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Who knows what a "tecalamit valve" is, or how it should be used?

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Who knows what a "tecalamit valve" is, or how it should be used?

Old 09-24-10, 05:06 AM
  #1  
LeicaLad 
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Who knows what a "tecalamit valve" is, or how it should be used?

Duuuh. That's "valve".

I’m trying to learn about the bottom bracket oil valve. I’m told that what is shown here is called a “tecalamit nut”. I would like to learn more. Can anyone advise me here?



First, of course, is how to use it. Does one really inject oil into an the bottom bracket shell? Wouldn’t you have a protective sleeve in there to protect from any debris? If not, wouldn’t oil contribute to pushing out the bearing grease? Other such questions of how or why you would use this.

I’d also like to know if this is the correct term for the valve, and from where the name comes.

Thank you.

Last edited by LeicaLad; 09-25-10 at 05:12 AM. Reason: Can't spell the basics!!! (But it was a typing error!)
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Old 09-24-10, 05:33 AM
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clubman 
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The tecalamit nipple does allow you drop some oil in the BB and it will indeed loosen up old grease and help your bearings roll smoothly. Most BB sleeves are installed with a slot lined up to allow the oil clear access to the spindle.

I think most C&V'ers would rather open up their BB's and service them with fresh grease and bearings rather than oil it up, only to have it gradually seep out and stain their Florsheim bike shoes.
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Old 09-24-10, 06:14 AM
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A bit impatient, are we?

Best I can tell "tecalamit" AKA "tecalumit" is a company name, and the thingy in your pic looks to be same difference from any other grease port/grease nipple. The company also made stuff for oil filters, being the probable cause for the oil reference. Heck, they're still around:https://www.tecalemit.co.uk/about.html
And oil is rarely used on the type of bearings there are on bicycles, because of its poor staying power. It's not that it doesn't work, but you need to keep it topped up "all" the time.
I can't tell if what's on your pic is the small spring-loaded ball that acts as an one-way valve on regular grease nipples, or if it's a patterned cap over what's basically a tidied-up hole through the BB shell.
Big grease guns customarily comes with matching filler heads that latch on to the grease ports so that you can pump grease into there while smaller grease guns rely on the same pushing action both providing sealing force between gun head/nipple as well as being the motive power behind injecting the grease.
I've never seen an arrangement where oil has to be forcibly pumped into a bearing. Then again, the difference between a really heavy oil and a light grease can be quite marginal.
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Old 09-24-10, 06:24 AM
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Looks like a really lovely bike.
You could perhaps pump grease in. Sometimes people use sleeves, but I've never opened an old bottom bracket and found a sleeve already in place. I have a Suntour greaseguard bottom bracket on one bike: The bolts are hollowed a little, and you take off the covers and inject some grease, which does cause a little of the oldest grease to squeeze out, replaced with new grease.
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Old 09-24-10, 06:33 AM
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Nice Frame...so far...let's see the rest, you can't hold out like that!

I have the same fitting on a '50 Norman and an older brass sleeve and cap on a Hercules. I use 30W oil in the Hercules BB, half a dozen drops before a ride. It doesn't leak out, the bearings run silent, although I've never put more than 20 miles at a time on it.

Some early bicycles were lubed with oil, perhaps a little grease on the outer bearings to protect from water. You can still find Cyclists oil cans and kits on eBay from time to time. Not sure if the tecalumit port is for grease or oil?

Last edited by Andrew F; 09-24-10 at 06:37 AM.
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Old 09-24-10, 07:07 AM
  #6  
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I think most Tecalemit grease guns are the "push" type. Alemite is another brand whose name has become generic for grease nipples (zerks).
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Old 09-24-10, 09:00 AM
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David Newton
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Dang, you need to unscrew the grease nipple and polish it up. That frame looks great!
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Old 09-24-10, 09:05 AM
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Impatient? Hmm. Well, this name and this spelling were provided by the person selling me the bike. I looked up the British company, but remain unconvinced it has anything to do with how that term came to be applied to a bike BB shell.

Personally, I'll be installing a standard loose bearing Campy BB with quality grease, so doubt I'll be needing to use this. (But, who knows?) What you see is just a threaded cap. Threads are clean and it comes on and off. No current BB sleeve I have seen has a groove that would facilitate movement of oil or grease. Most are either solid plastic, or accordion-like. Maybe older styles have them. I've never seen one.

Anyway, just wanting to understand what it is. I sincerely doubt I'll be using it..., but I'm open to understanding it better.

It comes attached to a 1963 Hetchins.

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Old 09-24-10, 09:12 AM
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Hey lad, nice frame! The part is just a patent grease nipple, fits the matching grease gun, that's all. I used to find them all over my '59 Triumph TR3, and my '69 BSA.

If you can see the little bump just above the front brake arm, that's one there.
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Old 09-24-10, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by LeicaLad View Post
.. this name and this spelling were provided by the person selling me the bike. I looked up the British company, but remain unconvinced it has anything to do with how that term came to be applied to a bike BB shell.
It doesn't apply to the whole BB shell, not any more than a Presta valve applies to a whole wheel.
Which is a fairly accurate comparison if I may say so myself. The Presta lets air into the tube, the "tecalemit" thingy lets the lube of your choice into the BB internals.
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Old 09-24-10, 05:38 PM
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Ah, I see. That makes more sense. The frame is being shipped, and I'm in Laos, leaving Vientiane for Savannakhet this morning.

Thanks for helping me figure this out in advance.
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Old 09-24-10, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by David Newton View Post
Hey lad, nice frame! The part is just a patent grease nipple, fits the matching grease gun, that's all. I used to find them all over my '59 Triumph TR3, and my '69 BSA.

If you can see the little bump just above the front brake arm, that's one there.
Nice bike!
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Old 09-24-10, 06:40 PM
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I've not had experience with that sort of nipple on a bike - but I'm fairly certain that's the type of grease zerk used on old British sports cars. Zerks like that are usually for grease. You use a pump to pump in new grease and squeeze out the old. Back in the day when you'd take your car in for an oil change they'd also "lube the chassis" - go around to all the zerks and pump new grease in. They used to be all over the suspension but these days most suspension bushings are rubber and not greased like that. Now they're most commonly found on truck driveshafts. I lube the joints of my 4Runner's drive shaft once a year or so like that.

Here's a grease gun originally for a Jag but I'd bet it'd fit that valve exactly:

https://jollyrogersmotors.com/node/43

I wouldn't be surprised if a standard grease gun from the hardware store would fit well enough to be functional though....I would guess in Laos you could find somebody with an old Land Rover who'd have a pump for that.

edit: oh yeah, didn't read all the replies thoroughly. David basically said the same thing.....

edit 2: ya know, I'm pretty sure there's a grease gun just like that in my dad's old tool cabinet up at my mom's house. In with the Whitworth wrenches......

Last edited by GV27; 09-24-10 at 06:58 PM.
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Old 09-24-10, 07:14 PM
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They are also known as "oil hole covers". They are the same fitting that WTB developed their Greaseguard system around. I think the pumps are known a "goose guns" in some circles.
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Old 09-24-10, 08:15 PM
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Yeah, yeah! That's what my Dad called his grease gun when I was a kid - a "Goose Gun". Hey man - thanks for bringing back that memory for me - I'd completely forgotten that!
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Old 09-25-10, 01:46 AM
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value=valve (misspelled) I wouldn't call that fitting a "valve", but I can see how others (British) might.
and Nice Hetchins!
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Old 09-25-10, 02:08 AM
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That's a great bike. I'd love to see it completed.
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Old 09-25-10, 02:33 AM
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I'm going out on a limb and guessing that it's there in order to allow you to re-lube the bottom bracket with a standard grease gun (these kinds are everywhere, I have one even). Why? Possibly because it could be done if you were on a long tour/ride and didn't have tools to service your BB after riding in the rain... or something like that. I am assuming that one would clean the BB area out at their earliest convenience after filling it up with a grease gun.
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Old 09-25-10, 05:09 AM
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Thank you, gentlemen. Much appreciate. The frame will be shipped from the UK to the east coast USA.

I am in Central Laos and Vietnam for the next 3-4 weeks, so I'll hope to have this frame waiting when I get home around Halloween.

I intend to build it as a rider with parts I already have. Mostly 70's bits & pieces. I'm really looking forward to riding it.
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