What BB for SS CX?

ok, but what about in a dry road setting?

I’d bet a bike that Tange makes BBs for Shimano.

Ext BB might be better on road, but as Dice says, it’s the exposure to water/mud/etc that kills them offroad.

My NDS bearing totally seized after a season of CX.

Better as in better to work on? Spin better out of the box? Spin better after they’ve bedded in/loosened up? Shinier? I look at it and think I’ve used one, but can’t remember where. Is it a hollow spindle?

Answering the Question of “buy expensive buy once VS buy cheap, replace often”, you don’t need to make that choice. Its more like buy once, have a nice part that you love and weighs 10% or so less, or buy once, have a part that doesnt look fancy but does its job for as long as you ask it to. If you’ve got heaps of WI stuff, go the steel BB too. Its nice :slight_smile:

Have to say the Tange unit looks identical to the Shimano ones. Never had any issues with Shimano sealed square taper units, and the newer models like the UN-55 have actually reverted to the metal rather than plastic NDS like the original UN-91.

Interesting further reading, basically they’re all the same anyway:


In 1992, Shimano released their sealed bearing cartridge bottom brackets for use with their road and mountain bike parts groups, this is the “UN” series of bottom brackets. The three, and the added Dura-Ace 7410 model, have some variations in their appearance and weights. The quality differences in terms of materials used, tolerances manufactured to or bearings used are less discernible.

We called Shimano headquarters in Irvine, California to ask how they differ. Robert explained that the more expensive models are made of better steel and bearings. We asked how, what type of steel is used for each, and how or what type of bearings are used for each, so we could explain to customers why they should buy one over the other. Robert said that this information was “product confidential”. When we asked if the spindle or bearings could be changed individually if they should fail, he explained that there are no user or mechanic serviceable parts in the UN series bottom brackets.

The assembly is warranted by Shimano for up to one year from the original purchase, a customer sending a defective unit to them would receive a new exchange for the defective B/B. For all other specifics he referred us to the Dealer’s Product Manual, which frankly has nothing specific related to the components, or materials, though it tells available spindle lengths. All we can tell you is what we observe about each.

The bearings used on both sides of all three, are labeled “HIC” and “JAPAN”. They, frankly, appear to be the same bearings in all three, and they all “feel” as though they have the same bearings. Ultimately, we ripped apart a UN-50, (the predecessor to the UN-51) to examine the bearing assembly and learned that the term “sealed cartridge”, which is Shimano’s term, isn’t quite an accurate euphemism for “precision sealed cartridge bearing”. The UN-50, when you removed the outer rubberized seals around an aluminum washer, revealed seven approximately 4.5mm diameter steel balls in a plastic retainer. With both outer seals removed, you can look straight through the B/B unit. These outer plastic seals, and their integrity, like those used in the Tioga MTB-SK, are all that keeps the outer world shielded from the inner 7 steel balls. The UN-51, UN-71, UN-91 and the DA 7410 B/B all outwardly appear to have the same bearings as the UN-50 we tore apart for inspection.

bikepro is ace. Good to hear a bike shop employee going to these lengths to give some worthwhile advice to customers.

I am running at lunch, HoBu, if you are keen to join.

I’ll be riding tonight. Running and riding, hardcore!

I like this. A part of me thinks that I should save money where I can, another part of me thinks that I’m already spending s#$%loads on this upgrade/rebuild, might as well keep the package all high end.

yep, and the BBs are the same as the freewheels, as in, if you know what you are looking at, you can recognise them a mile off. If you go something else, you’ll probably never look at you bike at say “there’s my bb, behind my crank there”, but if you go WI, you’ll often grab your bike, see the blue seals and go "nice… "

Horatio is a alloy of Holmium Boron and Uranium?

how can he be a weight weenie with atomic masses like those? (unless he’s mostly boron of course)

Can those elements create a cool nuclear warhead?


Smooth out of the box. Spin well when bedded in. Don’t creak like my last Shimano BB. And doesn’t have a shitty beige plastic cup. Solid spindle I think - its not that light. May look the same as the Shimano but it whats inside that counts. Seems nicer in my experience, albeit relatively limited.

Sure a WI one will no doubt be nicer if you can afford it.

This is build is not about what I can afford, trust me. I can’t afford any of this really, but I am impatient and banking on getting rid of my LLewellyn and Lennie Rogers frame’s to cover most of the outlay. I make some poor decisions sometimes.

Soooo if you had to chose between Phil and WI?

WI. More serviceable and less metal.

Phil can be adjusted 5mm laterally so you can tweak your chainline. I haven’t serviced mine since I bought it but I have installed it in multiple bikes where I needed to tweak chainline. My 2c.

No nuclear warheads are decidedly uncool…

also holmium is a strong neutron absorber and is used in reactor control rods and boron apparently has neutron capturing properties as well

if you go external, i have a CK BB you can have. think it’s for shimano. didn’t fit my sram rival.

ALL nuclear warheads are decidedly uncool :slight_smile:

Sorry, I can’t comment on Phils. I would like to have one. Seems more stout, less racey than WI, based on hype, 100% :slight_smile:

Also, I see your chain question, I say SRAM PC890, all the way. 3/32 is the way to go. Nickel plated, very quite, stuff comes off it easily. Other than that, does Rohloff make a 3/32 chain? Wipperman are great, I like their joining links a lot, but the SRAM nickel plating is really good for filthy stuff.

Another question, what chain do peeps recommend?