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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone.
I've got a question maybe some can help. My '04 Hollowpoint sport is only 6 weeks old and the Truvative spindle is already shot. It was loose and creaking so I had the mechanic where I bought the bike take a look. There were a few drops of water in the bottom bracket and the spindle was loose and kind of grinding. Appearantly water got into the bearings.

I've done a bunch of stream crossings but never totally submerged the BB. He band-aided it with White Lightning :-/ because you cant get into it to regrease, so its on borrowed time.

So my questions are:
Are current spindles so fragile that a few good stream crossings will ruin them?
Or, is the one that came on my bike a POS design, and I should upgrade next time?
Should it be a warentee issue?

Basically I'm trying to decide between buying a good one that will last (hopefully), or cheap disposable units.

BTW, also, a tooth on the small sprocket of the cassette BROKE off, and Performance replaced it without a hassle. But no luck with the spindle.

Thanks, Brian.
 

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You might be better off posting this question in the drivetrain forum.

FWIW, I haven't been a fan of ISIS, but I've also never owned an ISIS setup. There's a lot that's been written about some flaws in the standard in regards to bearing durability, and you replace anything, you ought to do some homework to find out which ISIS bottom brackets are providing the best reliability.

Personally, I've stuck with Shimano Octalink for the past five years, and it's been 100% reliable. Also, any of these outboard bearing cranks (including the ones found on the '05 Iron Horse bikes) ought to be up to snuff. However, neither is compatible with what you have now, so I'd read up on BB's first, then you can figure out what your next step is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Speedub.Nate said:
You might be better off posting this question in the drivetrain forum.

FWIW, I haven't been a fan of ISIS, but I've also never owned an ISIS setup. There's a lot that's been written about some flaws in the standard in regards to bearing durability, and you replace anything, you ought to do some homework to find out which ISIS bottom brackets are providing the best reliability.

Personally, I've stuck with Shimano Octalink for the past five years, and it's been 100% reliable. Also, any of these outboard bearing cranks (including the ones found on the '05 Iron Horse bikes) ought to be up to snuff. However, neither is compatible with what you have now, so I'd read up on BB's first, then you can figure out what your next step is.
Thanks bro,
I went ahead posted this oever in drivetrain. Oh yea, what is your avitar of? Looks like a cutaway of a geared hub, or transmission or something.
Later, Brian.
 

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BigBri said:
I've got a question maybe some can help. My '04 Hollowpoint sport is only 6 weeks old and the Truvative spindle is already shot. It was loose and creaking so I had the mechanic where I bought the bike take a look. There were a few drops of water in the bottom bracket and the spindle was loose and kind of grinding. Appearantly water got into the bearings.

I've done a bunch of stream crossings but never totally submerged the BB.
I noticed some unusual noise coming from the BB area of my '04 Hollowpoint expert a month or so back. I had ridden in the rain through some wet clay and when I finished, my bike was absolutely covered with the stuff. I hosed the bike off and cleaned it thoroughly, but about a week later I noticed sort of a creak that sounded like it was coming from the bottom bracket. I removed the cranks and bottom bracket and whilst removing the latter, a little trickle of water ran out. I know better than to direct any spray at the bottom bracket, so I doubt it got in via that route. But, when I had the bottom bracket out, I did notice that any water running down the inside of the seat tube would end up on top of the bottom bracket. There's a little slot at the top of the seat tube where the clamp goes around to hold the seat post in place. I think the water entered through this slot when I was cleaning the bike and ran down the seat tube to the bottom bracket. (I did spray that part of the frame pretty hard - that clay is really sticky!)

So far, I've been lucky. When I removed the bottom bracket, I spun the spindle while holding it next to my ear. It sounded perfectly quiet. I've actually had it out once since then while searching for another noise and it's still quiet. I did some research (using this site) on bottom brackets and one of the better regarded ones is the Truvative GigaPipe Team DH. I purchased one of these as a spare for when the original does finally die. As I recall I managed to get rid of the noise I was hearing by thoroughly cleaning the parts involved, regreasing, and assembling. (I didn't take the bottom bracket cartridge apart though.)

Anyway... the point of my story above is that it's possible the water got into your bottom bracket via some other route than the obvious one -- though I think the obvious route is still the most likely candidate. If I had allowed the water to soak the BB cartridge for much longer, I might already be using my spare.
He band-aided it with White Lightning :-/ because you cant get into it to regrease, so its on borrowed time.
I spent some time perusing Truvativ's web site while researching what spare to purchase. I seem to recall that some of their BBs are user servicable so long as you have the right tools. I don't know the procedures nor own the tools, but it might be possible. If you're the type who'd rather service something than replace it, you ought to take a look at Truvativ's site. From the bike shop's point of view, it's probably more cost / time effective to simply replace the part. Otherwise, they'd have to own the specialized tools that'll only work on Truvativ bottom brackets and be familiar with the service procedures.
So my questions are:
Are current spindles so fragile that a few good stream crossings will ruin them?
Well, if you get water or dirt into the bearings, I think they're pretty much done for. I used to hose down one of my other bikes regularly, and though I tried to avoid spraying the bottom bracket, water would get in anyway. I went through several bottom brackets before I figured out that it wasn't such a good idea to give my bike regular water based cleanings.
Or, is the one that came on my bike a POS design, and I should upgrade next time?
If you look at the reviews of the bottom bracket in your (and my) bike on this site, you'll see that it doesn't have a very good rating.
Should it be a warentee issue?
If it were me, I don't think I'd try to exercise the warranty for the bottom bracket if I'd gotten water into it somehow.
Basically I'm trying to decide between buying a good one that will last (hopefully), or cheap disposable units.
I thought about this when searching for a replacement / spare. I couldn't find any cheap disposable units that were cheap enough to make it cost effective. So, I decided to spend a bit more money to get one that was well regarded. I haven't had the opportunity to use it yet, so I can not yet say if this was the right choice.

If your frequently have to cross water on your rides, you ought to consider getting a good user servicable BB and invest in the necessary tools so that you can service it yourself.
 

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I hopr this helps with your problem

BigBri said:
Hey everyone.
I've got a question maybe some can help. My '04 Hollowpoint sport is only 6 weeks old and the Truvative spindle is already shot. It was loose and creaking so I had the mechanic where I bought the bike take a look. There were a few drops of water in the bottom bracket and the spindle was loose and kind of grinding. Appearantly water got into the bearings.

I've done a bunch of stream crossings but never totally submerged the BB. He band-aided it with White Lightning :-/ because you cant get into it to regrease, so its on borrowed time.

So my questions are:
Are current spindles so fragile that a few good stream crossings will ruin them?
Or, is the one that came on my bike a POS design, and I should upgrade next time?
Should it be a warentee issue?

Basically I'm trying to decide between buying a good one that will last (hopefully), or cheap disposable units.

BTW, also, a tooth on the small sprocket of the cassette BROKE off, and Performance replaced it without a hassle. But no luck with the spindle.

Thanks, Brian.
I've had the same problem with Truvative BB's. That said,in my opinion ISIS rocks! and if you want you can uppgrade to a system where the bearings are housed in external cups like the Saint set up or Diabolus. Both are available to fit your frame. If you want to stick with your existing cranks I suggest you get a Race Face or FSA BB, they seem to hold up alot longer. It took me two seasons of non stop lift accessed DH to develop play in my Race Face signature BB.
 

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ISIS (or octalink for that matter; yes took me about 6 months of riding to destroy mine...) is such a failure it's not even funny. I miss the old loose balls, cups and lock-rings, spindle (square tapered please) setups, at least you can adjust them and take the play out; polish the crap out of the races while you're at it. Now it's a new BB every couple months.

The problem is you are stuck with odd-shaped crank arms and unless you dish out big $ for a brand new setup incompatible with anything else, unproven and requiring special tools, you're, well... stuck.

Those things have a warranty BTW, but it takes forever for a failure-prone part to come back. And I'm tired of pulling those cranks off and tightening them down again, always a freakin' hernia waiting to happen.

Oh man, don't get me started on those things. Give me my cup and lockring back...

Maurice
 

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Warranty

FYI-Truvativ had a bad run of ISIS BB's last year, I know this because I was working in a shop as a warranty manager and had to take care of several BB problems with them. I even had a couple that had to be warrantied a second time. These were all covered under warranty. The problem with ISIS cames from the fact that the bearings are very small because BB shells were designed for the smaller square taper axles of yore. That is why the external BB trend is happening now and why both Truvative and FSA have been trying to increase the size of the BB shell that manufacturers use on mountain bikes. I had a problem myself on a Kona and upgraded to the Truvativ Team SL as it has an extra set of bearings on the drive side (the OEM spec BB only had two bearings, one on each side). Truvative did this for $10 and I've had no problems since.
 

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Another POV on water contamination

Sounds like the problem is not that the bb got water in it and wore out, but that the BB wore out and got water in it. A little water in your bearings will not make them wear out immediately(will hasten its death, sure, but not just kill it outright).

The problem with ISIS is one of wearing out in all conditions because the bearings are too small for the intended load. I have a five - or - six year old Raceface (square) taperlock BB with its original bearings. I havn't riden it underwater or anything, but I'm a big guy and rain and mud don't generally slow me down. If water was the primary culprit then you'd see all types of bb's (square, OCTO, ISIS and outboard) ruined after one water crossing. Nope - the culprit is a majjor design flaw. Aperently some ISIS BB life is much better than others - maybe the companies use higher quality bearings - I don't know. Like most things, thoough, your milage will vary.
 

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ISIS and Octalink have the same diameter shaft and are limited to the same BB shell size. Octalink chose weight and durability by having 4 sets of bearings - ball and needle. While ISIS took the light weight approach with fewer bearings. Both standards are left with smaller bearings than square tapers.

Check out raceface's service section in their website and they mention chasing and facing the BB face on your frame for maximum BB durabillity. If it is not properly faced it puts angular pressures on the bearing and they fry (with 2 bearing ISIS). Shimano figured "who would do that?" and overbuilt theirs and were correct in the end.

So face the BB shell at your shop and get an ISIS BB that has 3 or more sets of bearings.

A recent post in drivetrain forums liked the RF Signature XS(?).

Also check out FSA. They have just come out with an outboard bearing ISIS BB. yep. ISIS AND outboard bearing.

In regards to your cassette tooth, could a bad chainline be the culprit? I just noticed my chainline is terrible on my 04 Hollowpoint.

Mr. P
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Man! thanks for all the replies!
I just went from zero BB knowledge to knowing a bunch in know time flat! Thanks.

I posted over in the Drivetrain forum also and got some specifics on the FSA BB that Mr .P mentioned. External bearings, and has lasted one of the guys an entire six months ;) Its this one....
http://www.fullspeedahead.com/fly.aspx?layout=product&taxid=60&pid=120

Also this one looks good.... 4 bearings and beefy
http://www.beyondbikes.com/bb/ItemMatrix.asp?Link=MTBR&MatrixType=1&GroupCode=CM-BOT-Gig-Dh&Link=

Thanks for all the info guys. I'll get a good one and try to take care of it.
Brian.

BTW, incase anyone is wondering how much weight I'm putting on the BB, I'm 235lbs and riding somewhat aggressive XC, and not really abusing the bike.
Thanks again, B.
 

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An update...

KevinB said:
I did some research (using this site) on bottom brackets and one of the better regarded ones is the Truvativ GigaPipe Team DH. I purchased one of these as a spare for when the original does finally die.
I installed that (spare) Truvativ GigaPipe Team DH BB in my 04 Hollowpoint in late June. The original Truvativ BB was starting to get noisy. Upon installation, it did not spin as easily as my previous BB, but I figured that that might be due to it being a DH model. If it held up better, I didn't mind.

I recently noticed an occassional squeaking noise coming from the bottom bracket area. Mid-ride, two days ago, the squeaking was replaced by an annoying, fairly regular clicking sound that only occurs under heavy pedal load. Last night, I took the BB cartridge out, regreased the threads and crank interfaces, and reinstalled. It was still creaking/clicking during my morning ride. I suspect the bearings. The bike has been ridden almost daily since the BB was installed, but for the most part, I've avoided wet conditions. I think it's highly unlikely that any water has made it into this BB.

I suppose I could live with the clicking, but these things usually just get worse, and I find little noises like that to be really annoying. I considered an FSA MegaExo ISIS BB w/ outboard bearings, but they're hard to find and are rather expensive if you can find them. I've decided to try Shimano's M760 crankset instead. If it holds up, it may end up being less expensive than trying out different ISIS BBs every few months. (Though, to be fair, I did manage to get 8-9 months out of the original BB.) I'll report back if this solution doesn't work out for me. (I'll probably just forget to post a followup if it does...)
 

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KevinB said:
The bike has been ridden almost daily since the BB was installed, but for the most part, I've avoided wet conditions. I think it's highly unlikely that any water has made it into this BB.
Since this post coming back to life, I thought I would share how I found water in my BB.

I upgraded the EA50 stock seatpost that is 27.0 wide with a Thomson 27.2 (posts to these forums said it would fit - thanks peeps!) and the Thomson firmly slid in.

I think the seat tube and post might have mismatched just enough to let water through.

I found water in the BB after small stream crossings and after washing the bike (gently).

My intermediate solution was to rub a chuck of grease on in the joint at the end of the tube where the seat goes in after the post is set to height. And in the open collar "u" groove.

Been good since.

Stock BB is still good and spins well.

Mr. P
 

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Mr.P said:
I upgraded the EA50 stock seatpost that is 27.0 wide with a Thomson 27.2 (posts to these forums said it would fit - thanks peeps!) and the Thomson firmly slid in.
Thanks for providing further confirmation that this works. It was never clear to me if it would work for all 2004 Hollowpoint frames, just the warranty ones, or just some oddball ones here and there.

I'm running a 27.0 Thomson and it seems to me that it slides in a bit too easy. I have no problem with getting it to stay put, but there's some occasional creaking from that area. Slathering the seatpost with fresh grease usually fixes it for a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Mr.P said:
Since this post coming back to life, I thought I would share how I found water in my BB.

I upgraded the EA50 stock seatpost that is 27.0 wide with a Thomson 27.2 (posts to these forums said it would fit - thanks peeps!) and the Thomson firmly slid in.

I think the seat tube and post might have mismatched just enough to let water through.

I found water in the BB after small stream crossings and after washing the bike (gently).

My intermediate solution was to rub a chuck of grease on in the joint at the end of the tube where the seat goes in after the post is set to height. And in the open collar "u" groove.

Been good since.

Stock BB is still good and spins well.

Mr. P
Hey Mr. P,
Funny, I did EXACTLY the same thing. Borrowed a friend's 27.2 to make sure it fit, then bought a Thomson 410 x 27.2 . Nice and long, to get it down past the top tube, and a perfect, snug fit. I think water had gotten into the BB from the gap at the top of the seat tube. So far so good. BTW, I did go with an FSA 4-bearing, but I think water down the tube was the major culprit.

Later, B.

Oh yea, KevinB, its an '04 Hollowpoint Sport. The seatpost fit is just on the verge of being too tight, so its perfect. It doesn't take much clamp force at all to hold the post secure.
B.
 
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