I had Breeze Ind. rings on mine and was able to press them off and reuse them. Mine were not welded. I only did this once since I got tired of taring apart the whole frontend to fish broken axles out of the carrier.
I would stay away from birf rings just because it moves your weak point to the inner shaft.
Believe me, it's a pain in the butt pulling the whole front end apart to get the chunks out of the 3rd. Although somehow I managed to blow a birf and immediately after blow the inner spines on the other side within minutes of each other.
I have left my front end open to help keep down on busting stuff. If I do I prefer it to be the birf that goes since that's the easiest thing to swap on the trail.
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