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King Headset Removal

Old 01-21-21, 04:38 PM
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VtwinVince
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King Headset Removal

I have a first gen King NoThreadSet I'm trying to remove from a frame. After pulling the stem and spacers the fork is not budging. I've tried some Liquid Wrench and a mallet, no dice. Anyone got any pointers?
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Old 01-21-21, 07:48 PM
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aggiegrads
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I would try to get just the bearing cap first. Mine is a tight fit, so if you can get that part off, the fork may slide easier on the top and bottom cup assemblies.
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Old 01-21-21, 08:32 PM
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Andrew R Stewart 
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I have had to use quite a bit of impact force to dislodge the top race at times. This headset has an "O" ring on the race's ID to snug against the steerer (and thus not have had to "borrow" Cane Creek's split compression ring design). This O ring can not only be rather well stuck but it also can trap grime and/or water allowing for corrosion between the race and the steerer. Andy
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Old 01-21-21, 09:49 PM
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More penetrating oil, more time, and a bigger hammer.
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Old 01-22-21, 11:49 AM
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VtwinVince
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Thanks gentlemen, will let you know how it goes.
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Old 01-22-21, 06:06 PM
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canklecat
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If it's a first generation King headset the bike must be around 25-30 years old, right? The fork steerer tube may be corroded from years of accumulated moisture, maybe salts from sweat or drinks with electrolytes.

That's what happened with my 1993 Trek 5900 OCLV with Chris King titanium headset in late 2019. The previous owner used it for time trials or triathlons, so I'm betting sweat and/or electrolyte drink drool infiltrated through the headset and corroded the cartridge bearings and steerer tube.

After applying penetrating oil and waiting awhile I had to use a mallet to tap out the fork. It came out along with an exploded cartridge bearing unit. The steel steerer tube was coated with a brownish crusty residue that hindered sliding the fork out easily.

And I took the fork to the LBS so they could use their Park Tool crown race puller. None of the usual homebrewed methods I tried would budge the crown race and there was a risk of damaging the fork and steerer. With the Park tool removal took less than a minute.

After some careful scraping and polishing I cleaned up the fork, steerer and inside the head tube.

For now I'm using an Origin8 headset. I need to send the old King headset in for overhaul. They'll still service it for only $25.
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Old 01-23-21, 11:34 AM
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You're right, it's a '95 S-Works RockHopper. The combo of tons of penetrating oil and a bigger hammer worked, but it took some serious bashing.
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Old 01-23-21, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
If it's a first generation King headset the bike must be around 25-30 years old, right?
My 2006 Litespeed came with a CK headset that uses the O-ring instead of the split cone spacer so it's "only" 15 years old. I remove the fork (all carbon) and clean and grease the exterior of the bearings every couple of years and so far there is no corrosion on either cartridge.
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