Unable to Tighten Threadless Headset



S

Sid

Guest
I have a 2+ year old Fuji with a threadless headset (FSA brand). This is my
first threadless and I have never taken it apart so I am not real clear what
is happening with my bike.

The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any play,
then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I checked
it, I have had to tighten the headset. Today I checked it and felt play,
but when I went to tighten the headset it would not tighten any further. It
seems like it had run out of threads or something.

What's going on and how do I correct the problem?

Thanks in advance for your help.

Sid
 
Sid Fincher writes:

> I have a 2+ year old Fuji with a threadless headset (FSA brand).
> This is my first threadless and I have never taken it apart so I am
> not real clear what is happening with my bike.


> The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset
> by locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel
> any play, then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every
> other time I checked it, I have had to tighten the headset. Today I
> checked it and felt play, but when I went to tighten the headset it
> would not tighten any further. It seems like it had run out of
> threads or something.


> What's going on and how do I correct the problem?


Two things could be at work.

1. If you don't tighten the stem on the steertube adequately, it could
slide up the tube and even a couple of 0.001" is enough to make the
bearing loose.

2. If the spacer (stack) below the stem, on the steer tube is a smidge
too short, stem adjustment (to be done while the stem is not
tightly clamped) cannot put any pressure on the head bearing.

However, you ask as though you were able to get correct adjustment
"every few weeks" so item 2. would not apply. However, your final
comment seems to point toward insufficient spacer height. Get a
slightly greater stack height (selection of spacer(s)).

Jobst Brandt
[email protected]
 
M

Me

Guest
You may have broken the nut portion of the star-fangled nut away from the
star portion causing it to spin with the bolt but still resist any vertical
motion- for now. Remedy: a new star-fangled nut. the part is cheap, need the
insertion tool or have LBS do it- shouldn't cost more than ?$15.

Randy

"Sid" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
>I have a 2+ year old Fuji with a threadless headset (FSA brand). This is
>my first threadless and I have never taken it apart so I am not real clear
>what is happening with my bike.
>
> The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
> locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any play,
> then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I checked
> it, I have had to tighten the headset. Today I checked it and felt play,
> but when I went to tighten the headset it would not tighten any further.
> It seems like it had run out of threads or something.
>
> What's going on and how do I correct the problem?
>
> Thanks in advance for your help.
>
> Sid
>
 

anerobic

New Member
Sep 4, 2003
28
0
0
The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any play,
then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I checked
it, I have had to tighten the headset.
Sid[/QUOTE]

watch out- you may be feeling the brake caliper arms rocking and not the headset-there's usually a little play in them. if you are going to test that way, rock the bike side to side or turn the wheel ninety degrees first and then push forward and back. that way you loose the slop in the brake calipers.
 
P

Phil, Squid-in-Training

Guest
anerobic wrote:
> The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
> locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any
> play,
> then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I
> checked
> it, I have had to tighten the headset.
> Sid
>
> watch out- you may be feeling the brake caliper arms rocking and not
> the headset-there's usually a little play in them. if you are going
> to test that way, rock the bike side to side or turn the wheel ninety
> degrees first and then push forward and back. that way you loose
> the slop in the brake calipers.


I still maintain that palming the top of the headtube, placing 1/2 your hand
on spacers, and 1/2 your hand on headtube, and rocking the bike with the
front brake locked, allows you to feel for relative movement. IMO, it's the
best way to check for a loose headset.
--
Phil, Squid-in-Training
 
V

vbenares

Guest

> The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
> locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any play,
> then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I checked
> it, I have had to tighten the headset. Today I checked it and felt play,
> but when I went to tighten the headset it would not tighten any further. It
> seems like it had run out of threads or something.


Just in case: Remember to loosen stem bolts before turning the bolt on
the cap atop the steerer tube. If you don't loosen the stem bolts
before tightening the bolt on top of the steerer tube, the bolt either
won't give (because the stem is tight on the steerer tube and won't
allow itself to be pushed any closer to the bike) or it will give
slightly. In the latter case, tightening the nut will either move the
stem slightly toward bike (which shouldn't happen if the stem is tight
on the steerer) or start destroying the star-fangle nut at the end of
the bolt inside the steerer tube.

See:

http://www.parktool.com/repair_help/howfix_headthreadless.shtml
 
R

Robin Hubert

Guest
"Sid" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
> I have a 2+ year old Fuji with a threadless headset (FSA brand). This is my
> first threadless and I have never taken it apart so I am not real clear what
> is happening with my bike.
>
> The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
> locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any play,
> then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I checked
> it, I have had to tighten the headset. Today I checked it and felt play,
> but when I went to tighten the headset it would not tighten any further. It
> seems like it had run out of threads or something.
>
> What's going on and how do I correct the problem?
>
> Thanks in advance for your help.
>


Is your fork all carbon (carbon steerer)? What kind of top cap fixing
device is there (star nut or plug)?

As JB says, it's one of the two things he mentioned or possibly an
improperly secured plug, which could actually be moving upward. I've
never seen a star nut move upward without excessive force. Are you
loosening your stem (adequately) when you attempt to adjust the
headset?

Robin Hubert
 
W

Werehatrack

Guest
On Mon, 22 Nov 2004 01:55:49 GMT, "Sid" <[email protected]> wrote:

>I have a 2+ year old Fuji with a threadless headset (FSA brand). This is my
>first threadless and I have never taken it apart so I am not real clear what
>is happening with my bike.
>
>The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
>locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any play,
>then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I checked
>it, I have had to tighten the headset. Today I checked it and felt play,
>but when I went to tighten the headset it would not tighten any further. It
>seems like it had run out of threads or something.
>
>What's going on and how do I correct the problem?


You'll need to install another shim to provide more take-up capacity
for the top cap...but before you do that, find out *why* this
continual loosening has been going on. It shouldn't happen.
--
Typoes are a feature, not a bug.
Some gardening required to reply via email.
Words processed in a facility that contains nuts.
 
M

m-gineering

Guest
Werehatrack wrote:

> >The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
> >locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any play,
> >then I tightened the headset.


> You'll need to install another shim to provide more take-up capacity
> for the top cap...but before you do that, find out *why* this
> continual loosening has been going on. It shouldn't happen.


exactly, you want to be sure you're not separating the steerer from the
forkcrown!

--
---
Marten
 
Q

Qui si parla Campagnolo

Guest
SID asks-<< It
seems like it had run out of threads or something. >><BR><BR>

I answer-"First make sure the thingy in the steerer is low enough. Second make
sure the top cap isn't 'bottoming' on the end of the steerer or in some way
coming in contact with the fork steerer- I'd say ensure the SFN or whatever is
in the steerer is low enough and add a 5mm spacer on top of the stem..If this
seems like rocket surgery, go to a decent bike shop, It's what they do."

Peter Chisholm
Vecchio's Bicicletteria
1833 Pearl St.
Boulder, CO, 80302
(303)440-3535
http://www.vecchios.com
"Ruote convenzionali costruite eccezionalmente bene"
 
S

Sid

Guest
Thanks everyone for all the advise. This post is interesting to me because
I don't think I have a star fangled nut. At least it doesn't look like any
of the pictures I have seen of one. So I guess I have a plug and this is
the first I have heard of a plug. If I take the top cap off, then I am
seeing a small pipe looking setup and inside the pipe is a bolt with a hex
head. I have never turned that bolt. This whole setup must be the "plug".
Can I loosen this bolt and push the plug back down some?

By the way, I always loosen the stem completely before I adjust the headset
by tightening the top cap.

Sid

"Robin Hubert" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> "Sid" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> news:<[email protected]>...
>> I have a 2+ year old Fuji with a threadless headset (FSA brand). This is
>> my
>> first threadless and I have never taken it apart so I am not real clear
>> what
>> is happening with my bike.
>>
>> The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
>> locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any
>> play,
>> then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I
>> checked
>> it, I have had to tighten the headset. Today I checked it and felt play,
>> but when I went to tighten the headset it would not tighten any further.
>> It
>> seems like it had run out of threads or something.
>>
>> What's going on and how do I correct the problem?
>>
>> Thanks in advance for your help.
>>

>
> Is your fork all carbon (carbon steerer)? What kind of top cap fixing
> device is there (star nut or plug)?
>
> As JB says, it's one of the two things he mentioned or possibly an
> improperly secured plug, which could actually be moving upward. I've
> never seen a star nut move upward without excessive force. Are you
> loosening your stem (adequately) when you attempt to adjust the
> headset?
>
> Robin Hubert
 
F

Francesco Devittori

Guest
Sid wrote:
> Thanks everyone for all the advise. This post is interesting to me because
> I don't think I have a star fangled nut. At least it doesn't look like any
> of the pictures I have seen of one. So I guess I have a plug and this is
> the first I have heard of a plug. If I take the top cap off, then I am
> seeing a small pipe looking setup and inside the pipe is a bolt with a hex
> head. I have never turned that bolt. This whole setup must be the "plug".
> Can I loosen this bolt and push the plug back down some?
>
> By the way, I always loosen the stem completely before I adjust the headset
> by tightening the top cap.
>
> Sid
>
> "Robin Hubert" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> news:[email protected]
>
>>"Sid" <[email protected]> wrote in message
>>news:<[email protected]>...
>>
>>>I have a 2+ year old Fuji with a threadless headset (FSA brand). This is
>>>my
>>>first threadless and I have never taken it apart so I am not real clear
>>>what
>>>is happening with my bike.
>>>
>>>The Problem: Every few weeks I check the adjustment of the headset by
>>>locking the front brakes and gently rocking the bike. If I feel any
>>>play,
>>>then I tightened the headset. Seems like about every other time I
>>>checked
>>>it, I have had to tighten the headset. Today I checked it and felt play,
>>>but when I went to tighten the headset it would not tighten any further.
>>>It
>>>seems like it had run out of threads or something.
>>>
>>>What's going on and how do I correct the problem?
>>>
>>>Thanks in advance for your help.
>>>

>>
>>Is your fork all carbon (carbon steerer)? What kind of top cap fixing
>>device is there (star nut or plug)?
>>
>>As JB says, it's one of the two things he mentioned or possibly an
>>improperly secured plug, which could actually be moving upward. I've
>>never seen a star nut move upward without excessive force. Are you
>>loosening your stem (adequately) when you attempt to adjust the
>>headset?
>>
>> Robin Hubert

>


Why do you have to tighten it every few weeks? IMHO this is not normal,
there should be a problem somewhere.

Francesco