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Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

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Old 06-03-07, 03:06 PM   #1
MAK
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Creaking Crank? Please give your opinion.

I'm in my 50's and recently back into cycling. After riding a hybrid for a year I'm now relatively new to road biking but eager to learn. Problem is, back when I rode as a teen we fixed our bikes instead of wrenching them and the repairs were done with the bike upside down on its seat and handlebars instead of on a $150.00 stand. The point is, I have a lot to learn/catch up on.

Here is my problem. I ride a Felt F80 which is full 105 except for the crank which is an FSA-RPM. I note that when riding at a constant cadence, everything is relatively quiet, but when I put additional force on the pedals to scale a hill or just up my speed, I get a creaking sound from the crank. I've tried using TriFlo but there's no difference. Yesterday I tried an experiment and found that the creak only occurs when putting downward pressure on the pedals and if I concentrated solely on pedaling by pulling up (I obviously ride clipless), I couldn't get it to make a sound no matter how hard I tried. I realize that downward creates more stress but I really tried hard.

Is this normal?
Is it fixible?
Another kind of lube?
Something need to be tightened?

I know it's not a top quality crank. Should I replace it?

Thank you for any comments.
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Old 06-03-07, 03:17 PM   #2
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Creaks can be hard to track down. Be systematic. I first would check to make sure all the chain ring bolts are snug and then check the crank bolts (often under torqued). I would also snug up the pedals and perhaps grease the threads. It couldn't hurt to make sure that the cleat bolts are greased and snug.
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Old 06-03-07, 03:19 PM   #3
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http://sheldonbrown.com/creaks.html
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Old 06-03-07, 05:04 PM   #4
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I just recently spent a few weeks trying to find a creak that was very similar to yours. Miy problem turned out to be in the wheel, the freewheel body.
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Old 06-03-07, 10:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MAK
I'm in my 50's and recently back into cycling. After riding a hybrid for a year I'm now relatively new to road biking but eager to learn. Problem is, back when I rode as a teen we fixed our bikes instead of wrenching them and the repairs were done with the bike upside down on its seat and handlebars instead of on a $150.00 stand. The point is, I have a lot to learn/catch up on.

...

I know it's not a top quality crank. Should I replace it?

Thank you for any comments.
LOTS of us still fix bikes upside down. It still works just as well as it used to...screw $150 stands. I can't afford that stuff.

Regarding the creak - I find that it's usually because of under-tightened cranks. Tighten up those arms - 'crank that crank'. That might stop it. Worked for me....
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Old 06-04-07, 07:43 AM   #6
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A $150 stand makes it a LOT easier, though! Try it, you'll like it. As far as creaks go, there are many threads on this topic. Start greasing and tightening the simple stuff (any metal - metal connection) and move to the hard stuff (cranks, pedals, bottom bracket).
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Old 06-04-07, 02:44 PM   #7
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check that the cassette lockring is tight
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Old 06-04-07, 09:00 PM   #8
MAK
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Okay...What I'm getting from this is that almost every part of the bike can cause creaking noises. I was hoping that the lack of noise on the pull rather than pushing of the pedals would have helped focus the on the problem. Obviously not. I'll take everyones advice and start systematically isolating and ruling out possible sources

Thanks to all who responded, I do appreciate it.
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Old 06-13-07, 12:52 AM   #9
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I have FSA MegaExpo Gossamer compact crankset... It developed the creaking problem about 2-3 weeks after I bought the bike. I took it in to have it checked out since I get free service within the year... the creaking stopped for about 30 min... now it's back full force.

My creaking problem is EXACTLY the same as yours. Have you isolated the problem? I haven't looked at my bike yet, but I am guessing it could be the crankarms... If you could post your findings, that would be much appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 06-13-07, 10:26 PM   #10
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I've got an '05spec roubaix with fsa cranks. Never noticed it before since It's so flat here in south florida but they just built a golf course up on top of an old dump near my house. It's not much of a climb but its great to do any climbing here, anyway I've noticed the same creak only on the downstroke. will be taking it to lbs to check it out. stand by for result.
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