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Old 11-21-12, 07:43 AM   #1
teamtrinity
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Removing crown race?

Is there a safe way to remove the crown race without a special, dedicated tool?

Thanks!
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Old 11-21-12, 08:20 AM   #2
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Only if you can see some of its bottom edge; hammer and punch.

If it's a new-style thing with a beefy crown that extends past the race all around, you need a press that pinches blades beneath it.
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Old 11-21-12, 11:12 AM   #3
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if you've got skills you can do it with out the park remover tool (although I would mind having one)--
I have an old flat head screwdriver that is super smooth and worn (50+ years old) - used in conjunction with my rubber jawed work bench vise and a rubber tap hammer I have have 100% success on 1", 1.125", 1.25" & 1.5" crowns carbon & alloy with out a mark --- with a steady effort I can get them off safely in about 3-5 minutes.
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Old 11-21-12, 11:30 AM   #4
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Hammer+screwdriver+steadyhand+patience=success.
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Old 11-21-12, 11:46 AM   #5
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As long as the bottom outer edge is slightly raised from the fork crown you can drive a wedge under it. You can use a sharp screwdriver, or the blade of a strong knife like clam shucking knife. Once you have a crack started, then it's a simple mater of working it up by degrees. Be sure to keep it close to level as you work it up so it doesn't cam and gouge the fork.

If there isn't a raised outer lip, then you'll have to force a sharp edge under to get it started. Here's where I get the best service out of my old clam knife. This is likely to gauge a carbon fork, so work carefully.
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Old 11-21-12, 12:40 PM   #6
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Hammer & punch & delicacy. I had to remove one that had no bottom lip showing. Used a cheap (6 for $3.00!) wood chisel to get it started. Lotsa small taps, not lumberjack hits.
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Old 11-21-12, 01:43 PM   #7
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This also depends on the crown race and steerer. I have removed many crown races with leaving any mark until I tried to remove the crown race from a Shimano Ultegra sealed headset (one of the nicest headsets ever made BTW). The crown race is somewhat thin and simply would not move without considerable force. I eventually removed it but the crown race was too beaten up to re-use; fortunately the are still easily replaceable. So just a cautionary tale, if it seems like the hammer, screw driver, punch system is not working, take it to your lbs or buy a tool..
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Old 11-21-12, 02:22 PM   #8
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If the race is really flush and no exposed lip is available, a sharp, thin knife driven in gently all around the circumference should gradually lift it off it's seat. FB's clam knife is ok and the replacable blade from a utility knife should work too as it's thin and hard enough.
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Old 11-21-12, 04:35 PM   #9
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Some of those are a real pain even WITH specialized tools. Some manufacturers of CF forks, for example, don't even bother to provide recesses under the crown race area to get a tool started. The angle on a chisel is too steep but a good meat cleaver, a small hammer and a little care will do the job without a mark.
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Old 11-25-12, 08:01 AM   #10
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I bit the bullet and bought one of these. What a relief. Nothing like the right tool for the job.
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Old 11-25-12, 08:14 AM   #11
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Here's a pic of my Park crown race remover. Like others have said, it will work better on some races than others. It's heavy, bulky, and fairly expensive. Of all the tools I own, this one seems almost comical to me when I think about the tiny little task it helps me perform relative to the tool's physical size and weight. But it does do a nice job in most cases.

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Old 11-25-12, 08:50 AM   #12
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if the crown race has no relief under the base, i use a stiff putty knife to get it started then finish off with the park remover
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Old 11-25-12, 09:31 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by rootboy View Post
I bit the bullet and bought one of these. What a relief. Nothing like the right tool for the job.
This tool works only for crown races that have an exposed edge overlaping the fork crown race seat. If the crown race is entirely within the edge of the race seat, this thing is useless.
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Old 11-25-12, 10:59 AM   #14
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You can use a crescent wrench. Open it so it touch the adges of the crownfork and hammer gently you dont want to miss.
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Old 11-25-12, 11:36 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by well biked View Post
Here's a pic of my Park crown race remover. Like others have said, it will work better on some races than others. It's heavy, bulky, and fairly expensive. Of all the tools I own, this one seems almost comical to me when I think about the tiny little task it helps me perform relative to the tool's physical size and weight. But it does do a nice job in most cases.
Though expensive, it's still less than the cost of a new fork (usually), so I bought one too. I always find working in that area of a bike to be especially frustrating. A fork is a fairly delicate component that really doesn't take well to being abused, i.e. a single slip of a hammer or chisel could trash it, yet almost every task a mechanic does there involves banging on stuff with hammers, punches, slide hammers, etc. I just wish someone made a crown race setter that didn't involve pounding on things with hammers. I can envision a press that looks something like a bearing puller that goes under the fork crown and pulls the race down in a nice controlled manner.
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Old 11-25-12, 11:42 AM   #16
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Though expensive, it's still less than the cost of a new fork (usually), so I bought one too. I always find working in that area of a bike to be especially frustrating. A fork is a fairly delicate component that really doesn't take well to being abused, i.e. a single slip of a hammer or chisel could trash it, yet almost every task a mechanic does there involves banging on stuff with hammers, punches, slide hammers, etc. I just wish someone made a crown race setter that didn't involve pounding on things with hammers. I can envision a press that looks something like a bearing puller that goes under the fork crown and pulls the race down in a nice controlled manner.
The least harmful crown races are the split races offered by FSA and some other makers for their cartridge bearing headsets. They install and remove with only finger pressuere and no tools of any kind are needed. It's unfortunate they aren't more commonly available.
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