08 April, 2016

More Stem Stuff

By Chris
It's stem week at VO. Above is another tall stem. This one is not our design, but it's fairly inexpensive and we might stock it if it tests well. I posted a photo of it on my Twitter feed and immediately got two comments. One said it was pretty, the other remarked that it was ugly. Waddya think?
We got a lot of questions about the stem that we blogged about a few days ago. Here are some answers and additional information:
  • We have not settled on a name, but "Banana Stem" seems to be getting the most staff votes. My personal choice is "Andouille stem," after the delicious French sausage. Feel free to weigh in with, non-lewd, suggestions in the comments.
  • The stem passed the ISO MTB tests, 100,000 cyles of substantial load in two directions.
  • We plan to offer it in black and chrome, and maybe a limited run in clear-coated raw finish.
  • The steerer insertion length is about 65mm.
  • We're designing a dedicated 1" quill adapter that we'll make if the stem sells well.
  • The price should be about $80.
  • The clamp is 31.8mm. Modern MTB and dirt drop bars use that size. It's simple enough to use a readily-available shim if you want to run 25.4mm or 26.0mm bars. We thought about making it smaller, but still can't get our negative shims to work.
There is a third ongoing VO stem project. This one is a style of quill stem that many of you have asked for. We hope to have prototypes and post photos soon.



40 comments:

Philip Kim said...

both stems look great in their own ways.

Grande Hauteur if you're staying french?

Top of the Mountain stem if it's English?

Jennifer said...

So I have a Surley LHT and I have the stem jacked up as much as possible but it was still too low to keep my drop bars on the bike. I've tried two other bar-types and I'm still not happy. I actually really like the drops that it came with, if only I could get them a bit higher. Do you think your new stem or the one pictured at the top of the post might work? I'm ignorant of the bar sizes so I don't know if I would need shims, etc.

peddalhead said...

"Andouille" stem works better for me than "Banana" (yours look like they came from Whole Foods) but I like Philip Kim's "Grande Hauteur" much better.

VeloOrange said...

@Jennifer
The stock bars on the LHT are 26.0mm. Either of these stems will work with those with a 31.8 to 26.0mm shim.

VeloOrange said...

Jennifer, Either of these stems should get your bars higher. The one in the lower photo is taller.

Jennifer said...

Thank you! I hope you end up carrying both types of stems. I have been hoping to find a way to get the drops back on and still be comfortable.

Jean-Francois Caron said...

Keep trying on those negative shims.

I'm considering getting one of your Andouille/Banana stems for my 1 1/4" threaded headset Miyata MTB. I've got a 1 1/4" threaded-to-threadless adapter (home-made out of a piece of cro-mo MTB frame tubing) with a 1 1/8" threadless stem on it. Putting your crazy stem on top of that would be awesome.

Anonymous said...

What about 'Cygnus Stems'? Cygnus are the groups that swans belong too. And swans are larger and more regal than geese :)

billyhacker said...

I don't know why, but my visceral response is that the angular stem is dramatically more attractive than the banana. On the other hand, I'm sure I'll need the banana one day...

Guitar Ted said...

Oh! I like the Cygnus name for the LD style stem. Nice.

The other forged aluminum stem design is okay. Especially if it is a lot less expensive than the LD style one.

I'm in for the LD styled one, and I have a couple of coworkers that are as well.

Anonymous said...

Would be nice to add a cable hanger on the inside of the clamp if space allows.

Burrito Guru said...

How about the "VD" (vertical drop) stem?

Anonymous said...

Please stock that alloy stem, they are very hard to find in the US. The longer/taller version is possible.

Iain said...

Cygnus or banana sound good to me. Been wanting to put some dirt drops on my Salsa El Mar and have been looking for something like this. Take my money please.

Anonymous said...

Long s, after the obsolete letterform. Or ftem.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Guitar Ted and think Cygnus is a great name for the LD stem. The thread less stem looks like it has a plastic cap or something. A little cheesy but certainly not a deal breaker, would it be possible for you to post another photo with more detail?

thanks much

Ron

Anonymous said...

My own esthetic is the curved one doesn't work for me but the straight is one of the nicer looking if you have to be stuck with the threadless which still for me is a downgrade. It might tip me over to buying a Passhunter.

erick said...

i really prefer frames with taller head tubes..

keythob said...

How about Derringer? Looks like the old timey curved handled pistols.

Anonymous said...

I still prefer quill stems for my short reach. By the time I add a stack of spacers and a riser stem to a threadless setup, its ugly no matter what I do to try to pretty it up. The first stem shown above is better but its still a threadless stem with spacers. Bring back quills.

Anonymous said...

The nice thing about the top stem is that it works with the Dajia Cycleworks Accessory Mount that you sell. As someone who runs interrupter levers on drop bars, I find myself short on handlebar space.

The bottom stem looks 80s or 90s retro. Not that it's a bad thing, but I'd avoid it because it would clash with the current setups I have on my bikes.

ploeg said...

I'm in for the top one when you get it in stock.

Andy said...

What is the grey plastic piece on the angular stem?

Jesse Rinyu said...

Please make that LD stem. I'll buy like 5 of them.

VeloOrange said...

@Andy- that is a cover over the preload bolt hole-Scott

Wes Ewell said...

I need that alloy stem for my Camargue!

Sam said...

OK, these are the two best-looking stems I have seen in ... maybe forever. I can't decide which one I like best. It would probably come down to specs. The LD would be great in silver, but SUBLIME in raw clear coat. The forged stem--man, I really hope you stock that too. I haven't seen anything else quite like it. Love them both.

himespau said...

I too am a fan of the name Cygnus for the new stem. If tall and long enough, I'd really like putting it on my vintage mtb drop bar conversion bike (have a 120 mm nitto technomic now at max extension and it looks a bit odd - the super long soma threaded to threadless adapters look a bit odd too, a shorter adapter and your stem might look just right).

dropsondirt said...

Can you give the rise of the LD; and an approximate reach as well? I think I'll be in for at least one of these, being a fan of older MTBs wtih drops.

Also, are you planning on selling a 31.8 to 26mm shim? You had (a few days ago) only 25.4 shims.

Anonymous said...

I am waiting with bated breath to order one of the steel stems you're going to produce, but I would dig the alloy stem for my commuting/cruising bike. Having both alloy and black finishes available would be great.

Anonymous said...

My wife, who is French, notes that Andouille is a sausage, but is also French slang for idiot, apparently.

Alan Sotelo said...

When will these be available? I'm not from the US, but my friend will be travelling there soon. Thanks in advance!

fffinas said...

waiting...... checking VO every week for any update on this.

Brian Johnson said...

This THIS is the stem I've been waiting for! For years! I run the On-One Midge dirt drop on three of my bikes (Two MTB and one CX) and I can't get the rise and reach just right. Two of the bikes are threadless and one is a 1989 Stumpjumper with a 1" quill, natch.

I will be closely watching VO for developments! I want this stem!!

Anonymous said...

The surly straggler has such a short head tube that these stems would be wonderful as opposed to the ton of spacers I now have to use to get my drops at seat height.

Steve said...

Any word on the ETA for the Andouille? Eager to order one w/ the clear coat.

VeloOrange said...

@Steve

Looking like the end of August.

rge said...

The top stem looks great! Who makes it/where is it available? Are you going to carry it, or has the sausage won out? This would solve some serious frankenbike woes. Watching this space (eagerly) with everyone else!

PukeSkywalker said...

Any word on the 3rd party stem above? I would like one

VeloOrange said...

@PukeSkywalker,

We're looking to get them around mid-November.