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Integrated headsets - are there different sizes?

Big DaveBig Dave Posts: 85
edited September 2009 in Workshop
I've just started to rebuild a tired looking old Bianchi ML3 and it has an integrated headset. I've fitted a couple of 'normal' headsets before but I've never dealt with an integrated jobby up until now. Its a 1 1/8 sized one by the way.

My question is; do I need to replace the existing headset with a specific sort of integrated one? Are there different sizes? Also, will my choice of replacement fork be influenced by the fact that the bike will have an integrated headset?

Probably a daft question to those in the know but I'm used to building up MTBs with steel frames and good old FSA headsets. This whole integrated thing is confusing...

I ain't fat, merely optimised for gravity.


  • balthazarbalthazar Posts: 1,565
    I'm frightened by modern headsets too. I'm hanging on to old-ish fashioned threadless "normal" headsets for as long as possible. Since they prevailed there seems to have been a small explosion of nearly-but-not-quite identical types.

    Perhaps this Park Tool article can be our guiding light, however.
  • nicklousenicklouse Posts: 81,520 Lives Here
    Big Dave

    you just change the bearings on an integrated headset as there is nothing else to change :wink:
    "Do not follow where the path may lead, Go instead where there is no path, and Leave a Trail."
    Parktools :?:SheldonBrown
  • There are different types of bearing. The angles are different. I'd take out the cartridge bearings and take them to a good shop for advice. Also FSA do a measuring gauge which maybe a shop has, also I think they have a headset book which has drawings of all their headsets and bearings. Hope that helps a bit. It could be worse I have a 1 inch integrated headset which is totally non standard!
  • Ahh, I see. It is all a bit clearer now. I can see a trip to my LBS with a handful of bearings coming up.

    Thanks for the feedback guys.

    I ain't fat, merely optimised for gravity.
  • andyrrandyrr Posts: 1,624
    Think there are 2 or 3 common 'standards' (!) although I'm sure that there are a good few other varieties too.

    Bit of Googling : ... anchi.html
    fitted with VP-A41AC semi-integrated
    then ... 5&id3=1555
    Pinnacle Bikes have this headset fitted as standard.
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