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What are the differences between a 36 x 45 and a 45 x 45 headset bearing?

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What are the differences between a 36 x 45 and a 45 x 45 headset bearing?

Old 04-06-12, 02:13 PM
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Trunk Monkey
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What are the differences between a 36 x 45 and a 45 x 45 headset bearing?

I'm trying to sort out some spare parts I got with a used frame I bought recently. I'll try to be specific enough without being confusing (I hope).

Headset 1:
36 x 45 bearings are from a cane creek that is known to be a complete headset kit and everything is in good condition.

Headset 2:
45 x 45 is a set of Ritchey bearings that came out of what I BELIEVE to be a mostly complete Cane Creek headset (minus the original bearings of course). The original owner removed most of the logos off of his bike but the cups appear to be CC and the top cap definitely is, it's marked "Cane Creek VP-A46ACM"

I am going to send some parts out to get anodized a custom color. Since Headset 2 doesn't look so hot it only makes sense to get it refinished but I want to make sure I have a complete set that will function properly when I get the parts back.

My question is what is functionally different between a 36 x 45 and a 45 x 45 bearing. I'm sure one of the angles specs the angle of the inside diameter of the side of the bearing that mates with the race (is it the first or second number?). I noticed on the outside diameter of the "non-race" side of the bearing there is also has a chamfer/angle and it is on the side that installed in the cup first. Other than easing installation it doesn't appear the chamfer serves an operational purpose. Is this outer angle one of the two specified in the 36 x 45 or 45 x 45 spec?

I'm assuming I need to keep the races of the two headsets matched accordingly (unless they are both 45)?

Thanks for the help.
TM
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Old 04-06-12, 02:33 PM
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ultraman6970
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36x45 is the regular cane creek specs for integrated headsets bearings...

45x45 degrees is the campagnolo specification.

The bearings have angled edges, one is outside and othe other is in the inside diameter... you have two problems if you put the wrong bearing in a headset, the 1st problem is that the height of the bearing is different and the second one and maybe the post important one, is that the bearings rest line in a cone (races) with an angle, if the angle doesnt match the race then you have a lot of chances of destroying the bearing, headset bearings last long time but if you put them in the wrong headset probably after a couple of days it will be useless (cracked) and you need to put a new one in.

Hope this helps because i have not read all you wrote
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Old 04-06-12, 03:03 PM
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Trunk Monkey
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Originally Posted by ultraman6970 View Post
Hope this helps because i have not read all you wrote
Fair enough, lol. I get the impression that the 45 common in both specs is the angle on the OD. The spec that is is either 45 or 36 is the angle on the ID. Also, the bearing height is an important detail that I did not notice (couldn't see the forrest through the trees, not sure how I missed that one). The 45 x 45 is taller just for reference and seems to fit the cups that I pulled them from just fine. I believe the VP-A46ACM nomenclature on the cap also references this to a campy setup.

Thanks or the help.
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