Bicycle Mechanics - removing headset cups/race from frame without special tools?
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01-05-06, 12:32 AM
How well does it work to remove headset cups, as well as the bearing race on the fork crown, without special tools? The tool to remove cups from the head-tube is cheap enough to be worth purchasing (around $30), but crown-race pullers run around $120 from what I've seen.
In lieu of such special tools, I'd plan to use a rubber-mallet hammer, and a flathead screwdriver, to tap the bearing cups and the crown race out. How well do these work? And how much risk do I pose to either the frame or the headset parts? (The frame in this case is lugged steel Centurion, headset is 105 with aluminum cups, steel crown race.)
I've done it many times, it can work well, and it can present significant risk. I can't outwardly recommend you do it that way, but the tools can sure be pricey for something you might not do very often.
01-05-06, 04:16 AM
Yeah, tap gently and go back and forth to opposite sides to push it out gradually.
01-05-06, 05:40 AM
I've done it that way many times. Never hurt anything.
Depending on the shape and size of the fork, you may be able to open a vise to the point where the crown race will rest on the jaws without anything else touching them. Then a tap on the steerer with a wood block and hammer and that should free the race. Put something under the fork to catch it when the race comes free.
01-05-06, 07:25 AM
It sounds like y'all are talking mainly about removing the crown race. Which is the part that I'm less worried about. (My question sounded like it was more about the crown race, too.) But does the same apply to tapping out the cups? Just tap around the cup, so distributing force down from all sides? Is there much danger to aluminum cups if one is careful? Any danger to the headtube? Thanks.
Yes,but dont use a flat blade screwdriver. Use a 3/8 socket extension if you dont have a suitable punch. You dont want to chisel it out,but just drive it out instead
You can gently tap the cups and races from the headtube and fork by using a flat tipped punch and a hammer. The keyword is "gently". You need to set the punch against the lip of the cup or race and tap fairly lightly. Move the tap around the item so you move it evenly on each side. For an aluminum headtube, be careful that you do not gouge the inside of the tube with the steel punch.
There are also plans for building your own headset cup removal tool by using a piece of PVC pipe and cutting slots in one end. I have no experience with this, though.
01-05-06, 08:39 AM
There are plans for building your own headset cup removal tool by using a piece of PVC pipe and cutting slots in one end. I have no experience with this, though.
The build-your-own with PVC pipe should be pretty easy, actually. I should have thought of that. Thanks. I've already built my own crown-race seating device with PVC, and headset-cup press with a long bolt, nuts, washers and brass bushings.
01-05-06, 10:57 AM
You'll never damage anything if you use a piece of 1/2" copper water pipe as a punch. It's so soft that it doesn't even leave marks on aluminum cups. When the ends of the pipe get deformed, just cut them off.
01-05-06, 11:02 AM
I use a little 1/4" thick sliver of wood to knock out the cups. It takes a few miuntes, but wood won't hurt your cups, even if they are aluminum.
01-05-06, 02:31 PM
You don't need a special tool to put the cups back in either, just a vise with an opening large enough to put the entire head tube in horizontally, or you can use a long bolt and nut with large washers. Lube the cups before you press them.
Having said that, if its a good bike, I would get the head tube faced by someone that has the Campy tool. They will also likely include pressing the cups in the price for the facing.
01-05-06, 03:06 PM
I whacked mine out with a large flathead and a framing hammer the other night. Be as careful or as sloppy as you want with steel cups. Try to pay a little attention with aluminum ones, but overall it's not rocket science. Just beat those suckers out.
01-05-06, 04:54 PM
Heh, heh... when I was a kid, I'd whack off the headset cups from the outside by smacking them with a hammer! Then again, those were heavy-duty steel cups with chrome-plating. It'd reinstall them the same way too, with the hammer! :)
01-05-06, 05:00 PM
I dont use the tool for the job either, not worth it for my needs.
A piece of aluminum plate will do it, as will a socket like another poster suggested
I have a selection of brass drifts for driving in/out bearing races etc. Basically brass round stock in various diameters and lengths. It's generally softer than what your driving in so the tool deforms before the driven part. Most I picked up as scrap in my travels over the years. I have a couple of good hardwood blocks for starting and centering, and as said sockets that match the diameter work good for seal/race driving tools.
01-05-06, 10:00 PM
Hey, I have done it both ways and the $20 I invested on Ebay for the Park removal tool was well worth it. The headset cups usually come flying out with 1 or 2 light taps. The installation tool is over $100 so I made one out of a long bolt, washers and some scraps of hardwood flooring. Just take your time, apply a little pressure and tap it lightly with a small hammer. They will go right in. Alum. is easier than Ti but it will work if you are patient and keep it reasonably well lined up.--Rob--
For installing I lightly lube the caps and stick them in the freezer to make them smaller.A few taps with my shot filled dead blow and they are in place.
01-06-06, 12:40 AM
When I did a resto on my Mondia, I removed the cups by inserting a long shafted screwdriver INSIDE the head tube, and tapping them out from the internal bottom edges. Almost impossible to damage them that way.
I re-installed the cups by setting them in place, and then using a threaded rod with large fender washers and nuts on both ends. Just stick the rod through the cups/headtube, place washers and nuts on both ends, and start snugging them up. Take it slow and they'll go right in without damage or marring.
02-02-06, 11:50 PM
i just took mine out with a rubber mallet(you could use a regular hammer, but i didnt wanna bother the neighbors, its 11 at night) and hit a 15" crecent(adjustable) wrench after putting it on the steerer tube where its not stuck on there but wont slide over the headsets, oh yea, i used a wall mounted vice to hold the bike and used the vice to reinstall them in my other frame
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