I ordered a Paul Components Stem Cap Light Mount to use on my On-One Pompetamine commuter bike, and it arrived via USPS today.
It’s a nice machined piece of aluminum, of typical Paul Components style and worksmanship. I got black ano, to match the cockpit of my commuter. I bought it because I needed to clean up the cockpit of my commuter. I always ride with a light, a Magicshine MJ-808, purchased from the late Geoman a few years ago and run with one of his batteries (thank goodness I have 3 since the company is gone and those are no longer available) and a Magicshine taillight. It’s a good commuter combo, IMO. At any rate, that kit is always on my commuter. Sometimes I want to use my GPS to see how my fitness is coming along (once every few months or so, really) and I also have a Delta Airzound horn I have not yet installed because of the bar clutter issue. I run On-One Mungo mustache bars and while they are very comfortable, I have minimal space on them for mounting anything. The stem is not a viable mount because the angle is too steep.
Enter the Paul Components Stem Cap Light Mount. I bought it so I could put my GPS in the stem location, since it’s what I’m accustomed to on my mtb.
As you can see in the photo to the right, the mount for my Oregon 450 is just too wide. The left side zip tie slipped off with only minor fiddling. And below you can see why.That didn’t work as I had intended.
It’s just too small for Garmin’s handheld GPS mount.
This left me trying to figure out how else to make use of this device. I need to declutter my bars for sure.
The mount for my horn is pretty narrow, so I fiddled with it to see if it would work. I flipped the Paul mount around and test mounted the horn. No dice. The horn extends too far below the mount to work in this configuration. It absolutely must go on the handlebars. It eventually occurred to me (duh!) to put the light on the Paul Components Stem Cap Light Mount. Ya think? It’s the perfect fit for my Magicshine lamp.
Now yeah, it does stick up kinda tall in this picture. It just looks like it’s taller than it is. Really, it needs to be this tall to actually be able to aim downwards a bit over the handlebar (don’t want to blind the drivers, just make sure they see me). In reality it’s only slightly higher than what it was when the light was mounted on the handlebars. I think I’ll be keeping this here. The horn will go onto the handlebars where it needs to and it looks like I will have to remain happy with the GPS on the bars when I want to use it.
I need to point out a slight issue I had with this mount. It does not fit exactly the same way my old stem cap fit (On-One stem cap that came with the headset). The picture below illustrates the differences between the way the two caps fit. The Paul Components Stem Cap Light Mount needs more space between the top of the steerer and the top of the spacer stack (or stem) to be able to preload the headset. I did not need to use it to preload the headset today since I did not move the stem, but it is worth noting.
You can see that I had a sufficient gap with the old stem cap, but not with the Paul mount. What I ended up doing was using my dremel to grind enough of the steerer tube down until the cap tightened enough that the spacers underneath could not rotate. If I need to preload the headset in the future, I might have to grind it down some more, but for now it is sufficient.
In short, I have to say that this mount may not work for many GPS receivers. It would probably be okay for the smaller edge series and maybe even if you used a watch-style fitness GPS with a handlebar mount. But for the Oregon 450 mount I have (which is the same mount for the new eTrex line, Dakotas, Oregons, and Colorados), this part won’t work.
If you need a mount for your GPS, this is not your only option. You might take a look at Purely Custom’s Bicycle Accessory Mounts. It’s labeled as a “road bike accessory” so keep that in mind. It certainly does not look quite as robust as the Paul mount I just reviewed. It would probably die in a crash on a mountain bike.