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Old 09-20-11, 05:40 PM   #1
mm718
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Adjusting nut on skewer just spins...

Hi,

I am new to road biking and even newer to bike mechanics. I just went to change a flat and I can't get my back wheel off. I remember when I put my wheel on the last time that closing the quick release was a little harder than usual but I don't remember forcing it. It won't budge now and the adjusting nut just keeps spinning. What have I broken and how much will it cost to fix? Please advise.
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Old 09-20-11, 05:59 PM   #2
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On the off chance that it's a simple case of not knowing how to use a QR (please don't be offended) are you holding the lever on one end of the skewer while turning the nut at the other?

The QR unit is a thin skewer that runs through a hollow axle. While it's open, you adjust it by holding the lever while turning the nut, and checking trial and error until flipping the lever meets resistance about half way. Then you lock the wheel by closing the lever flat to the frame. Most of us orient the lever to either side of the frame tube so it's easy to get your hands behind them to re-open.
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Old 09-20-11, 06:12 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mm718 View Post
Hi,

I am new to road biking and even newer to bike mechanics. I just went to change a flat and I can't get my back wheel off. I remember when I put my wheel on the last time that closing the quick release was a little harder than usual but I don't remember forcing it. It won't budge now and the adjusting nut just keeps spinning. What have I broken and how much will it cost to fix? Please advise.
Maybe you just cross threaded the skewer thread? I may be miss reading this, but if you did cross thread (just forced the nut over the threads) it should just be a new skewer. (I hope for you!)
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Old 09-20-11, 06:17 PM   #4
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Another possibility is that your skewer nut is comprised of two parts (inner metal nut with a plastic or composite cover) and that you broke the outer cover away from the nut.
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Old 09-20-11, 06:20 PM   #5
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mm718: Some of the adjusting nuts are made from a metal nut inside of a plastic shell. Perhaps the plastic housing has come loose from the metal and that is what is spinning loosely. If this appears to be the case, perhaps you could use a pliers or Vice-Grips to squeeze it and get it to turn. Worst case you will need to hacksaw off the nut, taking care not to damage the frame, and get a new skewer.

Edit: desertdork beat me to it.

Last edited by dsbrantjr; 09-20-11 at 06:21 PM. Reason: add comment
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Old 09-20-11, 07:05 PM   #6
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Thanks, everyone. I've been using the QR as FB describes in his second paragraph but today I couldn't release the QR and so I tried to loosen the adjusting nut (not good?). Well I eventually got it off, changed my tire and everything seems OK although I haven't ridden the bike yet. Have I done any damage?

I think the plastic cover may have in fact become loose as you mention above.
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Old 09-20-11, 09:16 PM   #7
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mm718: It's really important that you get the skewer secured properly. If the nut is giving you problems you can probably get a new one cheaply (or free) from your LBS. If the QR is not working smoothly and lubricating it does not help, you should probably replace the entire skewer assembly.

The skewer lever should be tight enough that it leaves a mark on your palm when you close it. I also like to face the lever towards the rear when it is closed to eliminate something catching it and flipping it open as I ride past.
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Old 09-21-11, 06:14 AM   #8
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Thanks, dsbrantjr- I am taking it into the LBS today for my 30 day tune-up so I'll have them look at it. Thanks everyone for your input.
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Old 09-21-11, 10:17 AM   #9
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yes. Please keep in mind, if not fixed, this could be dangerous. Hoping your LBS fixes it for you.
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Old 09-21-11, 05:26 PM   #10
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My LBS checked it out and said it is fine. Took it out for a long ride today and all went well. Got my 30-day tune up done too although it seemed like the guy spent about 3 minutes on it...
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