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How do I...(6 posts)

How do I...BC
Sep 15, 2001 3:22 PM
adjust my threadless headset. Sometimes it is too tight and when I sprint it locks up and is hard to steer. Other times it is loose and rattles on rough roads and when I put the brake on and rock it back and forth.
re: How do I...Dave Hickey
Sep 15, 2001 3:33 PM
The allen screw on top adjusts the headset, but in order for you to adjust the heatset, first loosen the two screws that tighten the stem. Then tighten the alan screw on top of the steerer tube. After your headset is adjusted, re-tighten your stem. With a threadless system, the fork is held in place with the stem and the headset is adjusted with the cap screw.
Sounds like more than an ajustment problem...nee Spoke Wrench
Sep 15, 2001 4:03 PM
My bet is you have an upside down bearing, but there are a variety of other possibiities. My suggestion is to take your bike to someone knowledgable and have them disassemble and take a look at your headset.
Sounds like more than an ajustment problem...BC
Sep 15, 2001 5:15 PM
Well, it was like this when I took it for the 30 day tune up and when I told them about it the shop said they would fix it, but it is still the same.
Do this...Atombomber
Sep 15, 2001 6:36 PM
Take your bike to either the shop where you bought the bike, or if you don't trust their mechanics, another good shop. Have them "reface" your headtube.

If the two surfaces where the headset cups mate against the frame are not parallel, then you will get wonky headset adjusments. Sometimes too tight, other times too loose. Also, some headsets are just crap, and wear out prematurely.
Do this...David Feldman
Sep 16, 2001 12:37 PM
Three parts need to have good, parallel surfaces. The fork crown, the head tube--and the stem. On threadless systems the stem functions as an extension of the head tube. It's pretty easy to eyeball the crown race and the headset cups to see if they're correctly seated, although you still can't see if the surfaces are milled correctly. It's harder to see if a stem is out of square. You could also have an upside down bearing retainer if you have a loose bearing headset or a tight cartridge if the headset is one of the recent model inexpensive cartridge rigs, like a low-end Ritchey or Cane Creek. Both of these have bearing cartridge which are actually rebuildable and serviceable and are often so tight that they need it when brand new.
Shops don't want to think about this sometime, but a lot of new road bike technology especially carbon steerer forks and threadless systems cause bikes to require a longer assembly by more expensive help than beginning assemblers.
I wouldn't buy a modern road bike from a store that takes less than two hours to assemble one!