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Italian B/B(15 posts)

Italian B/Bmackgoo
Dec 30, 2001 5:40 AM
I'm building a bike with an Italian B/B. Any tricks to keeping the B/B tight? May be a little lochtite on the offending side?
No issues with the Italian B/BCima Coppi
Dec 30, 2001 6:23 AM
I have two bike with italian threaded b/b's, and I have never had the non-drive side cups loosen on me. I use teflon tape on the threads to "lubricate" them, and it works great. I personally would not use Locktite on a bb.

Good luck!

Issues,yesRusty Coggs
Dec 30, 2001 7:35 AM
The drive side is the issue.Right hand threading causes it to be 'self loosening'. Have had two loosen themselves. Making sure they are extra tight is the solution.If you use locktite, make sure it is not the permanent kind.
Confused....Cima Coppi
Dec 30, 2001 12:03 PM
How can the drive side have issues with the cup loosening. This does make sense because when pedaling forward the B/B spindle is turning in the direction of tightening the drive side cup, but in the direction of loosening the non-drive side cup.

I've had issues quite the opposite with my old open bearing B/B, where the drive side cup tightened down so much from use, I could not remove it.

Please explain.

Confused....Rusty Coggs
Dec 30, 2001 4:39 PM
common knowledge among people who use Italian thread BB. I think Sheldon Brown at has the explanation.I've seen it before,but don't give a rats why.Just know it happens,like in my case twice and it was pretty tight to start with. It's counter intuitive if that helps.
Jan 2, 2002 10:51 AM
In all seriousnes, I have had this phenomenon occur twice, while on the road, without a BB tool.

I have a new Derosa Merak and use an Ultegra BB. The drive side backed out when I was on a group ride. Interestingly, it didn't seem to have any problem when I had it set up on the indoor trainer (approx. 20 hours of use). After a road ride of 1 hour, the drive side cup started to back out and this progressed as I limped home...I hear the same problems with Campy cartridge BB's. I put blue locktite. Hope it works.
happened to meColnago FE
Jan 2, 2002 12:02 PM
On my Colnago Master XL...I check it more often now.
same experienceJefferson
Jan 3, 2002 11:23 AM
I built up a Colnago C40 in October. On my 3rd ride the drive side came loose. I am using Dura Ace. Tightened it really tight and so far so good. I am watching it like a hawk now.
Teflon Tape, Italian bikes and various BB sagaslonefrontranger
Jan 2, 2002 5:32 PM
I've built a dozen or so Colnagos to the tune of less than one roll of Teflon tape (also known as "plumber's" or "friction" tape) which works out to $1.95 at any self-respecting hardware store - pretty small change for peace of mind when working with bikes that run upwards of $3K. This is also standard procedure at several of the highly respected older "pro" shops I've dealt with who work on Italian BB bikes on a regular basis. The driveside has a greater than 50% chance of backing out sooner or later (seen it happen to several, none of them my builds, fortunately) if you don't tape or Ti-prep the threads. The coolest part is that when it backs out in the middle of nowhere, not only do you essentially walk home (one-legged really SUCKS going uphill, lemme tell ya), but you've also most likely rogered the threads to the tune of a new BB and/or $50 re-tap.

My SO has to resort to Ti-prep (next level of tack) in his Dream Reflex because our buddy / my boss had just opened his shop in Cincy and didn't have frame tools in yet, and we were all in a hurry to build it the minute the frame arrived. The self-professed "expert" (Colnago rep) who did have tools, took it upon himself to do the install, and in the process completely jimmied the driveside shell - we got there just in time to see him FIU. Damn fool started the tap in the WRONG DIRECTION, then after a few turns realized 'gee, somethin' ain't right...'; fortunately before he drove the tap so far out of kilter that it sheared through the BB shell! I personally would have demanded a new frame, my money back, and/or the moron's head on a plate from his boss, but my SO is way too much of a nice guy.

The SO took it to a pro shop and had to pay to get it properly tapped and refaced, but I fear the driveside threads on that bike will always be a little whacked - since he doesn't plan to sell it, this isn't much of an issue.

Needless to say, we now own our own frame prep tools. I have seen blue Loctite oxidize and seize in an aluminum BB shell on a few occasions. We destroyed an old Cinelli MTB frame (popped a head tube lug - cool!) and a Shimano BB tool trying to remove a blue-Loctited BB with a breaker bar. That frame was pretty much toast anyway, wish we'd have just yard saled it before embarking on the 4 hours of futility that project wound up as!

Moral 1: Not every moron with a $3000 box of Campy frame tools is qualified to use them - proceed at your own risk unless dealing with an established pro roadie shop!

Moral 2: If you buy a >$1500 frame, it's well worth the extra $50 to have a real professional do the prep and face.

Moral 3: If you use any type of thread locker on aluminum parts, either faithfully remove/reinstall/relube every six months, or be prepared to get medieval on it with long-torque wrenches and breaker bars 2 or 3 years down the road when you need to replace it. Moral 3 Corollary: When you must resort to the 6' breaker bar, make sure the equipment in question is 1) yours; 2) not worth much in monetary or sentimental value
re: Italian B/BVintageGenX
Dec 30, 2001 6:34 AM
Try to use a torque wrench and Campy's recommended setting. That will prevent it from slipping.
re: Italian B/BBernie
Dec 30, 2001 7:03 AM
The trick to keeping a bottom bracket from slipping is in the lubricant. I highly recommend that you put a little mayonaise on the threads of your bottom bracket. Yes mayonaise. It works fantastic.
re: Italian B/Bmackgoo
Dec 30, 2001 9:43 AM
Actually I've been thinking. Lochtite is German. I'm going to use on strand of al dente pasta. How did you know it was a Campy B/B?
Because you're a Campy Freak.nm
Dec 30, 2001 10:42 AM
Because you're a Campy Freak. Just look all over these boards.

Because you're a Campy Freak.mackgoo
Dec 30, 2001 11:42 AM
Boy, I've been known for a lot of things in my days, some things I'm not too proud of. But this, this is something to be proud of!!!
re: olive oilRusty Coggs
Dec 30, 2001 11:38 AM
YES! Olive oil, the only thing to use on an Italian BB.