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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is a discussion on the Turner forum right now and I wanted to get outside thoughts about what headsets are viable alternatives to King.

Link to the Turner thread

We have:
Hope
FSA
Interloc
Race Face
Cane Creek

Now I don't want this to become a thread about "My $30 headset is as good as your King". Just something informational to generate alternatives for those willing to pay a little more, but perhaps looking to pay less that King.
 

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Freshly Fujified
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My choice

As I just posted in the thread on the Turner forum is the FSA Pig DH pro. It has sealed cartridge bearings, and is meant to take a beating. From my experience, it is just one of theose parts you install and don't have to worry much about.

Bob
 

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Mantis, Paramount, Campy
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Stronglight, Older Ritchey WCS.

Anything using non cartridge bearings and preferably needle bearings.

Edit: Woops, meant to tack this to the topic thread.
 

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Mantis, Paramount, Campy
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Not Familiar With Them

Could be good.

I was just throwing some other options out there. I have a preference toward loose ball or needle bearing headsets. I like the feel better (same with hubs, and BB's to some extent). I realize they can be more maintance intensive and most people like to not have think about lubing and adjusting parts.
 

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I don't speak or read French

C. Alshus said:
Hi.

Check out Stoneedge Racing: www.stoneedgeracing.com

Bummer, cus the site looks nice. I wonder why the products themselves have Enlish words on them (e.g. "sealed bearings" inscribed on the headset), but the web site doesn't offer and English version of the content.
 

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Category Winner
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Thumbs up for Deus

I have had a King go bad on me. It was slightly used when I got it. King was willing to look at it, but an over the phone estimate put it at close to $50 or more to fix. Eeeks

My Race Face Deus was the only part of my bike with bearings that wasn't trashed after the Trans Rockies (fire hose bike washes). I needed a new BB and had to get my hubs rebuilt.
 

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Jerk_Chicken said:
Now I don't want this to become a thread about "My $30 headset is as good as your King". Just something informational to generate alternatives for those willing to pay a little more, but perhaps looking to pay less that King.
I faced this same dilemna a few weeks ago. That's when I noticed the huge number of Chris King headsets on Ebay and prompty purchased a new headset for $95 US.

That's the same price as a Raceface headset at my LBS !

Ken.
 

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For parts, My LBS sucks ass.

Ok, $80 for a front derailleur... LX!
$180 for a CK headset? Screw that, hit Danscomp for that.
 

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I am very easy on headsets (had one go bad in 23 years of riding) so I can use almost anything. I do not swap out headsets on complete bikes. Just use whatever it comes with.

I do have a couple of CKs but my future bikes will most likely have Cane Creek Solos.
I have had a few issues with CKs "knocking" because of the lack of compression rings.
The IRD looks good, too, though I do not know if it uses a compression ring or not.
 

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I think a few years ago King headsets were superior to anything else on the market, but since then a lot of other companies have caught on, and many of them for a lot lower price. I have a King in one bike, and two bikes with FSA Orbits (with sealed bearings). They all work equally well making it hard to spend twice the price for a King.
 

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Sugary Exoskeleton
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FSA or others with ACB

Have had excellent experiences with FSA Orbit Xtreme Pro. Have two with 4+ years so far and no problems. The Angular Contact Bearings are much more durable IME than cartridge bearings for headset applications.

Also Orbit MX is a cheaper alternative that also seems to hold up.

Like Shiggy I also had a King HS creak, but primarily just lost interest in paying so much, and then paying King for repairs instead of getting warranty service. They make great headsets, but you have to decide you care enough to buy one. Nothing else on my bike lasts 10 years (including the 2 Kings I have owned in the past), so that isn't really important to me when buying.

JMH
 

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Sugary Exoskeleton
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Yes

Ja, you are right, I didn't write that too clearly. I meant to suggest that any ACB is probably desireable over a regular cartridge bearing, which some companies do still use for headsets.

JMH

shiggy said:
CK uses angular contact cartridge bearings, as do most other cartridge bearing headsets.
 
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