1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
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2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    CF Handlebar/stem fit question

    Hi there guys.

    So I've been upgrading my Diamondback Overdrive over the past few months as I found I LOVE mountain biking (started for the first time in September of this year).


    So far I've replaced(everything on clearance/closeout):
    Pedals: Forte Convert
    Grips: ODI Troy lee Designs lock ons
    Fork: Manitou Tower Pro
    Saddle: SDG Bel-air

    I just placed an order for some carbon fiber bars, barends, stem, and seatpost. I am taking a gamble as it was from ebay for a ridiculous price. Carbon Handlebar Seatpost Stem Bar End Set Bike Mountain Bike MTB | eBay

    Now, my question is on fit as it will be a change from what I have now.

    Currently, my Overdrive has a 670mm wide low rise handlebar, with a 75mm stem. The new bars I ordered will be a 680 mm FLAT handlebar, with a 80 mm stem. My worry is that I read on a few posts that the wider you go in handlebar width, the shorter you should go on stem size. However, the smallest stem the seller offers is 80mm, which is 5mm bigger than what I am currently running, so I would be making the stem LONGER, not shorter.

    The selller offers the choice of a riser handlebar instead of a flat, but I figure with a 29er it would be better to go with flat? (also to slightly make up for the fact that I cut my Tower Pro a little too long and so I had to use an extra spacer on the headset.)

    I'm very very very new to this so forgive me if I sound ignorant at all about any of this stuff. I'm trying to learn.

    In your guys' opinion, will this make a difference? I was never properly fit for my bike, I just kind of got used to riding it and I feel the riding position is pretty good.

  2. #2
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    I'd give it a try - you are only talking a few mm's. It will stretch you out a bit more and lower your position a bit. May not be a bad thing on a 29er. You know you can move the spacer above the stem so it doesn't affect your stem height?

  3. #3
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    The angle of the stem also affects the distance from the seat.

    You can try your old stem too. The CF stem probably won't be that much lighter. I needed a shorter stem and the lbs lent me a cheap Eight 11 brand stem to try. I liked the fit, and shopped for a better stem. However, I couldn't find anything more than a few grams lighter, so I brought the Eight 11, ordered TI bolts for it, and called it quits.

    CF spacers are cheap and save a few grams. Also, the Purely Custom aluminum headtube caps are strong and very light. $15, but will last forever.

    Purely Custom Online Store - 1 1/8" Ultra Lite Threadless Headset Caps - Custom Bicycle Accessories

    I wouldn't cut the headtube any further. Just put spacers above the stem as Slash says. The weight is minimal, and if you ever sell the bike or fork....

  4. #4
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    Also if you want to you could always cut the bars down.

  5. #5
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    Low riser bars are what I use on my 29, I've preferred them because of the angle relief they can give my wrists with the sweep up and back and variation from rotating the bars back. You don't get that with a straight bar. You will probably want to consider another shorter stem off ebay or use your existing stem.
    You don't lose performance with some extra space above your stem from a longer than optimum length steerer tube. I would recommend all the spacers be put above the stem when you use a low rise bar on a 29. When you buy a high quality fork that could go on your next build, keeping the steerer a little long is a good idea.

  6. #6
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    eb's post mentions this - the sweep angle makes more of a difference than +/- 10 mm in bar width.

    Stems are a $15 item if you're not precious about them. If you have a hard time getting the fit right, try something different until you get it nailed. Then you can buy a fancy stem if you like. I find I don't care enough.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  7. #7
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    I just want to point out that those are not legit FSA parts. They might work totally fine, but dont expect any warranty from them or anyone to sue if they fail catastrophically

  8. #8
    Ride Everything
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    Here's a really useful tool for seeing how different stems affect fit:

    Stem Comparison Tool | yojimg.net
    GRAVELBIKE.COM - ride everything

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by moefosho View Post
    I just want to point out that those are not legit FSA parts. They might work totally fine, but dont expect any warranty from them or anyone to sue if they fail catastrophically
    This, no way I'd risk my health on these.
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  10. #10
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    I use Easton bars. They have taken abuse with no repercussions. I especially would not choose Chinese carbon bars that are fakes.

  11. #11
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    Thanks for all the replies guys. On an update, I actually ordered the 700mm bars with the intention of cutting them down if need be.

    Also, it was my fear that these were not legit parts, but I got talked into it by the seller who responded that they are all legit OEM parts when I inquired about them. Unfortunately, it is too late to cancel the order as they are on their way from Spain.

    Does anyone have any experience doing returns of counterfeit items through ebay? The shipping was $30, that I really don't want to pay to ship it back.

    In your guys' opinion, do you think that these bars are 100% fake? I guess it's my fault for being so gullible....not used to people blatantly lying to me to buy a product. (you can tell I don't use ebay too much).

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fobfather View Post
    Thanks for all the replies guys. On an update, I actually ordered the 700mm bars with the intention of cutting them down if need be.

    Also, it was my fear that these were not legit parts, but I got talked into it by the seller who responded that they are all legit OEM parts when I inquired about them. Unfortunately, it is too late to cancel the order as they are on their way from Spain.

    Does anyone have any experience doing returns of counterfeit items through ebay? The shipping was $30, that I really don't want to pay to ship it back.

    In your guys' opinion, do you think that these bars are 100% fake? I guess it's my fault for being so gullible....not used to people blatantly lying to me to buy a product. (you can tell I don't use ebay too much).
    For that price, no way I'd believe that were legit. Once you receive them I'd go through EBay, I don't think you'd have to pay shipping if the are counterfeit items.

    Here's a picture from FSA web site of the stem, the carbon doesn't look anything like the picture in the Ebay ad. The stem in the ebay ad has carbon weave showing between the two ends and the ends are plain black. The Ebay the white strip has small writting in black after the black FSA, real one doesn't as you can see.
    Name:  EN_93370e54-ff10-49b2-acc3-fac19c096e95_P248-2-ST-OS-99CSI.jpg
Views: 207
Size:  24.3 KB

    All their seatposts are cut at a slant at the bottom, the only one that isn't doesn't have graphics like the one on Ebay, that graphic has a angle cut end.
    Name:  EN_a7caf5a8-8a14-4c35-a261-d6010cda2911_P260-3-SP-RK-150-MTC.jpg
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Size:  6.4 KB
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  13. #13
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    His ad never claims that they are legit FSA parts. Just that they are carbon. I am sure they are carbon parts. They might work totally fine. They might not. I doubt Ebay will support a claim because he sold exactly what he said he was selling.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by moefosho View Post
    His ad never claims that they are legit FSA parts. Just that they are carbon. I am sure they are carbon parts. They might work totally fine. They might not. I doubt Ebay will support a claim because he sold exactly what he said he was selling.
    Unless he sent a communication that says they are authentic, then the OP has a case. Still think he has a case since Ebay is very buyer friendly and those are clearly counterfeit. One of the reasons I stopped selling on Ebay.
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  15. #15
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    When the items arrive, call FSA and ask them if they'd be willing to look at photos of the items. I would imagine they would like to know if someone is trying to pawn off counterfeit FSA parts.
    GRAVELBIKE.COM - ride everything

  16. #16
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    Yeah, I think I will call them. The seller did communicate to me in a message that they were OEM parts. I mostly got the set because of the color scheme and the bar ends.

    The seller also looks to be selling this item almost exclusively, and has close to a perfect feedback score. Just woulda thought someone would have noticed and put in a bad review if they were fakes. Let's see how long it takes me to get em and i guess i'll take it from there.

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