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How to Raise/Lower Your Stem Height
How to Raise/Lower Your Stem Height
Updated over a week ago

How to Raise/Lower Your Stem Height

This depends on the type of stem you have holding the handlebars.

Raising a Quill Stem

You can watch our video on adjusting a quill stem and handlebars here. (LINK )

Quill Hstems were the traditional type before ahead stems were invented. They are still found on many classic design bikes like our Vintage ranges.

Quill stems slide into the steerer tube of the fork and are secured with either an expanding bung or sliding wedge that presses against the inside of the tube.

Adjusting their height is slightly different – but arguably much easier – than a threadless stem.

  • Loosen the bolt on the top of the stem. Most use a hex head bolt, but some will use an external bolt.

  • Once loosened, you may be able to move the stem freely.

  • If the stem hasn’t been adjusted in some time, you may need to gently tap the bolt with a hammer to free the wedge or bung.

  • If the bolt is sitting proud of the stem, strike this directly. If it is flush with the top of the stem, you can use your hex key to gently tap the bolt.

  • The stem can now be adjusted to your desired height. Be sure to check for any minimum and maximum insertion marks on the stem and adhere to these.

  • Once you have set the height of your stem and lined it up with your front wheel, you can re-tighten the wedge bolt to spec (very tight).

Raising an Ahead Stem

You can watch our video on adjusting an Ahead stem and handlebars here. (LINK )

The first and easiest way to adjust handlebar height on an A-head stem system is by moving headset spacers. Headset spacers sit on the fork's steerer tube and help pre-load the headset bearings during adjustment. Generally, most bikes have 20 to 30mm of headset spacers that can be moved freely above or below the stem.

You can raise the handlebars on your bike using the steps outlined above by moving the stem so it’s above as many headset spacers as possible or flipping the stem.

However, if the handlebar is still not high enough for you, there are other steps you can take.

You can replace your stem with one that has a greater degree of rise (the angle of the stem relative to the steerer tube). Bicycle stems come in different amounts of rise, typically between six and twenty degrees.

You can also install a stem riser. This is an attachment that fits to the fork steerer. Stem risers effectively lengthen your steerer tube allowing you to have stem and handlebar higher.

The handlebars themselves can be replaced with something offering a different width, rise or sweep.

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