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Handlebars turn independently of front wheel
#1
Hey guys,

I just hauled my old Cannondale M500 out of the shed and I've been cleaning it and getting it road ready after years of neglect.

Everything is fine but I have one problem.

If I stand facing the bike, brace the front wheel with my legs, and grip the handlebar, I can turn the handlebar independently of the front wheel.

When riding, if I brake hard, the handlebars can come off center, requiring me to stop and readjust them.

I'm a total noob, and for all I know you're supposed to be able to do this, but it seems wrong and dangerous. I tried tightening the nut at the top of the stem but it does nothing at all. I've been searching online, and the guy was using two wrenches but I can't figure out where the bottom wrench is supposed to go...

Thanks guys.

Sorry if this is a really dumb question.
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#2
Its not a dumb question. People here will want to help you.A pic of the handlebar and stem would be helpful, but it seems like there is a question of tightness of the retaining screws and the centre bolt if its an older cycle ( quill stem ) I once repaired a cycle that had a similar problem and the clamps were overgreased and no amount of tightening would lock it up.
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#3
(09-18-2011, 12:56 PM)ghost Wrote:  Its not a dumb question. People here will want to help you.A pic of the handlebar and stem would be helpful, but it seems like there is a question of tightness of the retaining screws and the centre bolt if its an older cycle ( quill stem ) I once repaired a cycle that had a similar problem and the clamps were overgreased and no amount of tightening would lock it up.

yeah i went into the local bike shop to grab a pair of skinny 1 1/4" wrenches like the video I saw on youtube. they said this type of stem hasn't been made in 20 years.

i'll try the hardware store

thx
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#4
A pic would be really helpful...
The two wrenches are used to adjust the play in the bearing of the steerer. They have absolutely nothing to do with your problem.
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#5
(09-19-2011, 07:20 AM)Joe_W Wrote:  A pic would be really helpful...
The two wrenches are used to adjust the play in the bearing of the steerer. They have absolutely nothing to do with your problem.

There's a slot for an alan key on the top of the stem. i tightened that up and weirdly now the thing is holding together nicely.

thx for the advice guys
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#6
Congratulations, you found the tightening bolt. :-)) It connects to a wedge on the bottom of the stem and pulls it tighter.
Never Give Up!!!
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#7
(09-21-2011, 04:01 AM)GeorgeET Wrote:  Congratulations, you found the tightening bolt. :-)) It connects to a wedge on the bottom of the stem and pulls it tighter.

lol I'm such a moron
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