1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
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2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    First time dealing with headset issues

    Hi friends. I decided to post in the beginners forum since this is my first time dealing with a bad headset. After my last ride I'm having noticeable issues with my Race Face headset. It wont swing freely/smoothly and stays in the position I turn it to. Feels like a bad bearing.

    I ride a 1st gen Santa Cruz Superlight (2001). The Raceface headset just says "1 1/8"" on it. According to this page its a "1 1/8" threadless Aheadset AL".

    So does that mean that I can use any headset that is threadless and 1 1/8"? What about tapered headtube or non tapered? How do I know?

    Thanks and sorry for the silly questions.

  2. #2
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    Most 1 1/8" headsets will work ,There are some differences ,if you got the same one no issues. A tapered one is 1 1/4" on the bottom 1 1/8 on the top. When was the last time the head set was serviced? You might be able to clean it up and regrease it .Check the Park Tools or Sheldon Brown sites for how to service.

  3. #3
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    Threadless headsets are easy to take apart. Take a look and see what the bearings look like.
    If you need to replace it, it's probably best to take it to your LBS. You need a press to install the new cups. It can be done at home with washers and threaded rod if you are handy but it doesn't cost much to get the cups pressed in. No reason you can't use a different make of headset but you may have to re-adjust your spacer stack.

    Park Tool Co. ParkTool Blog Threadless Headset Service

  4. #4
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    I believe the older Superlights uses a 34mm headset. I'm not positive so you may want to double check, but a friend of mine has a 2004 Superlight that I installed the headset for and I'm pretty sure it was a EC34 Cane Creek that I installed. I think the more normal sized 1 1/8 straight headsets you'd find are 44mm.

    Components > Headsets and Spacers | Jenson USA

  5. #5
    'Tis but a scratch
    Reputation: huffster's Avatar
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    Try servicing it. Its really quite easy and cheap (like the cost of a teaspoon of grease).

    How to: service your headset - YouTube

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