Which headset to fit? (n00b content)

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  • Which headset to fit? (n00b content)
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    I’m building up a frame (second hand) which came with an integrated headset of unknown provenance, I also have a traditional FSA headset with cups (new), I’ve not had an integrated headset before and don’t know which would be better to put on?

    Can’t really see any benefit to the integrated set having read up online other than ease of fitting, I’m not bothered about the aesthetics but it’s a good frame so I’m wondering why it was chosen by the last user.


    Fitting a semi integrated headset.

    If the frame is designed for an integrated headset that is what you need. You won`t be able to fit a conventional headset,as there is a recess for the bearings to drop into.

    If its an MTB it's highly likely its a semi integrated or zero stack, not fully integrated which tend to be found on road bikes.

    Both My Giants have them and never had a problem with them so long as you service them regularly.

    The advantage is that they allow you to have a lower front end.

    What is the frame?

    Generally Cane Creek and FSA have them prefixed with ZS for zero stack and Hope also do one.


    This explains the different headset standards http://www.bicycleheadsets.com/uploads/SHIS_PR_TECH_DOCUMENT_v2__3_.pdf

    As JGG said it’s probably semi integrated (zero stack) and probably 44mm internal diameter headtube so you need either of the below depending on the fork you intend to use.




    if it is fully integrated (internal) then you probably need this


    But you need to know your headtube size

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    Thanks for the replies.

    After a clean up and closer inspection the headset is a Cane Creek HSS20130 steel and is marked 36 x 45 1-18″ (which I believe is fine as I’m fitting a Rockshox Recon which isn’t tapered).

    The frame is a Felt Virtue circa 2008 so I guess the one that came with it is the one to fit seeing as the traditional set won’t fit.

    Now to figure out which parts go where!


    Cane Creek HSS20130 is the bearing number

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    Cane Creek HSS20130 is the bearing number

    This I have now learnt!

    The frame is actually 2009 and according to Felt has a “fully integrated head tube” but for the life of me I cannot figure out how the current setup would work, I’m not convinced that all the components for the header are present.

    I think a trip to the bike shop is in order as I’m desperate to get this build finished today!

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