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Thread: BB's

  1. #1
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    BB's

    After playing with cup and cone for many hears I have gone over to Phil Wood Cartridge exclusively on all my bikes but one. The only reason for that one is that it is a French thread tandem bottom bracket and I just don't want to spend the money on something that I don't ride that often. The cup and cones on that bike are in pristine shape so should last forever. That said there are Shimano BB's, Un-72 for example, that are much less than the Phil and you could replace them a couple of times for the price of a Phil. That is the good thing; the bad thing is that you will probably have to over the life of the Phil. Pay them now or pay them later. It's interesting what people are saying about headsets. I have Chris King on most of the bikes and have never had any issues with them. I tend to not ride them in really bad weather and clean the bikes obsessively and they are not off road bikes. That may play a part in the equation.

    fixedgearhead
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  2. #2
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    i think this was supposed to go in the other thread...but, to reply RE: headsets, there's a BIG difference between chris king headsets and shimano 105 headsets.

    i'd still rather pay $15-$25 for a NOS loose-ball headset that will suit my needs and last a long time as long as i don't neglect it, than $100 for a king that will also suit my needs and also last a very long time.

    call me crazy, but i think $100 for a headset is a tad excessive.

  3. #3
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    hmm I was actually getting ready to get a 105 headset as a replacement for the original on my old 80's trek... should I? Or should I get something else? reccomendations?

  4. #4
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    105 and Record headsets come higly recommended. As for spending $100 on a King, I'm with OTS. 'Normal' headsets are good enough for 99% of bikes, and I can fit out five bikes with new ones for the cost of a King.

  5. #5
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    i'm not entirely sure why my 105 headset failed like it did. it was less than a year old when i first noticed the bearings binding. it was either incorrectly installed (by a high-end shop that should know how to do it) which caused the bearings to bind in places, and contributed to pre-mature failure, or i installed the fork crown race incorrectly, but i had it checked and rechecked by a couple mechanic friends and they said i did a good job with that. or it could've just been all the rain and salt and other crap that got in there. i still would like to be able to salvage it, but i hear the replacement cartridge bearings are almost as expensive as a whole new 105 headset. mine was not the first 105 failure that i've heard of. a courier friend of mine had one for i don't know how long, and the same thing happened to his that happened to mine.

    i have another 105 on my road bike which has seen significantly less foul weather (none, as a matter of fact), and it's still running smooth. and the one that "died" is still installed on the bike, and after three baths in WD-40, being rinsed out, and packed packed packed with grease. it still turns sort of smooth, and doesn't lock up in places, and doesn't feel "indexed" while i'm riding it, it's just noisy as all get-out from the grit and whatever else is still in there. i'm anxiously awaiting getting a job so i can either install the D/A headset off another frame, or pay to have it installed for me, depending on the type of job i get (the D/A is a loose-ball type headset, and matches my wheels).

    wakuponfire, if the original headset on your trek is still working smoothly, and the cups aren't pitted or trundled, i'd say keep it and save your money.

  6. #6
    BFSSFG old timer riderx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OneTinSloth
    call me crazy, but i think $100 for a headset is a tad excessive.
    Not if you ride off road. I had one King headset that took over5 years of off road abuse and never had to be touched. Sold it with the frame (it was 1") and it's still in use years later. Hands down, there's nothing like a King. The seals are incredible, the performance something that seems made up. It seems like a lot initially, but with a 10 year warrenty that will most likely not be used, they are cheaper in the long run.
    Single Speed Outlaw
    Riding Bikes and Drinking Beer.

  7. #7
    Spawn of Satan
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    I think I am the only person who likes the nine speed Dura Ace bb. I have only heard people slam it in this forum.

    I clean it and regrease it three times a year and it is very fast very smooth. Once it is adjusted it is awesome. I ride it in all weather.

    I like cup and cone bb's for road bikes and sealed for MTB's.

  8. #8
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    100 Dollar headsets

    I think that the King head set, while admittedly expensive is guaranteed for 10 years, no if's, and's or buts. If it fails for any reason then they will repair or replace it Period. That is what you get for the price. Is it worth it? you decide. I'll take the trouble free, well made, 10 year guaranteed product every-time over the cheaper shorter lived more service needy one. If money is the issue then I can understand the decision. If not then better is better for me. It is not a snob thing just an insistence on reliability and performance above all else.

    Fixedgearhead
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  9. #9
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    Phil BB's

    another nice feature is that the mounting rings allow about 5mm of chainline adjustment, so you can dial it in perfectly.....

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommasini
    another nice feature is that the mounting rings allow about 5mm of chainline adjustment, so you can dial it in perfectly.....
    That alone is worth the price to say nothing of longevity.

    Fixedgearhead
    One gear in front,
    One gear in back,
    No coasting.
    What don't you understand?

  11. #11
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    i'll agree that king headsets are more worth the money on mountain bikes, or even BMX bikes (although there ARE better/stronger cups available). but on a road or fixed gear bike, i just don't see the point. the amount of abuse that a headset sees from these bikes, vs. MTB/BMX is really not enough in my opnion to warrant a $100 headset with a 10 year guarantee. if you get a $20 headset and you take care of it (install and adjust it properly and overhaul it once a year), it'll last for years and years. i really think my 105 headset failure was a fluke, but if it was loose-ball i could've done something about the problem sooner, like lubed it more often or actually cleaned it. my issue with the 105 HS is that the bearings aren't sealed at all, they're just encased in a cartridge, which you can't get inside to check and see if it's rusting out or being damaged. when i pulled the cartridges out, i could barely move them with my fingers. this, compared to my loose-ball headset that's seen way more harsh weather (probably 5 or 6 years before i bought it 3 years ago). and is still going strong...and i've only overhauled it once. it'll probably continue to work fine for another 3 years, maybe even beyond. when it dies, it dies, and i'll get a replacement (if they're still making 1" threaded headsets in 3-4 years).

    for me, $100 would be better spent spread out over a number of different little parts that are actually disposable, like chains, tires, or brake paraphenalia, or go into a fund for better wheels or something like that. that's just me though...

  12. #12
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    H/s

    for me, $100 would be better spent spread out over a number of different little parts that are actually disposable, like chains, tires, or brake paraphenalia, or go into a fund for better wheels or something like that. that's just me though...[/QUOTE]

    I guess I had worse luck with ball and cone h/s. I have had Tange/Levin cheapos. Campy chorus and Record and they all have developed indexing after a few years. Other than on the Tandem, which is a bastard sized "Bardon" French Thread, the only non Chris I have is on the Peugeot PX-10. It is a Stronglight A-9 which has angular races and long needle bearings. Not expensive but after 8 years of touring/fixed gear use in all kinds of weather it has remained true and trouble free. I Use it only because it is French thread and the only thing available in that threading. It works beautifully.

    Fixedgearhead
    One gear in front,
    One gear in back,
    No coasting.
    What don't you understand?

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