Headset adjustment advice something is wrong ?

buder
buder Posts: 154
edited March 2011 in Workshop
Hello All,

I have needed to re-adjust the pre-load on the headset after noticing some play.

With the stem clamp bolts loose I adjust the top cap which sits on top of a 5mm spacer and this is fine I can remove the play no problem.

When I then tighten the stem clamp bolts its as if some play returns. I can if I try just about turn the top spacer by hand above the stem ?.

I cant turn the bottom 15mm spacer below the stem thats rock solid just wondering if the same should apply to the one above the stem as im not sure how I can solve this its a new bike so would have thought everything is in working order ??

Cheers

Comments

  • Mike67
    Mike67 Posts: 585
    If you take the top cap off does your stem/spacer stack protude a few mm above the top of the forks steerer tube? You need this to maintain the preload.

    Another thought..are your spacers seated properly when you apply the preload. Give them the once over to see if they are sitting straight.
    Mike B

    Cannondale CAAD9
    Kinesis Pro 5 cross bike
    Lots of bits
  • Berk Bonebonce
    Berk Bonebonce Posts: 1,245
    Mike67 wrote:
    If you take the top cap off does your stem/spacer stack protude a few mm above the top of the forks steerer tube? You need this to maintain the preload..

    Yes. The children they employ in Vietmanese bike factories may not understand the workings of headsets. As you tighten the top cap it has the effect of compressing the steering set up. If the top of your steerer tube only sits a mm or so below the uppermost spacer, there may not be enough compression.

    Second thing is the depth at which the star fangled nut or bung sits inside the steerer tube. The star nut/bung may need seating deeper into the tube as this is what your top cap tightens into. Give thought to the threads on the bolt and the positioning of these in the star nut/bung.
  • buder
    buder Posts: 154
    Mike67 wrote:
    If you take the top cap off does your stem/spacer stack protude a few mm above the top of the forks steerer tube? You need this to maintain the preload.

    Another thought..are your spacers seated properly when you apply the preload. Give them the once over to see if they are sitting straight.

    Hi Mike

    The bung I have is of the variety which has a lip that sits over the top of the steerer with is about 3mm higher than the top of the stem I then have another 5mm spacer which sits on the top of the bung/steerer and then the top cap so should have enough height to get the pre load right.

    Hope that makes sense ?. But I get what your saying I did make sure I had them put a spacer above as I was aware of what you said.

    Ive got it adjusted ok now no play but the top spacer can turn just about ?. With the stem clamp bolts loose its rock solid. Does it really matter though aslong as the bottom spacer doesnt turn its all locked down ?.
  • nicklouse
    nicklouse Posts: 50,675
    how much does the top cap go into the top 5mm spacer.

    I would fit a 10mm spacer and see if it fixes the issue.
    "Do not follow where the path may lead, Go instead where there is no path, and Leave a Trail."
    Parktools :?:SheldonBrown
  • buder
    buder Posts: 154
    I dont think its a problem now, bottom spacer is solid play is removed I was only worried about the fact the top spacer could be turned by hand but being as it sits above the stem its not really doing anything once the stem has been clamped down is it ?.

    Good point about the topcap, it doesn't go in by far but ive got atleast 6mm height I reckon