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Thread: shifting stem

  1. #1
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    shifting stem

    I was wondering if anyone of you has had this problem that I have been having with my Spot. I have a 100mm thompson stem, and have two spacers below and two spacers above [each is about a 1/4 inch]. I am running a '04 Z1 FR and a King headset. My problem - I can feel a slight clunk coming thru my bars, as if the stem is shifting on the steerer tube. This happens if I do a wheelie, come down, then get on the brakes hard - I feel something "shift" and a slight audible clunk noise coming from my stem/bars. Or, after riding on some rough ground, then doing a nose wheelie/stand - CLUNK!

    I have made sure my stem is pressing on the headset properly - even put in a new star washer. I have also used two allen wrenches to simultaneously tighten the Thompson's opposing clamp bolts. All to no avail!!! I still get this dreaded clunk. Are Thompsons hit or miss in the clamping ability [the one on my girlfriend's bike is solidly tight, but she doesn't really beat her bike up - maybe I should switch mine w/ hers....hee hee!]

    Should I try a new stem, eliminate all spacers [get new spacers?], or might I have elongated my headtube [dread!].

    Please Help!!!

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by jokermtb
    I was wondering if anyone of you has had this problem that I have been having with my Spot. I have a 100mm thompson stem, and have two spacers below and two spacers above [each is about a 1/4 inch]. I am running a '04 Z1 FR and a King headset. My problem - I can feel a slight clunk coming thru my bars, as if the stem is shifting on the steerer tube. This happens if I do a wheelie, come down, then get on the brakes hard - I feel something "shift" and a slight audible clunk noise coming from my stem/bars. Or, after riding on some rough ground, then doing a nose wheelie/stand - CLUNK!

    I have made sure my stem is pressing on the headset properly - even put in a new star washer. I have also used two allen wrenches to simultaneously tighten the Thompson's opposing clamp bolts. All to no avail!!! I still get this dreaded clunk. Are Thompsons hit or miss in the clamping ability [the one on my girlfriend's bike is solidly tight, but she doesn't really beat her bike up - maybe I should switch mine w/ hers....hee hee!]

    Should I try a new stem, eliminate all spacers [get new spacers?], or might I have elongated my headtube [dread!].

    Please Help!!!
    Switch to a different type of stem. My Thomson_ stem was constantly coming loose. I called Thomson and they said to send it in and they'd replace it. I got impatient and just went to Performance and bought another one.

    Guess what? It came loose, too. Interestingly enough, it's on an 03 Z1 FR. I switched to a standard Bontrager stem and the issues went away.

    I posted about this and my last post mentioned that switching my spacers did the trick. It didn't. The Thomson_ loosened the very next ride. I didn't post about it because I was tired of complaining.

    Interestingly enough, King headsets recommends not using the Thomson_ style stem. They recommend the standard wrap around the steerer stems.

    Another interesting note.....Thomson's new line of stems uses the standard clamping method. I wonder if they know something that they're not admitting.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the info - I too, was thinking the same thing when I saw Thompson's new stem, w/out that wedgie design......Didn't know about the King info, saying to stay away from Thompsons!

    Looks like it's new stem time!

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    Quote Originally Posted by jokermtb
    Thanks for the info - I too, was thinking the same thing when I saw Thompson's new stem, w/out that wedgie design......Didn't know about the King info, saying to stay away from Thompsons!

    Looks like it's new stem time!
    They actually didn't mention Thomson by name. They did say that the 2-bolt wrap around style was preferable to the internal clamp style (I'm mega paraphrasing here since I'm too lazy to find the blurb on the King site).

    Now who, I wonder, makes an internal clamp stem? Hmmmmmmm?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Shorts
    They actually didn't mention Thomson by name. They did say that the 2-bolt wrap around style was preferable to the internal clamp style (I'm mega paraphrasing here since I'm too lazy to find the blurb on the King site).

    Now who, I wonder, makes an internal clamp stem? Hmmmmmmm?
    Oooh oooh I feel upgradeitis coming on...
    So Thomson going to a normal clamp? I couldn't find it on their website. I'm interested b/c for some reason I have a click/creak near my bars. I've cleaned and greased the bar clamp and screws several times to no avail. Maybe it's coming from the steerer clamp.

    It wasn't very noticable before but now that I've eliminated several other noises it's more apparent.
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikezilla
    It wasn't very noticable before but now that I've eliminated several other noises it's more apparent.
    Ah come on 'Zilla you don't need to feed us that line. We're one of you. We're on your side. We all know that one of the symptoms of upgradeitis is the hallucinations of noises, creaks, broken parts, and premature wear all to justify the purchase of new swag .

    EDIT: Here's the thread with Thomson's new stem.
    Last edited by CrashTheDOG; 07-08-2004 at 07:33 PM.

  7. #7
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    A desperate cry for help

    Quote Originally Posted by CrashTheDOG
    Ah come on 'Zilla you don't need to feed us that line. ...We all know that one of the symptoms of upgradeitis is the hallucinations of noises, creaks, broken parts, and premature wear all to justify the purchase of new swag .
    Oooohhh THAT stem. I saw that. I assumed it was a 4-cross only type of thingy and was only going to be available as a shorty. Nice looking. I wonder if that big arse gap will collect dirt and start grit creaks?

    Y'know it's bad when you start planning upgrades for parts you haven't even purchased yet .... example: maybe I can get a swinger 3-way to hold me over until the DHX ships
    Faster is better, even when it's not.

  8. #8
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    well, I scrounged up a no-name pinch-bolt stem in my parts box and installed it - guess what ? NO MORE CREAK!!!! I am very glad for this [I wish all my bike mysteries were this easy to solve].

    Now I have to figure out what to do w/ my old Thompson stem......

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jokermtb
    Now I have to figure out what to do w/ my old Thompson stem......
    Throw it on the Classifieds for ~$40 before the new stems come out. About a month ago I went through my extra-parts box and identified all the stuff I thought I could sell, posted it on the classifieds and sold most of it surprisingly quickly. I've taken the money and set up a nice little swag slush fund.


    Quote Originally Posted by Bikezilla
    ...maybe I can get a swinger 3-way to hold me over until the DHX ships...
    Speaking of the classifieds, I've been waiting for a Vanilla RC to pop up on the Classifieds or Ebay so I can Push the sucker. It seems as though every length has shown up other than 7.5 x 2.0.
    Last edited by CrashTheDOG; 07-09-2004 at 07:34 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jokermtb
    well, I scrounged up a no-name pinch-bolt stem in my parts box and installed it - guess what ? NO MORE CREAK!!!! I am very glad for this [I wish all my bike mysteries were this easy to solve].

    Now I have to figure out what to do w/ my old Thompson stem......
    That's what's so great about this board. You can take advantage of other's experience. In this case, it was weeks of angst figuring out why the stem wouldn't hold.

    Now I also have a spare Thomson Stem to sell.

  11. #11
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    Thomson Stem Question

    So if someone (like me) were to order a Thomson stem, would that stem be the "new" stem or the old stem?

    Is the new stem a special order or upgrade?

    Ken

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken in KC
    So if someone (like me) were to order a Thomson stem, would that stem be the "new" stem or the old stem?

    Is the new stem a special order or upgrade?

    Ken
    Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but the new Thomson stem isn't available yet. I'd imagine they'll be ready for production and taking orders by Interbike.

  13. #13
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    Thompson's new stem is NOT available - anyone care to buy an OLD one? hee hee hee....

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