Ahead to Quill Stem retro adapter

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  • I'm hoping to mount a quill stem onto some 1 1/8" carbon forks and threadless headset. Is there an adapter as such that would allow this sort of retro conversion?

  • The short hassle free answer is: No, its not really possible due to the way the headset work.

    The stems in threadless systems, clamp onto the fork and provide the mechanism that hold the headset together. A quill stem just slides into a fork (and wedges inside) so on its own provides nothing to keep a threadless headset together. You would need something to act like a clamp to hold the headset together.

    Your other problem here is that, even if you could find a mechanism to allow this to work, 1 1/8" quills are very rare (made mainly for the MTB market).

    AFAIK the only way really to convert a threadless setup to threaded, which is not a bodge, is to get a threaded fork (or have the fork converted by a reputable framebuilder) but this is only really a good option with 1" threadless stuff. If you're frame has a 1 1/8" headtube, then things get complicated.

    Will be interested if there are any other solutions.

  • You can get adapters to do it the other way round, but I've never heard of one that goes that way.

    Quill stems are shit anyway - they fuse into the forks because it's impossible to get an airtight seal and water and stuff gets in. I had a quill stem that fused and had to cut it away from the fork steerer to get it out. Then had to throw both away.

  • I agree with pip that there's no straight forward hassle free way to do this and it begs the question what's your reason for wanting to do it? Also what size quill stem are you trying to use 1" or 1 1/8" and does the fork have a carbon or metal steerer?

    If the fork has a carbon steerer I'd suggest you give up now, or if you really want to use the quill stem fit a different fork, as I'm pretty sure trying to tighten a quill stem wedge in a carbon steerer is a sure fire way to bust your steerer.

    If the fork has a metal steerer and the quill stem is 1 1/8", you could, in theory, use a USE Ringo Star (see http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Model­s.aspx?ModelID=2741 ) to compress/hold your headset together, relieving your stem of this duty. Then as long as the quill of your stem will fit inside the steerer you could fit it just as you would with a threaded fork. I'm not recommending this, as at best I think it'll look peculiar, at worst acutely Heath Robinson, just saying in theory I think this would work.

    If you've got a 1" quill stem you're desperate to use with a frame that has a 1 1/8" headtube and is currently fitted with a 1 1/8" carbon fork I don't see how you're going to do this without ditching the fork (and current headset), but as long as the frame is designed to take a coventional headset (with press in cups) and not for an integrated/hidden headset and you're willing to ditch the fork you could fit reducer rings in the headtube so that you could then fit it with a threaded 1" headset and fork.

    So, no, can't see a straight forward way of doing this.

  • Mmmm.... I guess I'll be using a new style stem. Thanks guys.

  • yelmarb Mmmm.... I guess I'll be using a new style stem. Thanks guys.

    Stem Power !

  • pip The short hassle free answer is: No, its not really possible due to the way the headset work.

    Just an idea:

    You could lock the headset into place with a seat post clamp (or at a push a jubilee clip) - just sit it at the very top of the stack (above your head tube) and clamp it around the protruding steerer - although setting the tension of the headset without the usual [star nut + cap + bolt] might be a little tricker but not impossible.

    Here is something I knocked up in the very latest CAD modeling software running on the mainframe in my shed.

    pip 1 1/8" quills are very rare (made mainly for the MTB market).

    God did not rest on the 7th day as many of his flock believe, 'twas on this day that he brought the 'Shim forth from his bosom of creation.

    I have made many a shim from layers of beer cans to fit various bike parts together, here are the rules:

    Cheap beer (supermarket own brand) = thinner shims.

    Posh stuff (Kronenberg/Stella) = thicker shims.

    • just to make everything tight and solid between the quill and inside of the steerer - a thin layer of assembly paste (sometimes called friction paste) can really help.
  • good idea but the hell that is way too much hassle, get a thomson stem and it'll still look classic

  • P.S !!

    Just thought of how with the above set up you could over come the headset tensioning problem (well it's not really a problem just a little tricky)

    A: Insert one of those 'ring-go-star' things (from U.S.E) between the seat post clamp on the steerer and the top of the headset, push it all down by hand nice and tight and tighten the seat post clamp, then once it is all locked into place - remove any remaining play by tightening the 'ring-go-star' (it basically expands vertically when tightened).

    Hope this makes sense !

    So to sum up - to get the quill to work on a 1 - 1/8 steerer all you need is a seat post clamp (of the right diameter) some beer cans (for shim material) and to make life a little easier one of those U.S.E 'ring-go-star's

    http://www.use1.com/products/ringo_star/­index.php

    I would personally buy a stem that fits !

  • Stef good idea but the hell that is way too much hassle, get a thomson stem and it'll still look classic

    Indeed ! It is much less hassle to just get a stem that works with the steerer, there are millions of them in every bike shop.

    get a thomson stem and it'll still look classic

    Forget the Thomson - you mark my words they will all be using 'fist of fury' or the 'skull of death' style stems on the next Tour de France.

    ;P

  • nv55 You can get adapters to do it the other way round, but I've never heard of one that goes that way.

    Quill stems are shit anyway - they fuse into the forks because it's impossible to get an airtight seal and water and stuff gets in. I had a quill stem that fused and had to cut it away from the fork steerer to get it out. Then had to throw both away.

    Quill stems aren't shit really are they?

    We all managed fine on them for years. I still use them on my roadie. True, AHead is a better system but quill is just fine for most ppl. If you maintain your bike thoroughly quills are fine and won't fuse. Lets remember as well we're only riding a bike along a road. If you were riding BMX Freestyle or Freeride or Trials then yes a quill would be stupid. Aheadsets are a bit overkill on road bikes for my liking.

  • Perhaps shit is a bit rude, I didn't want to upset anyone. But IMO the quill system is shitter than a-head, yes. Maybe I should have used another word, like inferior.

    I had an alu quill stem fitted to a steel fork and steerer. The stem fused into the steerer, because when alu corrodes it expands. It corroded because there wasn't a good enough seal to keep out water. This is a common problem with quill stems, and a problem that is inherent in the design of the system. You could argue that I should regularly take the quill out and clean and grease the interface and then reassemble, but this was a fixed gear commuter bike whose goal in life was to be easy to maintain. If you're interested, the stem had only been in the fork for about 8 months, and yes - it was greased. I had to pay a bike shop to cut the stem off just above the headset, then the remains of the stem and the fork had to be thrown away and replaced.

  • Fair enough. I think your case is a bit of a rarity though.

  • hey guys

    I got me a new frame and built it up completely, but honestly - I'm just not too keen on the looks of the ahead stem I have. I just think an ahead stem makes the whole front area look bulky - don't like it too much!

    And today I saw that there are adapters which allow you to use classic quill stems with new frames with 1-1/8'' headsets like these: http://www.benscycle.net/index.php?main_­page=index&cPath=188_263_796

    does anyone have any experience with such wonderous technical miracles? are they useful at all and how do they look once they're fitted?

    cheers

  • Those adapters are so you can use an ahead stem with a threaded fork, not the other way around.

    I am pretty sure it is impossible to do what you want

  • this is a pisstake right?

  • You misunderstand they adapt a ahead stem to be used where a quill stem would be used.

    You need a ahead to quill. which I don't think exist because it's downgrading and stupid.

  • this is a pisstake right?

    What wrong with wanting to replace a ahead stem with a quill stem with all it's added flex and reduced strength?

  • oooohh THAT'S how it works. alright thanks, didn't know that.

    ps: albeit "downgrading and stupid", it's still definately better-looking, at least in my humble opinion

  • What wrong with wanting to replace a ahead stem with a quill stem with all it's added flex and reduced strength?

    Sorry Tommy, I'm off to make holes in my waterproofs and let my own tyres down.

  • ^ ignor them they're arseholes ;)

    There isn't really any point (as eloquently pointed out above), but I think there is a way around this.

    First, do you understand the differences? - size, how they both work, etc.

    If you don't you need to search on here and Sheldon Brown to find out.

    I think there are shims you can get which will make your head tube take a 1" headset. Then its just a case of new headset, forks and stem.

  • surely an inverse shim would work?

  • oooohh THAT'S how it works. alright thanks, didn't know that.

    ps: albeit "downgrading and stupid", it's still definately better-looking, at least in my humble opinion

    There are some nice ahead stems out there but in general I'd agree. I am incredibly unempathetic and hence can't really see the form over function thing.

    Sorry Tommy, I'm off to make holes in my waterproofs and let my own tyres down.

    At last some sense. I suggest you start wearing plimsolls too.

  • You could get some threads cut into your forks (if they're steel) and an adaptor to convert your aheadset into a threaded headset (its made by M:Part), i think wiggle sell it.

  • Don't listen to the haters. Hael is on the money you need a inverse shim. PM tynan for one.

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Ahead to Quill Stem retro adapter

Posted by Avatar for yelmarb @yelmarb

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