Why is re-facing necessary?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Jim Rogers, Sep 24, 2003.

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  1. Jim Rogers

    Jim Rogers Guest

    Will be installing a new bottom bracket and headset on my old bike. An old repair and maintainance
    book I have said that the head tube and bottom bracket shell should be faced first. Checked the
    archives of this group and several of the gurus here agreed.

    Went to my LBS to inquire how much it would cost, and they acted like I was crazy. They contend that
    if it was faced once (either at the factory or during the initial prep) and I wasn't having any
    problems, then everything was fine and I should just put the new stuff on.

    When I tried to defend the idea of facing before new installation, they asked me "if it was square
    at one time and you were not having any problems and you didn't crash or anything, how would it have
    changed?" They argue that the head tube and bb shel aren't going to bend or anything (absent a
    crash), so just there is virtually never a need to re-face.

    Not being an expert, I really couldn't answer their question. So I pose it here-- assuming you have
    everything square at some point, what exactly changes over the life of a bb or headset that would
    require another facing of the head tube or bb shell? Or have I mis-understood something?

    --Jim Rogers
     
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  2. S. Anderson

    S. Anderson Guest

    "Jim Rogers" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Will be installing a new bottom bracket and headset on my old bike. An old repair and maintainance
    > book I have said that the head tube and bottom bracket shell should be faced first. Checked the
    > archives of this group and several of the gurus here agreed.

    <<snip..>>

    > --Jim Rogers

    Do you know it was ever faced? That's usually the problem, as certainly not all factory builds are
    faced and sometimes shop builds are not either. If it's my bike and I know I faced both a year ago
    and I'm installing new stuff, I won't face it again. If it's a customer's bike and I've never seen
    it before, I'll face it (it takes all of about 10mins to do it..) just to be sure. If the job's
    worth doing, it's worth doing right. If the cust. doesn't know the history and I don't, facing is an
    insurance thing. If the cust. gripes about the price extensively, I'd eat the labour..it's better
    than re-doing the job a week down the road for free and having a bad customer experience.

    Cheers,

    Scott..
     
  3. In short, Jim, your bike shop is correct.

    Also, you might want to remember that they were honest with you when you gave them a golden
    opportunity to take you to the cleaners.
    :)

    Lewis.

    ********************************************

    [email protected] (Jim Rogers) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Will be installing a new bottom bracket and headset on my old bike. An old repair and maintainance
    > book I have said that the head tube and bottom bracket shell should be faced first. Checked the
    > archives of this group and several of the gurus here agreed.
    >
    > Went to my LBS to inquire how much it would cost, and they acted like I was crazy. They contend
    > that if it was faced once (either at the factory or during the initial prep) and I wasn't having
    > any problems, then everything was fine and I should just put the new stuff on.
    >
    > When I tried to defend the idea of facing before new installation, they asked me "if it was square
    > at one time and you were not having any problems and you didn't crash or anything, how would it
    > have changed?" They argue that the head tube and bb shel aren't going to bend or anything (absent
    > a crash), so just there is virtually never a need to re-face.
    >
    > Not being an expert, I really couldn't answer their question. So I pose it here-- assuming you
    > have everything square at some point, what exactly changes over the life of a bb or headset that
    > would require another facing of the head tube or bb shell? Or have I mis-understood something?
    >
    > --Jim Rogers
     
  4. Chalo

    Chalo Guest

    [email protected] (Jim Rogers) wrote:

    > what exactly changes over the life of a bb or headset that would require another facing of the
    > head tube or bb shell?

    Nothing. The only reason to face these frame interfaces at the time new parts are installed is if
    you believe that facing was never done to begin with.

    Some headsets and bottom brackets are more sensitive to face squareness than others. Chris King
    makes a good example of a headset that does not work right unless everything is machined square--
    including the underside of the stem!

    Frame facing used to be de rigeur, because cast lugs and hand brazing did not offer any assurances
    that these interfaces would be square and flat, and because European framebuilders in days of yore
    were not expected to deliver finished goods. (!) With more and more bike frames being welded from
    machined tubing segments, there are many fewer opportunities for these faces to be anything but flat
    and square, at least with respect to their opposite faces.

    There are many bike shops these days where the mechanics would never consider facing a frame unless
    there were some obvious and serious problem. Frankly, I don't see the sense in having shop mechanics
    do finish machining either-- it's like having an electrician rework your new toaster before you can
    plug it in and make toast. From where I stand, a frame that comes to the shop unready for parts
    installation is a warranty issue.

    Chalo Colina
     
  5. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On 24 Sep 2003 21:20:58 -0700, [email protected] (Chalo) may have said:

    >Frankly, I don't see the sense in having shop mechanics do finish machining either-- it's like
    >having an electrician rework your new toaster before you can plug it in and make toast.

    OTOH, appliances in Europe often are supplied without a plug on the end of the cord, and sometimes
    without a cord, simply because of the uncertainty of what will be required in that area. (It's my
    understanding that the average European is quite capable of attending to the necessary wiring
    matters without the need for a technician; probably not the case in the US!)

    If there were some question about exactly how the BB or head tube needed to be finished to accept
    its bearings, then there would be some rationale for supplying a semi-finished product. With
    extremely rare exceptions for the BB, this is not the case, ergo there is no such justification.
    Moreover, most bikes arrive assembled and complete; it is *conceivable* that the tubes might not be
    square, but it would seem damned peculiar for that to be the case when the bearings have already
    been installed.

    >From where I stand, a frame that comes to the shop unready for parts installation is a
    >warranty issue.

    Unless the frame is explicitly specified as semi-finished in the description, I quite agree. And,
    frankly, it strikes me as being damned foolish to ship semi-finished since there's no guarantee that
    the lbs will do a competent job of squaring the tube. If the maker wants to have certainty that the
    frame is right when it gets to the customer, then it needs to be *finished* before it leaves the
    maker's shop.

    --
    My email address is antispammed; pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail. Yes, I have a killfile. If I
    don't respond to something, it's also possible that I'm busy.
     
  6. On Thu, 25 Sep 2003 04:41:56 +0000, Werehatrack wrote:

    >>From where I stand, a frame that comes to the shop unready for parts installation is a
    >>warranty issue.
    >
    > Unless the frame is explicitly specified as semi-finished in the description, I quite agree. And,
    > frankly, it strikes me as being damned foolish to ship semi-finished since there's no guarantee
    > that the lbs will do a competent job of squaring the tube.

    I have to agree with this, and say that my last frame (Habanero) arrived absolutely ready for parts
    installation (thanks, Mark). Oddly, though, 1" forks are often not finished (faced), and this has
    led to the selling of two sizes of headset crown race in some cheaper markets, for faced or unfaced
    fork crowns. I don't know what the situation is with 1.125" or 1.25" headsets.

    --

    David L. Johnson

    __o | The lottery is a tax on those who fail to understand _`\(,_ | mathematics. (_)/ (_) |
     
  7. irene-<< An old repair and maintainance book I have said that the head tube and bottom bracket shell
    should be faced first. >><BR><BR> << Went to my LBS to inquire how much it would cost, and they
    acted like I was crazy. They contend that if it was faced once (either at the factory or during the
    initial prep) and I wasn't having any problems, then everything was fine and I should just put the
    new stuff on. >><BR><BR>

    They are correct in that if the BB and headtube was faced properly once, then another facing is not
    necessary, as long as you know it was done properly once(factory jobs, if they exist, are often
    poorly done).

    Excessive facing can make the indside of a headtube too large and can make a BB shell too small.

    Peter Chisholm Vecchio's Bicicletteria 1833 Pearl St. Boulder, CO, 80302
    (303)440-3535 http://www.vecchios.com "Ruote convenzionali costruite eccezionalmente bene"
     
  8. Chalo-<< From where I stand, a frame that comes to the shop unready for parts installation is a
    warranty issue. >><BR><BR>

    From the bike shop perspective, most framesets we see that are fresh from the factory all need to be
    prepped. From the very expensive Euro and American types to the lower end, but still well made, ones
    from local builders.

    As these are massed produced, the need to prep is a bigger need, not a smaller one.

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

    G.Daniels Guest

    what are the symptoms of the need for refacing??

    i have a slight elliptical movement on one side that physically manifests on the shell's bearing
    wear path.both sides are machined to finish but not 'polished'. is this a refacing symptom??
     
  10. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    >
    >Will be installing a new bottom bracket and headset on my old bike. An old repair and maintainance
    >book I have said that the head tube and bottom bracket shell should be faced first. Checked the
    >archives of this group and several of the gurus here agreed.

    If your frame was properly faced to begin with, there is no need to re-face unless you damaged the
    faces during the installaion or removal of the parts.

    >Went to my LBS to inquire how much it would cost, and they acted like I was crazy. They contend
    >that if it was faced once (either at the factory or during the initial prep) and I wasn't having
    >any problems, then everything was fine and I should just put the new stuff on. When I tried to
    >defend the idea of facing before new installation, they asked me "if it was square at one time and
    >you were not having any problems and you didn't crash or anything, how would it have changed?" They
    >argue that the head tube and bb shel aren't going to bend or anything (absent a crash), so just
    >there is virtually never a need to re-face.

    Nice to see they weren't try to sell you a service you don't need.
    -----------------
    Alex __O _-\<,_ (_)/ (_)
     
  11. Jim Rogers

    Jim Rogers Guest

    Thanks for the clarifications, guys.

    This bike is older and I just got it used, so I don't know the status. I'll have them check it out
    and I'll not worry about it after that.

    Jim
     
  12. Paul Floyd

    Paul Floyd Guest

    On Thu, 25 Sep 2003 04:41:56 GMT, Werehatrack
    <[email protected]link.net> wrote:
    > On 24 Sep 2003 21:20:58 -0700, [email protected] (Chalo) may have said:
    >
    >>Frankly, I don't see the sense in having shop mechanics do finish machining either-- it's like
    >>having an electrician rework your new toaster before you can plug it in and make toast.
    >
    > OTOH, appliances in Europe often are supplied without a plug on the end of the cord, and sometimes
    > without a cord, simply because of the

    This hasn't been true for something like 10 years now. My guess is that EU regulations
    stipulate that everything have a plug fitted (and in the UK, that the plug be fitted with an
    appropriate fuse).

    A+ Paul
    --
    Paul Floyd http://paulf.free.fr (for what it's worth) Surgery: ennobled Gerald.
     
  13. Chalo

    Chalo Guest

    [email protected] (Qui si parla Campagnolo) wrote:

    > From the bike shop perspective, most framesets we see that are fresh from the factory all need to
    > be prepped. From the very expensive Euro and American types to the lower end, but still well made,
    > ones from local builders.

    You are talking about paint removal here, not finish machining, right?

    I mean no offense to you or your mechanics when I say that professional machinists generally do a
    better job of cutting metal than professional mechanics do.

    Chalo Colina
     
  14. Chalo

    Chalo Guest

    "David L. Johnson" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Oddly, though, 1" forks are often not finished (faced), and this has led to the selling of two
    > sizes of headset crown race in some cheaper markets, for faced or unfaced fork crowns.

    That is actually a standards difference, between ISO crown race
    (26.4mm) and J.I.S. crown race (27.0mm) diameters. The obsolete and mostly abandoned American (aka
    BMX) headset standard also used a
    27.4mm crown race, but with different size cups than ISO.

    The only forks I have seen without some sort of faced crown race seat have been old ones, of a
    department store pedigree, which featured a roughly conical surface to "seat" a roughly conical
    crown race. Ick.

    Chalo Colina
     
  15. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    Jim Rogers wrote:

    > Will be installing a new bottom bracket and headset on my old bike. An old repair and maintainance
    > book I have said that the head tube and bottom bracket shell should be faced first. Checked the
    > archives of this group and several of the gurus here agreed.
    >
    > Went to my LBS to inquire how much it would cost, and they acted like I was crazy. They contend
    > that if it was faced once (either at the factory or during the initial prep) and I wasn't having
    > any problems, then everything was fine and I should just put the new stuff on.
    >
    > When I tried to defend the idea of facing before new installation, they asked me "if it was square
    > at one time and you were not having any problems and you didn't crash or anything, how would it
    > have changed?" They argue that the head tube and bb shel aren't going to bend or anything (absent
    > a crash), so just there is virtually never a need to re-face.
    >
    > Not being an expert, I really couldn't answer their question. So I pose it here-- assuming you
    > have everything square at some point, what exactly changes over the life of a bb or headset that
    > would require another facing of the head tube or bb shell? Or have I mis-understood something?

    Your logic is impeccable and you are correct.

    If it was straight and machined properly once it is fine yet. The issue is that so many frames are
    haphazardly done but claimed "straight". Mysterious BB problems disappear once the threads are cut
    in one plane. Headsets adjust easier and last longer when all the balls contact properly, too.

    Did your neghborhood competent cycle shop machine it all properly once? Then relax you do not have a
    problem. Most riders would be unsure of the answer.

    --
    Andrew Muzi www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April, 1971
     
  16. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    > On 24 Sep 2003 21:20:58 -0700, [email protected] (Chalo) may have said:
    -snip-
    >>Frankly, I don't see the sense in having shop mechanics do finish machining either-- it's like
    >>having an electrician rework your new toaster before you can plug it in and make toast.

    Werehatrack wrote: -snip-
    > If there were some question about exactly how the BB or head tube needed to be finished to accept
    > its bearings, then there would be some rationale for supplying a semi-finished product. With
    > extremely rare exceptions for the BB, this is not the case, ergo there is no such justification.
    > Moreover, most bikes arrive assembled and complete; it is *conceivable* that the tubes might not
    > be square, but it would seem damned peculiar for that to be the case when the bearings have
    > already been installed.
    >
    (Chalo, again)>>From where I
    >>stand, a frame that comes to the shop unready for parts installation is a warranty issue.
    >
    >
    (Anonymous, unable to admit to his own writing)> Unless the frame is explicitly specified as
    semi-finished in the
    > description, I quite agree. And, frankly, it strikes me as being damned foolish to ship
    > semi-finished since there's no guarantee that the lbs will do a competent job of squaring the
    > tube. If the maker wants to have certainty that the frame is right when it gets to the customer,
    > then it needs to be *finished* before it leaves the maker's shop.
    >

    You guys live in a different world than I do!

    Frames are given the minimal treatment to get them out the factory door.
    Manufacturer's "assurance" of proper machining is BS, pure and simple.
    They are close enough to jam the parts in with air tools. Period.

    When we start seeing frames which do not require facing we'll stop doing
    it. Until then, it is a market and the first manufacturer to start properly machining his frames
    will be at a competitive disadvantage.

    --
    Andrew Muzi www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April, 1971
     
  17. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    > On Thu, 25 Sep 2003 04:41:56 +0000, Werehatrack wrote:
    >
    >
    >>>From where I
    >>
    >>>stand, a frame that comes to the shop unready for parts installation is a warranty issue.
    >>
    >>
    >>Unless the frame is explicitly specified as semi-finished in the description, I quite agree. And,
    >>frankly, it strikes me as being damned foolish to ship semi-finished since there's no guarantee
    >>that the lbs will do a competent job of squaring the tube.

    David L. Johnson wrote:
    > I have to agree with this, and say that my last frame (Habanero) arrived absolutely ready for
    > parts installation (thanks, Mark). Oddly, though, 1" forks are often not finished (faced), and
    > this has led to the selling of two sizes of headset crown race in some cheaper markets, for faced
    > or unfaced fork crowns. I don't know what the situation is with 1.125" or 1.25" headsets.

    The two sizes are 27.1 for JIS and 26.4 for ISO. It is not a "cheap" or deficient machining or any
    qualitative issue.

    --
    Andrew Muzi www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April, 1971
     
  18. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On 25 Sep 2003 21:14:51 GMT, Paul Floyd <[email protected]> may have said:

    > On Thu, 25 Sep 2003 04:41:56 GMT, Werehatrack
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >> On 24 Sep 2003 21:20:58 -0700, chum[email protected] (Chalo) may have said:
    >>
    >>>Frankly, I don't see the sense in having shop mechanics do finish machining either-- it's like
    >>>having an electrician rework your new toaster before you can plug it in and make toast.
    >>
    >> OTOH, appliances in Europe often are supplied without a plug on the end of the cord, and
    >> sometimes without a cord, simply because of the
    >
    >This hasn't been true for something like 10 years now. My guess is that EU regulations
    >stipulate that everything have a plug fitted (and in the UK, that the plug be fitted with an
    >appropriate fuse).

    Things must have changed, then; the last two electric items I bought in the UK (in London) were
    still not equipped with a plug, and had cords terminated in three stripped and tinned leads clearly
    marked as to which was ground, etc. (I still have one of the tags, and you're spot on about it
    saying to fit a plug that uses a 5A fuse, by the way.) This was not exactly recent, but less than
    ten years ago. I noticed, however, that even then, there was increasing presence of the ubiquitous
    three-prong socket on the sides of devices for connection using a detachable cord (common in the USA
    only on computers and related devices). I presumed, at the time, that this was being done to allow
    people to buy prefab cords with the plug they needed, and/or to permit them to carry the device from
    place to place and merely swap cords as required to fit the sockets. Has this become the de facto
    method of dealing with the nonstandard wall socket situation, or do people still use adapters, or
    has the UK finally standardised the plugs?

    --
    My email address is antispammed; pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail. Yes, I have a killfile. If I
    don't respond to something, it's also possible that I'm busy.
     
  19. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On Thu, 25 Sep 2003 21:02:53 -0500, A Muzi <[email protected]wjersey.org> may have said:

    >When we start seeing frames which do not require facing we'll stop doing
    >it. Until then, it is a market and the first manufacturer to start properly machining his frames
    > will be at a competitive disadvantage.

    I should think that it's precisely the other way around; if it truly makes a difference, then the
    maker that is finishing the frames properly ought to be at a competitive *advantage*. Such machining
    processes are not expensive to set up when you're using mass production methods.

    --
    My email address is antispammed; pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail. Yes, I have a killfile. If I
    don't respond to something, it's also possible that I'm busy.
     
  20. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On Thu, 25 Sep 2003 21:02:53 -0500, A Muzi <[email protected]> may have said:

    >Werehatrack wrote:
    [snip]
    >(Anonymous, unable to admit to his own writing)

    Learn to read quoting levels before you say something that clueless.

    > Unless the frame is explicitly specified as semi-finished in the
    >> description, I quite agree. And, frankly, it strikes me as being damned foolish to ship
    >> semi-finished since there's no guarantee that the lbs will do a competent job of squaring the
    >> tube. If the maker wants to have certainty that the frame is right when it gets to the customer,
    >> then it needs to be *finished* before it leaves the maker's shop.
    >
    >You guys live in a different world than I do!
    >
    > Frames are given the minimal treatment to get them out the factory door.
    > Manufacturer's "assurance" of proper machining is BS, pure and simple.
    > They are close enough to jam the parts in with air tools. Period.

    Perhaps your experiences are with the wrong manufacturers, then. There are definitely some who are
    doing the job right.

    >When we start seeing frames which do not require facing we'll stop doing
    >it. Until then, it is a market and the first manufacturer to start properly machining his frames
    > will be at a competitive disadvantage.

    I should think that the makers who perform the machining (or who use methods of finishing that
    achieve the required squareness by whatever method) would be at an *advantage*, because they'd get
    better recommendations from the bike shops and press. You seem to be saying that doing a half-assed
    job is good, but at the same time complaining that it's bad; which side did you mean to support?

    --
    My email address is antispammed; pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail. Yes, I have a killfile. If I
    don't respond to something, it's also possible that I'm busy.
     
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