I recently acquired an old 96 Stumpjumper and after riding it for awhile I noticed it has a bit of play when I apply back and forth pressure to the handlebar which doesn't seem right to me. Am I correct in assuming it might be a problem with the headset? This is the first bike I've owned with a threadless headset so I don't know much about them. I've been looking at some photos of different headsets on google images and they all appear to be different than mine. Is it just me or shouldn't it have a top cup covering the black rubber washer?
'''96 Litespeed Catalyst, '05 Litespeed Firenze, '06 Litespeed Tuscany, '12 Surly Pacer, All are 3x8,9 or 10. It is hilly around here!
I looks complete to me also. BTW, be sure the upper edge of the stem is 2-3 mm above the top of the steerer tube. If they are flush, you won't be able to properly preload the headset and will need to add a spacer either below or above the stem to obtain the adjustment gap.
I think so too- it does look like the bearing cup, meant to be pressed into the headtube. If that's the case there is no way to "lock" the bearing to the steerer. Me thinks someone got their assembly procedure bass-ackwards.