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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 07-14-14, 08:50 AM   #1
ISPringle
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Climbs killing my BB?

Hey guys. Two weeks ago I went for a 60 mile ride on my ss. I got onto the last 20 mile stretch and my BB started squeaking. When I got back I took it to my LBS and had him look at it. Turns out I had a bad BB and he replaced the bearings. I chalked it up as wear and tear and was happy to have it fixed for $20. Well Saturday I rode a century. The first 30 mile everything was fine, and then I started hearing the familiar squeak again. I have not taken my bike into the LBS yet on account of two weeks of vacation leaving me broke, but I am wondering if maybe I am damaging my BB due to lots of torque being applied to it on climbs. I live in a rather hilly area, generally every road has a slight incline or decline and we have plenty of roads that have short periods of very steep grade.

On the 60m ride I rode a 10% grade for 4 miles and on the 100m I rode a 15% for 3.5 miles with a total gain of 5000+ feet.

If I only rode here in CT I think I'd be okay, but I go to school in VA on the side of the Appalachians and so I have a tremendous amount of incline to deal with there. D you think my squeak could be on account of the high torque being applied on the climbs? If so, could you recommend a solution, such as a BB designed for ss or for climbs?
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Old 07-14-14, 09:44 AM   #2
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BBs can handle the climbing, and your new BB is probably fine. Take it back to the same LBS and ask them to investigate and remedy.
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Old 07-14-14, 09:48 AM   #3
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What kind of bottom bracket is it anyway?
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Old 07-14-14, 10:23 AM   #4
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Might not be the BB. I had a similar issue happen a few years ago, on an old Nishiki conversion, and after a lot of investigating at a local shop, the mechanic found that there was a small crack in one of the lugs around the BB.
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Old 07-14-14, 01:13 PM   #5
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Torque doesn't ruin BBs, and you're not applying that much torque and not for very long.

Misalignment and lubrication problems ruin BBs. It's possible the LBS botched the installation, or it might not be the BB at all.
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Old 07-14-14, 01:36 PM   #6
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Try a different rear wheel. If the noise continues its the BB if not it's your rear hub that needs to be serviced. I had the same thing happen to me last week and it turned out it was just water had gotten into the hub. They sound almost identical.
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Old 07-14-14, 08:51 PM   #7
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Try a different rear wheel. If the noise continues its the BB if not it's your rear hub that needs to be serviced. I had the same thing happen to me last week and it turned out it was just water had gotten into the hub. They sound almost identical.
The problem with that theory is that squeaks can come from anywhere and due to the acoustics of tubing, just sound like they're coming from the BB. I learned this after chasing one 'BB' squeak that turned out to be my saddle (drop if oil under the nose) and another that was the spokes in the wheel (good retension fixed that). One thing's for sure, it's not the climbing.
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Old 07-14-14, 09:17 PM   #8
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Check the chainring bolts too.
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Old 07-14-14, 09:17 PM   #9
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and pedal threads.
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Old 07-14-14, 09:28 PM   #10
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I had the tube come apart twice on my Rollfast, but it's sixty years old and had to be cross braced, something I doubt you will ever have to do.

Get a friend (or two) to ride close and help you spot the source, or put it on a stand and try to work out the location. If it goes away, it could well be your saddle telling you it's not happy.

My directional hearing stinks in regards to anything but my stereo.
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Old 07-14-14, 09:28 PM   #11
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Chasing squeaks is like herding cats sometimes. Not a bad idea to just give the whole bike a full service (ie, everything) and hope it fixes the squeak. If nothing else, you know your bike's in tip top condition which, considering the riding you've been doing, isn't a bad thing.
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Old 07-14-14, 09:29 PM   #12
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and pedal threads.
Don't forget pedal bearings. Some can be rebuilt, some can't.
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