Mark in Florida wants to raise his handlebars by putting more spacers under the stem, but he needs to know how to do it; so here are our directions.
Question: Just purchased a Giant composite racing bike and please would some one post how to properly remove and adjust the carbon stem (raise it up) with spacers I was thinking of raising my bars some.
Hi Mark, I guess you have an A-Head stem, not the old style of the stem.
Loosen the bolts
First, loosen the bolts that hold the stem tight to the steering column. These will be at the side or the back of the stem. Then loosen and remove the top bolt and cap, the stem should then lift off.
You can then put spacers below the stem raising it on the column, be careful not to put too many spacers underneath as there won’t be enough columns for the stem to hold onto.
Put the stem back on top of the extra spacers and replace the top cap and its retaining bolt, don’t tighten the stem bolts yet. Now by tightening or loosening the top, you have to adjust the tension on the bearing in the headset.
Make sure the bars and wheels turn smoothly
Pull the front brake on and feel if there is movement in the headset if there is then tighten the top bolt. Then lift the front of the bike and turn the bars from one side to the other, making sure that the bars and wheels turn smoothly. If not, you need to loosen the top bolt.
Once you have the tension correctly adjusted, then tighten the bolts holding the stem onto the steering column, making sure that the stem is in line with the front wheel.
It can be a tricky job getting the tension just right, but with some practice, you should manage to adjust the headset correctly.
The adjustment of the headset is very important; if it is too tight or too loose, then it will damage the bearings.
Make sure that the bolts holding the stem are also tight as you don’t want it to come loose when out on a ride.
If there is not enough steering column for the stem to grip and you need to raise the stem further, you can buy an extension piece that bolts into the column and allows you to raise the stem further. We hope this answers your problem.
Should you have any more questions about carbon stems for handlebars…then head over this thread at roadbikereview.com, It’s really worth the time to read it!