A-headset adjustment



My Tandem has one of the new fangled, ::) ::) I think A-head set type of steerers. It is the type where your stem clamps onto a tube with a star washer inside and an allenkey nut with with a cap over the tube. There are spacers over the stem. Can or must this type of headset be adjusted for play. The old type with the wedge inside and the adjustable headset nuts were easy to work with and I understood them. What is the advantages of this type of steerer.????? What maintenance must this get.???????

Keep the wheels spinning

PS My Wife and I had our first race on the Tandem this weekend and did very admirably. (I think!!!) After throwing the chain two times due to my over zealousness we still managed to clock in at 31km/h!!!!!!!
G'Day h.
My tandem frame was built to take one of these new-fangled
A headsets, so I've installed a cheap Modus one just to see how it goes, with a view to replacing it with a roller bearing, or better quality unit later.
When the screw is tightened the star washer grips inside the steerer tube, and pressure (pre-load) is put on the bearings. The stem clamp is then tightened whilst holding it down on the spacers. Sort of helps to keep the assembly in place and maintain the position. I think I'm going to carry a spare star washer, just in case.
As for maintenance, perhaps it's just the same as the old type. If any slack is present, loosen the clamp and tighten the vertical screw or allen bolt, thus taking up any slack and again putting a little pre-load on the bearing. Finally, tighten the clamp.
I think the general advice is to have a few spacers below the clamp, in case you should change the handlebar clamp thingo later for one of a different length. i.e. rather have the steerer tube too long than find it's been cut too short.
Since my machine is incomplete and therefore not in use, I have yet to install the star washer. I guess we've got to come to terms with this item of progress, since it's so common nowadays.
It's inspiring to read of a bloke and his wife who are not afraid to get out and race their tandem. BTW, what's causing your chain to come off? Front deraileur adjustment/alignment? Too many links = too much slack? Hope you've got it sorted. Cheers.s
Hi Willie

I am using a Shimano Acera front deraileur. It is made for a 3 blade chainring. When it is at the extremes of its adjustment throwing it to the top gear takes it one click past. If I do not concentrate I trow it off the front blade, I have since learnt to throw it back while riding by just pedalling slower and manipulating the derailleur lever. It works most of the time. I only throw it occasioanly. Last Saturday we did a 72 Km race sprinted and won, for the finish and came fourth overall in the tandem class out of 15 tandems. Needless to say I was very chuffed.

We did the route of the 94,2 race that will take place on 03 Feb. 92,4 Jacaranda FM is a local radio station and quess what the rate is 94,2 km long. There is about 4500 entries and i think it will be a good race. Stiff course though.

I put new cones on my front hub today. I plished the new ones on my lathe. Cannot believe the diffrence it makes.

Keep those wheels turning!!!!!
Hi H. Sorry, I'm not very familiar with these index gadgets. Trouble is, there are so many possible areas of adjustment, all of which you are no doubt aware. 1. Limit screws. 2. Rotate the body of the front der. on the frame, assuming it's not a braze-on type. 3. Up & down the frame tube adjustment. 4. Fit a barrel adjuster to the front der. Umm, could be tricky, most don't have one, only the rear der. 5. Slacken the front der. cable clamp and put either a little slack or a little tension in the cable, holding it there whilst re-tightening the screw. This might effectively change the distance travelled of the cage when it reaches the index stop. 6. Each model of front der. has only a maximum range of teeth it will shift to and from, hence if you change a sprocket or two, the size may fall outside the specs. Back in the dark ages of ten-speeds and friction shifters, if it wouldn't work properly when correctly set up, then we'd modify the cage with a pair of pliers, reset the adjustments, and it would be fine.
Wish I had a lathe. Saw one today for sale, A$45, had to turn it down. Would you believe it was a treadle-operated job?
Not a toy, either. A heavy flywheel, round groove for an endless rope, the top unit had a grooved wooden roller on a shaft between two plain bearings, with provision to clamp a faceplate, and having a driver prong thing for wood turning. All that was missing was the bench to mount the two pieces on, and the backstop. It must have been durn near 100 years old, and I had to turn it down! Aaaarrrggghhhh!
Clever of you to polish the cones. Truly, every small reduction in friction you make is to your advantage. Did you simply use 400/600 # wet & dry? With kero? Many a time I've wanted to polish ball races. Two identical bikes, but one is smoother in say, the rear hub than the other. The answer has to be in bearing surfaces (finish) and maybe alignment.
Freddie Dixon, of U.K., years back, cut his teeth racing Douglas motorcycles, then switched to cars, Rileys. He was known to be up half the night, stripped the rear axle just to polish the faces of the gears on the crown wheel and pinions. Friction reduction. He'd re-assemble, and invariably win or get a place next day. I saw one of his experiments or inventions once, a disc brake on the front fork of a Duggie, only the disc mounted to the hub was made entirely of that brake pad stuff, and the 'pads' were of steel, I think. Pre-war, most likely. Good luck with your trouble-shooting. And goodnight.