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I'm an almost daily all-season rider for a dozen years. Press fit headset bearings are subject to wear and corrosion. If you ride and/or wash your bike regularly you will feel a slight stiffening over time (handlebars don't move as readily when walking the bike with hand on the seat). This steering symptom gradually increases to feel like you would expect ...


I just had some success by using an old innertube to get a MUCH better grip on the "knurled ring"-on my bike this ring is not knurled, it just has a bunch of straight edges but nothing really wrenchable.


Probably never -- headsets can easily last the life of a bicycle for most people without needing an overhaul. If you ride in the wet, it is advisable to have a front fender, though (to reduce the likelihood of needing an overhaul even further).

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