Do slammed stems mean bike fits have gone out the window

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
NickJHP
Posts: 108
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2018 2:22 am

by NickJHP

If you're worried about aesthetics, then stick to lugged steel frames and quill stems. This modern stuff looks like shit by comparison.

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onemanpeloton
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by onemanpeloton

Toby wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:17 pm
onemanpeloton wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 3:50 pm
so you'd sacrifice every other characteristic of a frame and it's geometry just so you can slam your stem?
Seriously? That's not what I said. There are lots of bikes out there. Why would it be impossible to find the right characteristics and geometry, especially since part of having the right geometry is that I'm not stacking a bunch of spacers to make it fit right? If I need an inch of spacers on a bike, I'm going to go looking for one with another inch of head tube instead.

To flip it around, I could ask "so you'd stack two inches of spacers under your stem to make up for buying a bike that doesn't fit you right?", but that would be stupid and inflammatory.
Wow, I hit a nerve there didn't I. Maybe we can have a sensible conversation now without getting so easily offended and touchy?

You said:
Toby wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:28 pm
I'd rather just buy a bike that fits close enough to correctly that I can fit it with a slammed (or very close) stem with the correct stem angle. If the bike doesn't fit like that, I'll switch from a crit frame to an endurance frame or whatever, or vice versa. There's a huge number of stack & reach combo frames out there to pick the correct numbers from.
So you said exactly what I thought you said. You'd choose an endurance frame over a racing frame purely on the basis of slamming the stem.......Well that was a short discussion
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by Weenie


DJT21
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by DJT21

AJS914 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 2:28 am
Hinault would have had a couple of inches of spacers with his very stretched out fit had he been riding a modern bike:

Image

Image
I'm not so sure to be honest, he'd probably be slammed. His saddle would be lower as pedal/shoe stack height has got lower, he'd likely be on compact bars rather than the classic bend with a deep drop. And also, all the old racing bikes had -17 stems whereas alot of bikes these days have a -6 or -8.

DJT21
Posts: 209
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 7:35 pm

by DJT21

istigatrice wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:56 am
fogman wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:55 pm
Bicycles are to be primarily ridden, not photographed. So someone buys one size larger frame size so he can slam his stem. Ends up with either a:
1. Short nubby seat post,
2. Short nubby stem which compromises handling,
3. Saddle slammed forward which puts the knee forward of the pedal axle.
4. Any combination of the above.

On the other hand, someone buys the correct size frame but still slams the stem. He now may be compromising power and comfort for aerodynamics and esthetics.
Except this is less true on some smaller frames. The shorter stem doesn't affect the handling nearly as much as "bad" trail and front center. If you buy a bike to ride hard you want to make sure it doesn't throw up any handling surprises (and long trail + short front center results in nasty surprises for me).

Also there's nothing wrong with putting the knee forward of the pedal axle. In fact a new study has suggested this places less strain on the knee. It's all about how your body functions. My body doesn't respond well to setback because it tightens up my angles - I'm better off with a more forward position. Reference for the less strain in forward position: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10. ... 18.1466906

So I agree that a bike is meant to be ridden but your other 4 points aren't true, especially for smaller riders and those with shorter legs and poor hip rotation.
Exactly (I think I've quoted you before regarding the above). Short stem compromising handling is an oft quoted internet myth, as is knee forward of the pedal axle.

BdaGhisallo
Posts: 1996
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by BdaGhisallo

DJT21 wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:52 pm
AJS914 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 2:28 am
Hinault would have had a couple of inches of spacers with his very stretched out fit had he been riding a modern bike:

Image

Image
I'm not so sure to be honest, he'd probably be slammed. His saddle would be lower as pedal/shoe stack height has got lower, he'd likely be on compact bars rather than the classic bend with a deep drop. And also, all the old racing bikes had -17 stems whereas alot of bikes these days have a -6 or -8.
Hinault raced with the classic shallow drop bar of his time, the Cinelli 64. You can see the ubiquitious deep drop bar of the era on LeMond's bike - the Cinelli 66. I have no idea of the actual drop and reach numbers for the two bars so cannot compare to the bars on the market today.

AJS914
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by AJS914

I'm sure Hinault might be slammed if he were a pro today. He'd also be on a smaller frame with a shorter reach. The saddle pushed far back and the rider very stretched out has gone out of fashion. I assume that it is because of aero considerations.

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nickf
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by nickf

Wait so everyone with spacers is doing it wrong?! Everyone is different. If you have say 10-15mm spacers with at least a 100mm stem then you golden. Bigger frame with no spaces and shorter stem, no thanks. Handing goes out the window. Dunno I'm just going to go ride my bike.

BdaGhisallo
Posts: 1996
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by BdaGhisallo

AJS914 wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 8:59 pm
I'm sure Hinault might be slammed if he were a pro today. He'd also be on a smaller frame with a shorter reach. The saddle pushed far back and the rider very stretched out has gone out of fashion. I assume that it is because of aero considerations.
Hinault actually started his career with less saddle setback and a shorter reach. Based on studies conducted with his coaches (Guimard started them off and the La Vie Claire team picked them up when he moved there in 1984) and after his recovery from the knee injury that resulted from him running too high a saddle on a 1983 Vuelta mountain stage, he gradually moved his saddle back and up over the course of a two year period. The move wasn't much, maybe 5mm if my memory serves, but the fact that they moved him a millimeter at a time and gave him months to adjust to each individual change, showed how much attention they were paying to positioning for him based on the best knowledge they had at the time. Hinault was plagued with knee issues throughout his career (spin those lower gears now that you have them kiddos) so his coaches were very particular about his positioning*.


Other than that day in the 83 Vuelta when his mechanic positioned his saddle a few mm too high in error. I still cannot fathom how someone who spent as much time on his bike as Hinault did couldn't immediately notice the difference. I can feel 2-3mm difference on saddle positioning and I am just an old fat dude.
Last edited by BdaGhisallo on Thu Aug 16, 2018 11:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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themidge
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by themidge

BdaGhisallo wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:15 pm
Other than that day in the 83 Vuelta when his mechanic positioned his saddle a few mm too high in error. I still cannot fathom how someone who spent as much time on his bike as Hinault did couldn't immediately notice the difference. I can few 2-3mm difference on saddle positioning and I am just a old and fat dude.
Yeah I'm surprised as well, he could surely have gone back to the team car to get it fixed, Merckx style. And in any case, you'd think that even someone with dodgy knees like Hinault would have been able to ride it out and be none the worse for it. A few mm out would affect you psychologically and some amount physically, but not to such a great extent as causing a significant and long(ish) term injury.

Nefarious86
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by Nefarious86

tymon_tm wrote:
Nefarious86 wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:54 am
After 5 attempts at being "fit" including a go by the most respected bloke in the country for fit I still had pain every ride. Roll forward to cracking it and doing my own thing 40mm lower and 20mm longer and life is much better. I still get pain in my T5-6 at times but its 100% more manageable with a more stretched position. Image

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holy cow, I thought I'm the only one having similar issue - according to all the wisdoms of the cycling world, my bars should be at least 20mm higher and 10-15mm closer. but riding that way I feel like sitting on a kitchen stool peeling potatoes. even climbing with bars so high and so close feels awkward. and yes, I do experience lower back pain as well - mostly when I ride a lot in the drops, and for whatever reason (like climbing) stretch up for longer periods. however, if I stretch a bit while climbing, holding the shifters, all is fine and yummy.

and no, I don't think slamming is popular - I can't remember last time a saw anyone with a slammed stem, or a properly long one for that matter (I used to ride 130 and 140mm, but with Aeroad's geo 120 is enough)
My issues crop up during extended efforts at or above threshold if I dont keep my hip angle in check and arch my lower back. It's worse with less reach because I can ball up smaller exaggerating the issue, it's been a slow and painful process finding relief and almost caused me to rack it completely. I've all but given up trying to totally eliminate it and and just manage it through being conscious of my position during efforts and now building strength in my core/posterior chain.

This shows me starting to ball up at the end of a windy 50min crit at close to 1.0IF after 40km at 0.8ish, a much higher than anticipated pace to get there due to traffic etc.

Image

Things weren't always low and long
120mm -6° 20mm spacer
Image

110mm -6° 10ish mm of spacer but much more stack.
Image

Both of these actually caused more pain.
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istigatrice
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by istigatrice

nickf wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:12 pm
Wait so everyone with spacers is doing it wrong?! Everyone is different. If you have say 10-15mm spacers with at least a 100mm stem then you golden. Bigger frame with no spaces and shorter stem, no thanks. Handing goes out the window. Dunno I'm just going to go ride my bike.
You're missing the point; spacers is fine and so is a shorter stem. However, on SMALLER frames the trail and front center can be less than ideal - so often a bigger bike with a shorter stem (maybe slammed) would result in much better handling than a smaller frame with spacers and longer stem.
I write the weightweenies blog, hope you like it :)

Disclosure: I'm sponsored by Velocite, but I do give my honest opinion about them (I'm endorsed to race their bikes, not say nice things about them)

istigatrice
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by istigatrice

Nefarious86 wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 2:48 am
Both of these actually caused more pain.
At the risk of trying to give someone a bike fit over the web - I suspect your problem is not being able to get enough reach on the bike rather than stack being too high (you may be compensating for too little reach by reducing the stack). If you're curious perhaps try a frame with a much longer geometry than the Allez? Also 3T make a 150mm stem :wink:
I write the weightweenies blog, hope you like it :)

Disclosure: I'm sponsored by Velocite, but I do give my honest opinion about them (I'm endorsed to race their bikes, not say nice things about them)

Hexsense
Posts: 498
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by Hexsense

istigatrice wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 3:17 am
At the risk of trying to give someone a bike fit over the web - I suspect your problem is not being able to get enough reach on the bike rather than stack being too high (you may be compensating for too little reach by reducing the stack). If you're curious perhaps try a frame with a much longer geometry than the Allez? Also 3T make a 150mm stem :wink:
What bike has longer reach and lower stack than Specialized Allez Sprint??
It is already a bit more aggressive than Specialized Venge and Canyon Aeroad.
istigatrice wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 3:12 am
nickf wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:12 pm
Bigger frame with no spaces and shorter stem, no thanks. Handing goes out the window. Dunno I'm just going to go ride my bike.
You're missing the point; spacers is fine and so is a shorter stem. However, on SMALLER frames the trail and front center can be less than ideal - so often a bigger bike with a shorter stem (maybe slammed) would result in much better handling than a smaller frame with spacers and longer stem.
Agree, let me say it again for those missing.
For most brands, size 50 and up with short stem rides better than size 49 and smaller with longer stem.
There are exceptions with some company that bother making different fork with more offset for smaller size than larger size to keep trail and handling in check. Then smaller sizes also ride fine.

If you ride size well above size 50, i agree that just the right size or a bit small might ride better than riding large size.

tonytourist
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by tonytourist

fogman wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:55 pm
Bicycles are to be primarily ridden, not photographed. So someone buys one size larger frame size so he can slam his stem. Ends up with either a:
1. Short nubby seat post,
2. Short nubby stem which compromises handling,
3. Saddle slammed forward which puts the knee forward of the pedal axle.
4. Any combination of the above.
Sounds like you're talking about @Bianchi10 He's too busy taking 15 selfies per ride instead of getting some actual miles in! :unbelievable: :smartass:

dudemanppl
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by dudemanppl

WOOF

by Weenie


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