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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 05-11-10, 08:22 PM   #1
russelr
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pedal click problem

On my fixed gear when I am trying to track stand I feel like a little click in pedals when I go from forwards to backwards. I have had this problem with my mountain bike before and it was just because one of the chain rings was loose so I tightened and it was all better. I've have tried that on my fixie and thats not the problem. Ive also made sure the pedals were tight.

Could I have a problem with the bottom bracket? or maybe the cranks are loose?

thanks in advance!
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Old 05-11-10, 08:27 PM   #2
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Do you ride in clipless pedals? If so it could be worn cleats moving in the pedals.

To check the bottom bracket, grab one crank arm and try to rock it side to side. If there is play that should locate it.
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Old 05-12-10, 06:48 PM   #3
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Do you ride in clipless pedals? If so it could be worn cleats moving in the pedals.

To check the bottom bracket, grab one crank arm and try to rock it side to side. If there is play that should locate it.
no i dont ride clipless because I mainly use it to commute back and forth to school so i just have pedals with toe straps.
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Old 05-12-10, 09:27 PM   #4
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Chain slack can cause this. How tight is your chain?
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Old 05-13-10, 12:39 AM   #5
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Has this bottom bracket previously been used on another bike or used in a geared application?
I have no hard physics to back this up, but I have to wonder whether a bottom bracket can develop more wear/issues in a fixed gear setup, where it's subject to torque in two opposing rotational directions, versus just one in a geared bike.
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Old 05-14-10, 09:52 PM   #6
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Has this bottom bracket previously been used on another bike or used in a geared application?
I have no hard physics to back this up, but I have to wonder whether a bottom bracket can develop more wear/issues in a fixed gear setup, where it's subject to torque in two opposing rotational directions, versus just one in a geared bike.
no bottom bracket has never been used except on this bike. I wonder though, I have the bike set up with the gear train on the left side vs the normal right side set up. I dont think this would cause an issue but i really dont know. the bike shop didnt stop me when i presented them with the idea.
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Old 05-14-10, 09:52 PM   #7
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Chain slack can cause this. How tight is your chain?

Chain slack is good, pretty tight actually.
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Old 05-15-10, 06:23 AM   #8
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If the description of a "little click" is accurate then the problem is very unlikely to be the bottom bracket or chain. That would be a lower pitch and felt as much as heard. The click is probably cranks that need to be torqued slightly more or possibly something between the spindle and crank arm mounting hole causing a poor mating. If tightening the cranks and pedals doe not work then remove both crank arms and completely clean all surfaces, including steel wool on the spindle and crank arm flats.
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Old 05-15-10, 11:43 AM   #9
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I vote for crankarm bolts not tight enough. Not to start a holy-war debate, but did you put them on dry or greased? What torque did you tighten them down to? How do you know that?
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Old 05-15-10, 12:10 PM   #10
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Is there any play in your pedals, when you grab them and try to move them up & down? They may need to be rebuilt or replaced. Clicks and creaks in your drivetrain are maybe the most annoying thing in the world. And when you fix them, it's maybe the best thing in the world. Wow, I just blew myself away.
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Old 05-15-10, 01:37 PM   #11
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i have a similar problem, only i get the noise only when i'm applying a good amount of pressure on the non-drive side pedal. my guess is that this side sees more heavy use (i trackstand a lot, with my weight on this pedal). i rebuilt the pedals already, since it needed to be done anyways. next step, checking cranks, then chainring bolts, and if those don't work i'll look at the BB but i doubt it's that.
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Old 05-15-10, 01:47 PM   #12
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...i get the noise only when i'm applying a good amount of pressure on the non-drive side pedal.
Most likely the cause is in the left pedal/crank, but might still be on the right, as the the drive path goes from the left pedal down the crank to the spindle and then up the spider/chainwheel to the chain. The forces and drive path are not quite the same from the right crank to the chain so the right crank stress might not cause the click even if the source is on the right side (open to correction on this).

Last edited by cny-bikeman; 05-15-10 at 01:51 PM.
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Old 05-17-10, 09:40 PM   #13
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Most likely the cause is in the left pedal/crank, but might still be on the right, as the the drive path goes from the left pedal down the crank to the spindle and then up the spider/chainwheel to the chain. The forces and drive path are not quite the same from the right crank to the chain so the right crank stress might not cause the click even if the source is on the right side (open to correction on this).

interesting. the noise doesn't happen on the right side at all, so i'll keep this in mind.
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