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  1. #1
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    Shorter Stem??? Smoother Handling???

    I was advised by my LBS that if I go with a shorter stem it with smooth out my DH
    experience . I am running a easton EA70 (6 degeree) 110mm stem. LBS is advising 80 or maybe 90. I though shorter would make the steering more responsive.

    I am not worried about body position. I am on a Yeti 575. Easton monkey lite lo-rise bars (660 wide). Fox Talas fork (05, 125mm).

    Amy opinions?

    Thanks,

    ST

  2. #2
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
    Reputation: shiggy's Avatar
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    It really depends on the bike, how you fit on the bike and riding style.

    In general a shorter stem makes it easier to descend on steep terrain as you can shift your weight back more easily.

    How it affects the steering and handling is an open debate and is highly dependent on the factors in my opening line. Take too much weight off the front end and the bike will not want to turn.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    It really depends on the bike, how you fit on the bike and riding style.

    In general a shorter stem makes it easier to descend on steep terrain as you can shift your weight back more easily.

    How it affects the steering and handling is an open debate and is highly dependent on the factors in my opening line. Take too much weight off the front end and the bike will not want to turn.
    someone should invent a telescopic stem... that would be ultimate.

  4. #4
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
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    Quote Originally Posted by wickerman1
    someone should invent a telescopic stem... that would be ultimate.
    They exist


    Just not for use on the front of a mt. bike. This is a tandem stoker stem. I have seen length adjustable road stems.
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  5. #5
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    A Gravity Dropper stlye stem? That would be cool

  6. #6
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    IMHO, the Syntace VRO Stem is pretty much what you could be looking for. It let you adjust your stem length as much as 50mm and, at the same time, adjust the stem rise, which make a lot of sense when you are going DH. I mean, moving your weight back and your torso upright could really help.

    For those moments when you want (know) that a more aggressive position is what you need, rotating the handlebar clamps makes the stem longer and lower.
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  7. #7
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    i used to run a 120mm stem. I have kind of a big bike. I always had a problem with higher speeds. I would always feel unstable. I dropped the 125mm and went with a 50mm down hill stem. Its big, and heavy, but I really like the shorter stem, and the shorter reach.

    I am also the type to not care too much about weight.

    That short of a stem made steep climbs a bit squirmy at first. but now I am used to the extra responsiveness, and I like it better on tech stuff.

  8. #8
    Your bike is incorrigible
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tavinho
    IMHO, the Syntace VRO Stem is pretty much what you could be looking for. It let you adjust your stem length as much as 50mm and, at the same time, adjust the stem rise, which make a lot of sense when you are going DH. I mean, moving your weight back and your torso upright could really help.

    For those moments when you want (know) that a more aggressive position is what you need, rotating the handlebar clamps makes the stem longer and lower.
    I was suspicious of those types of stem until I noticed Hans Rey was using one. I figure if it will stand up to the sort of abuse he must give a stem, then it will definitely work for us other shlubs.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guyechka
    I was suspicious of those types of stem until I noticed Hans Rey was using one. I figure if it will stand up to the sort of abuse he must give a stem, then it will definitely work for us other shlubs.
    It's VR-3 approved (this is a DH standard), so it's been designed to take a lot of abuse, for sure.

  10. #10
    Oh, So Interesting!
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    Went from 100 to 60 on my AC. I just bend my arms a bit more on steep climbs, it seems more stable on the dh...

    It made the handlebars a little close to my knees on steep tech ups, but not too bad.
    .




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  11. #11
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    Short stems are AWESOME

    I like short stems to ride with.
    I found it definitly improved my bike control.
    Better cornering, better jumping, better decending steeps.

    Yes I agree that they do not climb so well initially but you will adapt.

    Some of my riding mates changed and our riding improved dramitically.
    Then another group would comment on how my riding improved and I would say try a short stem. When they did change they were stoked.

    For your bike a 50mm would probably be too short. Try 70-90mm.


    Good riding

  12. #12
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    A shorter stem moves your weight further back, which is good for steep downhills and bad for steep climbs. It also reduces your steering leverage, making the steering heavier and more stable.
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  13. #13
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    I just changed from a 120mm to a 90mm on my Heckler and I'm really digging it. Easier to pull up the front end and it feels more stable.

  14. #14
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    If a stem is too short you will unload the front tyre too much. As a result you can loose steering traction downhill as well as uphill. In corners you need to weight the front tyre. All this can be overcome by shifting body weight around though (this includes riding lower as well as front/back), and your bike set-up/geometry. Therefore I would suggest trying 3 different stem lengths to see how it affects your riding. You may be able to borrow stems from a bike shop (with the promise you will buy one), or there are plenty of used ones for sale cheap. For variety try a 50, 70, 90.

  15. #15
    Ride on
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    I switched the 110mm stem on my Yeti 575 for a 90mm model because I felt that the low speed handling of my bike was unstable. The shorter stem eliminated the instability and improved the loftability of the front end, which improved the handling of my bike. It also made climbing a little trickier, and I didn't really notice much of a difference during steep descents. I still use the 90mm stem because I adapted to the difference in climbing and I always liked the descending capabilities of the 575. The big difference for me was the improvement in low speed handling, which helps a lot for stunts and technical trail features.

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