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 Post subject: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 8:24 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 5:29 am
Posts: 179
Looking to stiffen up the front end a bit. According to the Fairwheel Bikes 2014 stem review the Thompson X4 is the stiffest alloy stem they tested. Anyone have experience with that vs the Deda Zero 100 or the Easton EA90 who can comment on how they compare? I'm running 120 so getting a solid stem is important to me.

Thanks!


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 Post subject: Stiff stem?
Posted: Wed Aug 13, 2014 8:24 pm 


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:29 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2011 3:25 am
Posts: 910
Location: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
teleguy57 wrote:
I'm running 120 so getting a solid stem is important to me.


I am interested in how much power you think you would gain by having a stiffer stem. Or put another way, how much power you think you lose by having a flexy stem.


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 3:03 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 28, 2012 9:13 pm
Posts: 92
Who ever said anything about a loss or gain in power? The OP just said they want to stiffen up the front end, don't see anything wrong with that. It's just personal preference.

Personally I had the Zero 100 SC stem with the ti bolts and though it was plenty stiff, really liked it but had one of the bolts shear off in the stem about a year and a half after I purchased it. Wasn't able to extract it so it's now worthless.
Haven't had any experience with the other two but I have the deda superlegerro stem and it is definitely a little softer than the regular zero 100. Oh and both those stems were 130mm and were paired with deda alu bars.
Currently I am running the pro vibe sprint stem in 135mm and vibe 7s round bars just because why not have a little fun every once in a while and it's pretty dang stiff. Actually pretty fond of the setup and don't think I'll switch back any time soon. That stem is such a honker though; it's wayyyy bigger than I thought it would be.

Bottom line I would go for either the deda or the Thompson. Personally I don't like Easton stuff for some reason. Maybe because their old hubs were crap and I've had to work on so many and I hated their EC90 aero bars-flexiest I've ever tried but all that is another story.
Buy what you like best, I don't think you will be disappointed.

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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 4:43 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 3:44 am
Posts: 1763
Location: Canada
Haven't tried the Thomson.
I used to have a 3T ARX, and a Ritchey WCS alloy. I wanted a 10° stem, so changed to a Pro Vibe 7S, I felt it was more "solid" than the 3T, but not that much more than the Ritchey.
I just changed to Easton EA90, and went from 120 to 130. Don't feel much difference between them, they're both very solid (to me).

Louis :)


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 6:56 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2013 7:33 am
Posts: 57
Location: Hungary/Budapest
Im running a Thomson X2 - 130mm 10° stem with FSA Omega Compact bars, and its pretty stiff. Did a couple of hard sprints and could not really feel any significant flex. Its a great combination, but i'm also pretty sure that there's some even stiffer combinationts out there, like Pro's Vibe stem with the Vibe bars, as it was mentioned before here.


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 3:45 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 5:29 am
Posts: 179
Thanks for the responses so far.

Valbrona wrote:
I am interested in how much power you think you would gain by having a stiffer stem. Or put another way, how much power you think you lose by having a flexy stem.


Hornedfrog hit it on the head; for me it's about handling, not power. I currently have a Deda Zero 100 with Thompson KFC bars, and since I like the shape of the bars I do want to stick with them but would consider changing to another -8 or -10 stem if there would be a noticeable improvement in stiffness from that component.

According to Fairwheel's review the Thompson X4 is the stiffest alloy stem, beating out the Pro Vibe 7s in the deflection metric, with the Pro Vibe 7S having the edge in stiffness to weight ratio. While this is WW, I am open to adding a touch of weight (gasp!) if the stiffness gain would be noticeable.
Would be great if someone could give a real-world based comparison of the Deda (currently on my bike) to either the Easton or the Thompson.

Or for aesthetics of matched components, I could just go with the Thompson stem based on the Fairwheel tests... although I'm not going to replace my Syntace HiFlex P6 seatpost with a Thompson....


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 14, 2014 4:15 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2014 3:18 pm
Posts: 152
I'm running the KFC bars with a X2 stem and I can't feel much flex at all. X4 is the way to go if you want a rock solid front end though.


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 2:27 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:52 am
Posts: 251
To the OP...
Based on educated guessing...a sprinter, in a sprint may lose 5Watts over a stiff stem.
I made that up. But figure the rider is putting out over 1000Watts in a sprint. They are using the bars to transmit energy. The bars are flexing and most the energy is not returned.

So 5w or .05% feels conservative.

For non sprints, I belive the flex to be an asset.
Thompson is great product. Own seatpost and stems.


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 3:40 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2011 8:09 pm
Posts: 720
I can attest, although Fairwheel claimed the Shimano Pro Vibe 7S Carbon was the least stiff, I also run the Shimano Pro Vibe Carbon compact bars that are T800 UD, it is a stiff setup, but not overly. I'm a sprinter (900-1000w 20s+ sprint average)...the Scott Foil 15 BB and other parts of the bike are more flexy than that bar/stem combo.

Plus, on a foil, a slight dampening of the bars is appreciated, the ride is so darn brutal on that frame.


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 5:44 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2009 1:29 pm
Posts: 643
Location: UK
I'm not surprised the Thomson X4 stem came out as the stiffest alu stem, its designed for MTB!

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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 15, 2014 6:58 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 24, 2010 9:37 pm
Posts: 597
Location: it's raining, it must be uk
i used to have a deda zero 100 stem (120mm) with deda newton bars, but found the combination incredibly flexy, most of this was down to the stem (tried another stem which helped a lot)

eventually switched to cinelli ram 2 integrated bars, heavier but almost no flex, which i much prefer


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 16, 2014 6:55 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2008 11:40 am
Posts: 44
http://www.zipp.com/stems/sl-sprint-stem/#


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 16, 2014 9:13 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 10:03 pm
Posts: 802
Location: Back in the saddle...
I have an X4 and love it. I chose it over the X2 for the extra two bolts (duh, I know) since I race. I wanted the extra security in case I went down and was able to get back in the race.

I was using a Deda Zero 100 before, but the Thomson really improved the handling of the bike. As for "sprinting stiffness," I'd be lying if I said I felt much of a difference. Not at my size/power.

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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 12:07 am 
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Posts: 100
Quote from Fair Wheel Bikes "We don’t believe that there is any efficiency to be gained through a stiffer..."
Everything on your bike flexes and ~ 2 degrees deflection using the worst stem is not something to worry about.
Gotta love reading reviews when riders state "This stem is like a wet noodle..."
When I sprint, last thing I do is pay attention to deflection in stem and trying to get a feel for it.

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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
Posted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 12:07 am 


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 Post subject: Re: Stiff stem?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 12:40 am 
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Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 5:29 am
Posts: 179
boysa wrote:
I have an X4 and love it.... I was using a Deda Zero 100 before, but the Thomson really improved the handling of the bike. As for "sprinting stiffness," I'd be lying if I said I felt much of a difference. Not at my size/power.


Very helpful. Handling is where I hope to see gains from stiffness, and this comparison is exactly what I was hoping from the forum folks here.

mpulsiv wrote:
Quote from Fair Wheel Bikes "We don’t believe that there is any efficiency to be gained through a stiffer..."
Everything on your bike flexes and ~ 2 degrees deflection using the worst stem is not something to worry about.
Gotta love reading reviews when riders state "This stem is like a wet noodle..."
When I sprint, last thing I do is pay attention to deflection in stem and trying to get a feel for it.


No quarrel from me; again, for me it's not about power transfer, it's about helping the handling on the front end. I do think that's a different dynamic than efficiency -- efficiency sounds like power transfer to me....


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