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Headset Issue


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Ok so I am having some headset issues.

I made a thread on OTN about this. I am not really gettinganywhere with it there.

It is in detail over there, so I will include the link to it.


If you can give me some suggestions that would be great.

Before you post please read down the page a bit as I left out some info on the first post and I added to it down a few posts.

Thanks for any help you can give.

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I dont really understand what is happening but I think it's movement in the wheel not the forks. Try tightening the cones up. To find out if it is the cones pull the brake and wiggle the front wheel with your hand on the tyre. If there is movement it is the cones.

Edited by Mikey Tomo
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Yup , stumped as well if you're certain that :

  • The fork crown race is intact and snug around the steerer tube

  • and the internals of the King headset are O.K.

I'm presuming that the fork's steerer tube itself is entirely straight ? In your post on O.T.Nzzz you say it simply started to feel loose -what exactly is new here ? I mean is this an existing headset in a new frame / fork ? Has this combination of frame / fork and H-set been running O.K for a while or is there a recently introduced variable ? Either way , good luck with this , I'll be watching both threads just out of curiosity . It's not fair that someone with your determination and bravery should be denied the pleasure of riding by inexplicable technical gremlins .

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Right, the only thing left is frame and cups really going by your description. My echo team (cnc headtube one) done this after not long at all. Fearing the worst when I was able to take the headset out by hand I replaced it with a new one which was a super tight fit as you would expect. Problem solved.

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It is not the wheel. Cones are tight.

When you check the hedset by holding the front brake and rock the bike back and forth, the headset spacers move along the top race. They don't move with your hands, spin or jiggle. That is tight.

The best way I can describe it is that the fork is moving inside of the top race. THe race it self is not moving on the top cup. Just the spacers moving when you shake it. The headset is tight when you ride it. If you use force you can feel a knock.

It is not the fork as I tried with 2 different forks and the same thing.

The headset is only 3 months old and it is a King.

I tried 3 different top king races and 2 bottom king races all with the same result.

Bearings in the headset are tight and smooth.

I have had alot of King headsets and this is the first time that I have ever had anything like this happen.

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Could be several things none of which mean panicand buy millions of headsets.

1. not enough headsetspacers, you should have 5mm of space between the top of the forks and the top of the stem, without this the forks wobble as you described.

Very easy to solver add more spacers.

2. you may have crushed your star bolt presuming your using one, if you have over tightened yourtop cap your star bolt will be bent and wont hold the headset.

This also resultsin the wobbling youdescribed, just buy a new star bolt, or better soloution an azonic headlock or something similar.

3. Well its a king so it shouldnt but the bearings may have some movement inside the cups this= bad and money but doubt its that with a king.

other things it could be

badly mounted crown race (even if it looks ok)

Part of the headset missing. (bit useless i know)

destroyed headset.

Flared headtube.

Hope some of this helps, as i had the same issue, mine was both of the things i stated.

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I actually read the topic on OTN, and it looks like you've looked into every possible problem apart from the cups themselves, could they have flared? The bearings are pretty solid sealed cartridges if I remember rightly, so I doubt they've shrunk.

If you work in a bike shop, you should have a vernier, so you could try measuring the bearings and then the diameter of the cups to see if they have flared. It might also be an idea to measure the cups in line with the frame, and across it, so then you can see if the cup is oval.

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Yeah when I go to the shop I was going to face the frame again and try a different King headset.

Tarty on OTN gave the most logical thought, which sounds like it may be the case.

Friends of mine think that my head tube may be ovalized so I will measure things and see if this is so.

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