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  1. #1
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    headset spacer situation

    is there anything structurally wrong with placing a spacer above your stem? im looking to put a 12 or 15 mm spacer both below and above my stem because I want a little more height, but I also like the balanced look top to bottom, like so:



    is this a common setup? every how to I see says to have your stem clamp poking about 5 mm above the steer tube. should I just do the same for my top spacer?

    and my lbs should have a good selection of spacers right?

  2. #2
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    A spacer on the top is the best way to go, especially for a stem like you have pictured. It allows the stem to clamp completely around the steerer tube for an interface with more contact. A 5mm or 10mm spacer on top is how I install a fork.

  3. #3
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    yeah picked up 2 10mm spacers for like a dollar. gonna do it like that

  4. #4
    cougarbait
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuck_MI
    A spacer on the top is the best way to go, especially for a stem like you have pictured. It allows the stem to clamp completely around the steerer tube for an interface with more contact. A 5mm or 10mm spacer on top is how I install a fork.
    the steerer tube is static in shape and diameter throughout, it makes no difference where the stem is clamped.
    the spacers should be arranged to raise the stem to the correct height that is comfortable for you. They are neither intended to increase structural integrity nor aesthetics.
    09AS-Rsl/09Six

  5. #5
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    werd

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lambdamaster
    the steerer tube is static in shape and diameter throughout, it makes no difference where the stem is clamped.
    the spacers should be arranged to raise the stem to the correct height that is comfortable for you. They are neither intended to increase structural integrity nor aesthetics.
    I think that you misunderstood my response, or I was unclear and incomplete in my answer.
    The question is: Does the use of spacer on top yield any benefit? I say it does, because it enables your stem to clamp entirely around your fork steerer tube.
    A properly installed stem without a spacer on top of the stem does not clamp entirely around the stem. The top 5mm of the stem, in fact, is clamping onto nothing.
    I think that you have a conception that the stem clamps flushly to the top of the fork steerer tube, when in fact there is a 5mm gap to keep the headset topcap from bottoming out on the top of the steerer tube when attempting to adjust the headset.

  7. #7
    cougarbait
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuck_MI
    I think that you misunderstood my response, or I was unclear and incomplete in my answer.
    The question is: Does the use of spacer on top yield any benefit? I say it does, because it enables your stem to clamp entirely around your fork steerer tube.
    A properly installed stem without a spacer on top of the stem does not clamp entirely around the stem. The top 5mm of the stem, in fact, is clamping onto nothing.
    I think that you have a conception that the stem clamps flushly to the top of the fork steerer tube, when in fact there is a 5mm gap to keep the headset topcap from bottoming out on the top of the steerer tube when attempting to adjust the headset.
    5mm is way too much extra steerer tube. it should be more like 2mm. I am pretty sure any benefit is immeasurable. there are even top caps designed to fit to the top of odd adjustable rise stems, such as specialized pro-set stems. the top cap was intentionally designed to fit on top of the stem, and does not fit flush on a spacer.
    09AS-Rsl/09Six

  8. #8
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    the king top cap ive got fits exactly flush on my spacer, as the diameter of the clamped stem and the spacer are nearly identical

  9. #9
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    i put a spacer on top of my stem simply for resale value.
    09 Stumpjumper FSR Expert Carbon | 09 S-Works Enduro SL Carbon

  10. #10
    bi-winning
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJpattiecake
    is there anything structurally wrong with placing a spacer above your stem?
    No, there is nothing structurally wrong with doing that.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.


    Shorthills Cycling Club

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lambdamaster
    5mm is way too much extra steerer tube. it should be more like 2mm. I am pretty sure any benefit is immeasurable. there are even top caps designed to fit to the top of odd adjustable rise stems, such as specialized pro-set stems. the top cap was intentionally designed to fit on top of the stem, and does not fit flush on a spacer.
    I'm sorry that you don't still understand. Maybe it's a language barrier thing. Anyway, Cheers. Have comfort in knowing that your solution will not fail; My set-up is just a better choice

  12. #12
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    Del
    Last edited by chuck_MI; 12-14-2009 at 01:56 AM.

  13. #13
    Picture Unrelated
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    Quote Originally Posted by rkj__
    No, there is nothing structurally wrong with doing that.
    In fact, it's stronger. And if you had a fork with a carbon steerer, it is how the manufacturers suggest you install the stem lest you die.

  14. #14
    cougarbait
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuck_MI
    I'm sorry that you don't still understand. Maybe it's a language barrier thing. Anyway, Cheers. Have comfort in knowing that your solution will not fail; My set-up is just a better choice
    I understand what you are saying. why don't you engineer a stem with 52 bolts instead of two?? it will be a "better choice"
    09AS-Rsl/09Six

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuck_MI
    A spacer on the top is the best way to go, especially for a stem like you have pictured. It allows the stem to clamp completely around the steerer tube for an interface with more contact. A 5mm or 10mm spacer on top is how I install a fork.
    +1. And as another said, it helps resale too if you have a longer steerer that can fit more bikes.

  16. #16
    Spice
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    I've heard its better, particularly for carbon steerer tubes like the guy above said. The end of the steerer tube is the weakest point (im guessing, sorry if i'm wrong) so companies recommend not clamping the stem right at the end, but using a spacer above the stem. This give a bit of extra room, so that the stem isnt clamping onto the weakest point.
    Simples.

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