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HEADSET question.

BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
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Maryland, east coast.
Could a cane creek reducer headset lower cup put in by a bike shop loosen up and not be all the way by ME pulling the old fork off? People pull forks off all the time and put on new forks. I've done it. And never had this problem. I removed my old fork and put on a new one of the same exact brand and model, only it was a newer model with a different insides. The steer tube does not catch on the way out or in. So pulling it out, would not grab it from the inside via the steer tube. I'm figuring the headset was never seated properly.
 

BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
1,086
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Maryland, east coast.
did you remember to remove the crown race from the old fork and install it on the new fork?
Yes, absolutely. Common sense. It's on as far as it can go on the steer tube touching the lower crown. It's a first gen Cane Creek double XX reducer flush mount headset that came out when bikes just started going to 1.5 frame. I'm using a 1.125 (1-1/8th) fork in it. The chrome crown race at the bottom is the full size of the headset and has the blue plastic dust ring that fits in the headset and the grove at the bottom. My other bike has the same double XX but it's a newer design and the lower cup has a very small hole at the bottom where the bearing fits in and the much smaller crown race on the steer tube fits right up into it nicely and I don't have this problem.

The lower cup seems like it's about 1 millimeter out of the frame but I don't see that as the reason my fork is vibrating back and forth at the through axle. I've heard clicking for three years. I figured it was cable slap on the frame, or fork, then later thought it might be the bottom out spring inside the fork loose and making noise. The other night, with the bike upside down, I grabbed the tire and noticed the chrome race moved in the bottom cup of the headset. NOT the chrome moving on the steer tube, trust me it's pressed on hard! It ain't moving. But the chrome race, moves WITH the steer tube of the lower crown and so does the blue plastic. Meaning the chrome race and plastic dust ring are moving back and forth about a millimeter in the bottom cup. The star nut is as TIGHT as it can to the point I'm worried about breaking it. Yes top crown bolts and stem bolts are all lose and I know the proper order to tighten the bolts. Headset star nut tighten first, then the top crown, then the stem last.

At that time, January 2008, I called Chris King to find out if they had any reducer head sets because I wanted to buy one but Chris King's people said, "We know they are needed out there, we have the idea on the table, it's been discussed, but we have yet to have one in the works. It will probably be about six months before we do." I needed one then. So my bike shop put the Cane Creek flush mount double XX on it when I bought my fork from them. They installed the fork for me.

MY OPINION? It's almost like the bearing is moving back and forth inside the area allotted for it in the lower cup. Like the cup cavity for the bearing is too large or the bearing that came with the headset is a tiny bit too small leaving that room for play. The steer tube is tight, but there's play, not up and down in terms of the lower crown race being pulled up tight into the lower crown, it's movement back and forth. Repressing the lower cup that 1 millimeter into the frame will only give me 1 more millimeter of star nut tightening, it won't correct the back and forth, front to rear of the bike motion of the fork, inside the lower cup. The top of it is tight. But the bottom moves about 1 millimeter.

So my question would be, in the beginning when making these brand new first gen reducer headsets, did Cane Creek put any out that were recalled or were known to be a bit over routed where the lower bearing goes into the cup or possibly did they have too small a bearing outer circumference that allows the bearing, even when under tight pressure pulling upward, to move side to side ever so slightly, that at the end of three feet, at the axle, allows it to vibrate back and forth much more exaggerated?

Anyone heard of Cane Creek first out Double XX headsets having a problem? My second gen Double XX on the other bike, same model, does not have this problem.
 
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IH8Rice

I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!
Aug 2, 2008
24,554
488
Im over here now
if there was some slop for the past three years, the lower cup might have ovalized over time causing the bearing to move in it's seat.
 

BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
1,086
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Maryland, east coast.
Seriously? WOW! I would have never thought that. And thanks for the reply!

I believe the headset was never set all the way in from day one, but three years later, it's a little difficult to say the shop did it. Specially since I have yet to be back since I bought it. I think the shop owner didn't like me suggesting it wasn't put in from day one right but I've never fooled with the headset ever. The shop suggested me taking off the original 2007 Travis triple crown, and putting on a new 2008 Travis triple crown fork myself, somehow it got loose by a millimeter at the bottom but I've removed forks for 15 years to clean and relube them and the moment you undo the tension on the star nut, the bearing drops out and the lower cup hole is super big for the steer tube. Minus a huge burr on the steer tube catching the cup pulling it out, I can't see how removing a fork and putting it back would loosen the lower cup from the frame by the millimeter it appears to be out from the frame. It's in there tight as all get out. It don't move! I do have to admit, It didn't happen till the first season was close to over. I didn't hear it. Now it's constant.

I take it purchasing a new Cane Creek Double XX flush headset would correct the problem? I mean it's like a $40 fix. I can't see giving the shop ten bucks to press it in the last millimeter when for an extra $30, I can just put on a whole new headset. My grey King Fisher I built myself, and put the headset in myself, hasn't given me a problem since day one. It's a different design though. The crown race is only about 1.25 inches diameter. The first gen Double XX is about 2.5 inches or however wide the frame hole is. Plus the blue dust ring, seems to be a poor design compared to the newer one I bought for the second bike I built.

I'm going to call Cane Creek to see if there were problems with the first gen double xx's. and if they might let me upgrade to the newer model if I send it in for a discount. Either way, I've rode it three seasons, I don't mind paying full price for a new one. I got out of it what I considered fair wear and tear. This blue bike has had so much go wrong with it, I think I should just sell it and keep the grey one I built myself. Haven't had a problem with that one yet! Two years running! (Crossing fingers)
 

BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
1,086
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Maryland, east coast.
unfortunately they dont make the XXc II anymore. the Series 40 replaced it
That sux. Is the 40 flush mount. Going to their website to look. And would new bearings work or I take it I need a new bottom cup? I take it pushing the cup in that one millimeter isn't going to do anything to fix the prob...
 

IH8Rice

I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!
Aug 2, 2008
24,554
488
Im over here now
That sux. Is the 40 flush mount. Going to their website to look. And would new bearings work or I take it I need a new bottom cup? I take it pushing the cup in that one millimeter isn't going to do anything to fix the prob...
they do make a "ZS" (zero stack) Series 40. new bearings wouldnt work if the cup is deformed but with CC you can just buy the lower assembly.
 

w00dy

In heaven there is no beer
Jun 18, 2004
3,412
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that's why we drink it here
You may have ovalized your headtube. A cup that isn't fully pressed will work it's way in after a few rides. I haven't yet seen this on a bike with a larger headtube, but it's possible.

Pop the cup out and (with a set of calipers) measure the inner diameter of the headtube in two planes. If it's longer front-to-back than it is side-to-side then another headset won't help. If that is the case, which I hope it's not, you can shim it. Or, when CK starts making cups they usually offer slightly oversize cups to fix said problem.
 

BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
1,086
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Maryland, east coast.
The headset cup does not move inside the frame. The crown race on the fork and the crown move forward and back. Does this sound like an ovalized head tube? By that you mean my frame is out of round no thanks to said bike shop where I purchased it for not putting it in correctly from day one? Or we talking ovaled out the cup in which case all I need is a cup?

If the headset is in all the way minus 1mm, is it possible the crown race sliding up and back with each hit for three years has made the cup oval? Or would that cause the aluminum frame hole to oval out?
 
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w00dy

In heaven there is no beer
Jun 18, 2004
3,412
28
that's why we drink it here
I just re-read the thread. I'm going to take a step back and suggest you add a spacer to your steerer tube. You say the top cap is tight, but it may be bottoming against the steerer.

I don't think a bearing could work loose inside the cup. Those parts are pressed together at the factory and should be tight. If your lower cup isn't moving in the frame then that's probably all right. I was thinking the frame could be ovalized, but it's not that likely with a OS headtube.
 

BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
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Maryland, east coast.
I just re-read the thread. I'm going to take a step back and suggest you add a spacer to your steerer tube. You say the top cap is tight, but it may be bottoming against the steerer.

I don't think a bearing could work loose inside the cup. Those parts are pressed together at the factory and should be tight. If your lower cup isn't moving in the frame then that's probably all right. I was thinking the frame could be ovalized, but it's not that likely with a OS headtube.
No bottoming unless you mean the chrome and blue seal is moving over the bottom black cup.

Okay, so there is no confusion, I'll explain it like this. THIS is the one I have on my bike.




NOTE: The CHROME RACE RING YOU SEE ON THE BOTTOM IS THE FULL SIZE OF THE LOWER CUP and has a blue seal between the chrome race that fits over the steer tube and the lower cup. There is a hollowed out cavity for the lower bearing to sit in and it also has an angle that fits right on the angle lip of the lower CHROME crown race which is tight on the fork. The part that is moving is the chrome race attached to the fork steer tube, and the blue plastic dust seal. The black lower cup does NOT move in the frame. NOR does the top. NOR does the steer tube coming out the top or the star nut. OR at least that I can see. Now do you understand what I mean now? Just that lower chrome ring attached to the fork steer tube at the bottom of the lower crown and the blue plastic dust seal are moving over the lower cup, by about 1.5 millimeter. Now it's moving less about 1mm since I tightened the star nut really cranking on it.

The bottom Chrome ring has a raised lip, with the grove near the edge for the blue dust ring.

And the inside of the bottom cup shown at the top looks like this smaller version cup here where the bearing fits inside a little hollowed out inset area just like this image here. You can see it on the pic above but it's easier to see in this pic below.




Now as to my OTHER exact same bike, I installed THIS headset in a year later and I installed it, not the shop, it's in all the way and I have yet to have a problem with it. Note, it does not have the same lower chrome race design or the plastic dust rings.



BUT, on that one, it has a much smaller crown race, like this one here below.

 
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BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
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Maryland, east coast.
I'm going to try pressing the lower and upper cup in further, and pound the crown race down a little further in case they were never pressed on by the shop all the way. The only thing I've messed with is removal of the chrome race from the one travis to the other.

The one on my other bike is a reducer double Xc as well but the cups are much shorter. Not sure if that's a good idea to have on a dh bike compared to the deeper cups.
 
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BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
1,086
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Maryland, east coast.
Just take it to a different shop. It will be worth the $25.
It's only ten bucks to press it in all the way Beefy. I pulled it from the shop because I resent the implication that me removing the 2007 Travis and putting the 2008 in, somehow loosened the lower cup. I was told, "That's the way it is with these triple crowns, you have to have them installed by a professional bike mechanic." That's BS! I've removed my triple crown forks from my bikes for 15 years to take them apart, service, maintain, relube, put back together and put back on my bikes and never have I had this problem. Ever! If that's the case, how come my other bike with the same exact set up ain't having a problem? I'll press it in all the way myself. I was more concerned over the oval comment. The bearing would have to have ovaled the cup. I can't see how the frame would be ovaled by the cup when it's not the cup moving in the frame, unless the lower bearing moving inside the lower cup can some how deform the cup which then deformed the frame. :/

A new headset will only cost me $70 bucks and it's the newer design as seen in the bottom pic. It seats much better to the frame than this first gen model Cane Creek produced. I think the large chrome ring crown race is a poor designed compared to the newer one I bought a year later.
 

BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
1,086
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Maryland, east coast.
Ok, genius. Go ahead and start hitting things with a hammer. I'm sure that will fix the problem.
Would do you suggest, ball peen, rubber mallet, or a mull? :rofl:

I have a press dill wad! To me it looked like it was touching frame and couldn't go any further. The shop said it looked like it wasn't all the way in. Looks like 1mm of room, IF that much Oh and thanks for answering my question.
 

Beef Supreme

Turbo Monkey
Oct 29, 2010
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Hiding from the stupid
Would do you suggest, ball peen, rubber mallet, or a mull? :rofl:

I have a press dill wad! To me it looked like it was touching frame and couldn't go any further. The shop said it looked like it wasn't all the way in. Looks like 1mm of room, IF that much Oh and thanks for answering my question.
Here is the deal. You don't need your headset pressed in. You need your problem diagnosed. That is why I suggest you take it to a different shop. All of the common causes of your problem have been brought up in this thread yet you still don't know the answer. Take it to a freaking shop. BTW, try not to accuse them of shoddy work three years ago or otherwise make them want to slit your throat.

It is extremely unlikely that the cup was not pressed in all the way when first installed. No self respecting mechanic would leave a 1mm gap. If you have a gap between the cup and the frame you most likely have a problem. You can have an ovalized head tube and not be able to move the cup by hand. There is a lot of leverage on a headset with the fork in place. A good shop can help you determine if this is the problem.
 

BIGHITR

WINNING!
Nov 14, 2007
1,086
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Maryland, east coast.
The headset has appeared to be not all the way in for years. They put it in. Do the math. I'll try pressing it in all the way a little more. If that don't do it, I promise you, I'll take it to a shop. Happy? Now let me get back to my wooden block and hammer. :D