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Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

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Old 07-10-03, 10:56 AM   #1
norcorider
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BB problems

I know that my BB and rings are shot and I am replacing them. The only prob that I am having is that I cannot get the BB out. I have soaked it with penetrating fluid for almost 3 days, put the tool in a vice and turned the bike. I am turning the left side of the BB which is always a standard thread. I have also tried using gentle taps from a hammer to loosen the BB. Anyone out there have any suggestions?
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Old 07-10-03, 11:29 AM   #2
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What is the frame made of? And are you absolutely sure you are turning in
the right direction? Torque applied in the manner you described is
huge and should break any thread loose. I rounded over an oilpan bolt that
had been torqued by a mechanic during repairs when I inadvertently turned it the wrong way on the next oil change, because it was so tight the "right way". I was upside down and backwards. Can you get the R side of the BB
loose? If so the BB should be removable and more penetrating oil applied from the inside. Steve
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Old 07-10-03, 11:39 AM   #3
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The frame is aluminum and I have never serviced the BB, which could be part of the reason it has seized. I am turning the bike counterclockwise on the tool (when you look from the top). The left side of the drive is standard threading and loosens counterclockwise (imagine a nut and bolt upside down). I am confident I am turning the right way. As for the right side splines, they are shallow, about half the depth of the left so they won't handle the same type of torque and I could strip them a lot easier if I am not careful. I will try them, maybe it will work. Thanks for the ideas, hopefully one of them will work....
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Old 07-10-03, 12:50 PM   #4
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It certainly sounds like you have a seized bottom bracket. You might want to try using heat, but be very careful of using too much! Maybe this is a job for your local bike mechanic?
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Old 07-10-03, 01:01 PM   #5
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Any ideas on how I could use heat, just as a final last resort before going to the bike mechanic? I've already tried the other side (turning the opposite way) and it is just as stuck, plus it's easier to screw up the splines because they are shallower. Has anyone else had this happen?
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Old 07-10-03, 03:06 PM   #6
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Well, I've given up and taken the bike to the local bike mechanic who is having a hard time as well. They are using "Liquid Wrench". Hopefully it is a more powerful and better penetrating solvent than what I used....
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Old 07-10-03, 03:08 PM   #7
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that stuff works pretty well. i use it to get the rusted bolts off of the diff cover on my jeep. let that crap soak on for a few mins and the rust just peels away and the bolts pop off
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Old 07-11-03, 08:37 AM   #8
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Another solution is to spray some lube into the seat-tube and let it run down. I've had to do that numerous times on Triathlete's bikes. Swim in salt water + dripping on bike = siezed bottom bracket!

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Old 07-11-03, 01:23 PM   #9
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Hmm... good idea, should have tried that.... Are the seat tube and BB connected on every bike? Anyways, whatever the prob is, it's pretty bad. The LBS phoned me today and told me that it would be another day or two, they had to get some other tools (cutting torch? lol). This was after soaking the BB in liquid wrench for a while too. I hope that the prob's not too serious... Don't want to have to pay major $$. From now on, I'll take the BB out on my winter tune ups and regrease the threads.
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Old 07-14-03, 09:45 AM   #10
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Talked to the LBS again... turns out that they can't get it out either and they are sending the bike to Norco, where there is a machine to get them out. They say that it was over tightened. Has any one else ever had this happen? I've never heard of it happening before....
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Old 07-14-03, 12:35 PM   #11
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Campy makes a tool that comes in their tool box to deal with this. I believe it mounts on both sides of the bb. There is also a leverage bar that can be added to increase the leverage.

They can be overtightened but I think rust over time is the main culperate.

Bike shops see these all the time and they should be able to get it off.
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