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mbrtool
04-13-2008, 03:42 PM
In the last four years (24,000 miles) three aluminum stems have cracked on my bike. The last one, an Easton EA 70, took about 7,000 miles before it cracked lengthwise along the parting line. Has anyone else had similar experiences? Does anyone make a steel or titanium stem?

Louis
04-13-2008, 03:55 PM
Does anyone make a steel or titanium stem?

Fe = Not that I know of

Ti = Yes, but they are not that common

I'm sure you can find a well-made Al stem that will hold up indefinitely to "normal" use. (If you weigh 300 lbs and go bombing down cratered roads, that's not normal.) The Thomson stems (Al) seem to me to be very well designed and manufactured.

Good Luck
Louis

Gothard
04-13-2008, 03:59 PM
A lot of the builders on this forum will make you a steel stem. Salsa does them too.
Ti is also widely available, Moots, Seven, to name 2. Serotta still makes them?

AL is fine, as long as it is a well established maker. Nitto, 3T, Thompson.

I hope you are choosing the strong ones, not the fancy lightweight stuff. It is your teeth after all...

CNY rider
04-13-2008, 04:24 PM
I have a couple of EA 70's in service right now.
They seem really sturdy, well made, and are not weight-weenieish.

I'm surprised to hear yours busted after not many miles.

How big are you? Anything unique about your riding style?

mbrtool
04-13-2008, 04:34 PM
I weigh 170 pounds; ride on normal city (Chicago) streets and paved bike paths. In the same 24,000 miles I have broken one aluminum Nitto and two Easton cf handle bars.

MarleyMon
04-13-2008, 04:40 PM
Do you install yourself? and use a torque wrench?

mbrtool
04-13-2008, 05:13 PM
My lbs does all the work and they do use a torque wrench.

Tobias
04-13-2008, 07:59 PM
mbrt, these kinds of failures are relatively rare. The odds of a single rider having two over 24,000 miles in a four-year period should be incredibly small (example -- Iíve never had any over more miles). To have as many as youíve experienced suggests there are variables outside normal use. Iíd think about what you are doing that most others donít.

mbrtool
04-13-2008, 09:12 PM
Tobias, my brother says the same thing. Basically, I ride four times a week two hours per ride as hard as I can. Both (summer and winter bikes) fit me very well. I feel my weight is evenly distributed between my seat and handle bars.

stevep
04-13-2008, 09:26 PM
get heavier bars and make sure the stem is cold forged and not light.

BumbleBeeDave
04-13-2008, 09:38 PM
. . . (though it has been called my specialty), but what exactly is involved in riding "as hard as I can?" Does that involve lots of standing and sprinting that might involve yanking on the bars?

Additionally, did the LBS folks just tell you they use a torque wrench, or did you actually see them use it?

Just trying to cover all the bases . . . I've been riding for almost 25 years and the only stem failure I've ever had was the knurled wedge on an old Cinelli quill stem. I've never had one crack or break. +1 on Tobias . . . there's somethin' going on here. We just have to figure out what it is . . .

BBD

swoop
04-13-2008, 10:22 PM
i could see breaking one... but having that many fail is weird. do you see dead people in the house that no one else sees, or is the wife out to get you?

M.Sommers
04-13-2008, 11:05 PM
Not so good:

http://www.roadbikereview.com/cat/controls/stems/easton/PRD_304015_2515crx.aspx

Google would also inform me that a Deda Newton etc might be a popular/steady eddy choice.

Good luck and do what stevep said.

weiwentg
04-13-2008, 11:13 PM
Fe = Not that I know of

Ti = Yes, but they are not that common

I'm sure you can find a well-made Al stem that will hold up indefinitely to "normal" use. (If you weigh 300 lbs and go bombing down cratered roads, that's not normal.) The Thomson stems (Al) seem to me to be very well designed and manufactured.

Good Luck
Louis

Fe stems - are you serious? a lot of custom steel builders will do one.

ditto with Ti.

Both will be rather expensive. you can get Thomsons for under $100 and they're bombproof.

mbrtool
04-14-2008, 10:00 AM
Yes, I do stand when climbing the slight elevations we have here in Chicago. I also stand when doing intervals so I can get my heartrate up. Do I pull on my bars excessively...I don't know. Thanks for the recommendations on different stems. I have a Thomson on order.