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Difference between atb and road stems(8 posts)

Difference between atb and road stemsjeff_p
Aug 17, 2001 3:55 AM
What's the main difference between threadless atb and road stems? Is it primarily the angles offered? Or am I missing something? There seems to be more selection, especially for 1.125" stems. Can they be used on a road bike? Will this make me a "fred" (or should I say more of a fred). Thanks for any help.
re: Difference between atb and road stemsRusty Coggs
Aug 17, 2001 5:35 AM
You probably won't find an 'ATB' stem in a -17* rise.When used on a road bike they display a flashing subliminal message ...FRED.....FRED....FRED. But, it looks cool if you ride so fast no-one can actually read it.
re: Difference between atb and road stemsjeff_p
Aug 17, 2001 5:47 AM
Thanks, I thought so... Just like the looks of the Thomson stem on my mountain bike. Don't wanna be a fred!
re: Difference between atb and road stemsdavet
Aug 17, 2001 6:35 AM
Since road bars and MTB bars are different diameters, the corresponding stems have different sized bar clamps. You may run into a problem trying to clamp road bars in a MTB stem. Be careful!
Thomson makes road bike stemsShelley
Aug 17, 2001 9:27 AM
Try their website for info and I saw them for sale at
Handlebar clamp sizeBipedZed
Aug 17, 2001 6:39 AM
MTB stems are designed for 25.4mm MTB bars, road stems are designed for 25.8/26.0mm road bars. The difference in clamp size seems small, but enough that they aren't really interchangeable.
Good point on clamp size,but...Rusty Coggs
Aug 17, 2001 8:35 AM
Nitto does make a road bar with a 25.4 clamp if anyone is interested and wants to go to the expense.
Clamp sizesBipedZed
Aug 17, 2001 8:40 AM
ISO clamp size is 25.4mm. Most MTB and other lower-end handlebars are this size. The 25.8/26.0mm clamp size is the "Italian" standard. Since most high end road bars originate from Italy, the larger clamp size has been known as the "road" bar size and manufacturers of road stems choose this size for compatibility issues.