Throwback Thursdays: 1988 Wilderness Trail Bikes Grease Guard Bottom Bracket

17 September, 2014

Press fit bottom brackets.  Some people love them, many people hate them.  While I was up at Kona's 2015 Launch, kind product managers and marketing folk proclaimed to dealers that the 2015 model in discussion was going to a threaded bottom bracket, no more press fit.  A huge sigh of relief and thankful understanding filled the room.  Some even clapped.  It looks like press fit may be on its way out.  Other brands, like Santa Cruz, steered clear of its rise and fall.  It's funny to see things come and go.

Which brings me to the 1988 Wilderness Trail Bikes Grease Guard Bottom Bracket.  It was press fit.  It was press fit before that even.  Press fit has already happened - already risen, fallen, been forgotten, then reinvigorated with fresh zeal, now seemingly is on the decline - the winter is coming for press fit.

So maybe this is another been there, done that post but there were some sweet things going on with the 1988 BB.  For one thing, the bearings were stellar, for another, it was a Grease Guard design.  This means you could constantly keep the bearings well lubricated with grease.  It wasn't even hard to do and it made bearings... last.  Alemite aircraft grade flush type lubrication fittings in frames provided a light, high tolerance, good looking port that lasted.  Dualco grease guns, modified with longer nozzles were the perfect vehicle for happy bearings.  You can even still find the valve tip on Dualco's website that Wilderness Trail Bikes helped develop, it's still there in proper use today, #10547.  So there's been original thought from the start, as well as a way to make things work and last, even though the industry went another way, then came back, and looks to be departing again.  Cycles, things go in cycles.  Enjoy the 1988 catalog description below.

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