King Headset scoring: fact or myth?

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  • King Headset scoring: fact or myth?
  • GrumpyDave
    Member

    This is for those who have first hand experience of Chris King headsets, so please no hearsay or conjecture.
    Have you had the headset scoring the fork steerer tube?
    Did you have the headtube faced before installation?
    Did this occur on a steel or aluminium steerer?

    sheldona
    Member

    I’ve got 4 bikes with Chris King Headsets and never seen an issue with scoring. One of the steerers is a carbon one too. None are what you’d call long travel either.

    yes
    yes
    aluminium steerer, 160mm forks

    never happened with 100mm or 130mm forks though and those 160mm forks are fairly heavily ridden

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    Never had it happen to me. Same CK headset on a Reba (ali steerer) and a Thor (again ali steerer). Headsets been used on 3 bikes, and never faced any of the headtubes.

    Don’t doubt it happens, don’t know whether I’m convinced that it’s a failure of King’s design though.

    Jenga
    Member

    Yes
    Yes
    Aluminium Pikes 140mm

    Reluctant
    Member

    Yes, yes , aluminium steerer on several forks , mainly 100mm travel Rockshox. Saw this happen regularly back when i was a shop mechanic.

    It’s never happened to me on 130mm forks on XC bike or 200mm triples on freeride bike (same headset). I don’t know if it’s happened to my jump bike but my handlebars haven’t snapped off yet, so that’s OK.

    marty
    Member

    Yes. Yes. Alu.

    Premier Icon Gordymac
    Subscriber

    Yes on both my bikes, Turner 5 spot with Pikes & Chromag Samurai with Pikes.
    Yes they were both faced.
    Aluminium steerers on both (Pike 454 u-turn) Don’t really run them above 130mm, only very occasionally are they wound out to the full 140mm.

    Now ditched the Kings on both bikes and running Cane Creek S8s with no problems whatsoever.

    Premier Icon mangoridebike
    Subscriber

    happened to me too – quite badly on a set of RC40 Fighters and starting on a set of Marz AMSLs before I got rid of it

    Premier Icon Daffy
    Subscriber

    Yes, Yes, Alu 150mm

    Yes, Yes, Alu 130mm

    Premier Icon chimpymcchimp
    Subscriber

    Yes
    No
    Alu 150mm

    I have 3 CK headsets and none of them have scored the steerer, 2 of the bikes have had the headtube faced the other not. All steerers alu.

    pk-ripper
    Member

    Yes, Yes, Alu 140mm

    Yes, Yes, Alu 130mm

    Won’t run a king on more than 100mm travel now.

    zokes
    Member

    No
    No

    One is a cotic with 130mm revelations

    The other is a whyte with 150 mm Mavericks, which I guess is a safe bet, seeing as they don’t have a steerer as such to start with….

    ski
    Member

    Used CK with:

    Reba’s 115mm
    Pace RC-31’s
    Marzocchi Bombers 115mm

    on 3 differeent frames, never face, no scoring

    adstick
    Member

    Seen a few in the workshop. All with longer travel forks. Not seen any really deep scoring, but once it happens it means the top race of the headset stays ‘loose’. Wouldn’t use one myself, the original Ahead design is much better.

    yes
    yes
    on my magura durin and sids 100mm
    seen it on longer travel forks also

    twohats
    Member

    Faced frame
    160mm forks
    3 years, no scoring, but then I’ve always been careful to make sure that there is grease between the top race and steerer.

    solamanda
    Member

    Have you had the headset scoring the fork steerer tube?

    Yes

    Did you have the headtube faced before installation?

    Yes

    Did this occur on a steel or aluminium steerer?

    Steel

    170mm travel

    dave29
    Member

    Yes
    Yes
    Alu

    100mm

    Is it really a problem? Mine have only ever been lightly scored….

    naokfreek
    Member

    yes
    yes

    rs pikes alu steerer

    Premier Icon crazy-legs
    Subscriber

    Yes and yes.
    On both carbon and alu steerer tubes.

    It’s never been an issue, the scoring isn’t bad and it’s not affected the headset or fork in any way.

    Premier Icon auricgoldfinger
    Subscriber

    No scoring, used on 3 frames, with travel up to 160mm.

    However, I have found yesterday that the inside of the lower cup is heavily scored on the inside on one side. It appears my steerer has scored my King headset!

    My LBS, also say they’ve never seen it (are a CK stockist)

    Houns
    Member

    Yep i have it, doesn’t bother me in the slightest..Was faced, 150mm alu steerer

    And for those unlike tj who can’t see stress colours

    Dibbs
    Member

    If I was really worried about this I’d go out to the garage and strip one of my five (well one belongs to the wife really) CK equipped bikes to check for damage, but its cold out there and I can’t be arsed.
    Anyway is that really scoring or just cosmetic marking?

    Houns
    Member

    you can barely feel it with your nail

    Dibbs
    Member

    Does the mark line up with the o-ring in the top cap?

    Premier Icon coolhandluke
    Subscriber

    Took my Pikes off my hardtail on Sunday and can’t say I notices and scoring.

    Can’t see it being an issue if it did. It’s not likely to eventually cut through is it!

    Dibbs
    Member

    I wonder if its due to dirt getting trapped between the o-ring and the steerer and marking the steerer if there’s a small amount of play present, the o-ring itself shouldn’t be hard enough to mark the steerer on its own.

    Offroading
    Member

    Got a CK, had it in two frames both faced, both fitted with either Reba’s 100mm or Revs 130mm. Both had badly scored tubes.

    pk-ripper
    Member

    when my fox forks got scored by the headset it was probably about half a mil deep. I was happy riding them up to a point, but once I realised it was continuing to grow, I binned the headset.

    james-o
    Member

    no issues on a carbon road steerer, regular use over 4 years. same fork, same headset, inspected a couple of times and all well and good.

    “due to dirt getting trapped between the o-ring and the steerer and marking the steerer if there’s a small amount of play present”

    it probably is…

    adstick
    Member

    Nope, the marking is normally the whole depth of the race, not just around where the o-ring fits. I’m not sure it will cause detrimental damage to the fork, but if left it definitely stops the headset working properly.

    Question is, why would you buy a King when:
    -they have been shown to score steerer tubes
    -there is a better headset design out there
    -they cost 4 times more than a very good headset

    not CK, but i had a set of manitou minutes i used in the peaks, those things were so flexible that the sterrers deflection brought it into contact with the cups!

    Bruce
    Member

    Several bikes all aluminium steerers all 100mm travel all scored all fitted by reputable bike shops, don’t buy them any more and use hope headsets which don’t score the steerer.

    Premier Icon jamesgarbett
    Subscriber

    Yes
    No
    Aluminium Pikes

    Dibbs
    Member

    I’m yet to be convinced that this issue actually causes a risk of failure, so far I’ve only ever seen one photo of an alleged CK induced failure.
    You’d think with all these people reporting the so called problem, there’d be steerers failing left right and center

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    I don’t understand why this affects CK headset only, as all headsets use some sort of adjustable washer to centre the steerer, CK use an o-ring, other’s use a wedge. There’s essentially no difference. If anything, you’d expect the wedge expander to do more damage, as it’s metal, and the o-ring that CK use is soft rubber.

    richc
    Member

    the metal wedge holds the steerer firmly in place, whereas the o-ring can be squashed out of the way and this play causes the scoring as the steerer comes into contact with the headset cups (alledgely).

    nukeproof
    Member

    I’d like to know what is being defined as ‘scoring’ as some photos I’ve seen of the alleged damage look more like rubbing as opposed to gorges in the metal. My Revs might have lost a bit of finish on the steerer but they are not scored by my definition.

    nasher
    Member

    It happened on my pikes and my friends Fox 36.

    What annoyed me most was the creaking, and my pikes had avery deep groove.

    However I had one on my road bike with a carbon steerer…..no problems at all.

    It seems the problems lie with long travel suspension forks, there was a thread somwhere on MTBR saying that the design and tight tolerances of the CK headset does not allow for any ‘give’ hence the scoring.

    BTW I used other headsets and no problems.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    there was a thread somwhere on MTBR saying that the design and tight tolerances of the CK headset does not allow for any ‘give’ hence the scoring.

    whereas the o-ring can be squashed out of the way and this play causes the scoring as the steerer comes into contact with the headset cups (alledgely).

    these two posts are suggesting that the issue is that CK simultaneously have too much, and too little “give” which makes me think that the problem isn’t well understood?

Viewing 45 posts - 1 through 45 (of 84 total)

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