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Fork/Frame free play(6 posts)

Fork/Frame free playErikofEdmonds
Nov 5, 2002 8:55 AM
I have a new Bianchi Eros, with less than 500 miles on it so far. Last night I noticed that there is free play in the fork/frame connection. I noticed while riding that this causes the fork/wheel to move a bit when the front brake is applied. Also, the front brake started squealing within the last couple rides, which may be due to vibrations caused from the slop at this connection. I've never seen this problem before (Im no bike mechanic). What should I do? Thanks, Erik in Edmonds, WA
re: Fork/Frame free playRusty Coggs
Nov 5, 2002 9:20 AM
Adjust the headset.Or, more likely go to LBS and have it done.
Agree--it's a loose headset, shop should fix itretro
Nov 5, 2002 12:36 PM
It's common, and easy to adjust out. You might have them show you how to do it. With such a new bike, though, I think they should do it free.
may be too late...C-40
Nov 5, 2002 3:02 PM
It doesn't take very many miles of riding on a loose headset to dent the lower bearing race. If the the headset is rough when adjusted to zero clearance, it's time for a new one.

If your bike has a threadless headset, you should learn to do adjust the headset yourself. Usually requires only a 5mm hex wrench to loosen the steering tube clamp bolts, tighten the top cap to eliminate play and retighten the steering tube clamp. Takes a couple on minutes, tops.
Speaking of headset adjustment...B2
Nov 5, 2002 4:53 PM
That's something I've never developed a good feel for. It obvious when it's not tight enough, but how do you tell if it's too tight. I've been told to look for any binding as the steerer rotates, but it seems to me that you could still have it too tight without any binding??? I usually get it to the point where there is no play and then snug it up just a fraction more. Any helpful hints appreciated.

if no binding...C-40
Nov 5, 2002 6:06 PM
then it's probably not too tight. Leaving any clearance for the fork to bounce around will ruin a race a lot quicker than being a bit snug. As long as the fork turns freely, you should be OK.