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Road Stem vs. MTB Stem(9 posts)

Road Stem vs. MTB Stemteschrider
Nov 26, 2002 1:42 PM
What is the difference between road and MTB stems? I am specifically thinking about buying a Thomson stem for my road bike and can't seem to see any difference between the two. Thanks for your help.
Bar clamp size may be differentSilverback
Nov 26, 2002 2:07 PM
I've used MB stems on two different road bikes to get the bars up a little (quill type, for threaded headsets, I mean). I'm drawing a blank on the specific sizes, but there may be a small difference in the bar clamps (26.0 vs 25.4mm? Can't remember). Catalogs and Web sites often list the clamp diameter, or your bike shop should be able to tell you what will work. It's not insurmountable.
Nov 26, 2002 2:24 PM
Other than the clamp size they should be the same. Make sure you get the right one.
And then there's RitcheyKen of Fresno
Nov 26, 2002 2:47 PM
Who splits the difference and is supposed work ok (but not perfectly?) with both. Why can't they just standardize this clamp diameter business and be done with it?

How does the Ritchey work with different handlebarJL
Nov 27, 2002 6:55 AM
sizes (with the exception of OS sizes, obviously)? They seem to list it as 25.8. Does the .2 really make that much of a difference? I was thinking of using a different bar with a Ritchey WCS stem.


How does the Ritchey work with different handlebarKen of Fresno
Nov 27, 2002 8:23 AM
I am using a 26.0 bar in a WCS stem with no problem at all. Just over 1,000 miles so far and no problems. I don't think I would use a 25.4 bar though.
26.0 or 25.8 vs. 25.4 ....C-40
Nov 26, 2002 2:50 PM
Road stems are 26.0 or 25.8 diameter depending on the brand and are pretty much interchangeable.

MTB stems are 25.4mm (1 inch) and are small enough that they should not be used on a road bar without modification.

If you get an open-face MTB stem, each of the (four) edges of the stem and faceplate can be chamfered about 1/16 inch wide to eliminate the interference between the stem and bar. Don't do this unless you're desperate for a specific rise that you can't find in a road stem.
re: Road Stem vs. MTB StemEpicBoy78
Nov 26, 2002 3:02 PM
Also, the available rise angles are usually different for road and mountain versions of the same stem; at least, I know this is the case with the Thomson. I can't tell you for sure if the clamp sizes are different or not, though it wouldn't surprise me if they are. I've had my Thomson road stem for about six months and couldn't be happier with it. Though some criticize it for being overbuilt, and thus too heavy, I've found it to be super-strong, very well-made, and handsome as well - just like their seatposts. If weight isn't a factor, you can't go wrong with this stem.

re: Road Stem vs. MTB Stemdaniel_2001
Nov 26, 2002 4:38 PM
I think but I am not sure that Nitto makes road bars that would fit a 25.4 stem.