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  1. #1
    Fuhgetaboudit
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    Fox 36 Fork on Moment - Steelset Headset Really Needed?

    Okay, for practical purposes and the sake of posting a waiver on his warranty, Tony Ellsworth recommends that a steel headset, such as Chris King's, be used on any Moment that uses a Fox 36 Fork. This is recommended to prevent an ovalized headtube. However, if you're not hucking, jumping, or being overly aggressive or a Kamakazi on trails or XC rides... is it really necessary? Couldn't one get by just fine with a regular King Headset, which look a hell of lot better than the King Steel Headset? I'm a bigger guy at 240 lbs. and merely want a Fox 36 up front to give me a stiffer front end and to use the 20mm wheelset rather than a regular Talas RLC with Quick Release hubs.

    So what do you guys think here? Steel Headset to satisfy Tony's Lawyer's or regular Headset?

  2. #2
    Brass Nipples!
    Reputation: Bob the Wheelbuilder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuhgetaboudit
    Okay, for practical purposes and the sake of posting a waiver on his warranty, Tony Ellsworth recommends that a steel headset, such as Chris King's, be used on any Moment that uses a Fox 36 Fork. This is recommended to prevent an ovalized headtube. However, if you're not hucking, jumping, or being overly aggressive or a Kamakazi on trails or XC rides... is it really necessary? Couldn't one get by just fine with a regular King Headset, which look a hell of lot better than the King Steel Headset? I'm a bigger guy at 240 lbs. and merely want a Fox 36 up front to give me a stiffer front end and to use the 20mm wheelset rather than a regular Talas RLC with Quick Release hubs.

    So what do you guys think here? Steel Headset to satisfy Tony's Lawyer's or regular Headset?
    I personally think it's not necessary for the use you describe, but I have nothing to do with the company or their warranty. The responses I have read indicate if you ovalize the head tube, it won't be covered, but I think wrecking the tube would be highly unlikely.

    The Moment's head tube is quite a bit overbuilt and has a long section that mates with the full length of the steelset, so using one would give you a lot of extra protection. The Epiphany I'm building up is much more internally relieved with a shorter thick section the right size for a regular headset. A steelset on an Epiphany would be wasted weight. This is one of the things that speaks to the intended uses of the two bikes in my opinion. A moment would be a great trailbike for the more stout (no offense intended) rider.
    {Principal Skinner} Hmm. Whoever did this is in very deep trouble.
    {Martin} And a sloppy speller too. The preferred spelling of 'wiener' is w - i - e - n - e - r, although 'e - i' is an acceptable ethnic variant.

  3. #3
    Time is not a road.
    Reputation: chad1433's Avatar
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    It's also funny that on the website, they mention the 36, but not the 66 or any other type of long travel fork for that matter. What about dual crown forks? Not recommended?

  4. #4
    Fuhgetaboudit
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    Reply to Bob the Wheelbuilder

    Thanks Bob,

    I followed your build, not intentionally, as I know that you started with a Fox Talas same as me. Then you went up to the Fox 36 and did install the steel headset. From what I gather we're both in the larger category of guys so a Steel Headset will never hurt, no matter what riding we do. I just think a 36 is a better "OVERALL" fork for various applications of riding and yes, perhaps overkill to a certain degree in others.

    Thanks all for your replies. Is there anyone out there that IS NOT running the Steel Headset and found no problems at all? What type of terra firma are you riding? Input?

  5. #5
    Fuhgetaboudit
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    Info from Speegoat on Steel Headset

    I picked this up from an earlier post after reading and researching for hours. This is from Speedgoat.com and credit goes to them.... Read on

    We choose a standard Chris King headset for our VP-Free build. Some of you might have been expecting a King Steelset, RaceFace Diabolus or similar "deep" headset. The concept behind these hardcore headsets is pretty simple: if you build a headset with a deeper skirt-basically a headset that sinks much deeper into the frame-then there's less chance you'll ovalize the head tube on your frame (cause you'll have all that reinforcement) or jar the headset loose (cause there's so much contact with the press-fit between headset cup and frame). But we choose not to go that route for several reasons.

    First, a standard 1-1/8" Chris King NoThreadset is a damn fine piece of equipment, and it's going to hold up just fine to all but the most ridiculous abuse. Also, the head-tube on the VP-Free's frame is-as most heavy-duty frames are these days-extremely thick-walled. If you can ovalize the head-tube on a Free or a Yeti AS-X or a Banshee Scream, the friendly people at your local emergency room probably know you on a first-name basis.

    But here's some more practical reasons. Some shops don't even have the necessary tools to press in a deep-skirt headset, and-while we do have the goods to press such a headset, there's no good way to ever get one back out again. Some of you might be thinking, "Why not?" while the rest of you think "So what," but here's the deal.


    The VP-Free, like many finer frames, has an internally butted headtube. That means the tubing is thicker at the ends and thinner in the middle. This reduces weight without sacrificing strength. Bike mechanics use an ingenious little splay tool (Park Tools' RT-1 Headset Cup Remover) to drive headset cups back out of a frame. If you press a headset into your Free so deeply that it goes past the end of the internal butt of the headtube and just hangs in mid-air, then the tips of your splay tool are going to go right past that dangling bottom of the headset cup and run up against the thicker part of the frame. There's no way to tap out the headset. If you do this, you'll definitely damage your RT-1, and if you're not paying attention you could also damage the frame.

    Another possibility, if your headset cups are really deep and the head tube is rather small, the cups could press in deep enough that they'll almost touch. If there's no gap between the two cups, or a very small gap, there'll be no ledge for that splay tool to catch and press against. Once again, the cups will be stuck in there forever. But so what, right? The headset's always going to be used with that frame anyway. Not necessarily. Consider that if you're badass enough to need a specially reinforced headset, you've probably broken your share of frames and had them warranted, right stud? Of course, while we can't fathom anyone cracking a VP-Free frame, which is built like an I-beam, if you do manage to damage it, you're out of luck when it comes to salvaging your expensive headset. It gets buried with your frame.

    So that's why we've decided to install a regular Chris King NoThreadset headset for this build. Unless your standard riding gear includes the Tibetan Book of the Dead, your Last Will and Testament and a parachute, we think you should consider doing the same.




  6. #6
    Time is not a road.
    Reputation: chad1433's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuhgetaboudit
    [COLOR=Navy]Unless your standard riding gear includes the Tibetan Book of the Dead, your Last Will and Testament and a parachute, we think you should consider doing the same.
    That's funny!

  7. #7
    The Dude Abides
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    I think it'll be okay

    It seems Ellsworth is worried about the increase in energy (read stress) going into the headtube since the increased stiffness of the 36mm stanchions will absorb less. I haven't done any analysis on it or anything, but it seems they might be a little overly worried. I also like the Speedgoat opinion, they make some ineresting points.

    So my Moment will be rocking a 36 and I have a standard King headset. You don't suppose it'll be weaker because it's pink? It does say "Pretty and Strong" on it, so I think I'll be okay.

  8. #8
    In FTF We Trust
    Reputation: el-cid's Avatar
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    I don't know the ins-and-outs of the Ellsworth warranty, but it seems like if they recommend a deep-press headset, and it's a warranty issue, then that's what I'd go with. The weight difference can be made up elsewhere, but the peace of mind of knowing you won't get hassled if you ever have a problem with the frame is well worth 1/4 lb. or less. Plus, personally, I think the steelsets look pretty cool.
    "I'll disintegrate over time if I expect my body to try to keep up with my mind" -BM

    Race, Rocks or Road...Just Ride

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