that are 2cm higher. Bar width also affects how far you have to lean over to get into the drops or on the hoods. Too wide and your hands are further apart, causing you to lean forward further.

The Rise of Riser Drop Bars - Slowtwitch.com

Here's the thing about the internet. Both the questioner and respondents only have what's typed on the page. No one on the internet can tell you if your shoes fit, only you can say for sure. An angled stem, maybe some riser bars of the appropriate width and some specific exercises to strengthen your lower back and core muscles is what I'd do. By far, the biggest impediment to getting help on the internet is that many folks pose questions seeking validation of the answer they've already decided on.
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Old 07-11-21, 08:05 PM
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Exclamation

Before you spend ANY money...

You need to make some adjustments. The saddle tilt and most importantly, the handlebars! They're shocking.
Whoever set those STI shifters up did it ALL wrong, they're in completely the wrong position. Unwrap the bars, adjust by tilting them up so the top bit is horizontal, then adjust the STI shifter position.



After you've done all that, go for a couple of rides and see how it feels in comparison. Once you've got a feel for it, you can make more adjustments.

Assuming your current saddle height is correct, you shouldn't have too much saddle-to-bar drop to be uncomfortable. I have a single 5mm spacer under the step of mine (and that's about to be removed).

But getting those bars sorted should be your first step! Look at the position of mine (not 100% perfect, but close) compared to the position/setup of yours:



Any other questions, just holla. Happy to help.
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Old 07-25-21, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by tempocyclist View Post
Before you spend ANY money...

You need to make some adjustments. The saddle tilt and most importantly, the handlebars! They're shocking.
Whoever set those STI shifters up did it ALL wrong, they're in completely the wrong position. Unwrap the bars, adjust by tilting them up so the top bit is horizontal, then adjust the STI shifter position.



After you've done all that, go for a couple of rides and see how it feels in comparison. Once you've got a feel for it, you can make more adjustments.

Assuming your current saddle height is correct, you shouldn't have too much saddle-to-bar drop to be uncomfortable. I have a single 5mm spacer under the step of mine (and that's about to be removed).

But getting those bars sorted should be your first step! Look at the position of mine (not 100% perfect, but close) compared to the position/setup of yours:



Any other questions, just holla. Happy to help.
PM Sent!

Thanks
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