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  1. #1
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    Cannondale - Obsolete Headset

    Hi

    I have an old Cannondale M500 hardtail (in fact hard front too), which is circa 15 years old. The bike has treated me fantastically except that the headset has now gone (requires physical effort to turn the handlebars). Took it to my local and they told me that this part is nolonger made or in stock anywhere and that I may as well throw the frame away - something I am obviously loath to do, mainly because it is such a great bike. Can't remember exactly what diameter headset they said it needed but "threaded 1 1/4 inch" I think.

    Anyone have any bright ideas. Thanks in advance.

    Marc

  2. #2
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    Have you contacted Cannondale?

  3. #3
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    Not personally, but the bike shop insisted they had contacted all possible suppliers, including Cannondale directly. Guess it is worth a try in any case. Thanks

  4. #4
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    That is an unusual headset. The 1-1/4" size was introduced about the same time as 1-1/8" headsets. The 1-1/8" went on to become the de facto standard for almost all bikes while the 1-1/4" never caught on. Unless Cannondale can help or you get lucky and find an NOS one at a Cannondale dealer, I'm afraid you're out of luck. Even Loose Screws has nothing in 1-1/4"

    There were adapters that sleeved a 1-1/4" headtube down to accept a 1-1/8" headset but I don't know where they are available. Even if you located one, you would need a different fork so the cost may be more than the frame is worth.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider
    That is an unusual headset. The 1-1/4" size was introduced about the same time as 1-1/8" headsets. The 1-1/8" went on to become the de facto standard for almost all bikes while the 1-1/4" never caught on. Unless Cannondale can help or you get lucky and find an NOS one at a Cannondale dealer, I'm afraid you're out of luck. Even Loose Screws has nothing in 1-1/4"

    There were adapters that sleeved a 1-1/4" headtube down to accept a 1-1/8" headset but I don't know where they are available. Even if you located one, you would need a different fork so the cost may be more than the frame is worth.

    Check out Chris King as they still list this size in their catalogue.( though that might end up more than the frame)

    BTW the 1 1/8" headset was introduced in the 1930's as the British standard for Tandems and Mopeds and I may be wrong but I believe the 1 1/4 was originally a motorcyle standard that by whatever means ended up on quite a few 90's mountain bikes. GT and AlpineStar I know for sure.(owned both still have the star)

    I've heard of the conversions and they sound messy especially as the rigid Cannondales are such sweet looking bikes.
    Last edited by bikejack; 06-04-07 at 06:46 AM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikejack
    Check out Chris King as they still list this size in their catalogue.( though that might end up more than the frame)
    Good catch. CK does list 1-1/4" headsets in both threaded and threadless configuration as well as a headset to reduce a 1-1/4" frame to accept a 1-1/8" fork. As you said, the headset may be so expensive as to make the project unattractive. CK doesn't work cheap.

    BTW the 1 1/8" headset was introduced in the 1930's as the British standard for Tandems and Mopeds and I may be wrong but I believe the 1 1/4 was originally a motorcyle standard that by whatever means ended up on quite a few 90's mountain bikes. GT and AlpineStar I know for sure.(owned both still have the star)
    A lot of "new" ideas aren't really new but the 1-1/8" headset wasn't introduced to regular bikes until the '90's so the fact it existed well before that is of academic interest.

  7. #7
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    Threaded 1 1/4" headsets are still used by Bike Friday.
    http://store.bikefriday.com/index.ph...da1e0&cPath=25

    Don't believe everything a bike shop says...

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider
    A lot of "new" ideas aren't really new but the 1-1/8" headset wasn't introduced to regular bikes until the '90's so the fact it existed well before that is of academic interest.

    Given the number of mopeds in the world I'd say its been regular for quite some time.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by LWaB
    Threaded 1 1/4" headsets are still used by Bike Friday.
    http://store.bikefriday.com/index.ph...da1e0&cPath=25

    Don't believe everything a bike shop says...
    Interesting... and only 29 bucks!

  10. #10
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    Stripped rear derailleur cable bolt

    All

    Thanks very much for your responses - most helpful - didn't know this bike forum thing could be so helpful and useful - I hooked! Will take the head set off, confirm the size and then hopefully buy a $29 headset (plus the fortune in shipping to get it to the UK).

    Given the success of that query, here's another braintreaser. Have an XTR rear derailleur on my Santa Cruz BLT and being an amateur I have apparently managed to strip the cable connector bolt. [The reason I am not 100% sure is that there is this strange little spring that looks like the bolt might thread into but can't seem to make it happen and there seems to be too much play when i insert the bolt for me to have stripped it that badly]. If I have stripped it, expect the answer is throw it away and buy a new one, but thought I would circulate this on the off chance that there is something else I can do.

  11. #11
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    You should start a new thread...

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikejack
    Given the number of mopeds in the world I'd say its been regular for quite some time.
    True but mopeds aren't bicycles so even if the 1-1/8" headset was used on mopeds for decades, the bike world was pretty much unaware of it until the '90's.

    Out of curiosity, do the headsets used on mopeds have the same cup and crown race dimensions as those used on bikes?
    Last edited by HillRider; 06-04-07 at 04:58 PM.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikejack
    BTW the 1 1/8" headset was introduced in the 1930's as the British standard for Tandems and Mopeds and I may be wrong but I believe the 1 1/4 was originally a motorcyle standard that by whatever means ended up on quite a few 90's mountain bikes. GT and AlpineStar I know for sure.(owned both still have the star)
    The older British tandems I have overhauled use (some) different dimensions to current 1 1/8" headsets. Updating a 'Globetrotter' required brazing shims into the headtube and counter-reaming the fork crown to fit a modern headset. The stem is the same size (from vague memory).

  14. #14
    Gone, but not forgotten Sheldon Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider
    That is an unusual headset. The 1-1/4" size was introduced about the same time as 1-1/8" headsets. The 1-1/8" went on to become the de facto standard for almost all bikes while the 1-1/4" never caught on. Unless Cannondale can help or you get lucky and find an NOS one at a Cannondale dealer, I'm afraid you're out of luck. Even Loose Screws has nothing in 1-1/4"
    I believe Santana tandems also use this size, or did until recently. You might be able to get one from them.

    Headsets mostly wear out the lower parts, down at the bottom of the steerer, because that's the part that is weight bearing. If you can find a threadLESS 1 1/4 headset, you could use the bottom of that with the original threade parts above.

    Another fix for damaged headsets sometimes is to replace the retainers with loose balls. If you use loose balls you can generally fit more in than the retainer used. As a results, most of the new balls will no longer line up with the divots in the races.

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  15. #15
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    Beat me to it Sheldon B.
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

    If your bike has breaks, don't ride it.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by LWaB
    The older British tandems I have overhauled use (some) different dimensions to current 1 1/8" headsets.
    Probably a good reason for developing a standard.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider
    Out of curiosity, do the headsets used on mopeds have the same cup and crown race dimensions as those used on bikes?
    By definition a moped doesn't usually use a triple clamp like most motorcycles.

    From the mopeds I've seen they appear to have cycle sets in them. For dimensions I suppose it comes back to the manufacturer and how true they stick to the standard.

  18. #18
    cs1
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    Oh yee of little faith. Have any of you tried the temple of ebay?

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Shimano-Deore-XT...QQcmdZViewItem

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Saavedra-Needle-...QQcmdZViewItem

    I found 2 very nice ones for under $30 shipped from the same vendor. I've bought many times from Jones Bikes. If I were you, I'd buy a couple of them. Good luck

    Tim
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by cs1
    Oh yee of little faith. Have any of you tried the temple of ebay?

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Shimano-Deore-XT...QQcmdZViewItem

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Saavedra-Needle-...QQcmdZViewItem

    I found 2 very nice ones for under $30 shipped from the same vendor. I've bought many times from Jones Bikes. If I were you, I'd buy a couple of them. Good luck

    Tim
    Learn something every day. I never knew Shimano ever made 1-1/4" headsets.

    BTW, the stack height is given as 40.3 mm so the OP should be sure his steerer is long enough to work. I had an older Trek road bike that was factory cut to JUST fit the ~33 mm stack height OEM headset and all of the decent replacements were 37 mm or taller.

  20. #20
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    "threaded 1 1/4 inch" I think.
    I have a couple of 1 1/4 inch threaded laying around, 1 used, 1 new, they were for our Miyata Tandem. I changed it over to threadless.
    E-mail me with your address and I will send you one free.
    Gal. 2:20

  21. #21
    Senior Member TimJ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cs1
    Oh yee of little faith. Have any of you tried the temple of ebay?

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Shimano-Deore-XT...QQcmdZViewItem

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Saavedra-Needle-...QQcmdZViewItem

    I found 2 very nice ones for under $30 shipped from the same vendor. I've bought many times from Jones Bikes. If I were you, I'd buy a couple of them. Good luck

    Tim
    Yep. got me one of those for my Miyata. Now I've got the old (and still nos) Tange 1 1/4 as a backup.
    fun facts: Psychopaths have trouble understanding abstract concepts.
    "Incompetent individuals, compared with their more competent peers, will dramatically overestimate their ability and performance relative to objective criteria."

  22. #22
    cs1
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    Quote Originally Posted by TimJ
    Yep. got me one of those for my Miyata. Now I've got the old (and still nos) Tange 1 1/4 as a backup.
    I'm begining to think that there isn't anything you can't find on ebay. Used to be French parts were hard to come by. The other day I say 3 Campy BB's in French threading NIB for very reasonable money. You just have to know where to look.

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