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  1. #1
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    Sealed bearing headset binding

    I switched from a loose ball to sealed bearing headset (Nashbar, 1" threaded) and something doesn't feel right. Its very smooth and it tracks fine when I ride it with no hands, but there seems to be just the slightest amount of sticking or resistance when I go to make a fast turn. Its not the index type sticking from damaged BB headsets, just a slight resistance to turning.

    I've adjusted the headset so there is no play, but if I were to back off the adjustment nut 30 degrees or so, I would feel some play.

    Am I doing something wrong?
    Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

    1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
    1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
    1988 Ducati 750 F1

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by vpiuva View Post
    Sounds like maybe the cups aren't parallel. I've used that same headset and didn't have a problem. Knock on wood.
    Good point. I painted the frame and just had the headtube and fork crown faced. Wonder if the mechanic messed up?
    Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

    1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
    1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
    1988 Ducati 750 F1

  3. #3
    Sometimes knows stuff. rmfnla's Avatar
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    Pretty hard to mess that up if the proper tool is being used.

    Maybe the bearing mounts (cups for loose balls) aren't seated completely.
    Today, I believe my jurisdiction ends here...

  4. #4
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    Well, the problem was machanical failure. As a mechanic, I was a failure.

    I took it apart, measured the parralelism between the cups, which was fine so it wasn't the LBS milling job on the headtube that was causing the binding.

    I examined the upper and lower sealed bearings and they looked to be identical, so I swapped top to bottom. Apparently they are not identical and now that the bearings are in the right place, the headset works like a dream.

    Oh well, live and learn.
    Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

    1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
    1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
    1988 Ducati 750 F1

  5. #5
    Sometimes knows stuff. rmfnla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by San Rensho View Post
    Well, the problem was machanical failure. As a mechanic, I was a failure.

    I took it apart, measured the parralelism between the cups, which was fine so it wasn't the LBS milling job on the headtube that was causing the binding.

    I examined the upper and lower sealed bearings and they looked to be identical, so I swapped top to bottom. Apparently they are not identical and now that the bearings are in the right place, the headset works like a dream.

    Oh well, live and learn.
    I'd be interested to learn if there really is any difference between those bearings (do they have different part #s?) or if Arnie has struck yet again...
    Today, I believe my jurisdiction ends here...

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by rmfnla View Post
    I'd be interested to learn if there really is any difference between those bearings (do they have different part #s?) or if Arnie has struck yet again...
    I looked at them pretty closely, and I couldn't see a difference, but when I switched them, the space between the adjustable race and the top cup was different, so I guess I'm assuming they are different.

    Who is Arnie?
    Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

    1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
    1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
    1988 Ducati 750 F1

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