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  1. #1
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    Stem length, angle, and its effects

    Hi there,
    Was going to post in another thread but thought I would get clearer answers here. I've searched the forum and have the general consensus that a shorter stem is better for downhill worse for uphill.
    I currently have a 110mm stem and are unsure on the angle (see picture), on my NRS. I am trying to make my bike better for downhill in general (steep and small drops). What effect will a shorter stem have and what angle should I have? Does stem length effect steering? How short can I go? Climbing on my NRS is amazing so I am willing to sacrafice climbing ability for downhilling ease (I also have Reba U-turn).
    Thanks in Advance!
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  2. #2
    TC
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    size matters...

    shorter will get you dh better fosho, but you may need to muscle up on the climbing. If you've been riding a stem at 110 for awhile, you'll definitely feel a difference with anything under 100.

    I'm 6'3" and ride a XL Blur LT...swapped stock 120mm stem out for 60mm Hussefelt and run 1.5" riser bars. It wanders a bit on really steep climbs, but is fine on single track etc...


    But downhill, complete control. Period.

    Read more about stem length and rise (and any other technical or technique questins) at LeeLikesBikes.com
    http://www.leelikesbikes.com/stem-le...rail-bike.html
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  3. #3
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    I think i'm just going to try it out and get a cheapo second hand 50-60mm. Might be too short but worth experimenting. What difference does the angle make? Is a higher angle more downhill orientated, and how does it change your body position?
    Thanks for the reply and link

  4. #4
    Shortcutting Hikabiker
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    Dude, I am really trying not be be rude here, but get a new frame or bike. The NRS ans any sort of downhill just will not work, the bike is all wrong. Geometry, suspension, and strength are all just wrong. It's like trying to make a race car into a rock crawler.

  5. #5
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    I know the NRS is useless and potentially unable to do downhill. I will buy a new frame.....one day. At the moment I can't afford a new frame but it will be my next upgrade, and I am pleased with it's performance uphill. What I am trying is to is make it more able to do downhill by modifying it's intended geometry very cheaply, I'm not going to risk any big hits (<2ft) until I get a new frame.
    Anyway I have another question, do stems come with the cap that clamps it down by screwing into the steerer tube? Was looking at buying a stem and it didn't have this and my current stem has a different shpe cap that won't fit.
    Thanks.

  6. #6
    nocturnal oblivion
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    A 60mm cheapo would be a lot more fun, and you'll retain enough uphill ease. Ask those lbs' about a cap, it comes with the headset. If they don't have one, they would as soon as they replace someone's headset.

  7. #7
    The guy with 5 kids
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    T, I just got into a new Blur LT three weeks ago and am going through a similar scenerio. I am trying to find the right balance with my stem length and height as well as spacers under the stem. I went from a 90mm stem to a 110 and down to two 5mm spacers right now and has helped with climbing without taking too much of the handling away I liked with the shorter stem. I am now in the process of taking away another 5mm spacer and putting on a 100mm stem and put it through the paces. My LBS has been really cool about it and has encouraged me to keep playing with it until I am sure and will then cut the steerer tube as well order a new stem at no charge. hope this helps

    dave

  8. #8
    Bicyclochondriac.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiggles
    Hi there,
    Was going to post in another thread but thought I would get clearer answers here. I've searched the forum and have the general consensus that a shorter stem is better for downhill worse for uphill.
    I currently have a 110mm stem and are unsure on the angle (see picture), on my NRS. I am trying to make my bike better for downhill in general (steep and small drops). What effect will a shorter stem have and what angle should I have? Does stem length effect steering? How short can I go? Climbing on my NRS is amazing so I am willing to sacrafice climbing ability for downhilling ease (I also have Reba U-turn).
    Thanks in Advance!
    Try some cheap stems, but you don't need to go that much shorter to feel a difference. I would not go too drastic at first. Try going about 80-90mm. Even 20-30mm shorter will make a noticeable difference. Your angle looks like around 6 degrees, and stems with similar angles are very common. Remember that when you go with a shorter length and the same angle, the bar will be a little lower. This will be particularly important if you go all the way down to a 60mm stem.

    Don't worry about you bike not being a DH machine. What you have is fine for now as long as you are not hucking big drops. Just because this is an xc bike doesn't mean you can't fine tune the geometry to be more geared for the way down than the way up.

  9. #9
    attending to my vices
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    Good job!

    Quote Originally Posted by Acme54321
    Dude, I am really trying not be be rude here, but get a new frame or bike. The NRS ans any sort of downhill just will not work, the bike is all wrong. Geometry, suspension, and strength are all just wrong. It's like trying to make a race car into a rock crawler.

    misinformation. Dude is posting in the AM forum, obviously he is not racing downhill tracks with his NRS, he justs like to go downhill too. Since when can you not ride ANY mountain bike downhill? Isn't that what we all do?

    I just spent the afternoon riding up and down fun technical trails with a dude on a prophet, a mkIII, a camelion, a reign and an NRS!

    We all run between 40-60mm stems but non longer. I went from a 90 to a 40mm and haven't looked back and that was when I was DHing my Kona Kikapu xc bike so don't worry about it. Just start with a 60mm and go down from there. Getting a some wide oversized bars and stem combo will give your bike a great, aggressive feel and profile. I love my Truvative Holzfeller 40mm and 1.5" rise setup for all my riding needs and I do mostly xc/am type riding and enjoy the techy descents the most.
    OVER THE LINE SMOKEY!

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