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  1.  
    Of course, I think KING has won most peoples vote for the best headset on the market...however, what else out there do you think is better and why?

    I've always rode King headset, but recently picked up a Crank Bros headset and was VERY surprised! It's 1/2 the weight of the King, much more compact so I could cut down my fork slightly, and it's just as smooth. The cups are made out of super strong steel also, not aluminum.

    The Crank Bros headset has not given me any problems riding street in the rain and snow, so I have no doubts about it not holding up extremely well.
  2.  
    hatta super swan
    • CommentAuthorwowzah
    • CommentTimeJan 9th 2009 edited
     
    campy record, i don't think it's better than king, but it's good
    • CommentAuthorsmitg10
    • CommentTimeJan 9th 2009
     
    what makes a good headset?
    • CommentAuthorhenrydec1
    • CommentTimeJan 9th 2009
     
    hatta super swan easily
    • CommentAuthorbionnaki
    • CommentTimeJan 10th 2009
     
    learn to service a headset and you wont need to purchase the totally over-kill and expensive option. riding on the road doesnt require the perfect headset like DH mountain bike riding, for example, does.
  3.  
    Posted By: bionnakilearn to service a headset and you wont need to purchase the totally over-kill and expensive option. riding on the road doesnt require the perfect headset like DH mountain bike riding, for example, does.


    Have you ever felt how smooth a good quality headset is? Even if you pack a cheap headset with tons of grease and it's perfect adjusted, you can still feel the bearings inside when you turn. Use a good quality headset and it's so smooth. And plus, something like a King does not to be serviced all the time, like a looseball, cheap headset would.
    • CommentAuthorwowzah
    • CommentTimeJan 10th 2009 edited
     
    Posted By: terrible_one49
    Posted By: bionnakilearn to service a headset and you wont need to purchase the totally over-kill and expensive option. riding on the road doesnt require the perfect headset like DH mountain bike riding, for example, does.


    Have you ever felt how smooth a good quality headset is? Even if you pack a cheap headset with tons of grease and it's perfect adjusted, you can still feel the bearings inside when you turn. Use a good quality headset and it's so smooth. And plus, something like a King does not to be serviced all the time, like a looseball, cheap headset would.



    I would have to agree that putting a very expensive headset on a track bike is over kill. You hardly really use it and mostly just lean in to turns.
    On a mountain bike a chris king headset makes much more sense, you actually use the handle bar to turn and technically maneuver.
    but who the F cares, i'll put expensive headsets on a track bike any day. you do it cuz your a yuppie gangsta

    It might make sense if you are in the bar spin special olympics... then, maybe there is a rational reason
    • CommentAuthorianmichael
    • CommentTimeJan 10th 2009
     
    i like FSA's with the split crown race. super easy to install and decent quality for the price. just fine for a road/commuter.
    • CommentAuthorbionnaki
    • CommentTimeJan 10th 2009 edited
     
    yes, I have used chris king headsets.
    and I cannot tell the difference on track bicycles when actually riding.
    and I enjoy servicing my components.
    • CommentAuthorK3NNY
    • CommentTimeJan 10th 2009
     
    I am thinking about getting a Cane Creek Zero Stack
  4.  
    I agree I feel the differences of quality in a headset when I service it and when I turn the fork but when actually riding the bike itself especially on the velodrome where you hardly ever turn the fork at all (at least as long as people don't mess around with you by trying to block) I gotta say I don't really feel the difference. I like cane creek because of the price quality factor. Chris King is the best but they do look a bit braggy... I do not see why they have to be that expensive either. It's not like they made out of gold... titanium I understand (yes that stuff is pricey).

    I believe it is nice to have good quality components but you should start with your frame and finish with the handlebar grips... unfortunately a lot of people go the other way around.
  5.  
    My friend was riding some cheap FAS headset on his Masi track bike, and whenever he would take his hands off the bars, the bike would ALWAYS pull to the left. He had the headset adjusted and reset twice, but the problem was still there. He replaced the headset with a Cane creek and the problem went away.
    • CommentAuthorjaybird74
    • CommentTimeJan 13th 2009
     
    I installed the Crank Brothers Cobalt direct-set on my Bareknuckle. Very low stack height, light, simple. I had always used cheap headsets... this one makes a huge difference. Half the weight of a King, still 30g lighter than a titanium King.
    It matches my Thomson stem nicely too! I find the logos on King headsets to be a bit much... although the new ones will all have understated badging, much cleaner.
    Definitely lighter than a King... but the bearings aren't serviceable, as they are part of the cup (this is what direct set means). The cost is low enough that replacing the whole unit won't be that bad. It gets my recommendation... never would have considered it; Ben's Cycle was promoting it when I was building my bike up.
    Same goes for my White Industries ISO taper bottom bracket for my SG75s, but that's another thread!
    • CommentAuthordeermatt
    • CommentTimeJan 14th 2009
     
    hatta swan is a classic , nothing better . . unless its the ti version, thats better.
    • CommentAuthortyler215
    • CommentTimeFeb 9th 2009
     
    campy c record or any campy headset for that matter smooth all day.
  6.  
    My Campagnolo Nuovo Record headset is over 30 years old. Still smooth as silk.
  7.  
    I'd be totally shocked if anyone at all made aluminum cups. The bearings are steel. Aluminum cups would disintegrate.
  8.  
    I've always used cane creek and have never had a problem. Dependable and relatively inexpensive.
    • CommentAuthorfilthpunx
    • CommentTimeFeb 13th 2009
     
    shimano 600 or a 105. fuck yeah
    • CommentAuthorjam guy
    • CommentTimeFeb 13th 2009
     
    Posted By: terrible_one49My friend was riding some cheap FAS headset on his Masi track bike, and whenever he would take his hands off the bars, the bike would ALWAYS pull to the left. He had the headset adjusted and reset twice, but the problem was still there. He replaced the headset with a Cane creek and the problem went away.


    I would say this was the install and not the components. I can guarantee the cups were seated wrong. I ride cheap loose ball bearing headsets in all my bike. On my track only bike I have some NJS nonsense that came on the bike. I cannot tell the difference, and I guarantee that if you were put up to the test you couldn't tell either.
  9.  
    I put an FSA orbit headset on my wife's bike, and it's one of the smoothest headsets I've ever felt, I think it only cost $20-25 or so new. Look pretty much just like a king too, if you're looking for something flashy(hers has ball bearings top and bottom, not the pin bearings with the triangle shaped bottom cup. That's probably my best recommendation for someone who's actually looking to buy a headset for not a lot of money, that will still feel nice. Other than that, every other headset I've ever used all felt the same when I was riding, whether it was a cheap one I bought for $2 at the bike swap, and old campy one, or a normal cane creek or something along those lines.

    Out of all my headsets, the worst feeling one is actually my king, it's still smooth, but it has a bit of resistance, and no, it's not too tight. I'm not the original owner, so it may just need repacked, but it's not bad enough to bug me that bad.
  10.  
    Posted By: terrible_one49My friend was riding some cheap FAS headset on his Masi track bike, and whenever he would take his hands off the bars, the bike would ALWAYS pull to the left. He had the headset adjusted and reset twice, but the problem was still there. He replaced the headset with a Cane creek and the problem went away.


    That sure sounds to me like it wasn't seated right.
    • CommentAuthorAaron C
    • CommentTimeFeb 14th 2009
     
    ditto on the king headset problems. you can get away with a little imperfection on a mediocre headset, esp. loose ball. but on those kings if your frame is faced just right or something isn't quite seated the benefit from having such a nice headset isn't as much. i have 2 kings and golly they are 4 and 9 years old, have been through several bikes and work great!

    worst headset ever. the piece of shit cane creek headset that comes stock on the new kilo tt's. binds like a motherfucker. granted this was factory installed and the frame probably wasnt faced right but my lord is it bad. bad enough to notice it pull and bind while riding on the street! this is a winter rider but i have repacked it 3 times since i got the bike.
    next step smashing that thing out and installings something nice. properly.
    • CommentAuthorBubblan
    • CommentTimeFeb 15th 2009 edited
     
    Posted By: jaybird74...
    Definitely lighter than a King... but the bearings aren't serviceable, as they are part of the cup (this is what direct set means). The cost is low enough that replacing the whole unit won't be that bad.
    ...


    "The servicing can even be done while the headset is still in the frame. Take off the stem, pull out the fork, pry off one seal, douse the bearings with a degreaser, blow dry. When everything is dry, repack with grease and push back on the seal. Repeat to the other race."

    http://www.competitivecyclist.com/mountain-bikes/product-components/2009-crank-brothers-cobalt-sl-headset-4741.2016.0.html
    • CommentAuthorjaybird74
    • CommentTimeFeb 18th 2009
     
    Posted By: Bubblan
    Posted By: jaybird74...
    Definitely lighter than a King... but the bearings aren't serviceable, as they are part of the cup (this is what direct set means). The cost is low enough that replacing the whole unit won't be that bad.
    ...


    "The servicing can even be done while the headset is still in the frame. Take off the stem, pull out the fork, pry off one seal, douse the bearings with a degreaser, blow dry. When everything is dry, repack with grease and push back on the seal. Repeat to the other race."

    http://www.competitivecyclist.com/mountain-bikes/product-components/2009-crank-brothers-cobalt-sl-headset-4741.2016.0.html


    That's what I get for believing what I read... thanks for the heads-up man!
    • CommentAuthorlatron
    • CommentTimeFeb 18th 2009 edited
     
    Have a first-generation Dura-Ace that's still perfect. At this rate, it's gonna outlive me.
 



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