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Cage to cartridge bearings

Old 05-09-22, 03:38 PM
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Boo Boo
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Cage to cartridge bearings

Is it possible to convert cage bearings in a headset to cartridge bearings? Specifically my 2021 Scott Scale 965, but mostly just asking generally.
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Old 05-09-22, 04:04 PM
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Doesn't that already come with a press fit, cartridge bearing headset? Usually, the answer is no to converting caged balls to cartridge as the cups and races are shaped to only accept one or the other.
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Old 05-09-22, 04:11 PM
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Iride01
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Are you certain it isn't already cartridge? There are people selling after market headsets for Scott's that are cartridge.

But if it isn't broke........
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Old 05-09-22, 04:42 PM
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Very likely the OP's headset has cheap cartridge bearings and one fell part like the cheap ones do and he's seeing balls in a retainer after the inner race separated from the rest of the bearing.
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Old 05-09-22, 05:59 PM
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No, it definitely does not have cartridge bearings. Did a headset service and they are 100% cage bearings. I have worked with cartridge and cage bearings, and these are cheap unsealed bearings. I was surprised too when I opened the headset to see exposed balls.
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Old 05-09-22, 07:04 PM
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The Velo orange website has nice bling, don't know if it will work on your bike.

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Old 05-09-22, 07:04 PM
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Headsets on anything from the last 70 years should be generally replaceable. Before that there were some integrated headsets.

Just figure out the size of headset and replace.

You'll need to know the inner and outer diameters. For a 2021, it is probably a 1 1/8" headset, but there are multiple different styles.
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Old 05-09-22, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Boo Boo View Post
No, it definitely does not have cartridge bearings. Did a headset service and they are 100% cage bearings. I have worked with cartridge and cage bearings, and these are cheap unsealed bearings. I was surprised too when I opened the headset to see exposed balls.
Post photos. The Scott site specs:

Syncros OE Press Fit E2 / Tapered 1.5"-1 1/8"
OD 50/62mm / ID 44/56mm, which is described like this on the Syncros site:


The Syncros Press Fit tapered headset is the perfect solution for the new breed of frames with tapered headtubes and forks with tapered steerers. This high-quality and durable semi-integrated headset is made of forged and CNC machined aluminium cups. Featuring sealed cartridge bearings which offer everlasting smooth function.

As I said
previously those are actually 'cartridge' bearings, though not really sealed. There isn't much holding them together and the races separate pretty easily. They have caged balls inside but those are in races and the whole thing pops right out of the cup integrated into the head tube.
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Old 05-09-22, 08:55 PM
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Hi, I'll post an image from the web of my headset. I don't own a bike stand so it's a hassle to take it apart and show images.
ep1.pinkbike.org/p4pb20552629/p4pb20552629.jpg
This image is what came out of the bike when I did my service, and I'm pretty sure there wasn't anything else left inside.
I would upload the actual image, but I don't have enough posts to do that yet.
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Old 05-10-22, 06:14 AM
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BooBoo's photo

Those are what I refer to as caged.





These are sealed cartridge.
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Old 05-10-22, 08:43 AM
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^^^I'm not 100% certain but I believe the OP's bearings are cartridge bearings that have just come apart. Need to see the reverse sides of the parts though and that's what most HS bearing cartridges will look like inside.
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Old 05-10-22, 09:18 AM
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I don’t think anyone makes a drop in cartridge to replace caged or loose ball bearings.

I believe the caged/loose cups are radiused and the cartridge are angular.

I personally feel that if there is one application where a cartridge bearing headset is much more preferred it is on a mountain or cx bike.

Plan on swapping out the entire headset when the bearings go bad.

John
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