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  1. #51
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wheelspeed View Post
    Sorry, that wiki article was unimpressive. I think it was a university student trying to make it sound good. It read like a bunch of technical terms he was defining one after another. And everything was "model" or "simplified". Like a bike simulating a turn on a perfect surface with no rider. I challenge you to initiate a turn on an actual downhill country road, and then let go of the bars "to let the bike balance carry the turn".
    Rider continually makes steering input throughout the turn in real life. Quickness of that steering depends on the length of the lever used to twist the fork tube.
    No, it depends on the headtube angle and fork offset.
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  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wheelspeed View Post
    Quickness of that steering depends on the length of the lever used to twist the fork tube.
    The long lever provided by the stem presents a wider arc of control from the handlebars, but the response of the bike is still determined by fork angle and offset, as CX points out. Perfect examples:

    The commuter has 73 degree fork angle and slightly more trail. It "understeers," stays in line no matter what. The long 135 mm stem gives precise control over the headset bearings, but principally for balancing the bike and rider leaning into and scrolling through the turn. Essentially, rider is steering "straight ahead" all the time, making minute corrections to stay balanced and upright. The 135 mm stem requires a little more movement. It absorbs shocks from the fork a bit better, so the hands feel a little more comfortable on the hoods and handlebars.

    The other bike has a 74 or 74.5 degree steering angle and a 120 mm stem. It neither feels cushy or too reactive, but just right. Easily forget it's there. Lean the bike this way or that, though, and the steep fork angle responds so quick, rider really has to pay attention, "oversteer!" I've overreacted riding that bike and gone off the MUT, twice! The 54 cm frame was originally spec'd with a 110 mm stem. The only difference I could feel after changing to the 120 mm stem was a perception of a little more weight on the front wheel, easily modulated by moving fore or aft on the saddle.

  3. #53
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    Guys, I know all about head-tube and fork angle. I have a '19 mountain bike with about a 67 degree head tube and 50mm stem and 780mm bars; and a 15-year-old xc mtb with about a 71 degree head angle and 120mm stem and 700mm bars. Both use different forks with different trail and offsets. Actually, can feel the difference riding a mtb with 5" front suspension... uphill the bike has one head angle with the fork fully extended its 5", but downhill on the brakes with the fork squished, the head angle is 3" to 4" lower and you can feel it turn faster.

    Anyway, I think I've contemplated this enough to figure it out. I think going from a 90mm to an 80mm stem will make it twitchier, and the stem length change is like a 12% difference. Getting bars that get the hoods 10mm closer to me and keeping the same stem should be a much less effect on twitchiness. I think it's certainly less of a % change of "leverage" about twisting the forktube.

  4. #54
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wheelspeed View Post
    Guys, I know all about head-tube and fork angle. I have a '19 mountain bike with about a 67 degree head tube and 50mm stem and 780mm bars; and a 15-year-old xc mtb with about a 71 degree head angle and 120mm stem and 700mm bars. Both use different forks with different trail and offsets. Actually, can feel the difference riding a mtb with 5" front suspension... uphill the bike has one head angle with the fork fully extended its 5", but downhill on the brakes with the fork squished, the head angle is 3" to 4" lower and you can feel it turn faster.

    Anyway, I think I've contemplated this enough to figure it out. I think going from a 90mm to an 80mm stem will make it twitchier, and the stem length change is like a 12% difference. Getting bars that get the hoods 10mm closer to me and keeping the same stem should be a much less effect on twitchiness. I think it's certainly less of a % change of "leverage" about twisting the forktube.
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  5. #55
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    If your on a bike, and you think your pushing on the handlebars in the middle of a turn, you have no idea what is happening.

    I rode this morning and went around several corners at 10-20mph, without touching the bars at all, how u explain that? There was no twitchyness!
    BANNED

  6. #56
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Quote Originally Posted by duriel View Post
    If your on a bike, and you think your pushing on the handlebars in the middle of a turn, you have no idea what is happening.

    I rode this morning and went around several corners at 10-20mph, without touching the bars at all, how u explain that? There was no twitchyness!
    C'mon...you're is the word YOU ARE (you're) looking for.
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  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by duriel View Post
    If your on a bike, and you think your pushing on the handlebars in the middle of a turn, you have no idea what is happening.

    I rode this morning and went around several corners at 10-20mph, without touching the bars at all, how u explain that? There was no twitchyness!
    Good for ya!

    There was a right angle turn on a sidewalk MUT I had to negotiate that was too tight to lean into. I had to slow almost to a stop, actually turn the front wheel, and then go straight at the new angle. Obviously turning the front wheel 30 degrees at speed rider will lose his balance and go straight off the bike.

    Countersteer is putting pressure on the inside handlebar, correct? To keep the bike from "falling" into the turn? Also, if rider presses down hard on the outside pedal, the bike will stay firmly planted in the turn and rider can make course corrections with confidence. All a matter of inertial force and balance working together.
    Last edited by Fredrico; 3 Weeks Ago at 12:08 AM.

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by 9W9W View Post
    My brain can't understand how the top of the bar will be in the same point in space if the distance to it from the steerer tube is different. I think you meant to say on the hoods.
    Indeed I did. Sorry for the confusion.
    They do anything just to win a salami in ridiculous races. I take my gear out of the car and put my bike together. Tourists and locals are watching from sidewalk cafes. Non-racers. The emptiness of those lives shocks me. It was the illest of times, it was the dopest of times. And we looked damn good. Actually the autobus broke down somewhere on the Mortirolo.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by duriel View Post
    I rode this morning and went around several corners at 10-20mph, without touching the bars at all, how u explain that? There was no twitchyness!
    I absolutely agree. Frame geometry controls steering response at any speed above a slow walk, (where you actually do "steer" the bike). That is why crit bikes are hard to ride no hands, and tourers easy.
    I have, as my fitness and weight changed, run stems from 80 to 120 mm on the same bike with the same bars, and notice no change in handling.

  10. #60
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeWMass View Post
    I absolutely agree. Frame geometry controls steering response at any speed above a slow walk, (where you actually do "steer" the bike). That is why crit bikes are hard to ride no hands, and tourers easy.
    I have, as my fitness and weight changed, run stems from 80 to 120 mm on the same bike with the same bars, and notice no change in handling.
    And there ya have it. Someone who understands how bicycles turn.
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  11. #61
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    Too bad Bicycling Magazine doesn't.
    This is in an article on handlebars on their website:

    Reach: A longer reach can increase your leverage on the handlebar for more responsive bike handling (although too much can make steering feel too responsive, and put too much weight on the front wheel).

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeWMass View Post
    Too bad Bicycling Magazine doesn't.
    This is in an article on handlebars on their website:

    Reach: A longer reach can increase your leverage on the handlebar for more responsive bike handling (although too much can make steering feel too responsive, and put too much weight on the front wheel).
    Sure, it provides a slightly longer "lever" to make minor adjustments in steering, but the main determinants are geometry, mainly head tube angle and fork rake.

    Curious that author feels longer stems could make the bike "too responsive." My 54cm commuter bike with 73 degree steering angle, has a long 135 mm stem. The bike steers "cushier," not so "quick" as a shorter stem, this by virtue of the longer lever.

    The longer lever can override the natural resistance in the bike geometry, though, which one might consider "too responsive." Control is amplified by the longer lever providing slightly more leverage.

    Traditional wisdom says the ideal placement of hands on hoods should be vertical above the front hub axle for optimum control and fore aft balance. Weight ahead of the front axle can more easily override the natural balance dialed in by geometry. The idea is to keep the weight between the wheels, not overlapping front or rear.

  13. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeWMass View Post
    Too bad Bicycling Magazine doesn't.
    This is in an article on handlebars on their website:

    Reach: A longer reach can increase your leverage on the handlebar for more responsive bike handling (although too much can make steering feel too responsive, and put too much weight on the front wheel).
    Damn, I guess that means anyone can write for a magazine.
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  14. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by cxwrench View Post
    Damn, I guess that means anyone can write for a magazine.
    Pretty much. As long as the editor thinks the article will bring in readers. It's more important to sound interesting than to be true.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein



  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeWMass View Post
    I absolutely agree. Frame geometry controls steering response at any speed above a slow walk, (where you actually do "steer" the bike). That is why crit bikes are hard to ride no hands, and tourers easy.
    I have, as my fitness and weight changed, run stems from 80 to 120 mm on the same bike with the same bars, and notice no change in handling.
    Not exactly. Stem or 'tiller arm length' matters in 'steering response'. Now maybe there is a semantical difference between steering response and 'handling' and what some of the confusion is about in this thread.

    I think a better take on the discussion...my take is....which plays a bit into what you wrote above which I believe is correct is...the geometry of the bike matters more than stem length when it comes to handing.

    What factors influence handling related to bike geometry?
    - head tube angle
    - chain stay length
    - wheelbase
    - fork rake
    - trail
    - ride weight distribution...which is affected by metrics above.

    To refute stem length doesn't matter in bike handling...the following GCN video. Go to about minute 8 for some conclusions.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B69I_uayeMA


    All said, most of us can adapt to almost any bike with any stem length on it. For a while it maybe be noticeable but will typically fade with miles. Riders adapt. I ride long stems personally because I don't want to size up to a larger frame if I don't have to. Of course this is common with racers.

    Sagan's aluminum Allez Sprint with 150mm stem...size 56. Sagan is 6 feet tall. Most more average even good riders Sagan's size would be on a size 58 with 130mm stem with taller head tube. FWIW the Allez Sprint with its geometry is one of the most 'responsive' aka twitchy bikes on the market because of its frame angles. Of course a longer stem will slightly slow this response down but it will still be a very responsive bike and why Sagan would choose this particular bike for 'crit' racing...but not for road racing venues.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MlgTU7_Gvc

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