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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Aug 2009

    Stem coming out of alignment

    I will be in my first race event Sunday, and I was out yesterday riding the trail that will be used for said race. I managed to catch a root the wrong way while climbing and fell over. The stem managed to come out of alignment enough to make me feel like I was a drunk riding a bicycle. I eventually jumped off and straightened it out by holding the wheel between my legs... My question is, is it normal for it to come out of alignment for what seemed like such an easy fall? It looks like the bolts are torqued down enough, but what do I know? I would just hate for this to happen mid race .

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: sanjuro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Sounds like your stem was not tight.

    There is a simple test: put the front wheel between your legs and try to twist your bars. If you can move the bars, tighten the stem bolts.

    Keep in mind that the bars should not move even if you gorilla arm it.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Gasp4Air's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    If that doesn't work, try removing the stem and cleaning the top of the fork's steerer tube and the inside of the stem clamp with some alcohol of degreaser to ensure that it's absolutely clean and grease-free. If you haven't done it before, read up on how to remove and re-install the stem. It's easy, but the fork could fall out of the headset if you're not careful. You also want to re-tighten things in the correct order when you put it back together.
    Use it, use it, use it while you still have it.

  4. #4
    Picture Unrelated
    Reputation: zebrahum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Listen, if the stem didn't come out of alignment, it probably would have broken something else on the bike. It's not a big deal, just ride with a multi tool in your pocket and fix it. It's quite common to knock parts out of alignment when crashing, your issue is not atypical. I know a few people who run their stems a little lower than the max torque so they can knock them back after a crash (I do not think this is a good idea). Grab a multi tool and you're on your way to learning about on the trail fixes.
    Don't you hate it when a sentence doesn't end the way you think it octopus?

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