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why the freaking creak in the headtube?????(14 posts)

why the freaking creak in the headtube?????apex5200
Sep 15, 2003 4:25 PM
I have a strange creak in my headtube, which i thought was the headset, so i got a new king headset and can't figure what it is. i have a 2000 trek 5500. i thought maybe the fork is bad, but the creak comes specifically when you stand and sway the bike. any help would save my sanity...thanks.
Sep 15, 2003 4:28 PM
Grease the stem/steerer and stem/bar interfaces. I had the same problem, it was the stem/bar.
re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????12x23
Sep 15, 2003 4:49 PM
I've had this problem with my oclvs and they sound like they're breaking. One time I simply didn't have the front wheel skewer quite tight enough (Helium wheel/Mavic skewer), and once after a complete disassembly and cleanup I forgot to rub a little grease in the headset cups (Cane Creek S-6). Both were really bad and creaked as you described, and both were easily solved.
See post below on creaking cranks - it may not be your HS - nmKerry Irons
Sep 15, 2003 5:16 PM
re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????Cat 3 boy
Sep 16, 2003 1:45 AM
I get the same with a full carbon fork & one carbon spacer. Best remedy is grease the spacer & also the steerer VERY lightly.

No2 culprit is the front qr skewer, loosen it off & grease both sides of the dropout. I cured an elusive creak in seconds by doing this, the relief is FANTASTIC ;)
re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????apex5200
Sep 16, 2003 6:17 AM
i have thought of the grease factor, but this bike was just put together a weekago, and teh creak ws there before, it was part of the reaason i got all new stuff. i had a cane creek c2 headset and the stock trek bar, but now i have an ec 90 bar with a king headset and new wheels, ksyrium sls. i'll check the wheel thing, but everything that was on the bike, and made it creak is now off and it still creaks...i just don't get it.
re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????apex5200
Sep 16, 2003 6:22 AM
AND, i had my girlfriend put her head next to the headtube and she siad it was definitely the headtube. i thought it may be the crank, but it happens when not spining and is really loud in teh headtube. But it does sound like it is going to break..and it seems to be getting worse...
thanks for your help thus far everyone.
re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????12x23
Sep 16, 2003 9:59 AM
I was riding with a friend at a century last Saturday. His (he thought) bottom bracket was creaking when out of the saddle. According to his lbs it turned out to be the bearings loose in his front Ksyrium. I had never seen (heard?) this one before then.
re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????dave woof
Sep 16, 2003 3:50 PM
Could be your handlebars, if not CF, mine were creaking like that for a few days, they failed dramatically and I crashed. Check handlebars carefully.

Did you see this post in the General forum?Straightblock
Sep 17, 2003 7:50 AM
Sprint-Nick "Is this fork warranteeable?" 9/15/03 12:20pm

Like a handlebar failure, a fork failure could be catastrophic. Be careful.
re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????RichC
Sep 17, 2003 1:01 PM
Had a similar problem with my new build Principia. When standing over the bike and turning the handlebars from side to side there was a terrible creaking sound that sounded as if something was breaking inside the head tube. Stripped down the whole assembly and regreased all head set bearings but it still made the same noise. Finally tracked the noise down to the derailleur cable ends creaking inside the head tube cable stops. Trimmed back the cables (straight this time with no sharp edges) and hey presto noise disappeared.
Lube ??JimP
Sep 17, 2003 1:17 PM
I have noted several posters advocating lubricating the headtube/stem/bars. I recently replaced the stem and the ITM instructions were to lightly sand the inside of the stem and the outside of the headtube then clean thoroughly before assembly.

re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????slaw
Sep 17, 2003 2:23 PM
I have had creaks in the head tube area also on certain bikes. You might try one other thing if you still have not found your creak. Strange as it may seem the headset cups can creak in the frame. I have used epoxy to set some problem ones before. Viola, the creak goes away. Yes, it was the cups. Greased everything else etc to no avail before isolating it to this. Pressing the cups in with epoxy did the trick. Grease worked for a while in that interface but the creak always came back. Especially on the tandem where the load is so high and the anodized King headset cups actually move a micro amount against the frame tube. I have also done an OCLV frame and aluminum frames. That OCLV frame was so poorly made that the bores were oversize and in horrible shape (relatively new frame too). Epoxy bedded the cups in nice and straight. It now has a tight straight quiet headset many thousands of miles later. Of couse if you are leery about bonding the cups in try greasing and re-installing the headset cups in the frame. You just might find that the creak was coming from that area. And yes I did face and ream the head tubes to ensure correct press fit and proper square alignment as well before resorting to the epoxy. Th OCLV frame was so bad that the reamer just fell into the frame though.
re: why the freaking creak in the headtube?????NASA Noddler
Sep 17, 2003 5:24 PM
"Finally tracked the noise down to the derailleur cable ends creaking inside the head tube cable stops"

Good advice, I've seen this on two bikes lately, mine included. Watch how the end of the cable housing has to rotate in the cable stop to compensate as you rotate the handlebars side to side. Grease or a little lube oninto the stop can fix the problem.