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  1. #1
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Removing Look Keo Pedals -- what a pain

    I've removed my left pedal, from the inside using an 8 mm allen wrench and turning counter clockwise (w/ the bike flipped over). Not a problem

    So, to remove my right pedal, I need to turn the wrench clockwise. Correct?
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  2. #2
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    Correct.
    Fixed: IRO Group Buy
    Geared: Schwinn Peloton
    Little: MacNeil Ruben

  3. #3
    Senior Member BikeManDan's Avatar
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    Always loosen towards the rear of the bike. Thats how I remember at least

  4. #4
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AHemp View Post
    Correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by dwoloz View Post
    Always loosen towards the rear of the bike. Thats how I remember at least
    Ugh, I think I'm doing it right, but I'm getting nowhere. Hard to get any leverage, or maybe it's just lack of upper body strength -- which could mean that I'm at last becoming a cyclist!

    I'll try again tomorrow. Time to buy a workstand.
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  5. #5
    META Severian's Avatar
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    I'd also suggest a copy of Park Tool's bicycle repair book, or any of the other major repair manuals out there. Zinn is pretty good. As is Bicycle Magazine.

    Good luck!

  6. #6
    100% USDA certified the beef's Avatar
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    Cheater bar - get a big@ss length of pipe, put it over your wrench, and pull on the end. It works.

  7. #7
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    I find that to remove my Times, it's easiest to remove the whole crank so I can brace it against the bench top or floor for leverage. After breaking some 6mm allen keys I've taken to using an Allen socket in a ratchet handle with a cheater bar if needed.

  8. #8
    100% USDA certified the beef's Avatar
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    Don't forget to grease the threads before reinstalling pedals in the future. It saves a lot of pain.

  9. #9
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    I have a Park PRS-20 stand and that helps a great deal. I can brace the head of my ratchet against the underside of the bar of the stand and it makes getting pedals loosened an absolute breeze!

  10. #10
    Senior Member curbtender's Avatar
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    I loosen but don't remove pedals first so you can use them for leverage

  11. #11
    Senior Member rodrigaj's Avatar
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    I learned this the hard way:
    Never buy a pedal set that does not have standard 15mm wrench flats on its spindle. They are not worth it.

  12. #12
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    I have Keos and regularly move them between bikes, less regularly pack bikes for shipping, and happened to have been in the bike biz for 15 years and therefore installed and removed a lot of pedals in the course of just working.

    On 8 mm allen wrench pedals:

    1. Stand on the right side of bike, right/drive crank at forward 3 o'clock position.
    2. Put tool into pedal. It should hit the front tire/wheel. Move front/tire wheel to one side (I turn the bars right so the tire/wheel is now on the left side of the wrench).
    3. Stand on pedal with one foot.
    4. Grab allen wrench with gloved hand (it hurts if you don't have gloves or a cloth or something - when the pedal breaks loose it transmits a shock through the tool that makes my hand go numb for a while).
    5. Pull up hard on tool.

    For the opposite side:
    1. Stand on RIGHT side of bike, left/non-drive crank forward at 3 o'clock position.
    2. Put tool into pedal. Turn bars to the left this time.
    3. Hold left pedal with one hand.
    4. Hold tool with gloved hand.
    5. Pull up hard on tool while pushing down on pedal with other hand.
    Alternatively, stand on LEFT side of bike, pedal at what is now the 9 o'clock position (but same as above), put foot on pedal, pull up with tool.

    For more stubborn pedals use a cheater bar on the tool. On the left side you'll have to use the "foot on pedal" method to keep the cranks from spinning backwards.

    For the most stubborn pedals:
    1. Decide if destroying your bottom bracket bearings are worth it. This procedure may ruin them. Having said that, I've never hurt a BB doing this (but I've never had ceramics etc either).
    2. Put crank (either side) at the top of the pedal stroke (1-2 o'clock on drive side, 10-11 o'clock on non-drive side).
    3. Put in tool so it is at a 90 degree angle above the crank, pointing back at about the rear brake. You should have a couple inches for the tool to drop down before it hits things like chainrings or cranks.
    4. Hit the top of the tool with a hammer, preferably a dead weight hammer. I use a 5 pound dead weight sledge hammer for this.
    5. Pedal should loosen in 1 stout tap, maybe 4-5 if you tap it gingerly at first.
    The hammering on the tool can technically ruin your BB bearings/races. You need to hold the cranks but only lightly - the leverage of the tool is matched to the strength of the crankarm so the only way the tool would move incorrectly is if it fell out or if the crankarm breaks.

    Finally, for frozen in pedals, put the crankarm in a vise. Or, depending on what you want to save, you put the pedal tool in the vise and you turn the crank.

    The only pedal I haven't gotten out using these methods is a standard (i.e. non-metric) thread Aerolite frozen into a cold forged Superbe Pro crankset. The standard threads are slightly higher than metric ones so just tightening the pedal created massive amounts of heat energy. Not helping the cause is the fact that Aerolites use a 3/16" standard allen wrench (no other flats etc on early models). I bent the most expensive 3/16" wrenches I could find. So for now the crank lives with a broken Aerolite pedal in it. When I have time and a huge anchored bench vise I'll sacrifice the pedal axle and see if I can't salvage the cranks.

    To check if you're turning the tool in the correct direction, try turning it without holding any other part of the drivetrain. If the cranks spin backwards, you're turning the tool in the correct direction.

    hope this helps,
    cdr

    *edit* corrected for left facing o'clocks.

  13. #13
    Senior Member
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    CDR's post is excellent. The only thing I would add is that if you have problems with the allen wrench bending (like me) get an allen socket head for a standard rachet and have a go at it with that.

  14. #14
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    You or whoever put your pedals on put them on too tight.

  15. #15
    Isaias NoRacer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitropowered View Post
    You or whoever put your pedals on put them on too tight.
    +1 There's no need to crank them down that hard. They just need to be firm.

    Typically, I can put a ratchet with hex socket on the pedal and pop it with the palm of my hand (handle going toward the back of the bike) and it'll come loose.

    Do you have a trainer? A trainer can stand in for a workstand if you don't have one. When I replace/move my pedals, I loosely lock the rear wheel down in the trainer and then turn the bike upside-down while still in the trainer to remove/substitute pedals.
    2009 mileage = 14,738 miles; 2010 mileage = 15,234 miles; 2011 mileage = 17,344 miles; 2012 mileage = 11,414 miles; 2013 = 12,169

  16. #16
    Raising the Abyss celticfrost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitropowered View Post
    You or whoever put your pedals on put them on too tight.
    Guilty as charged -- although it was a heck of a lot easier getting the left off than the right and I'm usually pretty good at remembering not to overtighten things. I also greased the threads.

    Anyway, after just about busting a gut last night, I ended up using a variation CDR's technique and managed to finally get the right pedal off w/out any breaking any tools, knuckles, etc.. Standing on the left side of the bike, gripping the handlebars for added leverage and with the right pedal at about 3 o'clock I used my right leg/foot to apply downward/clockwise force on the end of the allen wrench while using my left foot to secure the left. LEG POWER > ARM POWER!

    Lots of good advice in this thread. Thanks.
    "...in Las Vegas where -the electric bills are staggering -the decor hog wild -and the entertainment saccharine -what a golden age -what a time of right and reason -the consumer's king -and unhappiness is treason..."

  17. #17
    Super Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by matthew_deaner View Post
    if you have problems with the allen wrench bending (like me) get an allen socket head for a standard rachet and have a go at it with that.
    I tried that with the not-very-smart 3/16" thing for Aerolites. Twisted a couple very nice tools, gave up. I don't know what the MAC guy thought when he saw them

    But esp for 6 or 8 mm, a great idea.

    cdr

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    Hey carpediemracing - Your post (which I have "grabbed" below) saved my life. I am due to head out on a bike tour very early on Monday morning, and I had been wrestling with my Look Keo pedals. Trying to remove them so I can take them with me on the flight, and then put them on the rental road bike I am using for the bike trip. I was struggling, and then I googled for tips and found your post. I would absolutely never have gotten those pedals off if you had not provided the how-to manual. so I just registered for this site so I could say thanks. You da man. Cityoflakes



    Quote Originally Posted by carpediemracing View Post
    I have Keos and regularly move them between bikes, less regularly pack bikes for shipping, and happened to have been in the bike biz for 15 years and therefore installed and removed a lot of pedals in the course of just working.

    On 8 mm allen wrench pedals:

    1. Stand on the right side of bike, right/drive crank at forward 3 o'clock position.
    2. Put tool into pedal. It should hit the front tire/wheel. Move front/tire wheel to one side (I turn the bars right so the tire/wheel is now on the left side of the wrench).
    3. Stand on pedal with one foot.
    4. Grab allen wrench with gloved hand (it hurts if you don't have gloves or a cloth or something - when the pedal breaks loose it transmits a shock through the tool that makes my hand go numb for a while).
    5. Pull up hard on tool.

    For the opposite side:
    1. Stand on RIGHT side of bike, left/non-drive crank forward at 3 o'clock position.
    2. Put tool into pedal. Turn bars to the left this time.
    3. Hold left pedal with one hand.
    4. Hold tool with gloved hand.
    5. Pull up hard on tool while pushing down on pedal with other hand.
    Alternatively, stand on LEFT side of bike, pedal at what is now the 9 o'clock position (but same as above), put foot on pedal, pull up with tool.

    For more stubborn pedals use a cheater bar on the tool. On the left side you'll have to use the "foot on pedal" method to keep the cranks from spinning backwards.

    For the most stubborn pedals:
    1. Decide if destroying your bottom bracket bearings are worth it. This procedure may ruin them. Having said that, I've never hurt a BB doing this (but I've never had ceramics etc either).
    2. Put crank (either side) at the top of the pedal stroke (1-2 o'clock on drive side, 10-11 o'clock on non-drive side).
    3. Put in tool so it is at a 90 degree angle above the crank, pointing back at about the rear brake. You should have a couple inches for the tool to drop down before it hits things like chainrings or cranks.
    4. Hit the top of the tool with a hammer, preferably a dead weight hammer. I use a 5 pound dead weight sledge hammer for this.
    5. Pedal should loosen in 1 stout tap, maybe 4-5 if you tap it gingerly at first.
    The hammering on the tool can technically ruin your BB bearings/races. You need to hold the cranks but only lightly - the leverage of the tool is matched to the strength of the crankarm so the only way the tool would move incorrectly is if it fell out or if the crankarm breaks.

    Finally, for frozen in pedals, put the crankarm in a vise. Or, depending on what you want to save, you put the pedal tool in the vise and you turn the crank.

    The only pedal I haven't gotten out using these methods is a standard (i.e. non-metric) thread Aerolite frozen into a cold forged Superbe Pro crankset. The standard threads are slightly higher than metric ones so just tightening the pedal created massive amounts of heat energy. Not helping the cause is the fact that Aerolites use a 3/16" standard allen wrench (no other flats etc on early models). I bent the most expensive 3/16" wrenches I could find. So for now the crank lives with a broken Aerolite pedal in it. When I have time and a huge anchored bench vise I'll sacrifice the pedal axle and see if I can't salvage the cranks.

    To check if you're turning the tool in the correct direction, try turning it without holding any other part of the drivetrain. If the cranks spin backwards, you're turning the tool in the correct direction.

    hope this helps,
    cdr

    *edit* corrected for left facing o'clocks.

  19. #19
    Senior Member TLCFORBIKES's Avatar
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    BikeManDan put it in very simple terms. I will add -- to remove the pedal point your allen tool towards the rear wheel and press down. This proceedure works on both pedals. They are reversed threaded but the threads are on opposite sides so both pedals come off in the same direction and go on in the same direction. To tighten the pedals -- point the allen tool forwards the front and press down. Grease the pedal threads and you do not need gorilla strength to secure the pedals. Thighten until allen tool stops and I will give the tool a light tap with my hand to secure the pedal.

  20. #20
    bike whisperer Kimmo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by celticfrost View Post
    So, to remove my right pedal, I need to turn the wrench clockwise. Correct?
    For right-hand threads, hold out your right hand and point your thumb in the direction you want the bit you're turning to go. Turn it in the direction your fingers curl.

    Left hand for left hand threads.

  21. #21
    Riding like its 1990 thenomad's Avatar
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    I just took a left crank arm off and dropped it down into a big pipe buried in concrete in my garage. This is a nice secure place for me to hold the arm and i cheater barred that little sucker. I BROKE an allen head socket on it! The thing snapped with sparks flying. OK, on to the 15mm wrench and a baby sledge. Yep, that did it.
    My blog about rides, bikes and builds: ridesgoneby.blogspot.com

  22. #22
    bike whisperer Kimmo's Avatar
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    Yeesh. Grease, people... and just do stuff up tight, not tight as a mofo.

  23. #23
    Riding like its 1990 thenomad's Avatar
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    I'm always greasing things, and darn if I never get one of these old bikes with a lick of grease on it! Argh!
    My blog about rides, bikes and builds: ridesgoneby.blogspot.com

  24. #24
    BeaverTerror Yan's Avatar
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    The mechanic at the local repair coop told some poor clueless girl to put her freewheel on her hub without grease. I interjected with "hey, shouldn't you put grease on that?"; and he responded "no!"

    Good luck getting that off in two years.
    Yan

    2013 True North custom touring; 2010 Novara Randonee; 2009 Unicycle.com Club 24"; 1989 Miele Tivoli; 1979 Colnago Sport

  25. #25
    cab horn
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodrigaj View Post
    I learned this the hard way:
    Never buy a pedal set that does not have standard 15mm wrench flats on its spindle. They are not worth it.
    Yeah just because you don't know how to remove 6mm/8mm pedals means they're not worth it. Almost all high end pedals are not going to feature 15mm wrench flats. Going to avoid them all?
    Mes compaingnons cui j'amoie et cui j'aim,... Me di, chanson.

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