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Proper Tightening for Threadless Headset(4 posts)

Proper Tightening for Threadless HeadsetFez
Dec 27, 2002 11:09 AM
How tight should I torque the top cap bolt? I read an article that said the stem bolt should be clamped very securely to the steerer tube, but that the top cap should be tightened very lightly so that the spacers (if applicable) can actually turn.

It said any tighter will not make any difference except that you risk stripping/breaking the top star nut.

re: Proper Tightening for Threadless Headsetdivve
Dec 27, 2002 11:36 AM
Tighten it until there's no play yet smooth turning through the whole range. As loose as possible is what I do. Then tighten the stem bolts down to 8-10Nm, which will then retain the headset adjustment regardless of the top cap torque.
Sounds like goofy advice to me.Spoke Wrench
Dec 27, 2002 1:37 PM
The purpose of the top cap is to adjust and hold the preset on the headset bearings until you can tighten the stem bolts.

While the stem bolts are loose you should tighten the top cap until there is no play in the headset yet the wheel still turns smoothly from side to side.

If you have a run-of-the-mill stem you can clamp down the stem bolts pretty tightly with impunity. If you have a high end stem, use the torque spec they advise or you may strip out some expensive threads. I was surprised at how little torque Thompson recommended for my stem.
re: Proper Tightening for Threadless Headsetmackgoo
Dec 28, 2002 10:56 PM
It just may be the described procedure gives a good pre load on the head set.