Now that I am getting serious about cycling, some time spent tuning my bike to fit me was in order. I have seriously considered upgrading to a new bike but prices are kinda crazy so I’m going to run what I brung.
The first thing that was immediately apparent after riding my bike for 30+ minutes was the pain and numbness in my hands and wrists. Some research revealed that I was leaning too far forward and placing too much stress on my arms/wrists.
My bicycle is an older mountain bike with a quill type “stem” and nearly straight handlebars. It stem wasn’t very tall and was rather long (pushing the bars forward). I wanted to raise the bars and bring them back (closer to me). Part of this effort required new, raised handlebars. This turned out to be a major undertaking! The new bars would not fit into the existing stem. The bar mount of the stem was a wraparound type and not one where the “top cap” came off – the bends could not be fed thru the stem. I ordered a threadless stem adapter (or “steerer adapter” if you prefer) and short (90mm) stem. Of course, the stem adapter was the wrong size. I resolved this by making a thin spacer and then realized that the old stem had a built in front brake cable hanger. So, I ordered a cable hanger that mounts to the new stem. However; the cable hanger was the wrong size for the stem… ugh… I sometimes wonder if I’m the only one that “makes progress” in this fashion…
In hindsight, I probably should have ordered one of the adjustable quill stems but was a bit nervous about their strength.
The above setup worked for a week or so but I really didn’t like the stem spacer that I built so I purchased a properly sized (diameter) stem. However; this stem was not as tall as the last one.
So, I am currently riding with the bars higher than they were previously but not as high as I would like them. Overall, the bike fit feels pretty good. I am now riding for 60-90 minutes at a time. My arms/wrists feel pretty good at the end of these rides but not as good as they could feel, in my opinion.
Some tuning remains…