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Choosing a headset

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Choosing a headset

Hi everyone!

I've been using my commuter bike for short trips and tours, but now I'm starting to build a dedicated touring bike. For now, most of it consists of recycled parts from older bikes, except from the frame, which will be (hopefully) custom made. The main thing that concerns me is the headset.

Which type of headset would you recommend me? A classical, threaded headset, or a threadless one?

I have experience with both, but in my humble opinion, threaded headsets would be better, because they are more adjustable (height and length), and I suppose it's easier to find spare parts in remote areas.

But I could be wrong, so I would be very grateful if you could share your experience.

Thank you and greetings,


WS Member WS Member's picture
Do not waste your money on a custom frame.

Hi Yayo,
I assume you are a normal human being, so the right mass produced frame can be made to fit you. The frame should be small enough for the crossbar not to castrate you if you fall off, but large enough to sit on the saddle with your heel on the pedal at the bottom and your leg almost straight.(Of course you ride with the ball of the foot on the pedal!) A little higher gives more power, a little lower reduces saddle sorness. Too high gives you shin splints, too low wears out your knee joints.
Cycle manufacturers compete to provide the best value at the price & so match the optimum components together. You will not do better for the money. Buy a second hand bike and replace things only as they wear out. Keep everthing oiled & greased, replace the chain regularly before it chews up the more expensive sprokets.
Both types of headset work well. The important thing is not to be stretched out too long and low, unlikely for a tourist who wants to see the scenery.
Join a club or find an experienced friend to be your mentor. You have probably taught youself poor pedaling style,"semplice" as the French call it. You are only pressing the pedals down because you have no toeclip with shoe plates or other locking on system that would allow you to apply force at right angles to the crank throughout the full circle. Practice one legged pedaling till each leg can apply drive through the whole circle without a "clunk" as the foot rises to the top.
I could go on for ever, but these are the mistakes that held me back the most.

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