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HELP! BB Threads on Fondriest Carb Level(17 posts)

HELP! BB Threads on Fondriest Carb Leveldirthead
Jun 25, 2003 11:31 AM
I recently purchased a Fondriest Carb Level frame and while installing the Dura-Ace BB, noticed that the drive side cup needed a little too much force to screw in. Once I decided the force was just too much, and there must be something wrong with threads, I started to remove the cup, and it was VERY tight. I stopped right there. The cup is not crossthreaded, just tight. There are 2 things that I can think of to do. First, I could go ahead and unscrew the drive side cup, and potentially damage the threads beyond repair. Or I could remove all the internals of the BB and cut the cup to relieve pressure before removing it. Once the cup is out, I will have the threads chased.

Has anyone experienced this before? And do you have any other ideas on the best way to remove the cup with doing damage to the BB shell threads??
Are you using the correct BB?SamDC
Jun 25, 2003 12:16 PM
Fondriest bikes use an Italian threaded bottom bracket, not English. Have you chased the threads yet? I received my Madonna frame yesterday and noticed the threads were kind of dirty.
Are you using the correct BB?dirthead
Jun 25, 2003 12:26 PM
The BB I am using is Italian thread. I did not chase the threads. I live about 150 miles from the nearest shop that can do that, so I thought I would try without chasing them. Now I need to figure out the best way to get the BB cup out with screwing up the threads on the BB shell.
re: HELP! BB Threads on Fondriest Carb Levelyashcha
Jun 25, 2003 12:25 PM
When I bought my Fondriest, I asked the guy at the shop to chase the threads for me, but I was told these were super high quality frames so they don't need it. Sure enough half way through putting the BB in, it was nearly impossible to put in since the threads were dirty. I just forced it in there and hope that I will never have to change it again.
re: HELP! BB Threads on Fondriest Carb Levelrussw19
Jun 25, 2003 4:42 PM
Super high quality frames DON'T need chased.... that's complete BS!

You should ALWAYS chase and face a new frame! ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS!

You just paid all that money for your new frame and now what? You skipped a vital step and are worried about destroying your bottom bracket shell! Sorry for your bad luck, but it really goes to prove my point. You can get away with not prepping a Trek 800 frame, but you just dropped over a thousand on a Fondriest and didn't prep your frame? Why?

And what happens when you have to replace your bottom bracket? Is it new frame time again?

Again, sorry to make light of your problem, but I am of the opinion that not prepping a frame is just plain stupid.

re: HELP! BB Threads on Fondriest Carb Levelyashcha
Jun 26, 2003 9:32 AM
You're right Russ. I took out the BB bracket last night and inspected the threads and they look normal, so maybe it wasn't anything for people to get hot and bothered about.
Jun 25, 2003 12:27 PM
First, I assume you have an Italian threaded BB (which has right hand threads on both sides). An english BB is enough smaller that it should not grip the threads of the Italian threaded shell. It's also LH threaded so it would not screw in if turned backward.

Hopefully you greased the threads before screwing in the cup. Under normal conditions, anything screwed in can be backed out. Of course, normally you would not experience very much torque until the face of the cup touches the BB shell. How did you decide you needed too much force? I did not see any mention of a torque wrench and you should use one.

I would call Fondriest in Denver and ask how they want you to proceed to preserve the warranty. The problem could be with the frame or the BB. No way to tell without removing the BB cup.

Since I just assembled a Fondriest, I can tell you that I had no problems. I did use a toothbrush and some mineral spirits to clean the threads a bit and carefully scraped the paint from the right side of the BB shell to insure a clean surface for the BB. My ISIS BB went in easily.
Jun 25, 2003 12:33 PM
Yes, I did use an Italian BB and greased the threads. I have installed several BB's before and most would screw in by hand most of the way. This one screwed in by hand for the first 2 or 3 turns, then I needed the wrench. The further it went in, the tighter it got, and the more force I needed to get it in. I stopped several times to make sure it wasn't crossthreaded, and it wasn't.

I guess what worried me is that it seemed to take too much force, from what I have experienced in the past. I did clean the threads before starting, and didn't notice anything unusual about them.

I don't know whether to try taking the cup out, or leave it in and hope to never have to change the BB.
just did a Top Levelterry b
Jun 25, 2003 1:39 PM
didn't have any problem. didn't face the BB, cleaned it up a bit and used a bit of lithium grease on the threads. I have had problems with some frames in the past (even post chasing) that go in by hand for a short distance and then need the Hulk to drive it the rest of the way (all the while wondering if it would ever come out again (it did.)

If it's only in a bit then I'd talk to our friend Will at Fondriest and see what he recommends - might mean packing it up and sending it back (are you prepared for that eventuality?) They may tell you to pull it out and I don't think unscrewing it will mess up the threads any more than they (potentially) already are.
I contacted Will @ Fondriest and he said.......dirthead
Jun 25, 2003 2:16 PM
to go ahead and remove the BB cup from the drive side and see what happened. With quite a bit of effort, I removed the cup, and found that all the threads on the cup were completely gone. The first 5 BB shell threads looked slightly damaged, but it could just be aluminum from the cup filling the threads. The final 20 or so threads are perfect.

Will said to have them chased and everything should be OK. Even if the first few threads are damaged, it should not cause a problem. Since there are no bike shops close to here that can do that to an Italian threaded BB frame, I have order a tap to do it myself.

I would definitely recommend Fondriest to anyone trying to decide on a frame. Not only are they running really good specials on some of their frames, but their customer service is great. Will was very helpful when ordering the bike and during my lengthy questioning about this problem.

I paid $1299 for the Carb Level frame, and Colorado Cyclist had it advertised for $2699. That seems like a pretty good deal to me. They even bumped up their warranty from 2 years to 4.
Tap price?Dropped
Jun 25, 2003 3:38 PM
Aren't taps horribly expensive? I seem to recall somewhere in the neighborhood of $400-$1000, depending on the model. Regardless, I'm glad everything will be OK.
The Park Tools tap lists for $650.00 nmDropped
Jun 25, 2003 3:40 PM
$150 for a VAR tap @ (nm)dirthead
Jun 25, 2003 5:26 PM
Yes, but you need the handles with that.Dropped
Jun 26, 2003 6:42 AM
Full VAR tap set is $400 at biketoolsetc. $150 is just for the "bit."

And even if it was $150, that's still a lot to pay for a job a bike shop will charge $10-15 for.

Oh, and this only interests me because I looked into it for my own bike and was just shocked at how much the tools cost.
just did a Don Racernazgul
Jun 25, 2003 6:09 PM
I brought it to the LBS and the mechanic scraped the paint off the outside of the shell but said it didn't need full-blown facing and the threads looked clean enough and didn't need chasing. I put in the BB myself after greasing the threads and it went in really smoothly (can't say the same of the FSA cranks which took enormous force to get close to the stop on the ISIS BB)
Could your BB shell be ovalised?Alexx
Jun 26, 2003 3:41 AM
I'm just wondering-did you have this frame shipped, and was the frame maybe dropped? If the threads don't turn out to be the problem, I'll bet you have an out-of-round BB shell.
re: HELP! BB Threads on Fondriest Carb LevelHeron Todd
Jun 26, 2003 7:57 AM
Doesn't Fondriest sell direct? If so, I'd be talking with Will about the level of frame prep I received on a very expensive frame. If it came from a shop, I'd be talking to them.

Todd Kuzma
Heron Bicycles
LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776