Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

2017 Specialized Roubaix rusted headset cartridge bearings

Notices
Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

2017 Specialized Roubaix rusted headset cartridge bearings

Old 09-11-19, 12:40 PM
  #1  
Yavuz C
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
2017 Specialized Roubaix rusted headset cartridge bearings

I am looking to see if anyone else is having the same problem. It's a Roubaix Expert Di2, which has been in use for about a year with ~7500 miles. The bike has been back to the shop many times with some annoying problems which were for the most part resolved except for one.

I am currently riding this bike with rusty cartridge bearings where the headset can't be torqued to the factory specifications. If torqued to those levels, I get notches in steering the handlebar in the centered position and 10:30 position (on the clock) which makes steering difficult. The shop mechanic lowered to torque to a level that makes riding possible, while still feeling 'rusty'.

I am told that Specialized does not have the parts and I have been waiting for almost two months. Much has to be said against bikes with proprietary parts, but that should probably be a subject for another post!
Yavuz C is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 01:14 PM
  #2  
Dan333SP
Serious Cyclist
 
Dan333SP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: RVA
Posts: 9,079

Bikes: 2013 Madone 3.1

Mentioned: 94 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5514 Post(s)
Liked 38 Times in 24 Posts
Originally Posted by Yavuz C View Post
I am looking to see if anyone else is having the same problem. It's a Roubaix Expert Di2, which has been in use for about a year with ~7500 miles. The bike has been back to the shop many times with some annoying problems which were for the most part resolved except for one.

I am currently riding this bike with rusty cartridge bearings where the headset can't be torqued to the factory specifications. If torqued to those levels, I get notches in steering the handlebar in the centered position and 10:30 position (on the clock) which makes steering difficult. The shop mechanic lowered to torque to a level that makes riding possible, while still feeling 'rusty'.

I am told that Specialized does not have the parts and I have been waiting for almost two months. Much has to be said against bikes with proprietary parts, but that should probably be a subject for another post!
Who makes the headset bearings? I have a Trek, but I've had similar issues. If I do just one or two rain rides, the headset bearings (both top and bottom) will start to seize due to rust. I can loosen the preload a bit to allow the stem to turn smoothly, but that allows a bit of play/clunking in the headset when I'm braking on the front wheel, so I have to tighten it down and get that notchy feeling again.

My solution is just regularly replacing the bearings myself as they start to get a gritty feeling. I had to contact FSA to get a part number for each (they make the headset for my bike) and then I had to find a 3rd party bearing maker on Ebay that sold angular contact bearings that match the FSA bearing dimensions, but since I did that work it's easy for me to get new bearings fairly quickly.

You can also slather your replacement bearings in a marine grease or similar, something that will provide a bit more protection from water ingress which is usually the cause of gritty/notchy headsets.
Dan333SP is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 01:21 PM
  #3  
redlude97
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 4,483
Mentioned: 28 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1828 Post(s)
Liked 111 Times in 81 Posts
Originally Posted by Yavuz C View Post
I am looking to see if anyone else is having the same problem. It's a Roubaix Expert Di2, which has been in use for about a year with ~7500 miles. The bike has been back to the shop many times with some annoying problems which were for the most part resolved except for one.

I am currently riding this bike with rusty cartridge bearings where the headset can't be torqued to the factory specifications. If torqued to those levels, I get notches in steering the handlebar in the centered position and 10:30 position (on the clock) which makes steering difficult. The shop mechanic lowered to torque to a level that makes riding possible, while still feeling 'rusty'.

I am told that Specialized does not have the parts and I have been waiting for almost two months. Much has to be said against bikes with proprietary parts, but that should probably be a subject for another post!
If you can't get the cartridge bearings from specialized have you tried to pull them and bring them to a industrial bearing shop or measured them yourself so you can order online? I'm not familiar with the layout of the futureshock, but you could also just try to pull the seals on the bearings and flush them out and repack with grease.
redlude97 is online now  
Old 09-11-19, 01:40 PM
  #4  
Dan333SP
Serious Cyclist
 
Dan333SP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: RVA
Posts: 9,079

Bikes: 2013 Madone 3.1

Mentioned: 94 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5514 Post(s)
Liked 38 Times in 24 Posts
Originally Posted by redlude97 View Post
If you can't get the cartridge bearings from specialized have you tried to pull them and bring them to a industrial bearing shop or measured them yourself so you can order online? I'm not familiar with the layout of the futureshock, but you could also just try to pull the seals on the bearings and flush them out and repack with grease.
I found a video and it does look like OP's bike has pretty standard upper/lower angular contact headset bearings-


Don't see any reason why he can't just get their dimensions and order replacements from a 3rd party.
Dan333SP is offline  
Old 09-11-19, 02:53 PM
  #5  
Chi_Z
Senior Member
 
Chi_Z's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 328

Bikes: Niner RLT 9 RDO

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 161 Post(s)
Liked 23 Times in 17 Posts
Originally Posted by Dan333SP View Post
I found a video and it does look like OP's bike has pretty standard upper/lower angular contact headset bearings-
Don't see any reason why he can't just get their dimensions and order replacements from a 3rd party.
Because those older Roubaix uses proprietary 1 3/8 inch bottom bearings that are very hard to source. You cannot just get the same diameter, you also have to get the angle right. Nowadays I stay clear of any frame with proprietary seatpost or headsets. Good luck finding parts on those future-shock 1.0 headsets when they are on future-shock 5.0 few years down the road.
Chi_Z is offline  
Likes For Chi_Z:
Old 09-11-19, 04:37 PM
  #6  
Kimmo
bike whisperer
 
Kimmo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Melbourne, Oz
Posts: 8,343

Bikes: https://weightweenies.starbike.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=152015&p=1404231

Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 590 Post(s)
Liked 84 Times in 72 Posts
When I don't have replacement HS cartridges available, I just whip em out, run some solvent through and work em a bit, which usually removes most of the grittiness. Relube with some heavy chain oil, slather in grease, and reinstall. Because they don't go back in exactly the same orientation, the problem spots don't agree between the bearings and they don't line up with straight ahead, and the notchiness is almost always cured.
Kimmo is offline  
Likes For Kimmo:
Old 09-11-19, 07:09 PM
  #7  
FlashBazbo
Chases Dogs for Sport
 
FlashBazbo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Middle Tennessee
Posts: 4,121

Bikes: BMC SLR01 TeamMachine Disk Di2; OPEN new U.P. Di2

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 869 Post(s)
Liked 50 Times in 34 Posts
Some years back, I had an S-Works Tarmac whose headset bearings were a rusted mess after less than 30 days -- and the bike was stored indoors and never saw rain in those 30 days. I suspect they were rusty before I even took delivery of the bike. Specialized gave me so much runaround as I tried to get a warranty replacement that I gave up and bought / installed my own headset. (They wanted me to pay the dealer to install the warranty headset. The labor would have been more than the cost of a new headset.) That was my last Specialized product. Ever. (It was a nice bike, though.)
FlashBazbo is offline  
Old 09-12-19, 11:06 AM
  #8  
Yavuz C
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Chi_Z View Post
Because those older Roubaix uses proprietary 1 3/8 inch bottom bearings that are very hard to source. You cannot just get the same diameter, you also have to get the angle right. Nowadays I stay clear of any frame with proprietary seatpost or headsets. Good luck finding parts on those future-shock 1.0 headsets when they are on future-shock 5.0 few years down the road.
This is exactly what I am afraid of. The bike is just a year old and the shop not having the part (I am told that it is a proprietary part) is not a good sign for the long term durability. I may have to buy a couple of the cartridge bearings when it becomes available and save it for future replacements. I am not mechanically inclined so that might be my only option. Thanks for your help.

I will keep the option of cleaning and reusing these parts based on the very good suggestions from others who responded.

Last edited by Yavuz C; 09-12-19 at 11:10 AM.
Yavuz C is offline  
Old 09-29-19, 08:05 PM
  #9  
hiknmik3
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Posts: 1
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I made an account to chime in on the issue of headset bearings in future shock equiped bikes. I have a 18 diverge comp and was surprised at both the short life and the difficulty sourcing the bearings. My first set were shot after a few months and I had a heck of time getting replacements.

Regarding the short life, I think a combination of riding in the rain and how I washed the bike caused the first set to rust quickly. Water runs down under the top cap and there is nothing to stop it. I now hand wash the top tube and am careful to keep water away from the top cap area. My second set has lasted over a year. I just took it apart tonight and there was a little rust on the outside of the bottom bearing but with a little grease it was as good as new. Oh and I grease the bearings thoroughly during reassembly to try to keep the water out.

Regarding sourcing, I just hate getting parts from specialized. I emailed rider care with my serial number and they initially couldn't provide a part number. When pressed I got a different number for the top and bottom (they are identical). When I pressed yet again I was provided the part number. I then drove to the dealer with the part number and a photo of the bearing from my bike showing the size marking. They required I bring the bike in so they could take it apart before ordering it to "make sure we order the right part". They eventually were able to get the part.

One final thought, I carefully disassembled my old ones by following a youtube video of taking apart a sealed bearing. One is now as good as new and the other is a serviceable spare.
hiknmik3 is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
icepick_trotsky
Classic & Vintage
10
08-23-15 07:17 AM
aloke321basu
Road Cycling
4
04-07-15 10:49 AM
lopek77
Bicycle Mechanics
6
02-09-15 09:06 PM
tompt
Bicycle Mechanics
7
06-04-11 02:28 PM
Airburst
Bicycle Mechanics
3
03-10-10 11:01 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.