Bicycle Mechanics - bottom bracket woes.
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08-06-00, 08:42 AM
Question pertaining to replacing a cartridge-type bottom bracket. My cranks became a little wobbly so I figured that the bottom bracket needed servicing/replacing depending on which type I had. The bike is a Gary Fisher HooKooEKoo circa '91. After doing some reading about the kinds of bottom brackets that I might find upon pulling the crank arms, I was puzzled to find neither a standard-looking lockring for a serviceable BB, NOR a splined surface to use the cartridge bottom bracket tool on. It appears to have a C-shaped type of retaining ring with small holes(pin wrench fittings?) at both termini of the ring and I have no idea how to remove it in order to even find out what kind of BB it is. Any suggestions are appreciated.
When you took your cranks off, did you still notice any play in the bottom bracket? Check the back side of your cranks for any rounding at the edges. You might not even need to pull the bottom bracket. I'm pretty sure you're right about the pin wrench. Don't be afraid to pull them out. The bearings should be in a retainer anyway. If not, there's a decent trick to get them back in. Let know how it goes.
08-08-00, 12:24 PM
Thanks for the reply. It's definitely not the cranks that are the problem. I've been doing more fiddling and it seems that my current BB is of an old and rare breed. Sort of a hybrid; a cartridge type that's meant to be thrown away when failing but is serviceable by removing the cranks, the retaining clips (the C-shaped things I didn't understand) and neoprene seals. This exposes the bearings which you can pack with grease with your finger. Unfortunately, it is meant to be serviced every year which I did not know and so I think it's too little too late since the crankset already wobbles. (Does that mean the bearings are SHOT?) By the way, neither the BB shell nor the BB itself are threaded. The BB appears to be just slammed in there and fastened with loc-tite. Anyone know what my options are? Can I replace and upgrade to a pure cartridge-style BB. Are there any around meant to be stuffed in a BB shell that lacks threading? One guy said I should just whack at the BB with a hammer until it pops out but I can't see myself doing the same in reverse to get a new one in!!.
Well, good call on not using a hammer. It sounds like you'll have to pay a visit to you local bike shop that has the right tools for the job. Without a threaded bottom bracket, your chances to upgrade are slim. Due to the lack of lubricant, your bearing races inside have probably worn. A good bike shop will have the right "presses" & "pullers" to remove and replace these parts. Make sure you find a good shop. Ask them how they're gonna fix it. Just to be sure someone else is not gonna be hammerin away on your bike. Although, sometimes a hammer is OK to get stuff like that out. A "press" is required most of the time to get things back in straight. I hope that helps.
This is a late answer to your problem, but if you haven't figured away out of your dilema yet, call the Gary Fisher customer service and explain your problem to them. They'll give you some good answers and may even sell you the parts. Before I got the proper tools for the job I was able to press the bearings out using a large C clamp and deep sockets. Not the best way or the easiest, but it worked. Be careful and make sure everything is at 90 degrees before applying too much pressure.
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