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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
i am not a moron (most of the time). never cut a steerer tube tho, can i do it at home or should i take it to the shop. is there anything that difficult or any tricks i need to know?
thanks

edit: i dont have a saw guide, fork is steel, nor do i have a caliper.
 

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I would probably take it to a shop myself unless you have the cutting guide. Your lbs should be able to make sure it's cut at the right height and installed correctly. It's not too difficult but I didn't have the crown puller and installer tool when I upgraded my fork so it was just easier to have to show do it for that reason too.
 
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Metal steerer? Don't use a pipe cutter on a carbon tube.

Its not that hard to cut one, but is also easy to cut one to the wrong length and it is much easier with the right tools.
 

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you can use an old stem and cut along the face of the stem. Remember measure twice cut once. A pipe cutter can leave a really sharp edge and make it harder to get a star nut in there if you don't have one in there yet and/or the edge will conflict with an expansion style star nut.

Finally use a medium tooth blade on the steel, some lube to lube the blade and cut in long even strokes working alternately through front then back of cut. Finally finish it off, de burr with some other piece of metal such as pliers and then hit it with some sand paper both inside and outside.

If you have 2 old stems use them as a guide, If you have no stems you can wrap the stem with masking tape and draw the line on that, then carefully cut through with a hacksaw. You can also use the pipe cutter to mark the cut in the metal and then finish with a hacksaw.

Finally measure twice, then measure twice again, then make sure the top cap of your headset is on there and all the spacers and the stem and then mark it.

Shouldn't need to take this to a shop to do it really, been cutting forks at home for years and only last year with the acquisition of a carbon fork did I get a cheapy fork cutting guide.
 

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loudog said:
i am not a moron (most of the time). never cut a steerer tube tho, can i do it at home or should i take it to the shop. is there anything that difficult or any tricks i need to know?
thanks

edit: i dont have a saw guide, fork is steel, nor do i have a caliper.

Measure 8 times and then one more time to make sure and cut once. If you eff it up you will be fork shopping.
 

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Pipe cutter

loudog said:
threadless. is a traditional pipe cutter not accurate enough thus requiring saw guide?
If, by pipe cutter, you mean a tubing cutter, then this tool is NEVER appropriate for cutting any bike steerer tube. Tubing cutters are made for ductile materials (like copper) and would work poorly on a steel or aluminum steerer and work terribly on a CF steerer. If your pipe cutter has a fine tooth saw blade, then it will work fine as long as you cut slowly and carefully, and work around the tube so that you are not left with a "hanging edge" when the tube snaps off. Regardless of the steerer tube material, you should dress the cut edge to remove roughness and give it a slight bevel.
 

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Here is what I do:

1) Before cutting your fork put the crown race on and install it on your bike.
2) Install your stem and bars on the fork to the position that is normal for you.
3) Add a 3-5mm aluminum spacer on top of the stem and use it as a guide to cut with a hack saw.
4) After you cut, keep the spacer on and take a file to ensure your cut is level.
5) Wipe clean, remove the spacer you used as a guide and add a new spacer that is slightly larger than the guide.
6) Add star nut, top cap and complete final installation.

Works for me every time and I've done at least 25 forks this way without any problems.
 

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See if you can sit in while they install. You'll have to since they will need your measurements to get it right.

You'll learn and I think you'll find out that it easier than you believe it to be.

Make sure it is a good shop with an experienced wrench. Believe me, they can f it up worse than you can. Tell them where you want it cut, add 5mm beyond that and run a spacer on top.
 

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RoadBikeRider
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I cut mine at home, it is alloy, just marked it and cut it without a guide. Filed it down nice and smooth, no problem. The cut does not need to be 100% perfect, just close. I would probably use a guide if I had a high $ fork though.
 

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Definitely use a cutting guide! Nashbar has a cheap 1" to 1-1/8" guide.

Also, like the folks say, measure a few times before cutting. When in doubt, I leave a little more on the fork (you can always make more small cuts later, but you can never put length back ON!).

Lastly, its good to have a variety of different steerer tube spacers so you can mix and match the spacer/stem stack to whatever length you cut to. (Nashbar has a bag of different sized steerer tube spacers you can get too - carbon or alloy) I sound like a Nashbar rep don't I? I just love Nashbar!

Cheers!
 
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