Quick headset assembly question

Today I started with the build of my new cross bike. The lower Headset bearing comes with a plastic counter part (Pictures attached).

Am I right that the plastic part comes on the bottom of the fork steerer Tube? Right between fork and lower bearing like in the last picture?

I ask, because the bearing slides easily onto the steerer, whereas the plastic part would probably need some serious pressing in. It is very tight.


Having a difficult time seeing the pic with the fork but it looks like the crown race (the black piece that fits onto the fork) is upside down but I can’t be 100% sure. The any crown race I’ve installed sits flat on the fork when installed.

The flatter side is on the fork:

Correct like that?

1 Like

Yes, that looks correct to me. The bigger pics help.


Thanks for the Support!

Is it normal that it is very tight? Can I Just “press it down” with a pipe on top or something like that?

1 Like

There’s a specific tool, but that tool is basically just a pipe, so - yes. The pitfall to avoid is deforming the crown race on installation. Go slow and just tap it on. If it’s super tight I’d take it to a shop and have them set it for you.

I’ve never seen a plastic crown race that didn’t have a slot on it before, but first time for everything I guess.


Agreed -never seen a non split plastic one. I use Cane Creek headsets & had always used a length of PVC. Can’t remember exactly why but I bought the setting tool from CC & it works great.

Also, @Tim_87, I’d recommend some carbon safe grease on the fork crown where that race sits. It’s not totally necessary but will give you one less place to look when you’re trying to track down that deafening creak that’s driving you nuts!


A PVC pipe (3$) and a hammer did the job. I put anti-seize paste under the crown race and a little bit of grease on the steerer to minimize friction.

Thanks again for the support.