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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 03-28-09, 06:46 PM   #1
guaps
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Problem with head tube. Is there a fix?

I just took a frame I'm restoring into a local shop to have the headset pressed on. The mechanic pushed the cups in with his fingers and said that's really bad. He said the head tube was too loose by about .2 mm. He said over time the head tube gets a little wider and there is no fix.

Is there anything I can do to fix this? I've spent the last several weeks painting it and I've already bought all the other parts i need for this bike (wheels, crank, handle bars, etc, etc).

The mechanic said it's not safe to ride. Why not? I can see it being annoying because of the play/knocking in the head tube, but how would it fail?

I'm pretty bummed about this right now...
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Old 03-28-09, 07:50 PM   #2
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even if it's rattling, there's not any "major" safety hazards. Sometimes a local shop would rather sell you a new bike than fix up your old one (not all shops). My recommendation is to use some aluminum cans as shims. However, a can isn't a permanent fix. In all reality you do need to replace the frame.
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Old 03-28-09, 08:07 PM   #3
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Shim it, you'll be fine. The other problem you might run into is that you may not be able to get the headset adjusted properly. In which case you might want to look for a new frame.
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Old 03-28-09, 08:10 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by zerosiah View Post
even if it's rattling, there's not any "major" safety hazards. Sometimes a local shop would rather sell you a new bike than fix up your old one (not all shops). My recommendation is to use some aluminum cans as shims. However, a can isn't a permanent fix. In all reality you do need to replace the frame.
Play in the headset cups and the headtube isn't going to be a "major" safety hazard?
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Old 03-28-09, 08:11 PM   #5
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Shim it, you'll be fine. The other problem you might run into is that you may not be able to get the headset adjusted properly. In which case you might want to look for a new frame.
^
^
my friend had a similar issue. shimmed it for about 1k miles while he looked for a good deal, never had an issue.
it was one of those "used to belong to a racer" njs frames, but i guess it saw one too many headset swaps.
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Old 03-28-09, 08:11 PM   #6
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What headset are you using?...Are you using a JIS standard headset?

assuming you have a 1" headtube, there are two headset standards.. JIS and standard 1"...

JIS has 30mm cups while standard 1" headsets have 30.2mm cups

there is a good chance there is nothing wrong with the frame at all..It might be you are using the wrong headset

a lot of Tange headsets are JIS...

Last edited by Dave Hickey; 03-28-09 at 08:26 PM.
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Old 03-28-09, 09:34 PM   #7
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The fine folks at King make oversize ones! from .02 to .10! only in silver. at least they did in the past back in the Santa Barbara days.
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Old 03-28-09, 09:54 PM   #8
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Super surprised to see Operator recommend a hack. But if you think about it, the fork and stem assembly (threadless or threaded) will just be pushing on it all the time. You might have better luck gluing or JB welding the pop can to the headset and then trying to press that in.
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Old 03-28-09, 10:13 PM   #9
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You guys are awesome, thanks! I'm going to look into a couple of things you all mentioned and see what I can do.

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Originally Posted by Dave Hickey View Post
What headset are you using?...Are you using a JIS standard headset? assuming you have a 1" headtube, there are two headset standards.. JIS and standard 1"... JIS has 30mm cups while standard 1" headsets have 30.2mm cups. there is a good chance there is nothing wrong with the frame at all..It might be you are using the wrong headset. a lot of Tange headsets are JIS...
It is an Origin 8 headset. It says Standard 1" on the box, and the guy at the shop said the head tube measured 30.4mm so those numbers all add up. So I think I have the right headset, but I'll double check anyways. If i do have the right one, I'll probably try the aluminum can shim.

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Play in the headset cups and the headtube isn't going to be a "major" safety hazard?
So what is the safety concern here? Speed wobbles? I don't understand how this would "fail" if it did.

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The fine folks at King make oversize ones! from .02 to .10! only in silver. at least they did in the past back in the Santa Barbara days.
This is a last resort, because it will cost me more $$, but a very good option. Thanks!
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Old 03-28-09, 10:18 PM   #10
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I have a headset thats been jb welded in. its been about 2 years and no problems. its not ideal, but its been holding up okay.
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Old 03-28-09, 10:41 PM   #11
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you might want to post this issue in the mechanic's forum also. Lots of expertise over there.
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Old 03-29-09, 01:11 AM   #12
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I have a headset thats been jb welded in. its been about 2 years and no problems. its not ideal, but its been holding up okay.
I have done the same.
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Old 03-29-09, 01:42 PM   #13
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Play in the headset cups and the headtube isn't going to be a "major" safety hazard?
Essentially the bike will not fall apart while riding. That's about all I'm saying.
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Old 03-29-09, 02:57 PM   #14
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Green loctite should be all you'll need. Me and all my trials riders do it on your bikes when the head tube ovalizes.
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Old 03-29-09, 04:30 PM   #15
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You need to get rid of play ASAP in the headtube. Over time, it will ovalize faster and faster. And then you're out a frame. I can't suggest any methods though. All of the headtubes with play that I've worked on were totalled by the time they took them into the shop.
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