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I am about to build up a frame with a shorter head tube than my current ride. I was wondering if there is an advantage to using a pressed-in head tube extension over stacking a large number of spacers. If it matters, the "new" frame I am building up uses a 1" steerer.

Serotta used to make these head tube extensions, before they started building their frames with longer dimensions at the top of the head tube. A company called Aerolite Titanium still sells them.

What are the pros and cons of extensions vs. spacers?
 

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Better than spacers, but the best solution is a frame with a longer head tube. Some frames have an longer section of head tube above the top tube, and some frames use a longer than normal head tube and just slope the top tube up to it. (Kind of a reverse compact effect)
 

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Rusty Coggs said:
If you are using a CF steerer fork, the recommended limit for spacers is about 25mm. With a steel or alloy steerer I don't think there is any advantage to an pressed in extension.
I believe Wound Up carbon steerer forks can be used with 40 mm of spacers. This is not the most common carbon fork but if you're near the limit (i.e. you're using a lot of spacers), it might make sense to contact the manufacturer to get the limit from them. That's what I did when I was trying to figure out if a carbon steerer wound up would work for me and some of the info I received from them challenged my assumptions (like the 25mm one which I previously held).
 

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Can a 1" carbon steerer be found? If not, you won't have much problems. Go with the press-in.

Seen the new Lemonds lately? A good inch of HT extension above the TT. They used to have chronically short HTs which doesn't work with threadless systems
 
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