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Stem Length Help

crazymilkcrazymilk Posts: 17
edited May 2019 in MTB general
I have been using my Cube TM Reaction Pro now for about 5 months. Being my first half decent MTB I was initially just blown away with it – I still love it however now I'm more into riding and picking up more experience along the way I am beginning to think that it needs a tweak to get it more comfortable and set up correctly for me (Body shape/size ect).

Its hard to explain but on long rides and without noticing I frequently find myself resting the base of my palms on the grips (so on the palm area nearest my wrist/ ball of my thumbs) rather than my hands on the handle bar grips “gripping” the grips with my fingers curled round. .
Of course when I am negotiating tough terrain I grip the bars but on normal/smoother riding terrain (and more when I am tired) I default to palms resting on the grips as I have tried to explain above

Now my (normally screwed up) logic would tell me that I need a longer stem as the cockpit is currently too short/tight for my body make up, would this seem a reasonable conclusion? Currently have a Raceface 35 Stem which I think is 50mm long.

I am 5ft 10” however I have short legs (29” inside leg ect) and a long torso.

Any help/guidance and/or advice would be very much appreciated


  • robertpbrobertpb Posts: 1,866
    What frame size are you riding?
    A 50mm stem on todays bikes is long anyway. Riding on your palms is more of a habit than anything else. If you think you need more room move the saddle back and try that before you start spending money. Plus have you set up the hight of your saddle correctly, as it goes up the distance to the bars increases.
    Now where's that "Get Out of Crash Free Card"
  • billycoolbillycool Posts: 833
    I rest my palms on the bars and sit a bit more `upright` when transitioning on the road etc.

    Might not mean the bike fit is wrong - as long as it fits you in the attack position (and you're not getting back ache or similar)
    "Ride, crash, replace"
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,135
    If you feel that you need a longer stem, why not consider a wider bar instead? It will have a similar effect in that wider bars will move your torso forward. In addition you will gain the benefit of increased leverage to resist the turning forces of rocks and other trail obstacles on your wheel.

    Typically, a comfortable bar should put the grips in the press up position, but you could easily go wider. I went from a 660 to a 740 in one go. Then bikes started to come with wider bars as standard, so I'm currently on a 760.

    If you are unsure, get a bar that you believe is wider than you think you might need, say an 800, and be prepared to cut it down. Before you buy, ensure that it can be cut down to your minimum width so that the diameter remains small enough for your bar furniture. Try the grips wide apart and see how you get on. Gradually move the grips inwards in small steps until you feel the position is OK. Don't be too quick to cut them down, you can't glue it back on; instead ride the bike on some tight rocky bends to see what the extra leverage can do for you. Most tree gaps are wider than you think! And for those that aren't, learn to shimmy! :lol:
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