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Wheels Manufacturing BB torque for carbon press fit frames

Old 11-06-21, 11:38 PM
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ctak
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Wheels Manufacturing BB torque for carbon press fit frames

Recently I picked up a Wheels Manufacturing (WM) outboard bottom bracket from my local shop for my 2015 Specialized S-Works. WM specifies a torque range of 35-50nm for these outboard screw-together bottom brackets, however I've read elsewhere that bb torque should be kept at the lower end of the specified range for carbon frames designed around the press fit standard. At 35-40nm and less (I have a torque wrench), even with everything liberally lubed with White Lightening Crystal grease, I'm getting a slight ticking/creaking sound from the bb linked below with my 2015 S-Works (osbb shell with aluminum cups bonded into the carbon shell) when I'm climbing hills out of the saddle. My main concern is that applying 50nm of screw-together force to a bb like this could cause damage to the carbon shell. Am I needlessly overthinking this?

I've messaged WM and Specialized and will report back what they say if anyone is curious, but I would greatly appreciate any input from other users with press fit carbon frames who have had success (or not) with these outboard screw-together bottom brackets.

Link to the instructions I'm following for the Shimano outboard bb model: https://wheelsmfg.com/tech/PDF/BB30-...CTIONS-WEB.pdf
Link to WM outboard bottom brackets: https://wheelsmfg.com/bottom-brackets.html
More technical info: https://wheelsmfg.com/bottom-brackets-tech-help

Pics below of what my empty bb shell looks like. Previously was using a bb30 crank with zero issues but I wanted to use a Shimano crankset with shorter arms.

Thanks in advance..

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Old 11-06-21, 11:50 PM
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Post install pic

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Old 11-06-21, 11:52 PM
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Btw, I've also swapped wheelsets, cassettes and pedals in an attempt to rule out the possibility of the ticking/creaking coming from something else
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Old 11-07-21, 07:37 AM
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It looks like you greased the cups. If not, grease generously. I doubt that increasing the torque will hurt anything, but BB30 cups could be worn. Did the new BB feel like a light press fit, or did it slide in easily? I have the angular contact bearing version of this BB on two BB86 bikes. The tool I have is just a splined long handle wrench, so I just tightened firmly. My BBs had a definite interference fit. No noise.
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Old 11-07-21, 11:59 AM
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DaveSSS Definitely well greased. It was more of a light press fit... I'm using the angular version as well.
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Old 11-08-21, 05:26 PM
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I have this type of BB on 2 of my bikes and I haven't heavily torqued them, but just cinch them snug (with a decent coating of grease on the frame). Both have been in use for about 2 years with no clicking or issues.
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Old 11-16-21, 01:54 AM
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Update: I heard back from Specialized technical support. They said for their carbon frames designed around the press fit standard, torque should be kept at the lower range of WM's specification.
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Old 02-01-22, 01:29 PM
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To follow up on this... after no email reply from Wheels Manufacturing I ended up calling them directly and was - to my pleasant surprise - quickly routed to a knowledgeable tech there. He said others have had success eliminating similar creaking issues by removing the bearings with a press (from the WM outboard bb) and applying a small amount of Loctite compound between each bearing and the inner surface of the adapter before repressing the bearings (note: voids warranty, as to be expected).

I did this and it almost entirely reduced the creak (tested over a handful of rides totaling ~200 miles), but not to my complete satisfaction. I then changed directions and installed one of these nifty 52g FSA BB30 English thread adapters, which came with its own little bottle of Loctite 609. For frames with aluminum shells or inserts like mine, this is a removable process with a bit of care and a hair blower.


So, here I am 1240 miles later and all is well. Zero honks or creaks of any kind, including when working extra hard out of the saddle or sprinting above 800w. Will report back if anything changes, but for now I am very satisfied.

A few pics from the install



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