Campagnolo CULT bearings

ollie cbollie cb Posts: 783
edited June 2013 in Workshop
So, with the help of some of you over in road buying advice, I bought some bora ultra twos recently.

In fact, my friend found a pair for me in Italy which were a very good price as they had covered approx 500 miles.
The rear wheel is as smooth as silk (just like a previous pair of boras I owned) but the front wheel feels ever so slightly rough.
I have just this minute stripped the front hub down to find that there seems to be quite a lot of grease in there as per these photos:
http://s1232.photobucket.com/user/ollie ... 20bearings

Would this be the cause of the resistance since the bearings require no lubrication/a very small amount of thin oil such as sewing machine oil:
http://weightweenies.starbike.com/forum ... =3&t=98956


Therefore, should I just clean off ALL the grease?

Thanks in advance.

Posts

  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,824
    A little bit of grease is going to add censored all resistance, any roughness won't be due to the grease, but could be due to dirt mixed up in the grease. Therefore I would strip the bearings down, make sure they're clean and re-grease.

    I just took apart my UT CULT bottom bracket bearings, one was a bit dry and I had some ticking, so I added some Campag BL100 grease. I wouldn't trust oil, grease will stick around for alot longer and provide protection against the wet/dirt.
    WyndyMilla Massive Attack | Rourke 953 | Condor Italia 531 Pro | Boardman CX Pro | DT Swiss RR440 Tubeless Wheels
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  • ollie cbollie cb Posts: 783
    Thanks for the speedy reply. I'll do that now. Pretty impressed upon reading about these bearings though and how they need virtually no grease.
  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,824
    ollie cb wrote:
    Thanks for the speedy reply. I'll do that now. Pretty impressed upon reading about these bearings though and how they need virtually no grease.

    I take the quote "needing virtually no grease" with a bucket of salt. This is true of all bearings, since grease is only require where metal meets metal, amd where contact surfaces meet there is so much pressure, any grease will be squeezed out.

    These BB bearings are made with under sized bearings so while they might not need much grease, they do need protecting from the elements. And grease helps protect them.
    WyndyMilla Massive Attack | Rourke 953 | Condor Italia 531 Pro | Boardman CX Pro | DT Swiss RR440 Tubeless Wheels
    Find me on Strava
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 23,969
    ollie cb wrote:
    Thanks for the speedy reply. I'll do that now. Pretty impressed upon reading about these bearings though and how they need virtually no grease.

    Shame it is an empty statement as even cult bearings last a small fraction of what a Campagnolo cartridge bottom bracket of the 1990s used to last
  • ollie cbollie cb Posts: 783
    Go on ugo, hit me with the bad news... How many KM do you reckon?
    (how long is a piece of string perhaps).

    As soon as it has stopped raining, I'll put a photo up of the final build :)
  • Monty DogMonty Dog Posts: 20,614
    For real-world cycling conditions I'd stick some grease in there as it'll help reduce the ingress of dirt and fluid - the difference in rolling resistance is near imperceptible. I used to run unshielded ceramic bearings on inline speed skates where you use 16 bearings at a time with light oil - makes a lovely noise but you had to clean them after every use.
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 23,969
    ollie cb wrote:
    Go on ugo, hit me with the bad news... How many KM do you reckon?
    (how long is a piece of string perhaps).

    As soon as it has stopped raining, I'll put a photo up of the final build :)

    Depends... in dry conditions they can last for a few years... but if you use them in winter or in the wet, they can last for days... it also depends on the load... i.e. how hard you ride and on how well built is your frame
  • ollie cbollie cb Posts: 783
    holy censored , days?! I was expecting maybe 2000 miles with a conservative estimate (or in wet conditions) but days...!

    Just to confirm, days would = before replacement or before stripping down and regreasing? If it's the latter, I can deal with that.

    Perhaps I'll be waiting for the sun to appear... back on go the neutrons.
  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,824
    My BB has been going for about 1800 miles, but I've not ridden it in the wet. One of two trips were on wet roads in places. Some grease can only help protect the bearings, as Monty Dog said above.

    The frame is 953 (steel) and very well made :-)
    WyndyMilla Massive Attack | Rourke 953 | Condor Italia 531 Pro | Boardman CX Pro | DT Swiss RR440 Tubeless Wheels
    Find me on Strava
  • ollie cbollie cb Posts: 783
    @drlodge and ugo, these CULT bearing are in my wheels and not bottom bracket so frame would not affect it. So is longevity longer/shorter for wheel CULT bearings? From previous experience, the shortest amount of time wheel bearings took until they were shot was approx 5000 miles in all conditions including plenty of winter censored .
    I only ask about the CULT wheel bearings as I have not experienced them before. Considering their price tag to replace, I am slightly concerned at the prospect of having to replace them after a few rides in the wet.

    But I have taken the advice on board and will be putting on a fair bit of grease before I ride them.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 23,969
    ollie cb wrote:
    @drlodge and ugo, these CULT bearing are in my wheels and not bottom bracket so frame would not affect it. So is longevity longer/shorter for wheel CULT bearings? From previous experience, the shortest amount of time wheel bearings took until they were shot was approx 5000 miles in all conditions including plenty of winter censored .
    I only ask about the CULT wheel bearings as I have not experienced them before. Considering their price tag to replace, I am slightly concerned at the prospect of having to replace them after a few rides in the wet.

    But I have taken the advice on board and will be putting on a fair bit of grease before I ride them.

    Hub is a different matter... typically Campagnolo/Fulcrum hub bearings are pretty good
  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,824
    Just seen this in the Campag FAQ wrt the BB bearings

    "If, instead, your mechanic has used grease to lubricate the CULT bearings, the performance of the CULT technology will be neutralised, making the expense useless."

    So a bit of grease cancels out the benefits of CULT...those benefits must be marginal at best then.
    WyndyMilla Massive Attack | Rourke 953 | Condor Italia 531 Pro | Boardman CX Pro | DT Swiss RR440 Tubeless Wheels
    Find me on Strava
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 23,969
    In other words... they are just a cult... :lol:
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 15,955
    The bog ordinary hub bearings in the Khamsins on my commuter have probably lasted about 10,000 miles so far and are still smooth as anything (cue major bearing failure this evening.....).

    The BB bearings on that same bike, now on close to 11,000 all weather miles, needed replacing about 2500-3000 miles ago. I went for the standard ones as a replacement as £15 is not much money and I'd invested in the extractor tool to get the first ones out. On that basis, I get better value for money occasionally swapping £15 bearings with my £50 extractor tool than spending a lot on the CULT ones and getting the LBS to swap them on very rare occasions.

    On the other hand, the freehub bearing on the Khamsins sounds like a bag of gravel.......
    Faster than a tent.......
  • jozsefpjozsefp Posts: 1
    Since spring 2018 I have been using the Campagnolo Bora Ultra 50 wheelset and Super Record 11s groupset with CULT bearings.
    The following are my experiences. It is important to note that in Hungary mostly the road quality is bad, so the bikes are quite heavily loaded.

    Front wheel: ran 23,000km, still bearing factory-mounted bearings. They rotate very nicely, it is important that the cone is precisely adjusted after mounting so that it is not weak or tight. After a couple of hundred kilometers, you should always check it and, if necessary, pull it up, but always in small increments. For the first bearings I use Ceramicspeed oil, after cleaning a drop.

    Rear wheel: They also ran 23,000km and still have factory-mounted bearings. The left bearing has a slight noise when I turn it dry to feel the wear. On the right side - where the freehub/cassette is -, still rotates nicely.

    Bottom bracket: I've changed bearings a couple of times, and I'm convinced that synthetic oil should not be used in this case. First, the oil can leak from the bearings into the bearing cups (I use Ultra Torque Pressfit Os-fit 86,5x41), where it can cause noise during high heat in summer. Secondly, these are low-speed bearings, it does not matter under load whether they are lubricated with oil or grease. In my opinion, use grease, so far I've used Finish Line Ceramic Grease. Next time I'm going to use Ceramicspeed All Round Grease (Blue) soon for the next bearing replacement fill in 70-75%.
  • Cult bearings should be run with light oil only. Grease is not needed.

    Clean up the hub. Reassemble with light oil 3n1 will do.

    Cult bearings last a very long time. If you do a very wet ride it maybe worth opening the hub up and dropping oil in. If the bearing is contaminated then strip and relube.

    These are the o ly ceramic bearings for bicycles that actually perform well.
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