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How important is bb30 bearing alignment?

Old 08-14-15, 06:33 PM
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How important is bb30 bearing alignment?

I purchased a rather expensive press given what it is - a threaded rod with two wing nuts. Cost over 30 bucks when I could have made something myself from the hardware store for less than 10.

The threaded rod and wing nuts with the fancy logo on it had no way of determining whether the bearings were parallel when they were put into the bike. What I did do was set the bike down on its side while I pressed in the bearings one at a time. I tried centering the threaded rod as I pressed the bearings in one at a time but the partner I was working with kept saying that the threaded rod was off-center even when I thought I had nailed it.

Upon final visual inspection the bearings looked relatively parallel but my eyes aren't calipers and in all likelihood there was probably some deviance from the bearings being absolutely parallel. So, is this an issue, and if so, how can I correct this? Buy the even more expensive Park Tool bearing press?
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Old 08-14-15, 09:41 PM
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Very important. Pressing bearings in a manner that's not absolutely square can crack or ovalize the BB shell and/or damage the bearing. Riding with unsquare bearings will cause binding, clunking, creaking, and, eventually, damaged bearings and possibly more damage to the frame.

To do the job right you need adapters to hold the bearings square as they're pressed in. Wheels Manufacturing sells sets for specific bearings that work with their presses. Here's the link: Wheels Manufacturing Sealed Bearing Open Bore Adapters. You can talk with a rep to see if their adapters will work with your press.

My advice is to gingerly punch out the improperly set bearings, reset them using the tool properly, and pray that nothing was damaged. You'll know for sure after the bearings go in and you've ridden a few hundred miles.
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Old 08-14-15, 09:44 PM
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You really need calipers to verify.

These moronic pressfit systems need to be installed perfect, basically. Any play and there will be noise, gawd will there be noise. Any out of square pressing and crack goes the frameset or otherwise damage things.
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Old 08-14-15, 10:36 PM
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I totally disagree with the comments above. i think it is next to impossible to press the bearings in perfectly square. My theory is... When you tighten the crank, the bearings will get re-aligned into the correct position they are meant to be in up flat against the circlips. My other theory is the bb shell will ovalise over time anyway because of the forces being exerted on it.

When i was rushed one time i pressed my bb30 bearings in by hand. It hasnt caused me any problems as yet (touch wood)

Last edited by trailflow1; 08-14-15 at 10:49 PM.
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Old 08-14-15, 11:32 PM
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Do any of you put the bearings in the freezer for a while before pressing them in? That's what we do for cars and they go in more easily.
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Old 08-14-15, 11:41 PM
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Originally Posted by oldbobcat View Post
Very important. Pressing bearings in a manner that's not absolutely square can crack or ovalize the BB shell and/or damage the bearing. Riding with unsquare bearings will cause binding, clunking, creaking, and, eventually, damaged bearings and possibly more damage to the frame.

To do the job right you need adapters to hold the bearings square as they're pressed in. Wheels Manufacturing sells sets for specific bearings that work with their presses. Here's the link: Wheels Manufacturing Sealed Bearing Open Bore Adapters. You can talk with a rep to see if their adapters will work with your press.

My advice is to gingerly punch out the improperly set bearings, reset them using the tool properly, and pray that nothing was damaged. You'll know for sure after the bearings go in and you've ridden a few hundred miles.
I used the Park Tool adapters (came with BB30 tool) with a Wheels Manufacturing bearing press. The press was nothing more than a threaded rod and two wing nuts. No method of self-alignment with the tool. So for people who actually have BB30 systems ... is eye-balling alignment when installing the bearings sufficient? That's exactly what I ended up having to do - I just eye-balled the bearing alignment and they look okay but almost definitely not perfect.
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Old 08-14-15, 11:43 PM
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Originally Posted by pacificaslim View Post
Do any of you put the bearings in the freezer for a while before pressing them in? That's what we do for cars and they go in more easily.
What about condensation?
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Old 08-15-15, 12:04 AM
  #8  
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Once you have the Park Tool BB30 tool & adapters, you could literally do the job with a C-clamp and a couple blocks of wood. The adapters (if pressed on evenly) will seat the bearings properly.
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Old 08-15-15, 09:03 AM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by pacificaslim View Post
Do any of you put the bearings in the freezer for a while before pressing them in? That's what we do for cars and they go in more easily.
Sounds like a good idea. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 08-15-15, 09:16 AM
  #10  
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Sram writes, on the installation instructions, that the bearings will not spin smoothly in an improperly installed PF30.
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Old 08-15-15, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Deontologist View Post
I used the Park Tool adapters (came with BB30 tool) with a Wheels Manufacturing bearing press. The press was nothing more than a threaded rod and two wing nuts. No method of self-alignment with the tool. . .
Wheels Mfg. explicitly states that press "is used with separately-purchased bearing adapters specific to the sealed bearings being installed." You used the wrong adapters -- another invented problem.
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Old 08-15-15, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by AnkleWork View Post
Wheels Mfg. explicitly states that press "is used with separately-purchased bearing adapters specific to the sealed bearings being installed." You used the wrong adapters -- another invented problem.
I used Park Tool BB30 adapters on my BB30 bike with the Wheels Mfg. press ... how did I use the wrong adapters?
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Old 08-15-15, 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Deontologist View Post
I used Park Tool BB30 adapters on my BB30 bike with the Wheels Mfg. press ... how did I use the wrong adapters?
How do you not understand how you used the wrong adapters after observing that they did not work correctly and wrote about it here? According to your post you intentionally misused the press then complained about the function and cost of the press even though you knew exactly what it was before you purchased it. Just FYI the manufacturer describes the press thus:
"Economy Bearing Press. . .
The Press-4 package includes 2 handles and a threaded rod.
Press-4 is used with separately-purchased bearing adapters specific to the sealed bearings being installed (see links below). You may need to mix and match adapters for your specific use. Check bearing part numbers before ordering."

If you wanted cheap, why didn't you just use the Park adapters with a bolt and nut?
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Old 08-16-15, 12:09 AM
  #14  
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The slop in simple non precision threaded rods ( of any brand) and washer/pressure disk tools is vast. Unless the pressure disk is held so well by the shaft that NO chance of cocking is possible then the bearing alignment is determined by the frame seats (be they machined or c clips).

Sorry guys but this is real. Take a Park press tool and see how much play there is between the shaft and the pressure disk. make your own judgments. The few that I have used are not very tight.

One way to insure the frame's situation determines the bearing seating (and not the press) is to tap the outer race of the bearing with a drift punch without also contacting the inner race. Working around the circumference of the outer race with the punch will insure the bearing seat is fully settled into it's intended location.

Now whether this end location is correct is another issue. But that's for the frame builder/manufacturer to insure. Andy.
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Old 08-16-15, 02:52 AM
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Originally Posted by trailflow1 View Post
I totally disagree with the comments above. i think it is next to impossible to press the bearings in perfectly square. My theory is... When you tighten the crank, the bearings will get re-aligned into the correct position they are meant to be in up flat against the circlips. My other theory is the bb shell will ovalise over time anyway because of the forces being exerted on it.

When i was rushed one time i pressed my bb30 bearings in by hand. It hasnt caused me any problems as yet (touch wood)
I agree.

Just make sure to press them in square so as to not damage the BB shell. The bearings will catch on the BB shell lip and should seat properly so long that you use a good press that gives equal pressure across the bearing surfaces. I bought a press on ebay to do this. It cost about the same as the one you bought. Works great. Getting the bearings out is another story entirely.

Originally Posted by pacificaslim View Post
Do any of you put the bearings in the freezer for a while before pressing them in? That's what we do for cars and they go in more easily.
Sounds like a great idea.

Originally Posted by Deontologist View Post
What about condensation?
I think any condensation would be minimal and doesn't much matter to aluminum and stainless parts such as BB shell or bearing cartridges.
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Old 08-16-15, 11:59 AM
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Correct BB30 alignment is important, but not difficult to achieve. Grease everything up and the bearings will go in more or less square. The right tools will press the bearings in to stop at the C clips and will be square once seated there. I was taught to do one bearing at a time, but I've done both at the same time with no issues.
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Old 08-16-15, 12:11 PM
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heating one part and/or chilling another is a common machine assembly practice.

Oil seal in the back of my Beemer Motorcycle was a hot press fit , dad , a machinist, put the whole part in the Household Oven

it, the oil seal, stayed in where the official Authorized Service shop job previously failed .



the Bicycle Frame manufacturer should have done the alignment of the bearing seats accurately. did they ? IDK.

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Old 08-16-15, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by AnkleWork View Post
How do you not understand how you used the wrong adapters after observing that they did not work correctly and wrote about it here?
The issue was no matter what the adapters there's no way of easily telling whether I had the threaded rod centered while pushing in the bearings. So does that matter? Seems like most of the people here with BB30 bikes are saying that it doesn't really matter.
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Old 08-17-15, 09:45 AM
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No matter how well fitting the press and adaptors are there is no way to guarantee that the bearings are properly seated. The press system simply won't provide the feel. You could really reef on it to insure it's fully against the seat (or circlip in the case of BB30), but that can cause other problems.

Follow Andy's method above and use a drift and hammer. Alternate the blows back and forth around the circumference of the outer race. It will go in square and you'll be able to "feel" when it's seated.

BB30 bearings are not very rigid due to their size, so you'll feel a roughness in the bearing if it's not seated squarely. Fortunately they recover when squared up. If it is a bit rough, don't ride it hoping the bearing will seat itself. Them bearings are not all that durable- it won't take long to do damage. Hopefully the shell was properly machined in the first place.
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Old 08-17-15, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Deontologist View Post
The issue was no matter what the adapters there's no way of easily telling whether I had the threaded rod centered while pushing in the bearings . . .
. . . because the adapters are wrong for that press. You admit that you observed the adapters not working correctly with that press and proceeded anyway. Then you attempted to blame your intentional failing on Wheels. You certainly understand all that.
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Old 08-17-15, 10:09 AM
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Originally Posted by AnkleWork View Post
. . . because the adapters are wrong for that press. You admit that you observed the adapters not working correctly with that press and proceeded anyway. Then you attempted to blame your intentional failing on Wheels. You certainly understand all that.
I used the adapters in the Park Tool BB30.3 package. How is this incorrect? The Park Tool site says "Includes two installation bushings #668 designed for installing the BB30 bearings." Those are the two I used with my Wheels Mfg. press. If this is incorrect you better tell Park not me so Park can start a mass recall. I have a BB30 bike by the way.

I'm tired of trying to prove something to a nobody online who doesn't even have a BB30 bike from the looks of their posts. Thanks to everyone who tried to help me though.
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Old 08-17-15, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Deontologist View Post
I used the adapters in the Park Tool BB30.3 package. How is this incorrect? The Park Tool site says "Includes two installation bushings #668 designed for installing the BB30 bearings." Those are the two I used with my Wheels Mfg. press. If this is incorrect you better tell Park not me so Park can start a mass recall. I have a BB30 bike by the way.

I'm tired of trying to prove something to a nobody online who doesn't even have a BB30 bike from the looks of their posts. Thanks to everyone who tried to help me though.
Now you're just being silly. Do you really expect anyone to believe that you don't understand that Park adapters are made for Park presses and not Wheels presses? You saw that they would not work together and now blame others for your fail.
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Old 08-17-15, 11:02 AM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by AnkleWork View Post
Now you're just being silly. Do you really expect anyone to believe that you don't understand that Park adapters are made for Park presses and not Wheels presses? You saw that they would not work together and now blame others for your fail.
Yes, the WheelsMfg press will have a lot of slop with the Park adapters, as the Park bearing press uses a 16mm threaded rod, whereas the Wheels one uses a 10mm one. The OP would have been better building a bearing press from $8 worth of parts from the local hardware store, I did this and it was compatible with my Park bushings.
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Old 08-17-15, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Deontologist View Post
I'm tired of trying to prove something to a nobody online who doesn't even have a BB30 bike from the looks of their posts. Thanks to everyone who tried to help me though.
I own a BB30 equipped bike and have switched out the bearings a few times. It ain't brain surgery.

Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
Yes, the WheelsMfg press will have a lot of slop with the Park adapters, as the Park bearing press uses a 16mm threaded rod, whereas the Wheels one uses a 10mm one. The OP would have been better building a bearing press from $8 worth of parts from the local hardware store, I did this and it was compatible with my Park bushings.
With the BB 30.3 in hand I bought the hardware at Lowe's for about $5.00. It would have been cheaper but I was compelled to buy a galvanized bolt, as ones in a cheaper finish were out of stock. The bolt I bought was just small enough in diameter to fit through the press-in cups. With my setup it's pretty hard to mis-align the bearings or otherwise screw up the job.
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Old 08-17-15, 07:14 PM
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I simply used a 5/8-11 threaded rod with large nuts and washers. I then did one side at a time using the frame as a reference for squaring and the rod had sufficient diameter to be centered on the adapters from my park tool 30.3. The new bearings work flawlessly.
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