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.
mtn. biking 101
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.
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 31
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30

    How to drop handle bar at stem?

    I have a 2012 Specialized Rockhopper Comp29,and after seeing a video of my bike,I found that the owner had his stem dropped lower than mine.Now I have 2 thick spacer rings under my stem and a thinner one under the stem cap.

    Now would I be able to take the stem cap off,unbolt the stem from the fork
    And take those 2 thick spacer rings,and remove them and the slide the stem back on and install those thick spacer rings on top of the stem,therefore lowering my stem?

    Or does the thinner spacer ring that was on the top of the stem before have to go under the stem? Then the stem installs on the fork neck and the 2 thick spacers go on top under the stem cap?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    Yes, you can put all the spacers above the stem, or you could cut the steerer shorter and not use any spacers.
    Watch a vid on how to adjust headset tension so it goes back together right.
    Round and round we go

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30
    Ok thanks,I figured that if I could move the 2 thicker spacers to the top of the stem,that I would at least need to take the thinner spacer that sits on top of the stem now and move it to the bottom,or else won't the stem bottom out on the black ring that sits on top of the bike frame? Or do I have to lower the stem just enough without causing the stem to touch the cap on top of the bike frame?

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    The screw on top cap squeezes everything together when/if the stem bolts are loose for adjustment. So no, you want them to touch otherwise it's too loose.
    If moving the 2 bigger spacers to the top, and the smaller to the bottom works height wise than that's fine too.
    Those spacers are there so there's a slight space between the top of the steerer and the top of the stack, just under the topcap, so that the bolt on the top cap has some squeeze room. That's why I said you can remove 1 or all the spacers, but then would have to cut the steerer just a touch shorter than the top of the stem. Otherwise they must be above or below the stem.
    Again, not trying to be a d!ck, and i don't know what headset brand or stem you have so watch a vid or 2, it should explain it much better than my words.
    Round and round we go

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: masterofnone's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,123
    You could try flipping the stem also.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    True ^, the stem on the bikepedia pic looks like a 0 rise so flipping it would do not, but ?

    Btw, because someone else's handle bar to saddle height is higher or lower than yours means nothing. If your set up fits you and you likey, that's all.
    Round and round we go

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30
    I have a 2012 rockhopper comp29 with stock stem and cap etc...

    I understand that if I remove all the spacers then I would have to cut the top of the steerer so that the top cap can go back on,and the stem I have clamps onto the steerer with 2 bolts,so I did not know that the top cap also worked to basically stretch open the steerer making the stem fit tighter,but then againbthats probally why there is a dish miled into the top of my steerer under the stem cap and the bottom of my stem cap also is taperd as to cup into the dish on my steerer stretching it under pressure.

    What I meant was since my stem is a bit thicker than the 2 spacers that are under it right now,I figured that if I remove all spacers,that the bottom of the stembwould hit the top of the bike headset and rub on the black ring that says FSA currently installed right now but I guess the video should show this I hope.

    Also what about handle bar length? How do you determin that,and should they be cut to fit or should I leave them? Is this a typical adjustment?

    And also I want to lighten the bike up is a carbon stem worth it? Maby a carbon seat post versus the aluminum one I have now?

    What is the advantage of lowering the handle bars,will this allow the fork to be more supple as all or most of my body weight will lean forward?

    I have SR Suntour XCR coil fork with hydro lockout and dampening.When I first started riding again I was 240lb and the fork was soft and withing the month I've been riding I'm now 210lb and the fork is much stiffer under my weight.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    1,725
    Shelden Brown and Park Tools have videos on all kinds of bike stuff. The top cap on the stem is meant to load the bearing ,it doesn't expand anything. For the money you would spend on those parts ,you wouldn't save much weight. The easiest and cheepest place to lose weight is the tires.The best place to lose weight is the wheels .Doing tubeless can help ,it can be a pain to set up sometimes though.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30
    Understood, so then a carbon seat post stem and bars is not worth it?

    I read that a fork is a good place to loose pounds also as mine is supposed to be heavy?

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    Ok the top cap doesn't stretch the steerer, it pulls up the steerer against the top of the stack, whether there's a spacer or a stem on top of that stack. Pull of the top cap and you'll see, there should be a small space between the top of the stack, and the top of the steerer.

    Some of my bikes have or have had the stem right ontop of the headset with no spacers without issue for years.

    Handle bar length is personal preference. It will effect steering speed, and may effect reach depending on the width of your shoulders. You could always move the controls inboard and ride some to test before you cut em.

    Whether the cost vs weight of carbon is worth it is your call, but in terms of fitness or training it could be a step backwards. Also agree with Dave and it's true that rotating mass is the best place to shave weight.

    A bike fitting and personal preference determines where the bars are. Of coarse more weight forward puts more weight on the front shock and tire so ? For me I find that in the beginning of the season I want the bars higher to see down the trail further, and to give my fitness some time to return, but as it and my flow returns, I want them lower.
    Round and round we go

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30
    Un.Well my interezt in the bikes weight reduction was more for the performance of thebike and to make it lighter reducing the weight of it,

    I always loved bikes and finally spent the money on a high end one,next I'm adding a stumpjumper fsr to my collection,but I ride because I love bikes and riding them,not for fitness purpouse.

    As a pro athlete I get enough of that,..lol..this is for fun,and just wanted to make the bike the best I can get it,and figured they made these carbon parts for that reason.

    Also as dumb as it may sound,with the addition of a Camelbak,and this Tpoeak Alien multi tool witch is a block of steel in its self,I feel like I'm putting a lot of weight on my bike frame and wheels so I figured if I can loose the weight in those parts,then it would get rid of unneaded weight and leave room for things I should carry.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Reign2Rider's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    281
    Should be fine. Try it. If not happy just put the smallest spacer underneath.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    1,725
    You can take weight off in a lot of places , there is a forum here called weight weenies ,they have lots of ideas and ways to spend money.Bang for buck is what you should look for .You could ride without the camelback and tools ,you could also ride without your helmet and shoes .I'd rather have tools and not need them than need them and not have them.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    Looking over the specs of that bike it's far from garbage, but farther from hi end.
    If you want a light bike than by one instead of doing it piece by piece, spending more and getting less end game.
    If you want to upgrade that's another story, but again is probably worth it if you want the best to just get another bike.
    If it was my bike I'd look for improvements more in performance than weight and would start with the fork. While xcr is a step in the right direction for suntour it still leaves much to be desired.
    Many people get caught up with wanting the latest and greatest, and are always looking for better, which can sometimes interfere with simply riding and having fun as you say. If you change or upgrade if/when something fails, or you want a different stem for cockpit adjustment, or a different fork because you find some fault with the one you have to me it's worth it. While you can shave some grams I highly doubt a carbon post and stem is going to add to your riding enjoyment so, is it worth it, ?
    On another note. Bike fitness is separate from other levels of fitness, and even more so with mtbing. Sure some carries over but lots does not. I find that out every time I bring a gym rat, or even an avid road rider onto the trails, or see it in myself after a long winter. Plus you can gain so much more from practice and pushing limits in terms of having fun or getting better. I always love it when a guy shows up on a beat up old clunker, and all the guys with their shinny new state of the art bikes are talking trash or snickering behind his back. Then they are in awe and can't keep up because they just don't have the skill, strength or stamina.
    It's the rider that makes it happen and fun, not the bike, ride and enjoy would be my advice. Or as Eddy Merckx says, "don't buy upgrades, ride upgrades"
    Round and round we go

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30
    Well the typical (Bicycle) people buy is 99% of the time from places like Costco,BJ"s,***** sporting goods,Wallmart,and these (Bicycles) are usually within the $150-$200 range.

    These bikes although cheaply made,usually do what they need too,as in taking a family of 4 down the road for a afternoon bike ride,or myself 15 years ago,a few miles around town each night,and some light trail riding,then of course do to the cheaper components I would keep adjusting the drive train untill one day I can't anymore.

    When a person gets to the point that they are considering spending $500 for a (Bicycle) basically a just about what a months rent costs depending....then in this case I would say the person is getting pretty serious in the hobby of (Bicycles) and in that price range much better machines can be purchased from reputable company's like Specialized,Cannondale,Trek...etc...

    Now,

    When we put $1150 into a (Bicycle)....a few hundred dollers or so under what I'm paying for a mortgage each....

    I'm going to have to stick to my previous title,and technically minus my front fork is true

    M4 frame, witch as few years back as 2009 was used on the Specialized Stumpjumper

    Shimano Deore rear derailler witch I read that a few years ago was what Shimano XT is now,or something allong those lines,basically trickle down technology,as I read that a few
    Years ago was a top level race component.

    As far as my crank I'm not sure,but what I have learned so far entering this hobby is that you want to spend money on th frame and then upgrade,and as I said the M4 before the M5 came out was specializeds #1 aluminum frame,used on there most expensive bikes that did not use a carbon chassis.

    So basically I have one of ethe best frames specialized has,and a mix of high and mid end components,as I read the shadow rear derailler was a top racing component years ago,and if its quality was at that range then,it is now maby a few grams heavier than the carbon units now,and Shimano Acera witch I'm sure was top end back then,and the money was saved on the fork.

    As some pro riders I bike with tell me,I paid for that frame and components more than good enou to get me going for now,then I will dump $$$$ into the frame and make it as good as any hardtail there is now.

    Also I humbly admit $ is no issue and was not my reason for the Rockhopper.

    This reply was not in defense,its just silly too me how people in most hobbies think,in thatws once top end last year is not today because the GI Joes with Kung FU Grip was jut released.

    Like the A1 aluminum frame that Specialized desighned years ago is considerd a down grade today because the M4 and M5 were released...lol..isn't that funny thoughr any fighting ,
    Last edited by wrench420; 05-12-2013 at 11:33 AM.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    463
    Quote Originally Posted by wrench420 View Post

    And as far as the fitness required for biking being different than needed for other sports,you are correct.

    Its very very easy to build up your athletic level in biking,I understand what you mean about some hard core gym fanatics getting burned up in biking but for me I wake at 3AM spend 7 hours at the gym constantly lifting,then fight train for another 9 hours,then go for a 7 mile run in witch I finish in under a half hour.
    Dude you sound like a bit of a legend in your own lunch hour. How on earth do you find time for cycling with a regime like that? With an ego like yours I wouldn't recommend lowering your handlebars too much. With all that weight forward you are likely to be going OTB on the slightest of downslopes. Then again I guess with your cat like reflexes and agility honed in hours of Muay Thai and MMA training you'll spring forward and land on your feet anyway. The bike might be a little worse for wear though.

  17. #17
    local trails rider
    Reputation: perttime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    11,825
    Er... did you get your handlebar height sorted?

    If you want to upgrade, are you happy with your grips and seat? Lots of people like to look for tires that are ideal for where they ride. Stock tires are rarely either best or lightest (which is not necessarily the same thing).

    "it IS possible that you are faster or slower than anybody else who is having at least as much if not more or less fun"

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    You paid how much for that bike?
    Not defensive, ummm, ok
    There's no inquiry at all in your post but so much ego and bs I wouldn't know where to start, if I cared to.
    So I'll leave you with WOW, just WOW
    Round and round we go

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30
    Yeah man I'm going to go for a ride and see if I want to lower the bars.I just saw that someone did that,and figured it would help with the stiff front shock to have more weight
    Forward.

    I was wondering if this soundes like it can be the problem,in the fact that I have the lockout opend all the way and the preload adjustment backed out all the way,so maby under my weight,the front fork is allready compressing so much that there is just a little bit travel left before I am bottoming out? And this is why the front fork feels like its not really working?

    And to the others,

    All I did in reply to someone was mentione my reason for loving this hobby and why I want to do it,and nce I am an pro athlete,that I allready work out way more than I need to so this is just for fun,and someone basically talked about how being a professional athlete in another sport does not mean the same for this one...lol..and how he's taking hard core gym fanatics with him and they could not hang.

    So I guess I went on a bit of a speal,since i work out for a living,and have to train for 3 ,4 minute rounds,while getting my head knocked in,as well as having enough staminah to fight...for my life it seems as well as any fighter.I meant no offense and appologise for my ignorrance

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    Yeah, i'd say at 220 whatever that it's bottoming out. Put a tie wrap on the top sanction right where it meets the bottom sanction and go for a few hundred feet on flat level ground with your weight on the saddle. The tie wrap will slide up and show how much sag you have.
    Lowering the bars will make it worse.
    The lock out isn't 100% when locked and has some sorta by-pass for big hits, so maybe try riding locked out too
    Round and round we go

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    463
    Quote Originally Posted by theMeat View Post
    Yeah, i'd say at 220 whatever that it's bottoming out. Put a tie wrap on the top sanction right where it meets the bottom sanction and go for a few hundred feet on flat level ground with your weight on the saddle. The tie wrap will slide up and show how much sag you have.
    Lowering the bars will make it worse.
    The lock out isn't 100% when locked and has some sorta by-pass for big hits, so maybe try riding locked out too
    Not sure this is the case with the Suntour XCR. I had one on my Aspect and lockout seemed to mean exactly that, locked out. There didn't seem to be any blowoff threshold. Great for road riding, not so good on the trails. Especially for a big guy like Wrench.

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30
    Is buWell when I was around 240 it seemed that the fork was softer and actually worked,but once I lightend up it feels like its not working although I keep it clean and oiled with rockshox fork oil on the stanchions.
    I tested the fork by leaning on it up and down and it moves smooth and it travels but feels stiff when I hit bumps,maby I need a lighter spring? Although that sounds strange since most guys that complained about the fork said its too soft?? But I feel its too stiff?

    Well the bike shop called me about a left over 2012 Cannondale Scalpel 29 its carbon though so I'm not sure I'm going to grab it because I heard aluminum is better for offroad where carbon is not,but I will also look into some forks.I always wanted a full suspension bike so hopefully it goes well

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    I'm pretty sure that fork has preload on one side, and not just lock out but lock out adjustment on the other. If you're sure you're adjusting proper and still aren't in range for your weight, you can get different springs to dial into your weight. Most forks come set up for average riders at about 170lbs so this is surprising unless they've (springs) been changed for you, or there's a problem with the fork.
    Are you getting any sag with your weight on the bike?
    Round and round we go

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    30
    Yes when I sit on the bike the front sags,and yes I mentioned that the preload is backed out all the way since I was trying to get the fork softer,should the preload be adjusted so there is no sag when I load the bike and then I should have full travel whenbi hit a bump?

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation: theMeat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    4,415
    Don't know the particulars for that fork, but probably in the 20-25% range.
    So if you have a 4 inch travel fork, which I think it is, your sag (you on the bike) should be round 1" or a bit less to be in that 20-25%
    This will tell you where in the ballpark you are, or if you're in the ballpark with those springs. Then you can dial in with the preload and lockout adjustments.
    Last edited by theMeat; 05-12-2013 at 03:15 PM.
    Round and round we go

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. What do I need to raise my handle bars/stem
    By doran in forum All Mountain
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 03-14-2013, 07:27 PM
  2. Handle bar and Stem advice
    By RYNO311 in forum Clydesdales/Tall Riders
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 04-14-2012, 10:14 PM
  3. How big of a drop can I handle..
    By shamanrawb in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 45
    Last Post: 03-29-2012, 03:35 PM
  4. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 04-21-2011, 03:33 PM
  5. How big of a drop can my bike handle
    By GatorB in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 02-10-2011, 08:08 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •