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Brampton Headset Bearing Size

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Brampton Headset Bearing Size

Old 06-01-23, 12:24 PM
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Bikes: 1948 P. Barnard & Son, 1962 Rudge Sports, 1963 Freddie Grubb Routier, 1980 Manufrance Hirondelle, 1983 F. Moser Sprint, 1989 Raleigh Technium Pre, 2001 Raleigh M80

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Brampton Headset Bearing Size

I'm getting some binding (hard to steer) with this early-50's Brampton. It's not really bad, just enough to make me look (to an experienced rider) like I don't know how to control a bike. The top races are definitely meant for 5/32" bearings. The bottom race is definitely (as-supplied) 1/8". 5/32" will not fit in the bottom races. I can't figure out why I am getting binding. Should I try 1/8" bearings in the top race? I tried putting 5/32" bearings in the bottom (from another Brampton with retainer). That was definitely wrong (I could tell by looking at the crown race from the outside with fork in steerer tube) Got binding and squeaking when tried to turn the bars.

5/32" bearings sit neatly

Bottom race almost filled with 1/8" bearings w/ 5/32 bearing outside for reference

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Old 06-01-23, 12:38 PM
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Brampton headset models with floating U-races take 1/8" ball in both upper and lower

due to lo-res of images (and me auld peepers! ) do not fully trust me observations based on the images provided

the floating U-race design is an interesting one to work with and perfectly valid in my experience

when well mounted and adjusted they can be very smooth

will seem odd at first to a spanner twister only familiar with cup & cone design

came OEM on many Brit mounts well into the nineteen seventies


Last edited by juvela; 06-01-23 at 04:44 PM. Reason: addition
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