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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What's the best method of installing a crown race, ensuring that the fork blades do not take excessive punishment while you're hammering away on the appropriate tool? In other words, is there another method other than standing the forks upright (on its dropouts), inserting the crown race, sliding the tool over the steerer, and hammering away?
 

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Gruntled
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:eek: Standing the fork on its dropouts and hammering away?

I think the generally accepted method is to put the fork over a 2x4 or something, straddling it, so that it supports the fork right under the steerer tube.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Jim Nazium said:
:eek: Standing the fork on its dropouts and hammering away?

I think the generally accepted method is to put the fork over a 2x4 or something, straddling it, so that it supports the fork right under the steerer tube.
I've just done a search on this site and it seems there are a number of methods. First prize is buying a headset with a split crown race that can installed by hand. Second prize is the method you describe, while third (and apparently most popular) is the gently, gently hold-it-by-hand-and-tap-away method. Not especially elegant, but effective none the less. Thanks.
 

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p != b
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What about:

* Assemble fork, crown race, and installation tool (ie PVC pipe).
* Flip entire assembly upside-down
* bang assembly on ground (ie. hiting the ground w/ the installation tool) to install crown race.

That's how I've done the two that I've installed, and neither of them have exploded, yet.
 

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RoadBikeRider
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Here is the way I did it.

Went to hardware store and bought an appropriate size pvc pipe and an end cap. Went home and placed the crown race level and tried to tap it on with the pvc pipe and a hammer. It kept wanting to go on crooked but I kept pulling it off and starting over. Looked online for advice, someone advised putting the fork in the freezer for an hour or so and the crown race in the oven @ 200 degrees for a few minutes...take them both out at the same time and the crown race is supposed to slip right on...all I got was burned fingers. One more try with the pvc pipe...still going on crooked. Searched the WWW one more time. Realized that I had bent the crown race in my futile attempts...realized that I wanted a better quality headset anyway (this was a cheap FSA) and went shopping with my fork and damaged headset. Purchased a Cane Creek and said to the guy at the shop "Hey do you think you could ask your mechanic to put that crown race on for me?" About 30 seconds later I was headed out the door. Long story short...get the proper tools. And by the way, the mechanic in the shop placed the dropouts in some sort of support when he was beating on it...basically the same as placing it on the floor.
 

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Number 2 on the course.
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gizzard said:
What's the best method of installing a crown race, ensuring that the fork blades do not take excessive punishment while you're hammering away on the appropriate tool? In other words, is there another method other than standing the forks upright (on its dropouts), inserting the crown race, sliding the tool over the steerer, and hammering away?
I just hold the fork with one hand under the crown, while I tap the race on with the other hand using either a slide hammer or the Part tool that allows the use of a hammer (preferable).

With some forks, you have to be careful about damaging the area where the steerer starts to taper outward, so I like to be able to see what is going on. This is mosty a concern with bonded Al steerers.
 

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refund!? said:
Pay no attention to the repsonses so far. Your lbs will install it correctly while you wait at a cost of from free to $10.
The LBS will either do exactly as I did or pound the drops into a concrete shop floor like a former co-worker did to a NOS Colnago fork. Caveat emptor. And to be fair, this was a rookie mistake -- but the point stands. If you want it done right. . .

Since OP asked about the correct way to use the apporpriate tool, telling him to go to a shop makes no sense.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
PeanutButterBreath said:
The LBS will either do exactly as I did or pound the drops into a concrete shop floor like a former co-worker did to a NOS Colnago fork. Caveat emptor. And to be fair, this was a rookie mistake -- but the point stands. If you want it done right. . .

Since OP asked about the correct way to use the apporpriate tool, telling him to go to a shop makes no sense.
Thanks Peanut
I have all the correct tools and I've installed a large number of crown races. I was asking because there doesn't seem to be a universally accepted 'correct method' for installing a crown race – not even on Park’s website (they conveniently skip this crucial step – how you actually secure the fork and orientate it when the banging starts). I can't understand why all headset manufacturers don't use split races to make the job easier. Perhaps that would be too logical?
 
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