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Burley tandem Bottom bracket spindle lateral travel

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Burley tandem Bottom bracket spindle lateral travel

Old 05-29-21, 04:50 PM
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SonsBikes
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Burley tandem Bottom bracket spindle lateral travel

Hello! I recently purchased a 1990 Burley Duet. Iíve been going through it and found that the rear bb spindle had traveled to the right. I removed the cranks, and was able to tap the spindle back to the middle. Iím pretty sure itís not supposed to do that.

There is no play in the bearings, and it rotates smoothly. But the travel. Anyone know how to fix this? Thank you!
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Old 05-29-21, 06:05 PM
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I have a 1990 Burley Bongo. Your rear BB when new was put in with a friction fit and held there by snap ring clips. There was also some what looked like epoxy. I suggest you clean it up as best as possible and see what is going on with it. I have never tried to remove mine but I have removed the outer bearing seals with a jewelers screw driver and worked grease into the bearings. I am guessing the original owner may have tried to work on that BB and gave up. If the bearings are staying in and the axle is moving to one side then you should be able to put a new one in. Hear is a listing for a new one. Burley Bottom Brackets Good luck

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Old 05-30-21, 06:37 PM
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I have a Duet and although I haven't owned it a long time I have just recently service the BB's. The spindle is a press fit in the bearings. There is a spacer inside but there are no 'stops' on the axle or any other feature that would lock the spindle in a given position, only the slight interference fit between the spindle and the bearing.

I don't know if blue Loctite would be an idea to keep the spindle from moving in the future but it probably won't hurt.
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Old 05-30-21, 08:24 PM
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I have a Duet and although I haven't owned it a long time I have just recently service the BB's. The spindle is a press fit in the bearings. There is a spacer inside but there are no 'stops' on the axle or any other feature that would lock the spindle in a given position, only the slight interference fit between the spindle and the bearing.
You can see from the picture the whole unit is held in by the snap rings. Yes he would need to remove the snap rings and press out the unit. I believe the once tight fit between the spindle and bearings has been compromised. I am the original owner of my 1990 Bongo and in addition to the snap rings there is what looks like epoxy. The OPs spindle used to have a press fit. A new BB set is needed. As I stated before I have used a jewelers or small screwdriver and removed the outer bearing seals several times in 30 years and worked fresh grease into them and replaced the seals. I bent my front spindle once. I had a Phil wood cartridge bearing set that had the same axle length at the time. I took it and the eccentric to a friends business and with his permission used his arbor press to take apart the Phil Wood unit. A then used the arbor press on the eccentric and removed the bent spindle and its bearings. The Phil Wood parts were compatible to the eccentric. the Phil Wood spec bearings had the same OD as the ones that had been pressed into the eccentric. I had taken a measurement of how far the left side of the spindle sat out from the bearing and was able to match it up. I did leave some info from Tandems East so the OP might get info or purchase parts.
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Old 05-31-21, 08:17 AM
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What I was attempting to say was that even though the spindle has moved, it may not be terminal. Depending on what SonsBikes is trying to do. I agree that ideally a new spindle is optimal, new bearings perhaps as well. But the spindle can, by it's design, move. I doubt the bearings will be difficult to find (haven't tried), the numbers are visible and they are likely a standard size available at a bearing shop. But as a provisional measure cleaning things up and centering the spindle might be fine, as long as the spindle isn't flopping around in the bearing bore.
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Old 05-31-21, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Rick View Post
You can see from the picture the whole unit is held in by the snap rings. Yes he would need to remove the snap rings and press out the unit. I believe the once tight fit between the spindle and bearings has been compromised. I am the original owner of my 1990 Bongo and in addition to the snap rings there is what looks like epoxy. The OPs spindle used to have a press fit. A new BB set is needed. As I stated before I have used a jewelers or small screwdriver and removed the outer bearing seals several times in 30 years and worked fresh grease into them and replaced the seals. I bent my front spindle once. I had a Phil wood cartridge bearing set that had the same axle length at the time. I took it and the eccentric to a friends business and with his permission used his arbor press to take apart the Phil Wood unit. A then used the arbor press on the eccentric and removed the bent spindle and its bearings. The Phil Wood parts were compatible to the eccentric. the Phil Wood spec bearings had the same OD as the ones that had been pressed into the eccentric. I had taken a measurement of how far the left side of the spindle sat out from the bearing and was able to match it up. I did leave some info from Tandems East so the OP might get info or purchase parts.
Thank you, Rick. I need some help with the definitions.

eccentricóI understand that this is the off-center cartridge used on the front bottom bracket and held in place by two set screws on the bb shell. Correct?

Also, ďOPĒ. I donít know what that refers to.

Again, many thanks to everyone here for the insights. Iím feeling better about this.
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Old 05-31-21, 12:19 PM
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OP means 'Original Poster', or Thread Starter. (in this case you, SonsBikes)
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Old 05-31-21, 12:51 PM
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OP means original poster on a forum. The eccentric is that round chunk of aluminum with the offset round hole in it. My Burly Bongo uses the same size eccentric as your Burley Duet. Eccentrics are not only used on tandems but also on singles. My Co-Motion Pangea Rohloff uses an eccentric with a threaded offset hole in it. This makes it simpler to find replacement parts. It also uses an interior locking system. I believe you should replace both the spindle and the bearings on your rear BB. That spindle should not move. My front BB spindle bent because it was under engineered for my uses. I weighed 190lbs the wife was close to that having just had the third child. I was also pulling a custom made bicycle cart that was designed to haul up to four children and groceries. Yeah All three were in the cart going up a canyon. Not only did the cheap spindle bend but the rear bolt on hub axle bent on those cheap hubs. Broken spokes also. Burley sent me hub axles and spokes twice. I was working my first good job and ordered in two pair of Phil Wood 48 spoked tandem hubs. I built up those wheels and the only problems after that were cracking rims on occasion. The exterior eccentric retention system, you no the two grub screws. Didn't always hold and I had to keep tools on hand to readjust.
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Old 05-31-21, 05:05 PM
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I may be erring a bit too far on the "close enough" side having been aiming for no-cost fixes at the local bike co-op lately, but I'd ride it and see if it happens again. While that particular design may have been a press fit, it isn't unusual to see EBBs (eccentric bottom brackets) designed with a slip fit between the spindle and bearings, then a set screw/shaft collar to prevent lateral movement. As a new to you bike, it's possible it took a good shove on the side of the crank, was mis-installed previously, etc.
I'm under the impression you had to give it a few taps to get it back in to place. If it slips freely back and forth, or if you come back from a ride and see that it's happened again, then I'd take a bit more action. You could probably set it with a single drop of loctite after cleaning the spindle, but take care not to let any get out to the seal. It's not the end of the world, but loctite between the inner race and the seal doesn't do the seal any favors. Replacing the spindle or adding collars (if there is space) would be the next course of action, but it I don't see this as a critical item the way a scored pedal spindle, shifting rear derailer alignment, etc. are, IE it isn't something likely to result in injury, additional costly repairs, or walking home if it does recur.
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Old 06-01-21, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by jccaclimber View Post
...If it slips freely back and forth, or if you come back from a ride and see that it's happened again, then I'd take a bit more action. You could probably set it with a single drop of loctite after cleaning the spindle...
I agree with jccaclimber. Sometimes 'close enough' is what is called for, sometimes not. But if all you're are trying to do is make the bike rideable it might be just the right amount of goodness to evaluate what you have.

On my Burley Duet the BB spindles need to be drifted firmly in order to move, but they do move. In normal riding they don't move.
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Old 06-02-21, 06:51 AM
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Thank you! I've got the spindle out today. Gonna try some things before I replace it. There's a cuff in the middle of the spindle. The placement of the cuff determines the right/left placement of the spindle and thus cranks. It slides a bit when I tap it with the plastic hammer. I have some ideas about making it stay put.

1. What if I remove the cuff, scour the surface of the middle of the spindle, and replace the cuff in the correct position. Shouldn't that make it harder for it to move? Sort of like how the stem and handlebars come together.

2. What if I remove the cuff, clean any oil / grease that's gotten in there, and replace the cuff. Not as robust a plan as #1, but maybe it's all that is needed.

3. This is the nuclear option. What if I do idea 2, and then have my friend (very experienced welder of bikes) spot weld the cuff to the spindle? I'm already worried that the heat could bend the spindle, or compromise its strength in a way that it will one day snap in half via a crack created by the act of welding. As I am not an experienced welder, I just don't know.


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Old 06-02-21, 07:46 AM
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The 'cuff' keeps the bearings apart from each other but it is designed to move. Cuff is aluminum and can't be welded to the spindle and even if you could weld it that isn't a good idea, the unit needs the parts to float relative to each other, otherwise the assembly tolerance would have to be much finer than it is.

Ideal solution is to replace the spindle and bearings, the retaining rings too while you're at it. As a start you can replace the bearings for chump change: they should be 6205LU and cost less than $10.00 each. The spindle might be fine and won't be so cheap, but still might not be terribly costly. The Burley bike is well made and I really like mine - but this is not a super high end or costly bike in terms of the components used, they built them with basic and affordable components, one of the virtues of the brand. Rather than redesigning things I think you might be better off to renew/replace what's there and it should be good as new.
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Old 06-02-21, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by SonsBikes View Post
Thank you, Rick. I need some help with the definitions.

eccentric—I understand that this is the off-center cartridge used on the front bottom bracket and held in place by two set screws on the bb shell. Correct?

Also, “OP”. I don’t know what that refers to.

Again, many thanks to everyone here for the insights. I’m feeling better about this.
FYI
Some years ago our Burley frame cracked at the SoftRide pivot point. I have largely parted it out but still have the FRONT ECCENTRIC and the STOKER BOTTOM BRACKET (cartridge still in it). FREE I would be glad to pay this forward if someone can use it and will pay the shipping.

I also have the full crankset if anyone is interest, as well as the 26" front fork and a great set of hand laces 26" Aeroheat 40 spoke if anyone has a use for them. Nominal costs except for the wheelset. Message me here if someone wants the eccentric or BB.
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Old 06-02-21, 08:53 AM
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Such a great offer!
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Old 06-02-21, 06:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Monoborracho View Post



FYI
Some years ago our Burley frame cracked at the SoftRide pivot point. I have largely parted it out but still have the FRONT ECCENTRIC and the STOKER BOTTOM BRACKET (cartridge still in it). FREE I would be glad to pay this forward if someone can use it and will pay the shipping.

I also have the full crankset if anyone is interest, as well as the 26" front fork and a great set of hand laces 26" Aeroheat 40 spoke if anyone has a use for them. Nominal costs except for the wheelset. Message me here if someone wants the eccentric or BB.
Drunken Monkey Iíd love to pay you shipping for those items. You can text me for details. 317 nine four six 41 four one. Thank you! It would be great to have a backup eccentric and the parts I need now.
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Old 06-02-21, 11:48 PM
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1. I appreciate the brainstorming on ways to do this, although I still think you should just ride it and see what happens. That spacer isn't designed to retain the spindle position, but you are correct that it absolutely would do the job.
2. Increased roughness between two surfaces under a clamp load often helps retention, but only if the roughness is on the harder surface. In this case it doesn't have much retention force to begin with and the spacer is the softer item so it won't do much. Removing material will in this case loosen any fit, especially if you end up where the bearings ride. A hose clamp (ie something that can be made tight, yet is removable) around that center spacer would probably do the trick if it cleared the BB shell. On the surface that seems like an ugly hack, but not that much different than a proper shaft collar at the end of the day. Bonus points because unlike Loctite it is much more easily reversed or adjusted.
3. In general, be careful how you press on bearings. You always want support behind the race that is being pressed so that the load path does not travel through the rolling element during installation.
4. I'd re-use the bearings if they feel good, but as noted they don't cost that much.
5. There's something odd where the bearing sits on the right side of your last picture. Is that corrosion, or just grease from disassembly?
6. I live in San Francisco, but will be spending several days in Holland next month. If you're willing to make the short drive over I'll bring a micrometer along and we can find out if the spindle is actually undersized or not, and by how much. The purpose of that portion of our trip isn't primarily to go riding, but we will probably have our tandem with us as well.
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Old 06-03-21, 07:51 AM
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Part Number for BB Bearings

SonsBike, and others - The bottom bracket bearings used on Burley's are standard industrial bearings. One pair of P/N 6203-2RS (17x40x12mm) on the rear spindle, and one pair of P/N 6003-2RS (17x35x10mm) on the front. Now that it's apart, go ahead and replace them. About $10-$20 a pair for good quality. Use a hydraulic press, and only apply force to the inner races. Properly assembled, there should be minimal gap at the snap rings (only used on the rear BB). High strength Locktite should also be used around the bearing perimeter when installing. I restored a badly neglected 2000 Burley Samba last year and, although the bearings have no issues, did some research on the subject. As stated earlier, great bikes, sensible components.

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Old 06-03-21, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by SonsBikes View Post
Drunken Monkey Iíd love to pay you shipping for those items. You can text me for details. 317 nine four six 41 four one. Thank you! It would be great to have a backup eccentric and the parts I need now.
Send text
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