In the pursuit of frame perfection (or perhaps patent avoidance), manufacturers are still introducing new bottom bracket “standards.” After introducing BB30A a while back, Cannondale is now selling bikes like the 2015 Slice tri bike, and the 2016 SuperSix EVO with PF30A (we’re double checking the models). That A stands for asymmetric and requires a different bottom bracket and either a Cannondale Hollowgram crank or one of the compatible FSA cranks or BB386 cranksets.
If you want to run a Shimano crank though (or any other 24mm spindle), your options are fairly limited. To address the issue, Kogel Bearings is stepping up with another version of their bottom brackets that serve as an adapter and as an improvement over the stock BB…
The difference between the PF30A and PF/BB30 is found on the non-drive side of the shell. On ‘A’ bottom brackets, the lip is 5mm thinner which theoretically gives frame manufacturers more material at the BB shell for stiffer BBs or more tire clearance with wider stays. As far as Kogel knows, they say they are one of the only options on the market to run a 24mm crank on a PF30A bike without a bunch of spacers. Like their other bottom brackets, Kogel uses hybrid ceramic bearings in aluminum shells with either Road or CX/Offroad seals. The Road seals offer less drag, but the CX/offroad seals are better at keeping water out of the bearings, naturally. Available for either SRAM or Shimano cranksets, the bottom brackets include a two year warranty and sell for $189.99.
Along with the PF30A conversion BBs, Kogel is also offering a new PF30 to 24mm ‘L’ (low insert) conversion BB that has shorter shoulders inside the shell. This is better for some metal frames with internal Di2 wiring.
To go along with those new bottom brackets, you’ll need something to install them. After frustrations with current bearing drifts on the market, Kogel decided it was time to offer their own. Designed around the Park HHP-2, Kogel’s drifts are specific to BB30, PF30, BB86, or BB90 and are sold as a set with two drifts and one frame guide. The frame guide locks into the frame allowing you to install one cup at a time for perfect alignment. The drifts also are designed to press on the cup without pressure on the inner bearing race so as not to damage the bearing. Each of the four sets will sell for $43, and Kogel mentioned they are flexible with the set mixes since conversion bottom brackets will require two different drift/frame guide combinations.
Finally, Kogel is bringing their ceramic bearing tech to narrow wide derailleur pulleys with the 12t SRAM compatible set. Built with a grade 3, Abec 5 hybrid ceramic bearing, the 11 speed compatible pulleys are currently available only in the Road seal, but CX/offroad seals are coming. The set of pulleys retails for $110 with blue center caps.