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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 02-27-04, 09:26 PM   #1
jpsimon
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Problematic noise on bike!

I have a Roadmaster Bike my parents bought me about 3 years ago from Wal-Mart but now the bike is making this annoying clicking sound each time I ride it and I was able to discover that it was coming from the front wheel. I had already tried to fix it this past Sunday but it has already returned and only gotten worse, never went away completely. I have oiled the chain too, it hasn't helped and I overly oiled it last Fall which only caused my dress pants to get all dirty when I ride to Notre Dame to see my best friend, it sucks! Can you help me fix this problem so I won't be annoyed or embarrased by it? I'm not an expert with bikes so please make it understandable so I can do it hopefully, thanks!
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Old 02-27-04, 09:28 PM   #2
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If it's a walmart bike and it's 3 years old, the front wheel's bearings are probably completely worn out.
I have a toystore bike as a beater and after a few months, the wheels went all stiff on me, none of them rotate smoothly anymore.
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Old 02-27-04, 09:29 PM   #3
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Your bike probably needs a complete tune up. As a guess, I think you have a problem with the spokes that is causing the clicking. Not surprising after 3 years; especially if it hasn't had any tuneups.
A complete tune up costs quite a bit of money. But if you don't get one I think you won't be riding much longer on that particular bike.
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Old 02-27-04, 10:00 PM   #4
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What do new Roadmasters go for? $60-$100? You are likely better off getting a new one or if you ride it much getting a nicer bike. A tuneup and getting the bearings replaced will likely cost you about as much as the new Roadmaster.
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Old 02-27-04, 11:31 PM   #5
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So there's nothing I can do myself? I was hoping you would suggest something I could do now cause I'm kind of in a time predictment since I ride my bike on Sunday to Notre Dame to see my best friend there and I don't want it making a lot of noise which causes students to stare at me and soon I bet they will talk bad about me or joke about it in an insulting way too, I know how they are from what they have done to me before with their snobby friends. So would the wheel need to be replaced or what? I did take it in not too recently to this place called Outpost Sports, told the guy to fix the noise and it still happened again when I got back home, made me mad. He was also fixing the flat tire on the back wheel but still he should have fixed that problem too, places just want to make money and not do things right anymore, so I have tried to get it solved, not like I haven't.
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Old 02-27-04, 11:41 PM   #6
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Without really knowing what the problem is, it is hard to give you a fix. Maybe some of the mechanics will surface soon and be able to help more.
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Old 02-27-04, 11:43 PM   #7
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A quick and dirty fix?

If it sounds like one or more spokes are popping try placing a drop of oil where the threads go into the nipple.

If it's the hub you may be able to remove the axle and grease the bearings with lithium grease. Be careful, the cheaper hubs just have bearings floating freely in there and if you lose one...

Start saving for a better bike. Start looking at your LBS, pawn shops and other places for a good used one.
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Old 02-28-04, 07:36 AM   #8
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You're positive it's the front wheel? Does this happen only when pedaling or all the time? I'm just trying to rule out other items. Does it have three piece cranks? If yes, try snugging the nuts/bolts that hold the arms on. Remove the seat post, clean well and apply a thin coating of grease to the section that is in the frame.

Another trick is to place a small drop of oil where all of the spokes cross and touch each other. I have run into this issue numerous times when a rider had an annoying creak on a wheel. Over time the spokes will creak with the motion of the bike.

Try this. If that fails and you've repacked the bearings and put a drop of oil on the nipples as one forum member suggested you've pretty much covered everything except having the tension set on the spokes.

Now the fun/hard part. It this bike is 3-years old and you run into some problems you need to weigh the cost of repairs against getting a new bike. You can get a brand new TREK 3500 Mt. Bike for $199 and a good shop will should offer 6 months to 1 year of free check-ups. Repairs are not cheap in some cases and you really don't want to put $80 to $100 dollars in repairs into a bike that probably was sold for $125 new. Other Items will wear out and eventually you will have bought a new bike with repair bills.

Try to above suggestions and let us know how it went.
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Old 03-02-04, 11:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpsimon
So there's nothing I can do myself? I was hoping you would suggest something I could do now cause I'm kind of in a time predictment since I ride my bike on Sunday to Notre Dame to see my best friend there and I don't want it making a lot of noise which causes students to stare at me and soon I bet they will talk bad about me or joke about it in an insulting way too, I know how they are from what they have done to me before with their snobby friends. So would the wheel need to be replaced or what? I did take it in not too recently to this place called Outpost Sports, told the guy to fix the noise and it still happened again when I got back home, made me mad. He was also fixing the flat tire on the back wheel but still he should have fixed that problem too, places just want to make money and not do things right anymore, so I have tried to get it solved, not like I haven't.
Yes, there are things you can do yourself. Everyone that responds to your noise problem (myself included) will do their best to nail it down. But, even if we guess it correctly, you still are the one to repair it. Go to a bike shop and spend $14-$20 dollars on a bicycle repair manual. They are extremely useful for even the experienced cyclists. The manual will provide you with all kinds of troubleshooting information and proper routine maintenance as well. Now for my guesses: Overtightened spoke, Loose spoke, Cone adjustment too loose, A slight crack in the rim, and possibly a bad wheel bearing or two.
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Old 03-02-04, 12:12 PM   #10
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You dont have to spend any money on a manual, first go to these sites to find out how to fix things.

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/articles.html

http://www.parktool.com/repair_help/index.shtml

However you will need a spoke wrench and a pair of cone wrenches. This bike will be good for learning how to do all the maintenance, and only buy the tools as you find you need them.
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