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Derailleurless
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This post is one in a series of twelve posts depcting the build of my Hollowpoint MkIII.
Link to MkIII / Speedhub bike build post.

Oh goody, more homemade tool solutions.

About four years ago, I put together a post titled "Thanks Gearjunky - 99¢ headset cup remover". It was a length of PVC tubing sliced open at the ends to impersonate a headset cup remover. Only problem was that every few uses, the PVC would become chipped along the edges and eventually shatter. Someone much smarter than I ran with Gearjunky's idea, but made their tool out of copper pipe. Not too long ago, I copied, and have been using this for maybe a year already. I must say, it's much improved over the old PVC design.

This is a simple piece of 1" copper, capped on one end, and flared open on the other with four 4" cuts. Combined with a rubber stopper to hold the flares open during the removal process, it's worked like a champ each and every time. And, since I'm banging on metal and not plastic, I retired the rubber mallet for a real hammer. Bangs out headset cups in a snap.

The second tool is a low-tech headset press. God bless Mike T., but I simply can't bring myself to whack a headset cup into the frame using a 2x4 and a hammer.

For me, the answer is a simple 3/4" x 8" UNF (fine-threaded) bolt with a stack of fender washers. A 1/2" bolt would be ever better for this application. The UNF threading requires 16 turns per inch of movement for a 3/4" bolt, or 20 turns per inch for a 1/2" bolt.

Avoid coarse threaded UNC bolts of similar diameters -- they would require 10 and 13 turns per inch, respectively, resulting in a less even press and a greater chance for the cut to get crooked while going in.

Here's a bunch of pictures.










 

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A wheelist
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Speedub.Nate said:
.......bless Mike T., but I simply can't bring myself to whack a headset cup into the frame using a 2x4 and a hammer.
I think of it as "gently caressing" the cups into the frame with a 2x4 and a hammer Nate. I look upon my hammer taps as intermittent pressing motions. People have this nightmarish idea that one needs to pound aways with a FBH (firkin big hammer) and that's not the case. The last one I did for a friend I made sure that he had the optimum 0.1-0.25mm of interference (how many shop "mechanic" headset pressers confirm that fit?) and had the headset tapped into his frame before he could have assembled a bolt, washers and nut or loaded the car for a trip to the LBS. It took maybe 10 seconds per cup.

"Wow I didn't know it was that easy" was his comment.
 

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Squalor
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Nate -

I use the exact same method for a headset press except I use a long eye-bolt instead of a regular bolt.

I then inset a long lever (I use an old handle from a floor jack - but whatever will work) and hold the nut on the bottom with the adjustable wrench.

I can just rotate the lever while holding the bolt and eveything tightens up without having to remove the wrench...

Same idea, just a little different implementation.

LP
 

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Nate, where did you source the parts for the press? I was thinking either hardware store or autoparts store, but I was wondering if a "UNF" bolt or "fender washers" were going to be hard to find. Thanks.
 

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Derailleurless
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
bikerboy said:
Nate, where did you source the parts for the press? I was thinking either hardware store or autoparts store, but I was wondering if a "UNF" bolt or "fender washers" were going to be hard to find. Thanks.
In fact, they weren't as easy to find as I expected. At the time, Home Depot nor my local True Value didn't stock any UNF bolts. I tracked some down at an Orchard Supply Hardware store.

The fender washers are pretty common. Bring along a headset cup just to make sure the diameter of the fender washer is large enough to cover the edges of the cup.
 

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lanpope said:
Nate -

I use the exact same method for a headset press except I use a long eye-bolt instead of a regular bolt.

I then inset a long lever (I use an old handle from a floor jack - but whatever will work) and hold the nut on the bottom with the adjustable wrench.

I can just rotate the lever while holding the bolt and eveything tightens up without having to remove the wrench...

Same idea, just a little different implementation.

LP
I used the exact opposite method for spreading the rear dropouts of a steel road frame to 130mm using threaded rod same diameter as a hub axle and placing the bolts and washers between the dropouts.
 

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Speedub.Nate said:
In fact, they weren't as easy to find as I expected. At the time, Home Depot nor my local True Value didn't stock any UNF bolts. I tracked some down at an Orchard Supply Hardware store.

The fender washers are pretty common. Bring along a headset cup just to make sure the diameter of the fender washer is large enough to cover the edges of the cup.
Word, Osh has more of this usefully stuff :)

I use that method on pressing everything in, bearings, headsets, it always works like a champ and costs next to nothing. If I had money to throw away I'd get the headset press from Park tools but this works fine for me.
 

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TeamRoundBoys said:
So, how do you set the crown race?
tap on with a pipe, keep the pipe on the floor and move the fork up and down to avoid damaging dropouts and rebound knobs. I used the stick and hammer method once and it took a few rides for the headset to settle in. The pipe method works much better.
 

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Derailleurless
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ratt said:
tap on with a pipe, keep the pipe on the floor and move the fork up and down to avoid damaging dropouts and rebound knobs.
Same here. I have a length of ABS pipe (PVC will do) with an interior diameter just larger than a 1-1/8" steerer tube. I simply stand the fork upside down on the pipe (which itself is standing on the floor) and bang on the underside of the crown with a rubber mallet.

Of course, if you use FSA headsets, most have that nifty split ring crown race, which snaps into place with light finger pressure.
 

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Speedub.Nate said:
Same here. I have a length of ABS pipe (PVC will do) with an interior diameter just larger than a 1-1/8" steerer tube. I simply stand the fork upside down on the pipe (which itself is standing on the floor) and bang on the underside of the crown with a rubber mallet.

Of course, if you use FSA headsets, most have that nifty split ring crown race, which snaps into place with light finger pressure.
I think the worst crown race I've installed was RF DH Real Seal headset... it was so hard to get it in its home position... i use this big metal collar that is just over 1 1/8 of an inch in diameter( inside dia.) and its about 3/4 of an inch thick and tall..efect for crown race fitting... then i use a pipe that i pound on the collar with( like a dent puller but opposite motion) and set the crown nicely.. except for the RF... it took a hell 'o long time to get it there...
now what do you use to get the crown race off??
 

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Derailleurless
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
wickerman1 said:
now what do you use to get the crown race off??
For removal, I bang 'em off with a flat bladed screwdriver and a couple of well placed blows from a hammer. Others suggest a brass punch to avoid scarring the bottom of the race. With those super slender races (I assume the RF is one of them), it's sometimes difficult to find enough exposed race to bang against.

I wish everyone would adopt the split crown that FSA uses -- it snaps on with light finger pressure and pops off with the gentle twist of a screwdriver blade.
 

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Another option for setting the crown race is to use a cut down peice of 1 1/8 Copper Pipe (about 12~18 inches long). Copper is a really soft metal and will deform to the crown race shape. It also will not shatter like PVC will when hit too hard. (PVC is sharp when is shatters)

If you have some time, you can hold the fork in one hand with the crown race and pipe in place and tap the crown race down (slow and boring). If you have less time a 2X4 between two sawhorses gives you a really good place to place the top of the rigid crown (not the suspension crown) of the fork and tap harder. In both cases watch the race seat and try to keep the race flat while is being tapped on the the fork.

Also, you can order just the headset press step washers to fit inside the headset from mail-order / web based part houses. Then you only need a single fender washer in the press.

Speedub.Nate said:
Same here. I have a length of ABS pipe (PVC will do) with an interior diameter just larger than a 1-1/8" steerer tube. I simply stand the fork upside down on the pipe (which itself is standing on the floor) and bang on the underside of the crown with a rubber mallet.

Of course, if you use FSA headsets, most have that nifty split ring crown race, which snaps into place with light finger pressure.
 
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