BB Info

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4/4/2007 6:31 PM
Edited Date/Time: 4/14/2016 3:53 PM

Found this while doing so research on BBs... thought I would share, as it is a frequently asked, and confusing topic.

From Ride magazine website:

"The American BB is as good or better than any of the other alternatives available if weight is not concern and the cups are installed properly. The major disadvantage is the assembly of this type of BB, which can oftentimes be more difficult than the others. American BB shell widths and tolerances vary, and the bearing cups supplied with the crank sets also vary. These dimensional variations can lead to an installation nightmare if you have cups on the "large" side, and a shell on the "small" side.

To save weight, and simplify assembly, manufacturers jumped to the Euro BB, which allowed the user to thread the bearing cups into the shell. This solved the installation headaches of American BB's, however; many riders soon learned that the Euro BB's smaller bearings could be a significant sacrifice, particularly on cranks with 22mm spindles.

Hoping to combat the Euro BB's biggest issue, the Spanish BB was developed. The early prototypes were essentially a larger bearing with "Euro-style" threaded cups. The production version of the Spanish BB switched to a newly sized bearing that's pressed directly into the BB shell, with the cups eliminated entirely. Other manufacturers liked the idea of pressing the bearings directly into the frame, but they went back to the more familiar American BB bearing sizes, creating the Mid BB."

- Chris Cotsonas - Product Designer at Odyssey

BB's. (from MPORA message board)

check out the link for description w/ pictures, this is just the descriptions.

US: largest, unthreaded, bearings in cups. hammer/press into frame (all cranks fit)

Euro: smallest, threaded, screw cups into frame. (cranks will fit with appropriate euro bb kit)

Spanish: larger than euro but still small, push bearings (no cups) into frame. requires specific (different) bearings for each crank spindle sizes (may have to be bought seperately). BB kits widely available for all popular cranks.

Mid: larger than spanish but the same type of set-up. uses the standard sized bearings that you get with 19mm cranks (profile race etc). bearings from primo cranks won't fit, you will have to buy the correct ones seperately.

companies: fly, hoffman, eastern, macniel, T1, dk and proper are amongst the spanish users.

s&m, United, FBM, alone, wethepeople and premium use mid

not many companies use euro BB's any more, and US BB's are dying a death, mostly found on completes nowadays.

I found it useful, hope it helps.


I'm not ignorant, I'm just working on my senelity.

7/5/2015 1:07 AM
Edited Date/Time: 7/5/2015 1:08 AM