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  1. #1
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    FSA the Pig headset question....

    Hi all, still a noob here, hope I'm posting in the correct place. I know this had been covered before in some posts but couldnt find answer to the bearing direction. I checked parktool tech manual and other website advised in this forum.

    I'm asking all you wise ppl for some help please. Thanks in advance.

    I just installed my first headset the pig, with the caged ball bearings. So I know the open cage faces downward into the ht and faces up into ht for the bottom bearings. and according to the little manual that it came with.
    Once i installed the fork, it did not sit flush with the fork's crown race. there was about 1-1.5mm gap with the bottom cup's lip to the bottom of race. so i tried to set preload, added/removed spacer made sure there was at least 3mm from top of stem to lip of fork. once i tried to set preload there was play front and back, and preload was super very sensitive. slightest torque would made the steering stiff, back the top nut off a tad, and there still little play. i removed the play then steer was stiff i played with spacers, torque , no ovalized ht. and i know starnut is not broken since other method worked buttery smooth. still stumped. couldnt get it perfect.

    so i flipped the bottom bearing face down(open cage facing the crown race) and was able to remove play, felt buttery smooth, and bottom cup sits very flush with the crown race. All seems perfect now. so stumped again, as i know the open cage should face each other. Now is it bad to leave and ride in this position for the bearings?

    i can post pics if it makes this easier to understand.

    and thanks again for all and any tips and advice.

    cheers, JC

  2. #2
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    Name:  Untitled 143.png
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    Unless you have your bearings like this, like the instructions say to do, you will destroy them, the cups, and have three-times the freeplay after the first ride.

    There is a skirt that is supposed to flush-up to the lower cup, have that installed properly so any gap is not a dirt-magnet area.
    I like Sand -- I don't like Witches.

  3. #3
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    Haint, thanks for the tip. Yup i had it set up correctly, but couldn't get preload and play set correctly. so i flipped the bottom bearings upside down, and all is perfect.
    I will take everything apart now and see what's wrong.
    as far as the bottom cup & the crown race, it should be sitting flush, am i right? there should be any such gap what so ever right?

    thanks. greatly appreciate all tips.

    heres a pic I noticed once the bottom bearing is faced correct direction. I slid onto steer tube and it did not sit on crown race is this normal or should it be sitting more on the race?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails FSA the Pig headset question....-image.jpg  


  4. #4
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    Every headset will have a different top- and a different bottom-stack height. If these bearings are in any way but properly, you will have not only a gap but will see bearing cages.

    Face the bearing into the cups, tighten it down, check it again after a ride.

    The pic, it's in backward. Simple.
    I like Sand -- I don't like Witches.

  5. #5
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    So even faced correct direction of the bearings there is possibility of a slight gap? In the pic the bearings are actually facing the right direction. Open cage side up. Here's few more pics. Sorry I know it's simple like my other bikes. But this particular feels off. Thanks again for ur time.
    These pics is when the bearings open cage side is facing the race. FSA the Pig headset question....-image.jpgFSA the Pig headset question....-image.jpg
    There is a lot less gap from bearing to crown race. In this position I was able to set preload and remove play and smooth steering. Stumped
    Let me know if more pics r needed.
    Thanks again

  6. #6
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    You should have a dust seal on top of the crown, it'll flush up against the bottom cup. Metal w/ a rubber lip around the outside.

    Those bearings look very very big for the kind of headset you say it is, I seem to recall more of a smaller bearing.
    I like Sand -- I don't like Witches.

  7. #7
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    Haha they are big. The pig has an oversized or larger bearing balls. I do have the rubber dust seal. It's just a rubber washer type. These a lot larger than my other bearing balls. These large ones seem to protude beyond the cage on both sides. Compared to the tradition size, those do don't pass the bottom of the cage ass much as the ones I'm installing. So stumped again.
    Guess ill have to swing by lbs and see another pig hs and see the orientation.
    Thanks again haint for your help.

  8. #8
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    That's the crown race that came with the headset or one that was on the fork already?

  9. #9
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    it came with the headset. fsa uses a steel non slit crace.
    are these considered oversized bearing balls. since they are that big.?

    feel free to chime in anyone, all and every comments are appreciated.
    thanks.

  10. #10
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    Update: so i spoke with the shop i purchased from. they told me FSA the pig, uses super over sized bearing balls. and that the crown race should be seated within the open caged and should not have any friction with the cage itself. so meaning, i'll have to turn the open side "away" from the headset, as he suggested and my original post.

    according to all the posts, and the manual, it is reversed. but it is however to get it flush & the only way it works.
    to sum it up, mech said w/ the oversized balls, it should sit facing into the crown race.
    and if anything, upon first bump/ride, i should feel immediate play & friction.
    so thanks again fellas, for ur answers & time. feel free to continue to chime in

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