Old Vintage Eddie Merckx Racer Bottom Bracket Replacement

Eddie Merckx Racer
Eddie Merckx Racer

There’s not much info about these old bikes, so I thought this was worth a quick post.

The bike in question is an Eddie Merckx “Tour De France. ” Not sure how old, but it has friction shifters, 10 gears and is made of solid old steel.

After suffering with a wobbly bottom bracket (ooh er…), my mate John decided to replace the BB and solve the problem for good. We had heard that you can swap out the old bearings and races with a modern sealed unit and enjoy years of maintenance free cycling.

After a bit of searching, we found a Shimano BB with 68mm diameter, 127mm spindle length that we thought could do the job. It worked a treat, but there were a few things worth noting.

  • One side is reverse threaded so you turn it clockwise to undo it.
  • Be really careful with the threads as they could easily be trashed if you don’t line things up and screw carefully.
  • You will probably need a Shimano tool to tighten the new BB into place. It looks like a normal socket, but with deep ridges on the outside.
  • You may also need a “hub puller” tool to get the pedals off the spindles.

I will follow up soon with some photos of the hub puller and Shimano tool. Also maybe some links and model numbers. 🙂

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Dan Dilloway

When I’m not recovering data for Dataquest, I’m usually either riding my bike, writing blog posts or DIYing.