Results 1 to 16 of 16
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    77

    Headset adjustment

    So I noticed a few rides ago that my headset was a little loose. So I stopped and tightened it up. Did not have any problems the rest of the ride. Rode two more times and on my last ride I noticed that it was squeaking a lot when I turned the handlebars, especially when there was torque on the bars or wheels. I also noticed that the headset had loosened up a bit. I stopped again to tighten the headset up and was not able to get it right. It was either too tight and would not allow the wheel to turn freely, or it was too loose and I was worried i would really mess the headset or even the frame up if I rode back to the car like that. So I tightened it up and rode back with it a bit stiff. Now that its home I am having the same issues. Too tight or too loose. This problem, along with the fact that it was squeaking makes me think the bearings might need to be repacked with grease. But I cant figure out why I can't get it tight enough without it being too tight. I have never done any work with my headset bearings so its a little intimidating to me, I just don't know if I should pull the front end off or not. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Photocodo

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    2,481
    Likely the top cover on the headset is touching the frame. They sell spacers to go under the top cap to fix this.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: dbhammercycle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    1,160
    Quote Originally Posted by Slash5 View Post
    Likely the top cover on the headset is touching the frame. They sell spacers to go under the top cap to fix this.
    Do you mean to say the top cap on the top of the steerer?

    Don't know if this is the issue, but was the steer tube faced before assembly?
    Last edited by dbhammercycle; 06-25-2014 at 10:07 AM.
    No fuss with the MUSS

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    2,481

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: dbhammercycle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    1,160
    Gotcha.
    No fuss with the MUSS

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: 127.0.0.1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    1,002
    take picture of headtube and headset plz

    is this an old school quill or modern 'aheadset' ?

    if a new type 'aheadset' like what almost all bikes have nowadays it is no problem to just move control cables aside, take off stem and drop the front to the floor, get in there, and clean out any mung and maybe apply some quality grease if the bearings are greaseable. there should be one or more very thin mylar gaskets somewhere in there, don't lose them

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    77
    So I checked the top cap and it was not touching the steerer, infact it had a small 3mm spacer between it and the stem. I then double checked that I was doing everything correctly. Tell me if this sounds right.
    1. loosened stem bolts
    2.tighten/loosen top cap so there is no play in the fork but the fork also spins withough too much resistance.
    3. tighten stem bolts back down.

    after all this im still having the same problem. Its either too tight and does not allow the bars to spin easily or the bars can spin but there is too much play in the headset. So I pulled out the grease and took everything apart. cleaned everything, inspected the bearings (which all looked fine), re-greased everything, put it back together taking much care not to lose anything or put anything in backwards or upside down. When I got it all put back together it was the same thing. Nothing had changed. are there any parts that can break and actually fall out while riding, something small or thin that I didnt even know was gone? Im not a mechanic but looking at it I cant figure out why this is happening unless there is a piece that is missing. I cant take a picture of it right now but I will try to get one soon. I may just take it to a bike shop and see what they say about it tomorrow. I just want to ride but dont want to screw anything up more than I already have.
    just so you guys know what Im working with I have a Santa Cruz Highball AL and its a cane creek headset (either a 10 or 40, dont remember).

    Photocodo

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: 127.0.0.1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    1,002
    while stem is loose and you are tightening the top cap

    grab and hold front brake and rock bike back and forth, you should
    feel front fork wobble...crank top cap down until that goes away, then
    check how smooth steering is left-right

    you should be able to find the sweet spot with no wobble and no notched steering

    if you cannot tighten the top cap down enough to eliminate front fork wobble
    while on the brake, perhaps the steerer tube is too long

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    2,481
    Did you check that the dust cap is not touching the head tube?

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    77

    Headset adjustment

    Found the problem. The bottom bearing is bad. Thats what was making it rock even when it was tightened. Got a new one on order.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    77
    Ok, so the shop got the bottom bearing in and replaced it for me. I went on a ride the next day and the first half of the ride was good, then it started creaking a little bit. Then it started creaking really bad, to the point that two of the guys I was riding with noticed it and said something about it. I stopped and checked the headset and noticed the same issue I had before. With the front brake locked, when I rock the bike forward and backwards there is play in the headset, both top and bottom. I tightened it down and rode back to the car. It seems that the creaking is worse when Im torquing the bars, climbing etc. I pulled the headset apart with a friend who is a mechanic. Same story, either too tight or too loose and there is still play in the headset even when its tightened down.
    I took it back to the shop, they pulled it all apart and could not find anything wrong with it. Bearings are good, all parts are present and accounted for, everything is in proper order with nothing noticably wrong. The headset is a Cane Creek 10 series. The mechanic said the only thing he could think of would be that on the 10 series the compression ring is plastic and on the 40 and 110 series it is metal. He thinks this could be the issue but it just doesnt make any sense to me because its not cracked or broken and has been working fine for the last three years. I have a metal compression ring on order to see if that might be the issue but Im just getting so frustrated with not being able ride Im tempted to just purchase a 110 series and be done with it. I know the 10 series is the bottom of the line for CC and Ive had the bike three years putting a good bit of riding on it, plus Im a 240lb rider so Im sure my weight is harder on parts than lighter riders. Does anyone have any possible insight on this issue? Anything would help at this point, I just want to get it worked out so I can ride in peace and confidence. But maybe I should just look into getting a new headset, its probably time anyway.

    Photocodo

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Man from Utopia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    95
    I had a CC40 on my TallboyC and it creaked like a mofo. It had the plastic compression ring. That ring is the stupidest idea to come down the pike for headset design ever. I upgraded it to a 110 and it still creaks although not nearly as much. I wish I would have bought a cris king instead.
    Help, I'm a rock!

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    579
    ok someone help me out here, where do the two silver washers go
    Headset adjustment-%24_57.jpg

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: dbhammercycle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    1,160
    Those are the spacers referred to by Slash5 that go under the seal/dust cover. Check out his provided link.
    No fuss with the MUSS

  15. #15
    Readin & Postin since '02
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    513
    Is the captive nut inside the steer tube moving up the tube?

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    77
    OK. So still having the same problem. I pulled everything apart and have pictures now. So the bottom cup looks like a normal press fit cup that holds the bearing in place. The top however does not look familiar to me. There is no "cup" that I am used to seeing. I am used to seeing a cup similar to the bottom that presses into the top of the head tube. There is a lip that keeps it from being pressed too far into the head tube. When I pulled the bearing out and wiped all the grease off I found what I assume is the top cup (maybe its not called a cup) but it is pressed down into the top tube. It is a few (maybe 3mm) millimeters below the top of the top tube. The bearing then sets into the "cup" that is pressed into the head tube. Is this normal that it is below the top of the head tube? Could this be causing my issues of not being able to get the headset tightened properly. To me it seems that the cup should be pressed flush with the top of the head tube. I also don't understand why it does not have some type of lip to prevent it from being pressed too far into the head tube. Am I missing something right in front of my face? is there something missing? Does anyone have any suggestions or ideas of what I should do.
    Again, the bike is a 2012 Santa Cruz Highball with a Cane Creek 10 series headset. Thanks for any help or advice.

    Cody
    The white arrow is pointing to where the top of the "cup" is pressed down to.
    Headset adjustment-unnamed-1.jpgHeadset adjustment-unnamed.jpg

Similar Threads

  1. Lower Headset race...new shock install..new headset??
    By Burt4x4 in forum Shocks and Suspension
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 01-31-2014, 10:06 AM
  2. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 11-19-2012, 04:58 PM
  3. Anyone else pre-occupied with headset adjustment?
    By ghettocop in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 05-25-2012, 08:30 AM
  4. Rockshox rebound problem- all adjustment comes from small range of adjustment
    By joehspicer@msn.com in forum Shocks and Suspension
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 05-19-2012, 12:47 PM
  5. Steerer damage + headset adjustment
    By B.BL in forum Tooltime
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 05-08-2012, 05:49 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •