Back to square taper! Anyone else given up?

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  • Back to square taper! Anyone else given up?
  • Premier Icon Brother_Will

    You fool some of us never left lol


    ST here, more through poverty, but my old BB, has already lasted longer than 2 HT11 it replaced.


    I’ve got a Syncros chainset with a Hope ti b/b on my ti456. I didn’t realy go back to sq taper,never left realy.

    ron jeremy

    run square taper on my roadie and now on my SS, works a treat and new BB’s at sub £15, everyones a winner


    I don’t need a new chainset at the mo but if i did…..

    I never started on it – all the glum stories put me off :o)

    More by accident than design all my bikes have octalink. Seems to last fine and won’t be getting changed at any time soon. I wouldn’t go to HT11 as it seems to be a bad bodge to me


    Few years back bought a bike with Truvativ ISIS BB…that lasted months, bought another bike that came with Truvativ GXP…that also lasted months…was going to switch to HTII but read a few stories on the internet about short BB life so just went back to square taper and stayed that way ever since.

    So, anyone else given up on HTII? I finally gave up last week and replaced my XT/Hope BB combo. Bearings and rings made of cheese. Well, probably the outboard position of the bearings as documented many times before but enough is enough!

    I’ve gone back to square taper! Middleburn and UN73, should last me a lot longer. Plus despite my immense power I can’t feel any real difference in stiffness…

    Anyone else gone Luddite?


    I agree with Brother Will!, always been on Square Taper! I see my mates changing their bbs regulary.

    Premier Icon Northwind

    Got square taper in my commuter- or will do when I actually rebuild it- and the last one lasted 17 years or so, a decade of that with daily use (though it was completely done when I replaced it). But I’ll still be using HT2 on my mtb, durability’s not been an issue so far.

    At least it’s not powerspline! That’s what’s in the spare and at a guess, it’s lasted 300 miles, now needs replacing. Just going to replace the entire crankset with a cheapy square taper, since I can spend £15 for another powerspline, or £35 for the same crankset in square taper including a BB!

    Pitty you cant still get the Un72 BB or I would run a Middleurn and ST. H2 is much lighter though and stiffer.

    Premier Icon Brother_Will

    Well im still on a race face taperlock from years ago but ive finally shagged the drive side cup on it so im currently looking for a suitable replacement because i cant find any replacement cups which is a shame as it would still be going if it wasnt for my ham fisted mechanics. The middleburn cranks hanging off it are still going as strong as ever.


    Had square taper in ’89 ok

    But then octalink in ’01 – always creaked.

    Sq taper on my Dads bike I built FSA cranks back in ’02-still solid.

    Had Sq taper on my hack-cranks wore out from 10’000 mile commutes.

    Now HT XT and Hone-nice and stiff. No creaks.

    When they are do go-I’ll use Local bearing shop for a tenner and not pay shoddy prices for bearings.


    Always had S.T., always will. Never failed me. if it ain’t broke, why fix it?


    When I had my Hummer built up in ’03 I had a RF Signature ISIS BB put in with Turbine cranks on. The bearings went after eighteen months so I had a new set put in which cost me eight quid. A couple of years or so ago it was put into my Inbred 567 where it continues to spin away quite happily. That’s six years. I have a set of Bonty cranks with a GXP BB on my SS which is proving faultless a year or more down the line and the ones on my hack Kona SS and my ’06 Remedy 66 seem to be working just fine as well. Maybe I’m just lucky having four non-sq.taper BB’s that work fine…


    got a st on me ss – it’s a ti fsa one it’s got 4 bearings i think, i’ve got a few spare bearings ‘just in case’ many muddy miles later and 2 years use and still no sign of wear – race face ht2 lasted 4 months – which is quite good apparently!

    Premier Icon Onzadog

    Brother-Will, just off the top of my head, I can’t help thinking I saw some taperlock cups on CRC the other day. Have you looked there?


    BB30’s, the new ST 😀

    Could be good – the wide q-factor of HTII was also a problem with my heels-in gimpy riding style…. Problem laregly alleviated with the return to ST, but BB30 could solve all!

    Have HT2 on the MTB just over a year, no problems. Had ST on the road bike and changed to HT2 as it flexed too much. Got ST on the commuter and I am constantly tightening the cranks cos they keep coming loose.

    If ST was so perfect, why did things move on – just marketing hype?


    ST isn’t perfect no. I broke an axle doing a drop off once, resulting in a nasty cut in my leg where the axle dug in. My original Middleburns also split along their length! Most of the problems people have with ST are caused by bad fitting though. But in nearly 20 years of riding and racing, I’ve never had the longevity issues of HTII with ST. You did well to get a year Topangarider, did you ride it? 😉 I’m sure it is stiffer but what difference does that make in the real world? Bugger all I’d say.

    Premier Icon Brother_Will

    Brother-Will, just off the top of my head, I can’t help thinking I saw some taperlock cups on CRC the other day. Have you looked there?

    Yes they do thanks onzadog, shame theyve only got drive side non drive side could do with replacing as well.


    After donkeys years of ST (9 years from a RF Taperlok BB, with a few bearing changes!), i switched to HT2 last year. Nowt wrong with the ST set up, just needed shorter cranks. I’ve no regrets so far. The new XT rings are sorted and hard wearing and the BB has been smooth and quiet for 15 months or so, which is quite acceptable service life. Back in the day an XT ST BB would last me a year or so. LX level bbs would sometimes last as little as 5 weeks! Not all they’re cracked up to be!
    Q factor is an interesting point….Not been a problem for me, but heard a couple of people say the HT2 cranksets are too wide. What sort of difference are we talking about?


    I’ve got a HTII that is about 4 years old and outlasted the Hone cranks that it came with
    square tape is a bit inelegant for me and I have wrecked cranks when they’ve come loose and where the cranks have fused to the BB axle

    Myfatherwasawolf – The bike was ridden yes (tho not as much as I’d like!)

    The stiffness does make a difference – on my road road, when I stomped on the pedals the axle flexed so much the chain would rub on the front mech – not had it happen once on the new HT2 Tiagra chainset.

    i’ve had the same HTII bearings on my MTB for about 3 years.

    how is everyone judging when they’ve worn out? Mine have “seized” a few times, but quick spin down the road and it loosens up again.

    Running square taper on the commuter though, think its 15 years old or something!


    Never ever been away from the square taper/middleburn set up. I’ve never had a problem with it, never been tempted by the HT or 30mm idea.

    Welcome back to the if it’s not broken don’t fix it group


    If they start seizing, it’s worth sorting them out (pop off the seals and clean and re-grease, or replace).

    I rode with a seized bearing for a while on my cross bike, and it’s slightly worn the axle now, as I guess I was just using the bearing as a bush. IT all works fine now, but it’s almost always a little bit creaky now, which I guess is due to the fit not being quite as perfect as it was when new. Total pain.

    I have a square taper dura-ace on my commuting bike, and the toal weight is less than the R700 compact on my cross bike, and the bearings have lasted about 100 years (I think, give or take a few)

    how is everyone judging when they’ve worn out?

    I would class that as when the cartridges have play in them allowing the cranks to rock back and forth, and creak/make grinding noises when riding.

    I do admit that the ST system is pretty crude and even unelegnat – but at least it works and lasts.

    i got a deore HT2 a few months ago and i think its amazing…i ride several times a week and its holding up fine…it so stiff and nice to pedal with…i have broken 2 square taper cranks and 2 isoflows in the last year so i thought id splash out

    HT II BBs are very dependent on the frame being properly prepped. I have one on my 4 year old 5 Spot that is still going strong – never been touched in terms of maintenance. The frame was properly faced by the shop before it was fitted.

    In contrast, I shoved the same model BB on my Handjob at much the same time, and it was wrecked pretty soon after. Since getting that frame properly faced, I haven’t had any problems with the replacement.

    I don’t tend to be a regular bike washer either mind – they usually get brushed clean and lubed, rather than hosed or pressure washed.


    HT II here for last few years, anthem and now P7 no probs at all

    I’m not sure frame prep is the big deal it’s meant to be – when you’re spacing the thing out with a load of plastic washers anyway!


    [*]Pop the seals off them when they are new and grease them and HT11 last forever.

    Premier Icon oxym0r0n

    What Brother_Will said


    Another one here. I had Octalink for a while – it came standard on my old Kona – and the splines wore away. I ride goofy-footed, so the non-drive crank loosened off.
    But the two bikes I’ve built since (4 years now) have both had square taper, with some secondhand Turbines that I picked up on here. I had one non-drive crank round off its tapers, so now use judicious amounts of threadlock and retighten occasionally. No worries.
    In fact, it works so well I’m struggling to justify some RS7s (even at £100) to myself. Booo!

    Premier Icon DaRC_L

    ahhh :-)just as I needed a new BB and was wondering whether to convert from ST, the answer (as ever) arrives here.


    [sticks head above wall, expecting to be shot]

    I always thought square taper was the most god-awful creation. BBs never lasted me more than a year (and I was only riding once a week then) bent axles, worn tapers, hard to remove (Always waiting for the threads to strip as I pulled the cranks off) unless they fell off mysteriously mid-ride. Hopeless rubbish IMO,
    Personally I’m glad to see the back of it.

    HTII on three bikes (commuter coming up to it’s 10,000 mile birthday) and never had a problem with any of them. Apart from the Cheese-Rings (TM) issue, the only other problem is the tiny pinch bolts. Had all three frames faced before fitting and they’ve all been fine. As well as the stiffness, I like being able to take the whole thing apart with an allen key…. always seemed to end up with creaking from sqaure taper from making/breaking the interference fit between the cranks and the arms.

    EDIT: ^^^ What Peter said… 🙂

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