Angle Headsets: What's Your Experience?

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Angle Headsets: What's Your Experience?
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Posted: Mar 24, 2022 at 10:04 Quote
I'm thinking about getting an angle headset to slacken the 67° head tube angle on my son's Giant Trance. I've been looking around and there seems to be more of them out there, nowadays. There's Cane Creek's AngleSet (I get the impression that was the first or maybe just the most well known). Works Components has a line of them. Wolf Tooth (I like their chain rings) has the Geoshift, limited to 1°. Does anyone have any experience with these products? Do you have any recommendations? Is there anything that should be considered beyond your desired effective headtube angle? Are there any pitfalls to this effort or just plain advice you can give? Thanks.

The products I have been looking at:
https://canecreek.com/product/angleset/
https://www.workscomponents.co.uk/
https://www.wolftoothcomponents.com/pages/geoshift-angle-headset
https://www.superstarcomponents.com/en/slackerizer-angle-headset.htm

Posted: Mar 24, 2022 at 11:09 Quote
I liked the Works Components, only downside is the upper bearings can shart the bed pretty quickly if they aren't packed with marine grease & you ride in the wet often.

Outside of that, affordable, easy install & quiet.

Posted: Mar 24, 2022 at 12:00 Quote
I’ve used both works components and superstar over the last 5 years or so. No problems with either, just take your time when pressing the cups in to make sure they are properly aligned in terms of front and rear and not skewed. There is a notch on the cup to aid line up.

Posted: Mar 24, 2022 at 21:26 Quote
Works are fantastic. I had a 2* degree on my old 26 and a 1* tee'd up on a 27.5 project bike. I've been running their reach adjust on my DH fun bike as well and a couple chainrings to boot. Everything is top quality from Works. Installation isn't tough, just as mentioned take your time and ensure everything is lined up.

The Works headsets accept Cane Creek bearings, which is a huge plus. Works are 45x45, CC are 36x45 so you will need the lizard crown race, which frankly I found seals better than the Works anyway. Agreed on the upper bearings, they did not seal very well, use marine grease.

Benefits are numerous for older geo especially. Slacks things out, lowers the bb, steepens sta, also makes a bit of room for a longer than spec'd a2c if desired. The 2* noticeably shortens reach, especially on already cramped frames. I went up 10mm stem length running the angleset so budget for a jump there.

ETA: I'm unaware of a Cane Creek angleset, only a Cane Creak one. Avoid for reason stated.

Posted: Mar 24, 2022 at 22:22 Quote
I didn’t like that it lowered my Capra so much but liked the slower steering had a -2 degree works headset

Posted: Mar 24, 2022 at 22:36 Quote
Works Components is great on my bike. Working well for over a year.
You need to make sure you have a fair bit of fork steerer. I only just had enough becuase the headset stack is much greater than a normal headset.
Also, dont bother with the1 degree version (which only changes it by around 0.7 degrees). Go for a 1.5 or 2 degree version.

The added benefit is that it also slightly steepens you seat tube and increases the reach (only slightly). And lowers the BB.

Posted: Mar 24, 2022 at 22:43 Quote
HaggeredShins wrote:
The 2* noticeably shortens reach, especially on already cramped frames. .

Hey Haggard Shins, an angleset (certainly the Works Components ones) will actually increase reach.Not decrease.

By increasing the angle at which the steerer goes through the head tube, this drops the front end, which increases reach. I think about 2mm for a 1 degree angleset. Thats why a 1 degree angleset will only give around 0.7 degrees (ish) of final head angle change. You gain the 1 degree through the headtube, but then lose 0.2 - 0.3 becuase the front end drops and slightly steepens the fork (hence why the BB drop and STA steepen). Make sense?? So it actually pulls the reach forward more than back.

Posted: Mar 25, 2022 at 7:28 Quote
Cpembo6 wrote:
HaggeredShins wrote:
The 2* noticeably shortens reach, especially on already cramped frames. .

Hey Haggard Shins, an angleset (certainly the Works Components ones) will actually increase reach.Not decrease.

By increasing the angle at which the steerer goes through the head tube, this drops the front end, which increases reach. I think about 2mm for a 1 degree angleset. Thats why a 1 degree angleset will only give around 0.7 degrees (ish) of final head angle change. You gain the 1 degree through the headtube, but then lose 0.2 - 0.3 becuase the front end drops and slightly steepens the fork (hence why the BB drop and STA steepen). Make sense?? So it actually pulls the reach forward more than back.

Sure you're not wrong on reach if you're only thinking about the geo table, but that's a bit limited for someone like OP to visualize what's going to happen as an impact on their true riding position. If you consider bar position as a measure of "final reach" and "final stack", to maintain bar height with an angleset, you lose final reach. There's no way around that. At the same bar height, your bars will come towards your lap with an angleset. I can't think of why any rider would want to sacrifice the height of their bars for the sake of reach measured on the frame; it makes more sense to address this at the stem.

The part above simply isn't true about head angle, though. HA is measured (and really all other geo for that matter) as an angle in reference to a plane drawn through the axles. Anglesets are designed to change the steerer angle in relation to this plane. The frame rotating forward/dropping doesn't impact this measurement, it results from it. The only geo measure that would impact the intended engineering of an angleset is a2c.

Posted: Mar 25, 2022 at 8:27 Quote
Yeah, reach shrinks with an angleset, not by a huge margin... Handlebars pulled closer to the cranks, hence shrunk reach.

Posted: Mar 26, 2022 at 10:48 Quote
I've used the Wolftooth angleset. Installed easily with a block of wood and a hammer. Never had any creaking. Bearings were good. Seemed to be a high quality product at a reasonable price.

Posted: Mar 26, 2022 at 15:29 Quote
I've got a 2 degree wolftooth angleset sitting on my bench waiting for me to design a set of custom brackets for an old lefty I'm going to install on my fatbike frame, looks like a nice piece of kit. In my case, the bottom and top bearings are external cups to fit in my 1 1/8" steerer tube with a tapered steerer - make sure you double check what fits your frame, you might end up with extra stack if external cups are required. I did look at the whole range of Cane Creek, Works and Wolf Tooth to see what would fit my frame.

Posted: Mar 26, 2022 at 15:56 Quote
I have a Wolf Tooth 1 degree angle set installed on a 2020 Rocky Mountain Instinct. It’s been creak free during normal MTB riding. Being ZS was nice since the bike fit well and I really just wanted a bit more stability at speed.

I am also working through Ryan Leech’s skills lessons and the headset (or something) does creak when doing rocks and hops with the brakes locked up. But JRA, it’s dead silent.

Posted: Mar 27, 2022 at 6:59 Quote
I just installed a Works 1.5deg angle set in my sons Giant to slacken it. So far so good. No issues.

Posted: Mar 27, 2022 at 22:07 Quote
HaggeredShins wrote:

The part above simply isn't true about head angle, though. HA is measured (and really all other geo for that matter) as an angle in reference to a plane drawn through the axles. Anglesets are designed to change the steerer angle in relation to this plane. The frame rotating forward/dropping doesn't impact this measurement, it results from it. The only geo measure that would impact the intended engineering of an angleset is a2c.

That certainly makes sense, but this is not the case. At least for Works Components (I cant comment on other brands). I have previously asked them this exact question after measuring my HA before and after installing their headset. They confirm a 1 degree only only changes where the steerer passes through the headtube by 1 degree. Not the final resting HA (which, as you say, is measured from the axles).

Also, even when installing spacers under the stem to make up for the small amount of lost stack, you are still gaining a slight amount of final reach.

e.g. -1 degree angleset will increase reach on a typical trail bike by around 2.9mm and reduce stack by around 2mm. Taking into account hand position on the bars (instead of geo chart reach/stack) the hands have moved down 1.9mm and forward 2.3mm. If installing 2mm spacer under the stem to keep the same bar height, you end up your hands 1.5mm further forward (increased reach whichever way you look at it). It's only a very small amount. I'm jsut making the point that it doesnt decrease reach.

Take a look at a geo calculater and run the numbers. It's easy enough to do. I went through this in great detail a while ago when I was making a lot of changes.

Unless I'm over thinking things and missing something obvious??

Posted: Mar 27, 2022 at 23:02 Quote
Cpembo6 wrote:
HaggeredShins wrote:

The part above simply isn't true about head angle, though. HA is measured (and really all other geo for that matter) as an angle in reference to a plane drawn through the axles. Anglesets are designed to change the steerer angle in relation to this plane. The frame rotating forward/dropping doesn't impact this measurement, it results from it. The only geo measure that would impact the intended engineering of an angleset is a2c.

That certainly makes sense, but this is not the case. At least for Works Components (I cant comment on other brands). I have previously asked them this exact question after measing my HA before and after installing their headset. They confirm a 1 degree only only changes where the steerer passes through the headtube by 1 degree. Not the final resting HA (which, as you say, is measured from the axles).

Also, even when installing spacers under the stem to make up for the small amount of lost stack, you are still gaining a slight amount of final reach.

e.g. -1 degree angleset will increase reach on a typical trail bike by around 2.9mm and reduce stack by around 2mm. Taking into account hand position on the bars (instead of geo chart reach/stack) the hands have moved down 1.9mm and forward 2.3mm. If installing 2mm spacer under the stem to keep the same bar height, you end up your hands 1.5mm further forward (increased reach whichever way you look at it). It's only a very small amount. I'm jsut making the point that it doesnt decrease reach.

Take a look at a geo calculater and run the numbers. It's easy enough to do. I went through this in great detail a while ago when I was making a lot of changes.

Unless I'm over thinking things and missing something obvious??

unless it's because you're down under,
It’s exactly the opposite that happens,
I had works anglesets on many of my bikes and it actually decreases reach by quite a margin,

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