EC cup in ZS frame?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    EC cup in ZS frame?

    Is there any compelling reason that one could not use an EC style headset cup in a frame intended for ZS style cups?

    I recognize, of course, that the stack height would change and all the geometric consequences of that. But my question is more about frame construction, tubing wall thickness, etc. Dimensionally speaking, an EC44 upper cup should press into a ZS44 frame no problem. Same with EC56 cup in a ZS56 lower. Is there any functional or strength reason to discourage this? Would a frame intended for EC cups typically have thicker walled headtube to support the "leverage" created by an external cup? Or am I thinking too hard?

    For context, the reason I'm asking is that I'm considering using an angle changing headset in a ZS44/ZS56 frame with a tapered steerer fork. That particular combo (ZS44/ZS56 *and* tapered steerer) isn't directly supported by any anglesets because dimensionally there isn't enough space.

    But I can use a Works headset with an EC44 upper and ZS56 lower and tapered fork. Especially given the lesser forces on the upper headset, it seems like this would have little/no risk. The additional stack height doesn't bother me, I'm tall and typically have 15-20mm of spacers under my stem.

    Alternatively I can use a Cane Creek Angleset for ZS44 upper and EC56 lower. That will also raise my BB and further slackening, of course, but that might not be a terrible thing in my specific case.

    So, any rationale to not consider these options?

    FWIW, this is a 2015 alloy BMC Speedfox frame.

  2. #2
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    Many have done this without issue. As long as your steerer is long enough and it won't screw up your cockpit geometry, should be fine. I had looked into this once when ZS44 cups were out of stock everywhere, but ended up finding one.

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