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Chris King on intergrated headsets(10 posts)

Chris King on intergrated headsetsgtx
Mar 21, 2002 9:24 PM
of couse they have an interest in this, but...
linky no worky....g-money
Mar 21, 2002 9:44 PM
it's a pdf nmgtx
Mar 21, 2002 9:53 PM
no, linky worky....collinsc
Mar 21, 2002 9:54 PM
you have adobe acrobat reader? you need it to check that out. can be had at if needed.
Personally, I like my conventional headset butLazywriter
Mar 21, 2002 9:54 PM
that article seems a little desparate to me on the part of Chris King. They must be nervous because the integrated design is working and more are adopting it.
They should have done what Cane Creek and Campy did and tried to get their Perdido as a standard in high end frames. They were late to react and are scared now. This is a shame because I would have loved to put a King in my Vortex, but couldn't. They make an awesome headset, but the integrated design works well. The talk about durability and frame damage is speculation and mainly the result of poor maintenance becasue a unadjusted conventional headset can ruin a frame potentially.
I am glad my Vortex has the pressed in cups though rather than the bearings sitting right against the inside of the headtube. That plus a lifetime guarantee calmed my initial concerns. However, to buy a Pinarello with a proprietary headset and fork is a scary endeavor. At least use the Campy or Cane Creek. The more this design is tested in competition, the more King will fall behind because there will be no turning back.
I hope their Perdido can be adapted to frames so people have choice again. I am sure someone will design something to make this possible, but only the company that spends on R&D. Cannot rest on your laurels and plead with the public to not adopt new technology so your company can continue to flourish. Now that is pathetic when they could just join in a try to build the better integrated headset rather than whine about the speculated design flaws.
re: e-mail these cry-babies and tell them:Ron
Mar 22, 2002 12:27 PM
to stop there WHINING!!
I used the Chris King headsets for years, on 99% of the bikes built in my shop. Never had a problem with any of them, not-a-one. But these guys was asleep at the wheel; kind of like IBM with DOS. They ran head first into Cane Creek and Campy doing business 24/7.

A few of the bike rage-mags ran articles refering to frame damage as a result of useing the integrated headset design last year. They made it a POINT to pick on companies like Pinarello and De Rosa. Both De Rosa and Pinarello are useing the integrated headset in there frames (Mereck, Plante, Prince, Galileo, and the up coming Pinarello Marvel frameset). So far they are all doing just fine. No frame or headset problmes.
These companies as well as a few other have been in the bike industry and making frames/bikes longer than these mouth peices been walking up-right(if they are).
I'm sorry, but there is nothing WORST than a self serving magizine bashing companies for impovements and/or changes in any industry. And they make there living off what these companies and what they do.
I don't subcribe and never will.

Chris King, blew it and in a area they had total control and consumer confidence.
And they heard it from me at the 2001 InterBike Show.

So far not a problem with any of the frames or headsets. I'm not a fan of the Cane Creek headsets or any product they produce, not my first choice, but they work. And Cane Creek is doing business and not playing bicycles like Chris King.
And if Chris King is going to sit back and wait for the cycling industry to have problem with our frames, I'll be willing to bet we'll see them file chapter 11 before that happends.

OK, I feel better,

thank you
what are these "improvements"?DaveG
Mar 23, 2002 7:53 AM
It's certainly true that CK has a bias on this, but I'm struggling with the "improvements" you refer to with integrated headsets. Yes, they "work" as you say but that's not any argument to change. Personally, anything that detracts from the standardization, durability and repairability of your bike is a bad thing in my opinion. I've been tough on headsets in the past, and I like the idea that if I mess one up I can easily replace it with headsets from many manufactuers. Maybe with today's ultra-lightweight, limited life ride-and-toss frames the lifetime of the headset is of minimal concern concern. However, I can't see any significant benefit to these designs and there are definately some drawbacks. I can see why bike companies think this is a good idea, but tell me why we should think so? Actaully there may be some money to be made here. If I stock up now on replacement parts for these things. I'll be selling on on ebay in 5 years for 10 times there current cost.
Follow the Money ifRon
Mar 23, 2002 5:57 PM
you really want the truth$ The frames manufacture transfer cash from the dealer to there own pocket. The money paid for the following: headtube facing for the headset $25.00, headset installation $20.00, and the cost of the headset $55 to $105.00. THe manufacture can add as much as $165.00 to the price of the frameset.
The end user with still pay the same amount within a few buck, but it caomes down to who gets the cash. Not the dealer or the customer that do there own work. And the bearings for the Pinarello price is a lot less than a Chris King headset.
It cost less money to replace a bottom bracket or headset than it dose to repair it. And take allot less time.
The price of the bearings for the Merlin, Lightspeed, Prince and so on is one sixth the price of a Chris King headset. They are regular old industrial grade beadings you get from King and Command bearing. And if you ever get the chance to see inside some of these bikes, don't be surprised to see the same bearings Shimano use in there headsets.
You don't have to think that what they do is a good ideal. They make the rules and don't really care what WE think when it comes to there MARGIN$.
There is allot of stuff I would change back as well. This one don't really bother me much. I lose money as well as Chris King on the deal and it don't make me happy. I just made it up in other areas.

Hey, if you don't have change you might as well be riding your old Stingray or a Pennyfarthing (spl).

The new headsets are cheaper and much easier to replace.
Try replacing a old loose ball headset. Glad that thing is gone.

Thoughts on CK comments,TJeanloz
Mar 22, 2002 4:57 PM
Clearly, Chris King has a vested interest in non-integrated headsets. But his arguments against them show ignorance of facts that I would not expect. First, the definition of 'integrated' headset is one that, while in existence, is certainly very rare. I don't know that I've seen a loose ball integrated headset on a modern bike. What King calls semi-integrated, the rest of the industry is calling integrated. It's an issue of semantics, but King is railing against an issue (or rather, a headset) that doesn't really exist.

As to the argument re: steering, it is clear that there will not be an effect at the headset level, but the effect is in stiffening the headtube/steerer tube by reducing the distance between the crown race and the top race. A stiffer steerer will lead to better handling- we discuss it every day re: 1 1/8" headtubes.

As to proprietary bearings, this is the pot calling the kettle black- can you put any standard bearing in a Chris King headset? Of course not- it's proprietary. So how can they use that as an argument against integration?

I think the real answer here, is one that's been hashed out on these boards for a long time- and that's that the integrated HS is purely cosmetic, and MIGHT have some weight or stiffness benefits besides.
Mar 23, 2002 2:08 PM
when all bike mfg go to "hidden" "integrated" "press on" headset who's gonna buy King? After all you can't really show off what is hidden.

with respect to lifespan how often do headsets fail? besides "old school" headsets aren't immune as CK may lead to believe you can still ovalize headtube and destroy frame.