Over the years, more than a couple of my bikes had legendary Chris King headsets gracing their front ends, but it wasn’t until recently that I finally got to test out their bottom bracket. In the grand scheme of the 43 years the Portland based company has existed, it took them a relatively long time to come around to bottom brackets, but these days they have options for just about everything. With the widely welcomed re-emergence of threaded bottom bracket shells, the Threadfit 30 found its way onto my Evil Offering…
- Engineered, manufactured and assembled in Portland, Oregon USA
- King Lifetime Warranty
- Made-in-house bearings
- Available in 11 colors
- User serviceable bearings
- Ceramic bearing upgrade available
- Conversion kits for easy fitment with various cranksets
- 94 grams
- $176 USD
Rather than manufacture a plethora of different bottom brackets for fitment with all of the various cranksets in the cycling world, Chris King brilliantly makes a few different BB units and leaves the rest of it to their conversion kits consisting of sleeves, spacers, etc. Shown above is the spacer that fits the bottom bracket to the 30mm spindle on Cane Creek’s eeWings Titanium cranks. The spacers are made from “Delrin”, a dense and high precision plastic.
Chris King’s bearings need no introduction, but if you’re unfamiliar they are completely made in house at their Portland Oregon factory to ultra high precision tolerances. This means super low drag, and speaking of drag…there is a ceramic bearing upgrade option if you’re feeling spendy. It’s worth mentioning that the bearings are user serviceable via King’s injection tool.
Your bottom bracket will arrive with spacers for chainline and spacing depending on your bike’s BB shell, hub width and whether or not you’re using a chainguide. Lastly, not shown is a Delrin spacer which separates the two cups inside the frame.
On the trail
After an installation that was so smooth and simple, it was almost unsettling, I’ve enjoyed silky pedaling and haven’t heard a peep from the center of my bike. The fact that it’s a threaded bottom bracket helps, as they never garnered a bad reputation for making noise in the first place. With that said, I have a hunch that King’s Press Fit 30 BB’s are likely very quiet as well. Anyhow, much like their hub bearings, you can expect is a break in period. Initially, there is a tiny bit of drag that’s undetectable on trail, but after a few rides the bearings take on a burnished feel and spin freely.
There’s only so much to talk about regarding how a bottom bracket performs on trail, but rather, the discussion mainly pertains to its design, durability and how well it keeps quiet. In all of those realms, the Threadfit 30 scores the highest conceivable marks, which is unsurprising as Chris King truly has no equivalent. Lastly, there is the topic of value – $176 is admittedly a lot of money to spend on a bottom bracket. If it weren’t for the fact that King offers a vast array of conversion kits to work with a wide variety of cranks on the market, there’d be more reason to be apprehensive about investing in one of these units. This is less so due to skepticism of the part itself, which now boasts a lifetime warranty by the way, and more due to the understandable concern over the bike industry’s fickle nature when it comes to ever changing standards. With all of that in mind, I have a strong hunch that threaded bottom brackets are
back here to stay for a while. If you’re a buy it once and get it over with type person, the Threadfit 30 has your name written all over it.