I had my local shop install a new Chris King headset into my Litespeed last week. I followed that with a new carbon fork with carbon steerer, new stem, and a new compression plug. When I'm off of the bike and pivot the front end this noise comes from the headset that sounds like something crunching gravel. The obvious two things would be the headset bearings or the carbon steerer, that's what's moving after all. Thoughts? I'm thinking either the bearings got damaged, the stem is too tight / not tight enough on the steerer, the compression plug is too tight / not tight enough, or gravel worked it's way in there (and I'm not really kidding about that last one). Has anyone heard this noise before and diagnosed the problem? I trust the shop completely, so I seriously doubt that they munged the bearings pressing the headset; they even used the super special Chris King headset ... set.
This morning I tracked the problem down to ... none of the above. It's the cables and housings shuffling around in the downtube stops and barrel adjusters. I have no idea how to quiet the housings. I may just drip some triflow down there and see what happens.
It only takes a drop. Any excess is a dit magnet.
If the shift housings (assuming STI) were left too long, they will often slap against the headtube or even each other. I set the length so they don't overlap in front of the headtube when the steering is straight ahead. You might be able to shorten them and that may reduce or eliminate some of the noise.