Bottom brackets have become a real pain in the ass. Prior to 2006, the year Cannondale released BB30 as an open standard and effectively lit the match that has become a full-blown blaze, a handful of tools could install and remove any bottom bracket ever made. Every single BB tool style made until that point could’ve fit in one drawer of an average size toolbox. Now, pro shops practically need an entire toolbox dedicated to bottom bracket tools.

Properly installing a press-fit bottom bracket requires the use of a press and a set of bearing drifts. Between all the bottom bracket shell and bearing diameters, there are at least 8 drift sizes to account for. In order to have the capability of pressing any press-fit bottom bracket into any frame, you’re looking at a minimum of 16 individual drifts to accompany your press.

That’s just the pure press-in stuff. There are also thread-together press-fit styles as well as good old threaded bottom brackets. To cover those, you’re looking at at least 11 different tool interfaces. Eleven. Each of which does the exact same thing as the other, but with different diameters and numbers of splines.

Cool. Thanks bike industry engineers. Nice collaboration efforts, jackasses.

There is no one single kit that’ll equip a home or pro shop with absolutely everything needed to install and remove every bottom bracket out there—with the possible exception of Park Tool’s $7,800 Master Tool Kit—but the Wheels Manufacturing Professional Bottom Bracket Tool Kit will give you a great start to bottom bracket installation and maintenance.

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