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  1. #1
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    How do I know which BB tool to use?

    Im contemplating building my own bike from scratch, and it would be my first time doing so. Yes yes i know i know its more expensive, ive read all those threads.
    And yes it very easily can be. and i accept that, but the value of knowing how to assemble an entire bike is very appealing. And i know what I want, and what I can get away with in terms of parts and gear.

    I have various tools at the house, but not many bicycle specific tools.

    So please teach me bike tools.

    What BB tools will I need? How do I choose out the right one? The frame i'm looking at uses 68mm BB, there are many types and kinds of bottom brackets and a specific tool for each, am I right?

    What about the headset? Ive read some DIY ways of installing headsets. This part of the build worries me the most.

    Then i need a chain tool, thats straight forward.

    Everything else I can take care of with basic tools.

    Am I missing anything?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    get the bb tool that fits the bb that you want to use

  3. #3
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    The crankset determines the bottom bracket and that determines the tool. Pretty much the same for all of the other parts.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    If you're going to use a cartridge BB (shimano, truvative etc), you'll most like likely need this one:



    If you're going the external BB route, get this:



    Both are from Park Tools.

  5. #5
    SE Wis dedhed's Avatar
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    Apr 2005
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    Milwaukee, WI
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    '68 Raleigh Sprite, '02 Raleigh C500, '84 Raleigh Gran Prix, '91 Trek 400
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    If you're using a typical headset, IMO it's one part that really doesn't need bike specific tools. I use a brass drift to knock out cups and crown race. Threaded rod, nuts, and washers to press new ones in. A piece of copper or PVC pipe tp drive on new crown race. Probably the most important tool is a caliper to measure things so you get the right headset as far as cup and race diameters, stack height etc.
    '68 Raleigh Sprite, '02 Raleigh C500, '84 Raleigh Gran Prix, '91 Trek 400

  6. #6
    Senior Member jeepr's Avatar
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    I don't know where you live, but your LBS might be the way to go. I have no problem showing someone how to work on their own bike, especially if they buy tools and parts from me..

  7. #7
    Pleasurable Pain greyghost_6's Avatar
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    You could just start with a bike and take it apart. A lot of parts need the same special tool to remove them (there are some exceptions) but that's how I learned. Take it apart, and put it together. But since you probably want to work with newer stuff for an assembly you might be in for a lot. Start small, get a park tools chain breaker, a good set of METRIC allen wrenches, I like parks big pedal wrench (PW-4) it has 2 positions (its more expensive but its a freaking INVESTMENT that will last 50+ years). And go from there.
    I had to re-learn how to walk once, but never needed to re-learn how to ride a bike. Cyclist for life.

  8. #8
    Senior Member JonathanGennick's Avatar
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    For headsets, I use the following:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Mountain-Bike-Ro...#ht_500wt_1023

    You could probably source most or all of the parts at your local hardware store, but I bought the set from eBay. What I like about it is that the discs that press the headset cups are designed to seat into the headset bearing. Press the cup with the bearing in place, and everything stays inline. The set above fits 1 1/8" and 1" headsets. There is a separate set for 1.5". I press several headsets a year using the tool.

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