Token wants to eliminate all of the downsides of Press Fit bottom brackets with their new Thread Fit setup. They aren’t the first company to come up with the idea of threading a bottom bracket back into your modern Press Fit bike, but with a modular system, a couple of bearing options, and a wide range of frame & crank compatibility, they are trying to make it easier on both bike shops and individual cyclists looking to get rid of creaking and bearing drag (as well as brute force to install BBs.) They’ve also got a trick new thru-axle concept, all after the break…

Thread Fit bottom brackets

What they’ve done is built is a modular bottom bracket with two aluminum shells that thread together inside of your frame. A variety of composite adapters slide over the shell and interface securely with your frame’s bearing seats. The result is a securely threaded-together shell that ensures its bearings are properly aligned on both sides and clamped down tight inside your frame, so there are no creaks and your cranks can spin smoothly with longer bearing life.

The Thread Fit bottom brackets are available both with Token’s standard premium stainless bearings for around $50 for a specific bike setup or for about $120 with their TBT ceramic ball bearings.

The Thread Fit bottom brackets are being made available in individual complete setups specific to a bike and crankset combination or in kits that make it easier to fit a wide range of different bikes and cranks, so for example bike shops can always have on hand what they need and restock as they install them. Each of the kits comes with a pair of composite BB wrenches that allows you to safely tighten down the alloy cups without damaging either the bottom bracket or frame, and they also are available separately.

The Shimano-specific Thread Fit 24 kit retails for about $60 and includes the universal Thread Fit bottom bracket with standard bearings, plus adapters to fit 5 crank/frame combos: Shimano 24mm axle cranks in BB86, BB90, BB92 BB30 & PF30 frames.

The Thread Fit 37 kit brings the price up to about $90 with a broader fit range and includes the standard bearing universal Thread Fit bottom bracket and the adapters to fit 7 crank/frame combos: Shimano 24mm axle, SRAM GXP 22/24mm axle, BB30 & BB386 cranksets in PF30 & BB386 frames.

Token also individual solutions for Cannondale BB30A frames with Shimano cranks, GXP adapters for all frames, and Cervelo BBRight bikes to be used with Shimano, GXP, or BB386 cranks.

Press Fit

If you want to stick with a standard press-in bottom bracket setup, but want to go with either Token’s standard steel or affordable composite ceramic bearings, they’ve probably got you covered too. Token aims to offer replacement and upgrade bearings to fit just about any frame, no matter what solution you want to go for.

A2T thru-axle

It isn’t just bearings (or wheels) that Token is developing. They also showed us a neat thru-axle design with the idea of a secure interface but with faster wheel removal. Basically the A2T (Axle 2 Turn) is just a very coarse threaded axle that would thread into a captured nut in a frame or fork.

Just two rotations of the QR lever allows it to be completely removed, and the position of the internal cam lever can be adjusted with the nut on the other end. Token is working with frame makers to get it built into you next road or mountain bike for a more mechanically simple alternative to some of the other quick thru-axle concepts floating around.

TokenProducts.com

42 comments

    • zooey on

      Token’s BB set, with adapters covering a range of diff frames $50-60.

      Enduro’s BB $200. Enduro’s wrenches, $70 for pair.

      That said, who sells Token products that ships to US? I searched, and only came upon 1 Shimano version on ebay UK.

      Reply
    • Paul S. on

      Yes, and Wheels Mfg as well. Those are good products, but those are a specific BB/frame combo. If you want the SRAM GXP bearings for a PF92 frame, you have to order that part. If your LBS doesn’t stock the whole array of products, you are going to have to wait to get a part in. This modular design in theory makes it easier for LBSes to stock the parts to build what you need.

      That said, I think this is a bit of a solution in search of a problem. The real selling point is that they are coming in at a price much closer to a PF BB from SRAM or Shimano than a thread-together from Wheels Mfg or Enduro.

      Reply
  1. OriginalCim on

    This is the first thread-together solution I’ve seen for BB90 (Trek) frames. Does anybody know of others?

    I know about the WheelsMFG/Praxis/KCNC thread-together BBs for BB90/BB90/BB83 etc. This Token adapter might put Trek bikes back on the ok list for me.

    Reply
    • OriginalCim on

      On second look, it appears this DOES NOT work for BB90. The Token product page mentions BB89.5 (a new one to me), but not BB90. BB90 uses a 37mm shell diameter, while BB86 and apparently BB89.5 use a 41mm shell.

      So still no thread-together solutions for Trek BB90.

      Reply
      • crazyeddie on

        BB89 (without .5) is the symmetric one, BB92 is 2,5mm longer on the drive side. Most bottom bracket/crank systems need a 2,5mm spacer on the drive side for BB89 shells.

        This 2,5mm asymmetry was needed for Shimano’s E-Type front derailleurs when BSA was actually a standard.

        Reply
      • PFS on

        BB89.5 is the same as BB92, just a little narrower like 68/73 BBs. Its a cup that holds the bearing that presses into the frame similar to PF30. With BB90 the bearings do directly into the frame similar to BB30.

        Reply
  2. mudrock on

    The only issue I have is the wrenches are plastic, Don’t see them lasting that long. Besides that, glad I stuck with threaded BBs. The promised weight savings, and maybe increased efficiency of stiffer axles, went out the window long ago, when these adapters are required.

    Reply
    • Fraser@TOKEN on

      You’re right the plastic won’t last all that long but the bottom brackets work with standard metal tools. We use plastic to reduce the risk of metal tools scratching the frame when installing the bottom bracket.

      Reply
    • veganpotter@mail.com on

      The weight is still lower with PF30. The PF30 and BB30 cranks available are way lighter than their equivalent 24mm models.

      Reply
    • nick on

      theres not enough space for that – the only 30mm spindle in a 41mm shell option is the 4130 from enduro/rotor – and that basically a 6806 bearing (BB30/PF30 bearing) with the outer race machined down .5mm

      Reply
    • Fraser@TOKEN on

      @groghunter – We are working on this! We are about to start testing samples and they should be ready to show at Taipei Show in March.

      Reply
      • Groghunter on

        @Fraser That’s great news, with all the companies that are abandoning 24mm spindles. 30MM spindles have won the war, frame companies really need to start looking at moving away from BB standards that don’t work well with a 30mm axle.

        Reply
  3. whatever on

    How about just refusing any bike with a press fit frame to begin with? Put that failed baby to bed.

    Besides, there are plenty of overseas suppliers with excellent reps willing to give you any BB you want with their frame. Just saying.

    Reply
    • bearcol on

      I’ve tried to refuse to buy changes I feel are a step backwards. Never worked in the past, but maybe PF will be different? There are new frames offering threads. Typically we aren’t given any options after a few years pass.

      Reply
  4. Exodux on

    I have a couple of bikes with a PF BB’s, a Cannondale EVO BB30 and a Dedacchi Super Cross cyclocross bike, which uses PF92. I have never had a problem with either of them over 10’s of 1000’s of miles.

    Reply
  5. Exodux on

    I have also developed a, what I call a “Open 12 or Open 15” dropout that uses a 12mm or 15mm axle that stays with the hub, just like any QR hub would and the dropout has a opening to accomadate the larger axles. The system works just like what we have using for years, but with up to 60% more contact and clamping area. Very quick wheel changes, no loss axles with almost the same stiffness as a thru-axle system. Not on my website yet, but can be seen on my instagram #exodux

    Reply
  6. ibcyclist on

    Ever since I started using Loctite 609 with Primer 7649 on my Cannondale Evo PF30 BB I haven’t had a problem. On bike one I have Rotor BB and bike two I use the Campagnolo Over-Torque system with the Campy cups. Both make zero noise and get plenty of miles.

    Reply
  7. bearcol on

    Just go back to threaded bb’s already. I’m happy to say all three of my frames are threaded. I also enjoy buying shimano xt bb’s for 20 bucks or less. The bike industry is a joke.

    Reply
  8. Marin on

    Solution to a problem that should not exist.
    I really don’t understand why are there so many BB variations out there. Why not settle on standardized threaded BB and be done with it?
    Imagine if there were different pedal spindle diameters, head tubes ( tapered is virtually universal) etc…
    Bike industry is a disgrace with so many mutually incompatible “standards”.

    Imagine if PC componentry kept changing like this and new usb stanard that’s not backwards compatible kept popping out every year, or that every new hdmi iteration had a different connnector…
    There’d be rioting on the streets…

    Reply
    • PFS on

      Head tubes are no where close to universal. In tapered you have 44mm top and bottom, 44mm top and 49mm bottom, 44mm top and 55mm bottom, 44mm and 46mm bottom. Then the integerated with 36deg and 45deg upper bearings in 42mm and the lowers are 36deg or 45 deg in 56mm bearings.

      Options are not bad. You just need to know what you are buying and why.

      Reply
  9. Don on

    I have stayed with old school threaded BB on my road, mountain, and TT bike and have had zero issues. So why do people put up with press fit crap?!

    Reply
  10. Matt on

    I have a $30 sram BB92 that has over 2000 miles on two different frames and I haven’t had a single issue. Sure I’d prefer a threaded BB but I don’t understand the hate for PF.

    Reply
    • bearcol on

      Because many experience lots of noise and installation/removal isn’t as easy, but I suspect most of the anger is due to the fact that there’s no compelling reason to move away from threads. The only reason PF is a thing is because it reduces production costs of carbon frames with no price reduction for riders. I’m sure people would be fine with PF is it progressed something.

      I’m glad you got lots of miles out of your PF bb. My issues with PF have nothing to do with longevity, though it has been my experience that newer BB’s don’t last as long as older 24mm BB’s which have larger balls. Snicker if you must, but larger balls are better than smaller balls when it comes to BB’s.

      Reply
      • Matt on

        Lower manufacturing costs weren’t the sole reason for the PF standard. Shorter chainstays on larger wheeled bikes were also a contributing factor (especially for PF92). By having the bearings inside the BB sleeve, the sleeve is wider than threaded, which allows the chainstays to be spread further to the outside of the BB shell. This in turn gives more clearance for tires so the chainstays can become shorter. This helped bikes like the Process 111 and Evil Following have really short chainstays with 29″ wheels.

        Boost accomplished the same thing but doesn’t require a PF BB, which is one reason I think we’re seeing a bunch of manufacturers go back to threaded on Boost equipped frames.

        Reply
  11. Mr. P on

    The threaded BB was a hack to solve the ISIS/Octalink issues in the same small frame shell. I burned through plenty of threaded BBs and heard them creak over the years. The in-shell BB was designed to properly fix the hack, but the execution seems to be the issue. In shell is still the proper route (why there are so many different solutions), it’s just a matter of proper execution. Going back to the small threaded shell is a step back that will need to be solved again in the future.

    Reply
    • bearcol on

      What an improvement we had when external threaded hit the market! I used to burn through isis, and shimano BB’s in as little as a month. My first external bb lasted SO much longer there’s no comparison.Threaded external cups are a great design that needs to come back. When they are designed to have removable seals for servicing you can get years out of a cheap threaded external bb. I have a feeling threaded will come back considering santa cruz and other companies are willing to offer it rather than cut their production cost by a small amount. PF bb will be looked back upon as just another bad call by the bike industry.

      Reply
      • Chris on

        That has nothing to due with threaded or PF and everything to do with seal design. The two are not related. SKF make old school, square taper threaded BBs that come with a TEN year warranty because they’re so well sealed. OTOH, I used to own an Alex Singer frame made which had the originally press fit BB installed in it and that BB was still going strong after 50 years of service, again because of well designed seals.

        Personally, I still prefer loose bearing hubs and BBs. Yes, you need to disassemble and service them on a regular basis (especially here in rainy Seattle!) but if you know what you’re doing it’s not a difficult task and the result is a hub/BB that spins far more smoothly than any sealed cartridge bearing and will never wear out.

        Also don’t consider me a luddite. I might prefer loose bearings and square taper cranks b but I also love clipless pedals, hydraulic disk brakes and plan to upgrade to Di2 or eTAP this year.

        Reply
    • Groghunter on

      Truth. BSA was designed when most bikes were steel, too. Those fine little threads were great in a steel shell, with a square taper/ISIS BB with internal bearings.

      When you take it, & apply it aluminum, & a BBs that load the threads, rather than the shell, you’re asking for trouble. People that want us to just go back to BSA need experience what happens when an external bearing cup loosens up & destroys the threads in that BB shell. Last time I checked, BB shells aren’t replaceable.

      Also, the fact that a press fit interface makes a ton more sense for carbon frames(rather than a threaded insert that can break loose) isn’t going to go away, either. Thread together makes the most sense of any BB style, with a bigger shell diameter in order to easily handle a 30mm spindle.

      Reply
      • Chris on

        Yup. Threads work great in steel and titanium. Not so much in soft aluminum. Press fit can last forever so long as you get the seals right. French builders proved that decades ago. Problem is most of what passes as “sealed bearings” are really not very well sealed at all.

        Reply
        • mtbman99 on

          Never had an issue with threaded bb in an aluminum frame. But I will agree on the bearing seals they are garbage on most “sealed” bearings

          Reply
  12. Robin on

    There’s never going to be just one standard for BB’s. Accept it. Manufacturers (Token, Praxis, Enduro, and others) that provide solutions for real or perceived problems with X BB. Buy what works for you. Don’t buy what knots your BVDs.

    Variety in standards is nothing new in industry. Some industries have a lot. Some don’t. The cycling industry is no different. Find another sport if the product side of this sport confounds you and angers you so much.

    I like my Campy crank, and I’ll probably base my bike buying decisions on what will work with my crank. You may like a different crank and a different BB standard. I love coffee ice cream. You might hate it. Variety. Get used to it.

    Reply

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