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Lateral flex of the Reynolds Ouzo Pro ?(8 posts)

Lateral flex of the Reynolds Ouzo Pro ?PT
Mar 13, 2001 11:36 PM
I just got my Reynolds Ouzo Pro installed with a 1 inch spacer and 90mm stem. When I grab the handlebar drops and put some pressure on it side to side, I can see and feel the stem along with the steerer tube flex side to side. Is this normal or do I have to cut down on my spacer ? Thanks for any help offered.
Ouzo Pro steerer flexBipedZed
Mar 14, 2001 5:35 AM
My guess is you have a 1" steerer. I had a 1" steerer Ouzo Pro with 1cm of spacers and I found the steerer to be too flexy, particularly when out of the saddle. I began to lose confidence in the fork after a few months. Reynolds is having problems with the 1" steerer. Initially they recommended up to 1" of spacers with the 1" steerer. Recently they have revised that to 1cm of spacers max.

I really like the lightness and the ride of the Ouzo Pro, so much that I bought a frame with a 1 1/8" head tube so I could use a 1 1/8" Ouzo Pro. The 1 1/8" fork is everything it should be, light, stiff and rides great. I use 2cm of spacers with no problems. In fact, Reynolds says you can use 1 1/2" of spacers. FYI I weigh 155lbs.

In other words, I don't think the 1" Reynolds Ouzo Pro is a good buy but would totally recommend the fork with a 1 1/8" steerer.
Ouzo Pro steerer flexsteveq
Mar 15, 2001 6:13 AM
I've got a 1" ouzo pro that i just installed on my 5200. with a millenium bar i was kind of worried about the steering getting a little too flexy but i haven't really had any problems...yet. does reynolds discourage use of more than 1 cm of spacers due to fear of failure or just fear of "noodley-ness"? thanks
re: Lateral flex of the Reynolds Ouzo Pro ?Helper
Mar 15, 2001 7:44 AM
My handlebars will flex before my 1" Ouzo steerer tube flexes.
Yuppergrz mnky
Mar 15, 2001 8:32 AM
It's kind of funny to think that some riders can feel a beefy 1" carbon steerer, with an inch or two of cantilever, flexxing while applied through a noodle-like aluminum bar (~20 cm of cantilever) and who knows what for a stem. When you sit down and do the analysis and the math (I haven't done it - - yet) you will realize how silly this hypothisis truely is. Especially when followed with the statement that the 1-1/8" steerer makes all the difference in the world.
Mar 15, 2001 9:24 AM
Based upon email correspondence with Reynolds Composites, their engineers have acknowledged that in "extreme competition" the 1" carbon steerer may deflect beyond original design parameters. Beginning late 2000 Reynolds revised their manual to limit stack height on 1" carbon steerers to 12mm - less than half the original 1" stack height specification. Hmmm...

I won't be sitting down with calipers to measure OD/ID of my 1" and 1 1/8" steerers and then mathematically calculating deflection. I also couldn't give you an exact numerical number for how much the 1" steerer deflects compared to the 1 1/8". However, my 1" steerer does flex and creak on medium to hard efforts whereas the 1 1/8" steerer is solid.

I may not know a lot of math but I believe this formula after I cracked a Cannondale frame at the headtube: Creaking = Bad.
Funnygrz mnky
Mar 15, 2001 1:46 PM
First, I don't doubt you or your experience. If you're failing a C'dale frame at the headtube you've got to be an animal on the bike! I would expect, given your experience and strength, that aluminum handle bars don't last too long for you.

Nothing is infinitely rigid or stiff and everything flexes to some degree. The $64,000 question is how much. No doubt, with all other things being equal, the 1-1/8" steerer will be significantly stiffer. I ride the 1" version and have noticed very little flexing. I'm about 155 - 160 and do a lot of hard climbing and the "race at lunch" with the boys (which isn't the same as an official race). Things were pretty bad for while with a Look Ergo stem until I figured out my stem requirements. Now, using Ritchey stems things have been very solid (1" regular and a 1-1/8" WCS with their shim). The bars and the stem connection to the steerer are the typical weak links.

If everything is the same when you transitioned your setup you must have been using a 1-1/8" stem with a shim to bring it down to 1". This is typically where a lot of flexxing and creaking takes place. Metal on carbon deosn't creak, but metal on metal does. Our local high end LBS advises against using stems with spacers/shims if at all possible - they don't like people coming back complaining about creaking noises.

As an interesting demo, next time you're in a shop take an alloy bar, place one end against a carpeted floor, and push/pull on the other end while standing on the end on the floor. Now try the same thing with a carbon bar if they have one. The difference is quite noticable.
Mar 15, 2001 4:38 PM
About that cracked Cannondale, it was a 1989 3.0 MTB frame with a Ritchey Logic fork that developed a progressively worsening creak that finally culminated with a stress crack at the downtube/headtube after a particularly heinous 32 mile XC race. At 155lbs I'm actually not much of an animal at all, but I do get out of the saddle a lot.

Interesting point about the Ritchey WCS road stem. That's what I had/have on the two forks. Maybe the shim was the source of the creaking after all. I also have the Easton EC90 bars which are super stiff and probably exaggerated the flex. Food for thought.