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  1. #1
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    EBB Slipping, Madness!

    I am having a helluvatime getting the EBB on my new Soul Cycles Dillinger to not slip, creak or squeak. I'm waiting back on the guy from Soul for some advice, but I'm asking here too, as it seems plenty of people here have experience with them.

    So, for those who don't know, The Dillinger is an aluminum hardtail with a Bushnell 'Pinch Bolt' EBB shell, and Soul's own house made eccentric.

    I did my first real ride about a week after getting the frame (mckenzie river trail fwiw), and found the EBB, which i had setup dry (as recommended) with both bolts torqued to 60 in lbs, was slipping slightly, as well as making slight creaking/pinging sounds. I didnt drop a chain the whole time, but it was still annoyingly lose and unacceptable imo. Since then, I have tried the same setup but with grease, as well as with no grease but PTFE/plumbers tape. Neither of these worked any better - they all slip and make noise.

    So I went and got a Niner Biocentric from a lbs, as i had read here that they fit in the Soul. The non drive side fit in perfectly, but it seemed that the drive side was significantly ovalized. I don't know if it was just from the one ride i did or that it came like that. Anyways, after 30 mins of careful sanding, the drive side fit in nice and smooth too, and I made sure to sand the outer faces of the EBB shell, as per the instructions.

    As you can probably guess, the Niner EBB also slipped, creaked and squeaked. I've tried it: totally dry, a little grease, a lot of grease, no grease with PTFE tape (including with tape over the 'lip' of the eccentric, so it covers the face of the shell), as well as of the above but tightened the bolt 'extra hard' (some people solved their Biocentric slipping problems with tape + extra torque). FWIW, each time i tried any of these, it was on a 32x20 gearing (surly cog and ring) and with the BB resting at about the 5:30 position (almost at the very bottom, which i figured would prevent it from slipping any further).

    So i'm now sitting with a chain tensioning system that doesn't work, on a beautiful bike that i want to go ride. I'm all for any type of fix that works, so longs as the EBB remains adjustable, and doesn't further damage my frame. And by works, i mean doesn't slip and doesn't make any abnormal noises.

    Also, i took apart my crank system (pedals, pedal washers, chainring, bashguard, all crank bolts) and regreased and re-tightened them to make sure it was EBB making noise, and not anything else.

  2. #2
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    EBB Madness

    Slurry
    I had terrible problems with an 08 GF Rig. Switched to a Carver EBB, perfect!

    Wombler.

  3. #3
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    Get in touch with Soul...it sounds like their customer service is pretty good, and they've probably encountered the problem before.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slurry
    As you can probably guess, the Niner EBB also slipped, creaked and squeaked. I've tried it: totally dry, a little grease, a lot of grease, no grease with PTFE tape (including with tape over the 'lip' of the eccentric, so it covers the face of the shell), as well as of the above but tightened the bolt 'extra hard' (some people solved their Biocentric slipping problems with tape + extra torque).
    FYI- I'm pretty sure this won't help your creaking problem, however the 'lip' over the eccentric is meant to be clean/dry and no tape. That's why you had to sand the face of your bottom bracket shell on the frame. That is the clamping surface that keeps things locked down supposedly.

    This along with the additional torque (160-190 in lbs.) may remedy your slipping. Not sure on the creaking because I'm have some creaking issues as well - with one layer of PTFE tape.

    Keep us informed what works.

    -matt

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by fat_weasel
    Get in touch with Soul...it sounds like their customer service is pretty good, and they've probably encountered the problem before.
    I've left a message with Chad, still waiting on his reply.

    Quote Originally Posted by mattmor
    This along with the additional torque (160-190 in lbs.) may remedy your slipping. Not sure on the creaking because I'm have some creaking issues as well - with one layer of PTFE tape.
    I'll give that a try too.

  6. #6
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    Well Chad is in the process of sending me a new frame (for other reasons), I did try the setup as mattmor suggested, and though it still creaked, it didnt slip.

    Once the new frame arives, i think i will try:

    Biocentric
    PTFE tape on inside but not on the lip
    Light amount of carbon prep (aka 'seize') on the shell face
    Rough up the shell a bit with a rough file (give it some knurling, kinda).

    I will post with results eventually.

  7. #7
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    Are you sure it's a pinch bolt EBB? Sounds to me like it's a wedge EBB. Is the frame's bottom bracket shell split, and does it tighten around a solid round eccentric via external pinch bolts brazed to the bottom of the shell?

    Or is the BB shell solid and does the eccentric consist of more than one piece (wedges) so the eccentric itself expands as the wedges are pulled together via bolts?

    The latter is a wedge EBB and this sounds like the type you have. It is rare to employ a split shell / pinch bolt bottom bracket on an aluminum frame.

    --Sparty
    Last edited by Sparticus; 10-14-2009 at 09:39 PM.
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  8. #8
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    Uh, the shell is solid, but it uses two bolts that thread up into the shell and tighten against a solid eccentric. Seems like the most common design thus far.

    I was told this was a pinch bolt EBB. Maybe not?

  9. #9
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    this worked for me:

    You don't want grease, you don't want Teflon tape. Coat the EBB with plumber's anti-sieze compound. It should be grayish white and not greasy at all. That should eliminate the creaking. As far as the slipping, just let it slip to where it wants to be. As long as your chain is not dropping, who cares. Yeah you might have a little chain slap, no BFD.

  10. #10
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    You have a "set screw" EBB.

    --Sparty

    Quote Originally Posted by Slurry
    Uh, the shell is solid, but it uses two bolts that thread up into the shell and tighten against a solid eccentric. Seems like the most common design thus far.

    I was told this was a pinch bolt EBB. Maybe not?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparticus
    You have a "set screw" EBB.

    --Sparty

    Uhhh. Yeah. Sounds like mechanic error. Possibly, I don't know for sure.

  12. #12
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    Did it work?

    Quote Originally Posted by Slurry
    Well Chad is in the process of sending me a new frame (for other reasons), I did try the setup as mattmor suggested, and though it still creaked, it didnt slip.

    Once the new frame arives, i think i will try:

    Biocentric
    PTFE tape on inside but not on the lip
    Light amount of carbon prep (aka 'seize') on the shell face
    Rough up the shell a bit with a rough file (give it some knurling, kinda).

    I will post with results eventually.

    I'm curious to hear if you found a solution to your problem. I also have a soul and get the creaking (which I can live with) and have to tighten the chain every 5th ride or so.

  13. #13
    jdg
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    Do you have the chain length set so that the EBB is actually tightening the chain on the downstroke if it does slip? This is ideal. I have an El Mariachi and have it set up this way and it works well.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by SlurryWell
    Chad is in the process of sending me a new frame (for other reasons), I did try the setup as mattmor suggested, and though it still creaked, it didnt slip.

    Once the new frame arives, i think i will try:

    Biocentric
    PTFE tape on inside but not on the lip
    Light amount of carbon prep (aka 'seize') on the shell face
    Rough up the shell a bit with a rough file (give it some knurling, kinda).

    I will post with results eventually.
    I have two bikes with EBBs; one has pinch bolts (by far the best design) and the other has like yours, a set screw design. The set screw is on my tandem; which works well for that purpose, but I can't imagine why a designer would use the set screw system on a single speed. As you learned, by design the set screw system ovalizes the shell. If I understood you right, you sanded either the EBB or shell to make up for the ovalizing; that in my opinion is a huge mistake. The last thing you want to do is remove metal from these mating surfaces. The Niner Biocentric looks like a better solution, but I would not "rough up the shell", but rather rough up the edges of the shell. If you look at the design of the Biocentric, it's the mating surface between the outside edge of the shell and inside lip of the "cups" that hold the unit in place.Further, I would keep the these surfaces dry for a stronger joint. The weakness of the Biocentric is it is only held into place by a screw on one side. If you didn't "sand" the cups, then I would try using them on your new frame. However, I would not even try using the set screws. I didn't think I would ever hear me say this, but there may be a wedge bolt design, such as the Bushnell (yours is also not a Bushnell) or Carver EBB that will fit. These have there own problems, but are a stronger and more robust design than the set screw. I still think the split shell/ pinch bolt is the best EBB, but I'm guessing aluminium may not hold up to this style.
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    Last edited by aka brad; 11-16-2009 at 10:34 PM.
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    http://www.cycle-frames.com/bicycle-...-BUSHNELL.html

    Try a Bushnell EBB. Works like a champ.

    Tim

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashevillemike
    I'm curious to hear if you found a solution to your problem. I also have a soul and get the creaking (which I can live with) and have to tighten the chain every 5th ride or so.

    Kinda bringing up an old post, but my I've got some new info.


    Got my replacement frame a few weeks ago. Much to my surprise, the new frame's shell was ovalized right out of the box (hadn't even set it up with an eccentric), and it seemed to be ovalized in all the same places that my previous frame had. Chad from Soul Cycles seemed very surprised to hear this, and said he was going to look into it. I haven't heard back from him yet.

    Anyways, I re-sanded the inside of the shell to round it out, and sanded the paint of the face of the shell just enough to get to the bare aluminum. This, with the niner biocentric and now a new Shimano XT (outboard bearing) crankset, has been working about 60% of the time. It stays quiet but still slips small amounts (1-2 mm or so, based on the white line of the biocentric and a mark i placed on the bb shell). Its definitely better, but I'm still not pleased. It has decided to start creaking randomly on a few occasions, and all I can do is take everything apart and reinstall it, which stops and noises but is still annoying. 1-2 mm of slipping is actually quite noticeable in terms of loss of chain tension.

    Since getting the new frame, I have set the biocentric up with carbon prep, ti prep, and grease, all of which would either cause noise or slipping. I couldn't even get one layer of plumbers tape around the eccentric without it being too big to fit into the shell, so I've only been able to run it dry. I also found that i really have to crank down on the bolt in order to get any decent holding power. I read the threads of some other people who have been having trouble, and most of those who talked to niner were told that they should up the torque on the bolt.

    If nothing changes i might sand the (paint? anodize?) off the inside lips of the bio centric itself.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slurry
    Kinda bringing up an old post, but my I've got some new info.


    Got my replacement frame a few weeks ago. Much to my surprise, the new frame's shell was ovalized right out of the box (hadn't even set it up with an eccentric), and it seemed to be ovalized in all the same places that my previous frame had. Chad from Soul Cycles seemed very surprised to hear this, and said he was going to look into it. I haven't heard back from him yet.

    Anyways, I re-sanded the inside of the shell to round it out, and sanded the paint of the face of the shell just enough to get to the bare aluminum. This, with the niner biocentric and now a new Shimano XT (outboard bearing) crankset, has been working about 60% of the time. It stays quiet but still slips small amounts (1-2 mm or so, based on the white line of the biocentric and a mark i placed on the bb shell). Its definitely better, but I'm still not pleased. It has decided to start creaking randomly on a few occasions, and all I can do is take everything apart and reinstall it, which stops and noises but is still annoying. 1-2 mm of slipping is actually quite noticeable in terms of loss of chain tension.

    Since getting the new frame, I have set the biocentric up with carbon prep, ti prep, and grease, all of which would either cause noise or slipping. I couldn't even get one layer of plumbers tape around the eccentric without it being too big to fit into the shell, so I've only been able to run it dry. I also found that i really have to crank down on the bolt in order to get any decent holding power. I read the threads of some other people who have been having trouble, and most of those who talked to niner were told that they should up the torque on the bolt.

    If nothing changes i might sand the (paint? anodize?) off the inside lips of the bio centric itself.

    Hi Slurry,

    95% of slipping is due to the 90 degree of the bio-centric hitting the inside 90 degree of your frame. The best thing to do is "knock down" the inside sharp lip on the inside of your frame so there is NO 90 on 90 contact. Basically you want to eliminate any type of high spot if this makes sense so you are not gripping that corner edge.

    For creaking, you can chamfer the inside 90 degree where the 6mm bolt head touches the Bio-centric cup. Taking a drill bit slightly larger to this hole and deburring that edge should be all you need.

    I would go up to 180-190 or so. The next batch of bio-centrics will be laser etched with this torque value as 120 seems too light.

    Hope this helps.

    Brett
    Front Range Forum Moderator

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2melow
    Hi Slurry,

    95% of slipping is due to the 90 degree of the bio-centric hitting the inside 90 degree of your frame. The best thing to do is "knock down" the inside sharp lip on the inside of your frame so there is NO 90 on 90 contact. Basically you want to eliminate any type of high spot if this makes sense so you are not gripping that corner edge.
    So, sand the inside of the bottom bracket shell on my frame so that it doesn't form any type of square edge (90 degree)? Just want to make sure im getting this right

    For creaking, you can chamfer the inside 90 degree where the 6mm bolt head touches the Bio-centric cup. Taking a drill bit slightly larger to this hole and deburring that edge should be all you need.
    I always found it weird that that bolt didn't have any type of washer on it. I haven't actually checked, but I'd guess the inside of the biocentric cup where the bolt head sits must be kinda mashed up from all the torquing.

    I haven't heard anyone use the term '90 degree' to describing these things in this manner, so just making sure I'm understanding you right. I would have guessed that if everything fit together totally flush then it would hold nice and tight and have no room for play (which would cause creaking) - but I guess not.

    Thanks for your reply!

  19. #19
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    Hi Slurry,

    Basically just knock down the inside edge so there isn't a sharp 90 degree - it doesn't play well with the 90 degree on the EBB.

    Let me try to get some pics.

    Brett
    Front Range Forum Moderator

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2melow
    Hi Slurry,

    Basically just knock down the inside edge so there isn't a sharp 90 degree - it doesn't play well with the 90 degree on the EBB.

    Let me try to get some pics.

    Brett
    did all this, creaking has pretty much stopped, but even at 180lbs of torque im still slipping. My last straw was trying some blue locktite on the contact surface of the ebb. I let it set for 24hours, still slipped on the 1st ride.

    My last option is the bushnell / carver ebb, but at $90+, im hesitant to buy one, especially considering all the sanding i've done and the amount of ovalization that was present initially. I'm already sitting on a $89 Niner biocentric that doesn't work and I can't return to the shop i bought it from.


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    Hrm. What do the ends of the set screws look like? Do they have a sharp "cup" like point on the end of them? You might look there. Most decent hardware stores will sell stainless setscrews like that.

    I have a Phil set screw ebb and it has be absolutely flawless for 2.5 years. Never a single issue (besides smashing a setscrew with a flying rock). Shell is slightly oval but I don't see how that matters at all. The set screws dig in and it's good to go and even though I've adjusted it tons it never really has issue with "favorite" spots either. Would have to seriously chew some aluminum up to slip. Never any noise either.

    Maybe the Phil EBB not being anodized has something to do with it? A bit softer surface for the set screws to dig in. I have a steel frame too, but I don't see how that is making much difference.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slurry
    did all this, creaking has pretty much stopped, but even at 180lbs of torque im still slipping. My last straw was trying some blue locktite on the contact surface of the ebb. I let it set for 24hours, still slipped on the 1st ride.

    My last option is the bushnell / carver ebb, but at $90+, im hesitant to buy one, especially considering all the sanding i've done and the amount of ovalization that was present initially. I'm already sitting on a $89 Niner biocentric that doesn't work and I can't return to the shop i bought it from.


    I never thought I'd say it, but I miss my Karate Monkey and its fork ends.

    Hi Slurry,

    OK, here are some detailed instructions.

    http://www.Ninerbikes.com/downloads/NIN_EBB_install.pdf

    For the Niner Bio-Centric to work on non-Niner frames, the I.D. of your shell must be 55mm tall x 68mm wide.

    Also, is your bb a split shell design? If the BB is a true pinch bolt/split shell style - meaning the EBB shell is cut and has a gap - I'm not sure this would the the best solution in the first place as the bio-centric needs a perfectly round and solid clamping structure.

    Hope this helps.

    Brett
    Front Range Forum Moderator

  23. #23
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    I have not had any problems with EBB's but I have a thought that might help.

    Instead of grease between the EBB and frame, try either thread anti-seize or pipe thread sealant (pipe dope). Grease is obviously slippery, intended to reduce friction between moving pieces. Like bearings. This really is not optimal for something like an EBB that you don't want to move. Thread anti-seize or pipe dope prevent seizing and creaking, as grease might do, but they are not slippery like grease. I have used both on threads, seat posts, and other items I don't want to seize, but also don't want to slip. I can't say that it will work for an EBB, but it has worked well for other applications.

  24. #24
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    chuck uni, its just the stock set screws.

    to everyone else, i finally found something that worked.

    after the 1st locktite setup slipped a small bit, i bumped up the torque from 180 to 200lbs without resetting the position and it miraculously decided to work. no more slipping on creaking, for about a week now.

    Now im afraid to undo it... I don't feel its a real fix, but it will work for now.

    The only problem is

  25. #25
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    I ride a GT Peace SS, and the ONLY time I've had a problem with the eccentric was when adjusting the chain tension, I accidentally overtightened it just a bit.
    This started the eccentric creaking badly, even with just light pedalling.
    The bolts were done up just fine.
    When I realised what I'd done, I backed off the chain tension slightly, tightened the bolts again, and no more creaking, even under a heavy load!

  26. #26
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    Out of round shell and slipping?

    Sounds to me like the builder needs to step up to solve the problem?
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    I agree that it sounds like something the manufacturer should take care of. If the EBB area is ovalized before you even used it, I would have sent it right back! I also agree that the setscrew EBB is the worst design of the three. The pinch bolt is the most secure, but because of the split shell, it lets some contamination in, so should be cleaned out periodically.

    Good luck
    Mark

  28. #28
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    You might try to get longer bolts that is what I did and I have no problems now.
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  29. #29
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    Hi Slurry!

    How's the EBB situation? Still slipping?

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChuckUni
    Hrm. What do the ends of the set screws look like? Do they have a sharp "cup" like point on the end of them? You might look there. Most decent hardware stores will sell stainless setscrews like that.

    I have a Phil set screw ebb and it has be absolutely flawless for 2.5 years. Never a single issue (besides smashing a setscrew with a flying rock). Shell is slightly oval but I don't see how that matters at all. The set screws dig in and it's good to go and even though I've adjusted it tons it never really has issue with "favorite" spots either. Would have to seriously chew some aluminum up to slip. Never any noise either.

    Maybe the Phil EBB not being anodized has something to do with it? A bit softer surface for the set screws to dig in. I have a steel frame too, but I don't see how that is making much difference.
    I know this is a week old, but it was such a strange post I had to comment. First of all, the reason your Phil Woods EBB is not anodized is because it is made of steel (if there is an aluminum Phil EBB I have never heard of it); that is also why it doesn't develop "favorite spots". The fact that your bike is steel is huge, as I have not seen a aluminum set screw EBB except for Slurry's Dillenger. Slurry has fits with his EBB, because the set screws can not hold an aluminum EBB in an aluminum shell. He has now stated he has used loctite to stop it from slipping, but now is afraid to adjust the chain in fear it will start slipping again. The bike manufactures that use EBB with aluminum frames, all use some form of a wedge EBB. If have followed coach417, he has exactly the same problem with the same frame and has finally ordered a wedge style EBB and if successful, it's something Slurry might look into as a permanent fix. It certanly doesn't make sense to have an EBB you can't adjust.
    Just one more rep and I get the toaster!

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka brad
    I know this is a week old, but it was such a strange post I had to comment. First of all, the reason your Phil Woods EBB is not anodized is because it is made of steel (if there is an aluminum Phil EBB I have never heard of it);
    No. It is a relieved and polished aluminum EBB, without being anodized. But yes the frame shell is steel. Before you write stuff, look it up.

    Quote Originally Posted by aka brad
    that is also why it doesn't develop "favorite spots".
    I think the reason it doesn't develop "favorite spots" is because the cupped set screws (which are stainless steel) are sharp enough dig in pretty much anywhere you set it.

    Quote Originally Posted by aka brad
    The fact that your bike is steel is huge, as I have not seen a aluminum set screw EBB except for Slurry's Dillenger. Slurry has fits with his EBB, because the set screws can not hold an aluminum EBB in an aluminum shell.
    An aluminum shell might have part to do with it, but with the Phil set screw style, for it to slip you are gonna chew the hell out of the EBB insert first, as the set screws are dug in a bit...and hence its not held by shell to EBB insert friction alone. So it's probably not as shell material dependent. Also, because of this, IMO, slightly ovalized shell doesn't matter. And it holds damn tight with not a whole lot of torque on the set screws.
    Last edited by ChuckUni; 12-14-2009 at 08:50 PM.

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    First of all, the reason your Phil Woods EBB is not anodized is because it is made of steel (if there is an aluminum Phil EBB I have never heard of it);

    Quote Originally Posted by ChuckUni
    No. It is a relieved and polished aluminum EBB, without being anodized. But yes the frame shell is steel. Before you write stuff, look it up.
    Well either Phil Wood doesn't know what they're selling, or you don't know what you own. http://www.philwood.com/products/bot...ts/eccentrics/
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka brad
    Well either Phil Wood doesn't know what they're selling, or you don't know what you own. https://www.philwood.com/products/bo...ts/eccentrics/
    I'll give you that, the website is confusing. They are talking about the frame shell though.



    That's not unfinished 4130! And if the unrelieved one was 4130 and made to that shape it would weigh 5lbs (exaggeration, but not much of one). I have seen them anodized in various colors too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChuckUni
    I'll give you that, the website is confusing. They are talking about the frame shell though.



    That's not unfinished 4130! And if the unrelieved one was 4130 and made to that shape it would weigh 5lbs (exaggeration, but not much of one). I have seen them anodized in various colors too.
    It did seem like the unrelieved version would be a boat anchor as you said, but I figured it's Phil Wood and they know what they're doing. I have a split shell EBB and it has never slipped or creaked since the day I got it. My Burley tandem has a set screw type, and while the timing drivetrain doesn't have the stresses on a BB as a standard drive, it did come loose once and I couldn't imagine trying to keep it tight with an aluminum shell; but that's just me..
    Just one more rep and I get the toaster!

  35. #35
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    Another update.

    The Lock-tite EBB solution started slipping again as soon as I adjusted it. but....

    I had a more in-depth conversation with the guy from soul cycles, and I would just like to make clear my use of the word ovalization. When I have been talking about it i was referring to the "out-of-roundness" of the inside of the drive side shell. This may have been more of an imperfection than ovalization, so I hope I wasn't too incorrect in my terminology and confused anyone that was having similar problems.

    I'm in the process of further remedying the issue with Soul Cycles, so I'll keep you guys up to date. Props to Chad from Soul Cycles once again, for going above and beyond with his customer service.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka brad
    He has now stated he has used loctite to stop it from slipping, but now is afraid to adjust the chain in fear it will start slipping again.
    just fyi - it was the Biocentric that i locktited, not the set-screw ebb.

  37. #37
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    I have the relieved aluminium Phil Wood bb with a steel frame and two bolts to set it and if done up nice and tight it will not slip or creak.No grease and crappy,crappy weather in the UK at the moment.Thats not going to help you though is it.(??)

  38. #38
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    Did you ever find a solution to this issue? one of my ebb set screws had to be drilled out, (due to it being to short, and having to tighten the screws to many times because the ebb was slipping ) I have it jerry rigged with a stainless hex bolt on the good ebb hole, and was able to slightly retap the bad hole, but im looking for another option thats more reliable, Did you end up trying the carver ebb?



    Quote Originally Posted by Slurry
    Another update.

    The Lock-tite EBB solution started slipping again as soon as I adjusted it. but....

    I had a more in-depth conversation with the guy from soul cycles, and I would just like to make clear my use of the word ovalization. When I have been talking about it i was referring to the "out-of-roundness" of the inside of the drive side shell. This may have been more of an imperfection than ovalization, so I hope I wasn't too incorrect in my terminology and confused anyone that was having similar problems.

    I'm in the process of further remedying the issue with Soul Cycles, so I'll keep you guys up to date. Props to Chad from Soul Cycles once again, for going above and beyond with his customer service.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by LIFECYCLE
    I have the relieved aluminium Phil Wood bb with a steel frame and two bolts to set it and if done up nice and tight it will not slip or creak.No grease and crappy,crappy weather in the UK at the moment.Thats not going to help you though is it.(??)

    Yea ive read some good stuff about the phil wood one, but for my situation im SOL on that one.

  40. #40
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    Slurry, I doubt this helps, but I've got a Hooligan (basically the 26" version of the Dillinger) and have stuck with the original set-screw EBB.

    I have NEVER been able to keep it from slipping - and that has NEVER been a problem. No matter what I do, the EBB slips slightly, and I end up with less chain tension than I had originally set. But, it seems that it just finds its own tension - once it slips a little, it doesn't slip more. I've been riding the crap out of it for over two years and the chain tension has never been a problem.

    I get a slight amount of creaking, I think from the EBB. But, there have been a few times when I have gone nuts trying to fix a bad EBB creak, only to finally realize that the culprit was something esle. EBBs take a bad rap, and they seem to be immediately blamed when things creak, but in my experience, if you can't solve the EBB creak look elsewhere because it could easily be something else. For instance (though slightly unrelated) I greased the pivots on my 5.Spot twice recently before figuring out that it was my rear QR that was creaking. Not saying this is the case with yours, but it is certainly worth a try.

    Hrm. What do the ends of the set screws look like? Do they have a sharp "cup" like point on the end of them? You might look there. Most decent hardware stores will sell stainless setscrews like that.
    that accurately describes the screws that came with my frame.

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