This is a shameless attempt to save the the most advanced civilization in
history from imminent self destruction by eliminating carbon emission,
dependence on foreign sources of fuel,obesity, hypertension and diabetes.
Cycling accomplishes all those things at once and helps us develop a better
understanding of ourselves, each other and our relationship to the cosmos.

Oh, horse puckey!
I like to ride bikes, have been doing it all my life.
The rest of that crap is just a fringe benefit,
and the blogosphere gives me a chance to share my interior
monologue with virtual rather than imaginary friends.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

VO threadless bottom brackets

  I've been puttering around with the old Raleigh mixte frame that I have had lying around.  It will make a nice recreation bike for my son who is a little shorter than I am.  But being an older frame it has a few problems.  One big one is the bottom bracket shell which is 71 rather than 68mm wide.  I wanted to upgrade from the original but the width is an issue.  I found a solution in the VO threadless bottom bracket,
rather than having threaded cups it has expanding collars which seat in the shell
 to secure the bottom bracket.
It works really well and makes up nicely for the extra width of the shell, but the external collars on the unit add another 2mm.   Consequently the 110 mm axle I should use will leave the crank flush against the adjustable cup.  Long story short, it didn't work.   I reordered another with a 116mm axle to compensate and it worked just fine, something to keep in mind when installing this on an old Raleigh.  
So far, I don't think it screwed up the chainline enough to matter.
     For some mysterious reason, the units come in silver, or multicolored anodized finishes.  They warn that it is a random choice so when you order, you may get either (!?!??)
Fortunately, I'm building this for a college student.  He'll think it's cool.
   Another thing to remember is that installation and removal or adjustment is done with the old fashioned cup wrench and spanner.
  It's a small thing but something to remember, they work even if they aren't compatible with the current Park Tool catalog.
Another issue with the old frames is the absence of cable stops on the downtube.
This $15 gadget from ProblemSolvers is a perfect solution for that.
It is a well machined hinged unit which can be ordered to fit four different sized tubing.
It's a neat clean way to provide dual cable stops wherever you might want them.
It was another good day in garage, until a lady walked up and asked if I had one for sale in her size.
 She looked a little confused when I told her they were all mine.Oh, well,

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