Wanted: A forever BB! (I need suggestion for an easy to change bearings BB)- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Wanted: A forever BB! (I need suggestion for an easy to change bearings BB)

    Wanted: A forever BB! (I need suggestion for an easy to change bearings BB)

    My modest 29er MTB cracks again like mad. Currently I have Shimano BB-52. Did already some bearing maintenance but cracking came back fast.

    I am aware that bearings don't last forever. My hopefully reasonable question is:

    What is good BB where it's easy to change bearings?

    I am aware that quality bearings can be more expensive than a complete BB.

    For the BB-52 (ID 25mm bearings) one side is quite easy to change, it has 27mm or ID, but one side has also 25mm, which would be tricky to get the bearing out.

    Or what you do to replace BB bearings?

  2. #2
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    chris king!

  3. #3
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    Rather then replacing bearings in a $20 Alivio BB, why not just get the $35 xtr?

  4. #4
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    If you really want forever bearings, get a Chris King BB and their tool to flush grease through the bearings. But it won't be cheap. The next King bearing I wear out will be the first one, I've got King stuff old enough to drink in all 50 states.

  5. #5
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    Keep in mind that a lot of BB creaking is actually the BB shell creaking in the frame. You'll need to take everything apart and feel the bearings by hand to determine if they're bad, or whether the issue lies elsewhere.

    In general, unless you're willing to spend a couple hundred bucks, I'd say just buy a decent Shimano bottom bracket and be done with it. When it wears out, put another one in. They're cheap and pretty decent.

  6. #6
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    Yeah, they are cheap enough and the tools are cheap too. I always ran xt's but threw a set of hopes on right before I retired the bike. kind of a splurge but they worked well. External bottom brackets are so easy. Much easier to replace the whole thing than fart around with bearings.

    I consider them wear items.

  7. #7
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    Whenever you have a choice replace your bearings with stainless ones. Even living in the arid west, water has been the consistent killer of my bb bearings and stainless ones live long.

    https://www.endurobearings.com/produ...ainless-steel/

  8. #8
    EDR
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    Bearings are not usually the culprit of creaking/cracking sounds. BB shell threads/interface are though.

  9. #9
    Rider
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    Mediocre bearings usually aren't the culprit of bearings dying early. Lots of out of spec bb shells out there and it doesn't matter what bb you stick in there unless it's custom made to account for the messed up shell.

  10. #10
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    XD-15 is made with nitrogen stainless steel like the blades in a jet engine.
    https://www.endurobearings.com/technology/xd15/
    "XD-15 ceramic bearings use a different material than any other bearing on the market and is exclusive only to Enduro bearings. XD-15 is a very special nitrogen infused steel material that will not rust or corrode. Even running in salt water or any caustic nutrition drink you can spill, it will not be degraded or affected. Even dirt or sand inside will not wear it out; this will simply polish the races smoother. "
    I installed it in a pressfit housing with UltraBlack urethane gasket material. Let it cure for 24hrs. No probs.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ungod View Post
    Keep in mind that a lot of BB creaking is actually the BB shell creaking in the frame.
    Not sure in my case. I recently had the BB disassemble, I cleaned the bearings. re-greased with a good PTFE grease. Very smooth... for a week. Then is started again slowly.

    On the other bike I use I have the GUB ceramic bearings BB (but press-fit type). I might try that for MTB, they are quite cheap too and so far don't make a noise. Not sure the bearings can be replaced.

  12. #12
    Hoolie Ghoulie on Strava.
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    I do not buy bike frames with press fit, that is #1. Even Ibis moved back to screw in bottom brackets. I loved my Chris King Btm brkt, but these days I pop in a new XT Btm Brkt every spring for about $20. I use the old one to hold my trash bag down to the bottom of the trash can, where it belongs. XT seems to last about 150-180 rides all seasons. Sometimes you get a bad one, or it gets so wet, it only lasts like 75 rides.
    Buy American, save lives. (Tough for cyclists)

  13. #13
    eri
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    Another ck fan here. But... I think before anyone spends the money on ck (or another premium solution like cane creek) they should ruin a few more cheapo bb to be sure its a trend. Xtr lasted through a low mile year for me on a second bike, symptom was cranks are both loose and binding. Open up (destructively) and bearings are rotted, for most bb it means they are toast.

    I think shimano bb are a good value, a year for $20. The sram units i had were more like 90 days. $20 wont get you replacement bearings. Shimano is excellent for the price.

    That said i dont think a creak entails a new bb, at least my dead bb never creaked, they grinded-ed, like sand, and the crank rattled. When you remove the crank and move the bb bearings do they feel gritty and make a sandpaper noise?

    Your frame shell might be damaged or it could be the crank spindle is damaged? Or could be something else? Pedals? Can be very difficult to diagnose. If it is a creak between bb and shell try thin plumbing tape around bb threads? Locktite 242? If one of those works for a month of hard riding then you might consider a retaining compound.

    Forever bb: The ck bb is pretty amazing, you can pretty easily clean and replace the grease, i do it once a year but the grease that comes out doesnt seem to need it. I believe it will outlast the frame. Other solid option: Cane creek makes a neo bb that might truly be a forever bb, designed to tolerate steam pressure wash in meat packing plants. They now also make a less expensive stainless bb that i would have tried had it been available when i got my ck.
    the truth is always a gift because it offers the recipient of that information the chance to change the outcome - Grace Choi

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by eatdrinkride View Post
    Bearings are not usually the culprit of creaking/cracking sounds. BB shell threads/interface are though.
    THIS!

    The only BB I ever had that made any noise was a threaded Shimano, many years ago and it was in the threads. Cleaned them really well and tightened properly and the noise stopped. I've used PF on 4 bikes and they never made noise. The one time I was convinced it was the BB, I replaced it with a Chris King. Turned out, it wasn't the BB.

  15. #15
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    In the meantime I didn't got for 'forever' and bought the GUB bb with ceramic bearings. No idea how long they last, but I do have the same as PF30 on my gravel bike for a few month and they still to well.

    I double the bearings are high quality, but the shell has enough space to press the bearings out and replace them with something different.

    Here is what I mean:

    Wanted: A forever BB! (I need suggestion for an easy to change bearings BB)-img_20200710_095026.jpg

    On the Shimano there isn't much space on one side.

    Quote Originally Posted by MSU Alum View Post
    The only BB I ever had that made any noise was a threaded Shimano, many years ago and it was in the threads. Cleaned them really well and tightened properly and the noise stopped.
    I disassembled the BB52 recently, cleaned the bearings, greased them up. They where quiet for two rides or so. Then the noise came back. When I cleaned them I noticed that the bearings do not run very smooth when testing them by hand. I guess they do have some issues that can only be fixed by replacing them.

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