Unsure of how to setup the fork & headset on your 500 series, 700 series or Core 5? Here you will find everything you need to know & reference for doing this properly. This will ensure the longevity of the headset parts, and that it's all assembled properly and safely. Failure to do so can result in premature wear on the bearings and headset parts, as well as potential for it to loosen up and cause the rider to loose control. If you are not

If the conical spacer is stuck on the fork steerer tube, often it will come off with a little twisting. However, if necessary, you can give it a few gentle taps with a mallet or dead blow to persuade it to come off:

Headset, fork, top cap - If you are not familiar with installing this or not familiar with bicycle part names, it may be best to have it assembled by a bike shop. Please watch video carefully.

As with many bike components, proper installation is important to avoid damage to the bike and to avoid injury while riding the bike. If you are unsure, stop, take some pictures and contact us.

  1. Carefully install fork fully, make sure it is seated well with the bottom of the head tube and the lower bearing that is inside the bottom of the head tube. The lower bearings (larger diameter of the 2 ball bearing cages provided) along with a dust cover should be installed in the bottom of the head tube. If they will not stay in place, you can place them on the crown race on the fork. The dust cover would go on the fork first, then the bearings. You can then carefully install the fork steerer tube into the head tube. Make sure the bearings and dust cover sit properly in the lower bearing cup and on the crown race. The fork should be fully installed.
  2. Once the fork is installed through the headtube, place the compression ring on top of the fork steerer tube. The compression ring has a "split" in it. It is not a complete circle.
  3. Slide it down the fork steerer tube, the lip of the compression ring will insert just inside of the bearing when the fork steerer tube is properly centered. This make take some adjustment to get it to sit just right.
  4. Next place the cone spacer or conical spacer on. Make sure the plastic/ring or dust cover is also installed with this. It should fit right on this spacer.
  5. Add remaining spacers on steerer tube.
  6. Put stem on on steerer tube (but do not tighten bolts yet!). Are you handle bars on correct? Are the wires and cables routed properly?
  7. Insert top cap and bolt, carefully tighten it top cap bolt as shown in the video.
  8. Now you can tighten bolts on stem where it connects to steerer tube. Please be careful and slowly tighten in a criss cross pattern. Do not over tighten or you may strip the stem.
  9. Check to make sure, there is no play in the fork. That the it is well seated at the bottom of the head tube and the top of the head tube.

Core-5 Headset pictures: Note the orientation of the bearings and all parts. They are positioned as they would be when properly installed.

They stack in the order they are in. The top left goes on last. The bottom right goes on the top of the head tube first.

They stack in the order they are in. The top left goes on the bottom of the head tube first. The bottom right goes on the top of the fork first.

This video shows how to properly install the fork and headset spacers correctly: 

This video gives a clear overview of the headset and how each component fits together in the upper bearing cup: 

This YouTube tutorial video covers some basics in detail starting at:
2:36 to 3:45 you will see both the lower cup and ball bearing cage and the upper cup and ball bearing cage along with 2 additional washer like components for the upper bearing.

This YouTube tutorial video has some more detail in troubleshooting your headset, checking top cap, loosening bolts in stem, and checking upper and lower bearings: