Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 11-16-07, 05:56 PM   #1
jimn
Junior Mint
Thread Starter
 
jimn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Bikes: http://nachlin.com/bicycles/
Posts: 100
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ultegra 6600 Bottom Bracket lubrication/adjustment

Hi,

I have a bike with the Ultrgra 10-speed from 2005 or 2006. It has about 700 miles on it. It features the cranks described in this document - Hollowtech II.

I'd noticed that the crank bearings seemed a little stiff. Took the chain off and spun the cranks. If I push them hard, they will spin maybe twice and then stop. Contrast this with a bearing on another bike that's 20 years old and just spins indefinitely.

Now, because of the design, it does not seem that one can lubricate the botton bracket at all. I hesitate to even try to get in there, because you need a g-- d--- torque wrench to put the crank arm back on!

Is this something that will just wear in? Can I adjust or lube this myself without a torque wrench?

Should I just ignore it and develop massive thighs from all the extra work I am doing on my rides?

Thanks in advance for your help.

Jim
jimn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-16-07, 06:22 PM   #2
greyghost_6
Pleasurable Pain
 
greyghost_6's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Bloomington, IN
Bikes: Voodoo Rada, KHS Alite 4000, Smith & Wesson Tactical, Diamondback Response
Posts: 350
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
When you spin it is is smoothe? If its gritty and chunky then I would take it someplace that has the tool dis assemble and re assemble. If it is nice and smoothe, then the extra resistance is probably just the seals and such that keep grit out of your bottom bracket. I overhauled the same years bottom bracket in the dura ace style, If I remember correctly when i spun it it didn't spin and spin and spin either. So I think you are ok. I know that Ultegra is known for its superior seals, so I think you are good for thousands upon thousands of more miles, might even loosen up too.
greyghost_6 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-16-07, 06:23 PM   #3
HillRider 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Bikes: '''96 Litespeed Catalyst, '05 Litespeed Firenze, '06 Litespeed Tuscany, '12 Surly Pacer, All are 3x8,9 or 10. It is hilly around here!
Posts: 28,776
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 36 Post(s)
If the bearings are stiff on a Hollowtech II crank (i.e. external bearing bb cups), I expect it's because the frame's bottom bracket shell faces aren't parallel and the bearings are binding. The first thing to do is have the frame faced which should solve the problem.

Also, was the crank preload done properly when the crank was installed? This could also be a contributor.

Give up, it won't make your thighs the envy of your riding buddies no matter how tight the bearings are.
HillRider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-16-07, 06:32 PM   #4
supcom
You need a new bike
 
supcom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Bikes:
Posts: 5,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The stiffness you feel is negligible drag and there's no adjustment to make. External bearings are known to have a bit more drag than internal BBs. It's OK.

No-load drag has little to do with drag under load anyway.
supcom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-16-07, 10:39 PM   #5
Peek the Geek
is slower than you
 
Peek the Geek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: WI
Bikes: Gunnar Sport, Marin Pine Mountain, Gunnar Ruffian, Gunnar Roadie, BMC Fourstroke, Salsa Vaya
Posts: 1,486
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I noticed the same thing back when I got an Ultegra-equipped bike. In fact I asked the same question here on BF, and I've seen several others ask it since then. I'm assuming it's pretty normal, and no, my thighs have seen no significant growth.
Peek the Geek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-17-07, 12:20 PM   #6
jimn
Junior Mint
Thread Starter
 
jimn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Bikes: http://nachlin.com/bicycles/
Posts: 100
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks, I see this has been mentioned before though I didn't find it.

I suppose I can ignore it, though as others have said, it just feels wrong.

As mentioned in another thread, the cranks spin with the same resistance all teh way around, so it's probably not the BB faces (though I would not doubt that this frame is not assembled terribly precisely - Bianchi Virata from Taiwan).

Any engineers here want to expand upon no-load drag, etc?

I suppose overall this bike's a lot better than the one I was riding before it - a swapmeet amalgam of 20-year-old parts, weighing about 10 pounds more than this one. I think I had the cheapest bike of anyone in my club.
jimn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-17-07, 12:30 PM   #7
DMF 
Elitist Troglodyte
 
DMF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Dallas
Bikes: 03 Raleigh Professional (steel)
Posts: 6,924
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimn View Post
As mentioned in another thread, the cranks spin with the same resistance all teh way around, so it's probably not the BB faces
That doesn't make sense. The bearings and the axle are symmetrical. Cock a bearing off perpendicular (as a un-square face would) and it will bind evenly all the way around.
__________________
Stupidity got us into this mess - why can't it get us out?

- Will Rogers
DMF is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-17-07, 01:19 PM   #8
operator
cab horn
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Toronto
Bikes: 1987 Bianchi Campione
Posts: 28,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This is normal. Replace with ceramic bearings and/or loose ball/bb + crankset if you want lower drag.
operator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-17-07, 01:55 PM   #9
kenhill3
use your best eye
 
kenhill3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Olympia, Washington
Bikes: '75 Bertin, '93 Parkpre Team 925, '04 Kona King Kikapu, '05 Bianchi Vigorelli
Posts: 3,058
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by operator View Post
This is normal. Replace with ceramic bearings and/or loose ball/bb + crankset if you want lower drag.
If he INSISTED, yes. Otherwise it would be plain silly.

Reface and/or a new BB.
__________________
"I tell you, We are here on earth to fart around, and don't let anybody tell you any different." - Kurt Vonnegut jr.
kenhill3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-17-07, 02:22 PM   #10
ginsoakedboy
Banned
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 616
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This is common and typical with all the Shimano (and other makes too) outboard bearing bb's. I have two bikes set up with the XT M760 bb and one with the Ultegra 6603, and this is the way they come straight from the box. Nothing to be done, adjusted, faced or replaced -- because there isn't any problem. I've replaced the bearings in one of my XT sets with Phil Wood ceramic bearings, and the drag difference is negligible. The one thing you should make sure is that you don't tighten in the crank arm too tight with the star nut before you secure it with the hex bolts.
ginsoakedboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-17-07, 05:19 PM   #11
operator
cab horn
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Toronto
Bikes: 1987 Bianchi Campione
Posts: 28,306
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenhill3 View Post
Reface and/or a new BB.
This is not going to solve his "problem".
operator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 02:30 PM   #12
jimn
Junior Mint
Thread Starter
 
jimn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Bikes: http://nachlin.com/bicycles/
Posts: 100
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
OK, the consensus seems to be that this is par for the course with the bearings in newer BBs.

I still don't get why this is not considered a problem, though. I mean, sure it's probably OK in the short term, but over the course of a 60-mile ride this has got to make a difference. Not that I am at this level, but it's hard for me to believe that people who pay $6k for a bike because it weighs 10 grams less are putting up with mechanical resistance of this kind without complaint.

ginsoakedboy, are you saying that the Phil ceramic bearings have this same tight feeling?
jimn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 03:08 PM   #13
Ingleside
MARGINALS
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: San Francisco
Bikes: 09 Tarmac Pro SL / Sunday BMX /
Posts: 420
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
What you are experiencing is normal with most external bb systems. If you have a newer bike chances are that bb shell is pretty close to being fine and there is nothing to be done with it. facing may or may not make the bb smother but at the end of the day a traditional bb will have less drag than the external systems that are common today.
although all external bb systems do exhibit more drag than a traditional bb, i have noticed that campy does apprear to have the least amount of drag in their bb. their system uses a different seal system that has lower drag than the shimano/fsa style bb.

one last thing, you may want to check how much preload there is on the bb. the end cap that threads into the left side of the bb axle is responsible for preloading the bb and there if there is too much pressure it will cause the bb to be tighter.
Ingleside is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 03:40 PM   #14
Al1943
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Oklahoma
Bikes: Trek 5500, Colnago C-50
Posts: 9,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimn View Post
Contrast this with a bearing on another bike that's 20 years old and just spins indefinitely.

The one that spins indefinitely probably needs grease, I don't think that is normal.
Al1943 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 03:42 PM   #15
ginsoakedboy
Banned
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 616
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimn View Post
ginsoakedboy, are you saying that the Phil ceramic bearings have this same tight feeling?
Yes - a little smoother, a minor improvement in terms of the drag, but not a night-and-day difference. I don't think I would invest in another set unless they show a dramatic improvement in durability over time. BTW - contrary to Shimano's instructions, the bearing cassettes can be replaced - you don't have to buy entirely new assemblies. But the cassettes are press-fit into the cups, so removing them takes some doing. I see that Phil Wood sells a kit for removing the cassettes, but I just had the LBS do it.

I mentioned it, and Ingleside talks about it in more succint terms -- if you overtighten that end cap, you will cause the arms to press inward on the plastic seals/covers, which in turn will interfere with the free rotation of the bearings. I think the spec for tightening that cap is like 5 nanometers -- which is like nothing. It's easy to overtighten, especially if you use the Park Tool that puts the nylon star-shaped bit at the end of a 10" metal bar.
ginsoakedboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 03:49 PM   #16
ginsoakedboy
Banned
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 616
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimn View Post
Now, because of the design, it does not seem that one can lubricate the botton bracket at all. I hesitate to even try to get in there, because you need a g-- d--- torque wrench to put the crank arm back on!

Is this something that will just wear in? Can I adjust or lube this myself without a torque wrench?
You won't lube them yourself because the bearing cassettes are sealed. You will just replace them. But they should last quite a while.
ginsoakedboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 04:06 PM   #17
Peek the Geek
is slower than you
 
Peek the Geek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: WI
Bikes: Gunnar Sport, Marin Pine Mountain, Gunnar Ruffian, Gunnar Roadie, BMC Fourstroke, Salsa Vaya
Posts: 1,486
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Al1943 View Post
The one that spins indefinitely probably needs grease, I don't think that is normal.
Perhaps "indefinitely" is a bit of an exaggeration. On the other hand, my older square-taper cranks (which are greased properly) spin for a good 8 revolutions or so before stopping. Just sayin'.
Peek the Geek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 05:22 PM   #18
NoRacer
Isaias
 
NoRacer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Essex, MD
Bikes: Ridley X-Fire (carbon, white)
Posts: 5,178
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Check the preload first. There's a cap on the non-drive side that must be adjusted properly or it will cause the crank to bind if too tight. You can get the proper tool to adjust this at your LBS.

It is NOT NORMAL for a Shimano external bearing BB to only spin 2 times and stop.

If you find that after loosening the cap a little (there should be no side-to-side play) that the crank still seems to be binding, then have your LBS replace the BB bearings or you could do it yourself--reference www.parktool.com for directions.
NoRacer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 06:15 PM   #19
tellyho
Your mom
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 2,541
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If by old, you're referring to cup and spindle, then I think it's totally normal to expect a cartridge BB to spin much less freely than an older one. I don't know about outboard bearing BB's; I still have square taper.
tellyho is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-07, 09:46 PM   #20
ScrubJ
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Vero Beach FL
Bikes:
Posts: 1,102
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
By their nature, any sealed bearing is going to have some drag. Go to a bearing house, ask to see a new sealed bearing, hold the inner race and give the outer race a spin. Feel the drag? It's a combination of the grease and the friction of the sealing lip on the inner race.
ScrubJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:40 AM.