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What are the different types of BMX stems?

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This guide has been written by cycling review expert Alex Bristol

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What are the different types of BMX stems?

One of the most important parts of a BMX bike is the stem. When buying, you need to ensure that the one you have picked will give you the perfect balance when riding. Before you purchase a BMX stem, you need to be aware that there are two types of BMX stems. These types includes the front load and front load stem. Even if they provide almost the same performance, you need to know that they are somehow different. In this article, we shall outline their differences.

Top Load stems

These ones feature a top plate which is removed when you are installing the bars. This means that they have a higher bar position as compared to the front load stems. The major feature of these stems is that they move your bar higher. If you don’t like front wheel landing or heavy landings, then a top load stem may be the best for you. However, those who love higher bars may be to prevent back pains, top load stems will be the best.

Front load BMX Stems

Front load stems contain a vertical front plate where you install the bar. Due to this, they have a lower bar position. Some people believe that front load stems are not reliable and are weak since the dissipating force is usually spread on the bolts. Due to this, the bolts wear out easily which may cause them to fall. However, this is not true especially when you are using an advanced top load BMX stem. If you love to use a more forward position when riding or you just prefer lower bars, this one will be the best. Again, if you love being overstretched when riding, this type of stem will be ideal

How BMX stems my affect your rides

  1. Bar positioning– Before choosing, you need to think how the bar positioning will affect your rides. This means that you need to set your preferred height. If you prefer the bar to be a bit low, the front load BMX stem will be the best. However, if you love riding when the bar is a high, then you should consider a top load BMX stem.
  2. Reach – The height of your stem may affect your reach. A short stem will allow you to maintain a sharper and an upright position. However, it may limit your speed. On the other hand, a longer stem will not affect your speed and it is the best in terms of stability. On top of that, it provides more leverage on the front wheels.

Conclusion

The two types of BMX stems top load and front load stems.  Even if they have different designs, their functions are the same. Before buying, ensure that you have picked the one that suits your preferences because picking a wrong stem may affect the performance of your BMX bike.  If you need a stable BMX stem which will allow you to ride at a speed, then you should look for a top load stem.

Sources:

1.BMX STEM GEOMETRY EXPLAINED – Post by BMX union

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