Monday, March 2, 2015

Score One for Homemade Tools and Brute Force!

Had a day to play in the garage and figured it was a good time to swap out the creaky cranks on the Cannondale tandem for some (hopefully) less-creaky cranks (for those who like minutiae, I'm going from the stock Octalink V2 setup -- which has always been a noisy nuisance for me -- back to ye olde fashioned square tapers).

I was able to get an impressive 75% of the old bottom bracket cups out of the frame (a solid C), but the stoker's drive side absolutely refused to budge. Poured some oil in from the non-drive side, let it seep in (and out the other side onto the garage floor, sorry dear), nothing. And yes, smarty-pants, I know that the drive side bottom bracket cup is left-hand threaded.

I was up against two problems: One, I needed to apply approximately 1.3 metric crap-tons more leverage, and two, I needed a way to make sure that the bottom bracket tool didn't pop off the cup during the application of said leverage. Being unable to plan ahead for my blog posts, I addressed the second problem first:

There's the offending bottom bracket (for ease of viewing, shown -- SPOILER ALERT!! -- after it had already succumbed to my greater intellect and been liberated from the bike), the bottom bracket tool, and a rear skewer. You could just as easily use a quick-release, but I went with what was handy. Put 'em all together, and you get this:

Ain't no way, no how that tool's popping off now. So all we need is approximately 1.3 metric crap-tons of leverage, which comes courtesy of the Cylindrical Leverage-Enhancing Tool Utilization System (CLETUS):

The CLETUS is available in a wide variety of lengths specifically calibrated to deliver the exact metric crap-tonnage of force needed for precise extraction. I selected the 609.6mm model, affixed it to my wrench, grasped it with the opposable thumb shown, applied force with the hairy Neanderthal forearm shown, and proceeded to remove that cup like nobody's business. Then this happened:

 So I got that going for me, too.


Pete Saunders said...

I also have a CLETUS, but mine is black.

Anonymous said...

As much as I respect solving problems, I think there are better solutions than CLETUS (tm).
Reason 1: using a tool in a way that was not intended by the manufacturer is inviting trouble. At best, a broken tool. At worst, physical injury.
Reason 2: a better solution is the BFW.. where "B" stands for "bigger". My standard BFW is a 12" crescent, but the big gun is the 15" pipe wrench that was purchased to remove a freewheel body from a hub.
Reason 3: this was a chance to buy a nice vice for the workbench. Put the BB tool in the vice and apply force to the frame.

The use of the QR to retain the tool is good. I keep some threaded rod for that sort of purpose... removing the old fashioned fixed cup with the two small flats, or installing a headset.

Points for the Kubrick reference! If they were to film it nowadays, the ape would have be filmed while wearing safety glasses (can't risk injury from bone fragments flying into the eyes).

Steve in Peoria, where it's not as snowy as it was yesterday

Pondero said...

Okay, THAT was fun!

smontanaro said...

I'm just a square taper person. Does Sheldon Brown's big bolt/washers/nut fixed cup remover not work for Octalink and other more "modern" bottom bracket setups?

Jason T. Nunemaker said...

Steve, you are indeed correct... this post should have been accompanied by the standard disclaimer from our Legal Department that misuse of tools as shown can cause bodily injury and/or death. Although I will say that one of the advantages of the CLETUS is that it moves the operator a little further away from the Mayhem Zone.

smont (who I'm guessing is iBOB pal Skip?), the issue with Sheldon's trick on Octalink is that the bolt diameter you need is bigger than the hole in the bottom bracket tool - maybe Park has redesigned the tool since then? Sheldon's verison is more elegant, but I made it work. I think he'd approve.