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  1. #1
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    The Creak With No Discernable Origin

    Hey, I'd appreciate any opinions on this extremely frustrating case.

    Original setup: phil wood BB (bought new), sugino 75 crankset (bought used)
    New set up: new protype bb, new sugino 75 crankset
    on a geekhouse fixed gear

    original setup had spindles dry and clean, still creaked, greased em, still creaked, cleaned again, still creaked.
    new setup, creaked upon 1st installation, dry only.

    problem: place the left crank arm at 9 oclock, put downward pressure on it and it gives a single, loud creak. then move it to 3 oclock, give it a downward push, the creak happens again as if it just unloaded and reloaded.

    notes:
    -it's only caused by the left crank arm.
    -the original 75s had a slight bit of wear on the inside of the press area, but nothing that seemed off-canter, buttt it did seem to leave a similar mirror-image scuff on both bottom brackets.
    -i rode the original 75 crankset on the new protype bb for a few days, was quiet only for a day.
    -have tried multiple crank bolts.
    -have loosened and tightened the chainring bolts.
    -have removed the seatpost/collar/binder bolt and greased it all.
    -had the bb threads re-chased.
    -checked the bb to make sure the seattube was welded all the way around before the downtube was welded on (could see some slight rippling from the inside of the bb that confirmed it).
    -tried original set up with teflon tape + grease on bb threads.
    -original creak was far more pronounced, could manipulate the crankarm with my hands and make it creak (with a fair amount of force), but the new setup's creak requires bodyweight.
    -have done the original setup it without the pedal on the left arm (drive side pedal is stripped so it's stuck on there for now), new setup never had pedals, just body weight on the bare arm.
    -both bottom brackets are iso, so they match the taper properly.
    -have greased the interface where the non-DS cup slips onto the bottom bracket.

    my fear, the frame is cracked.

    thoughts?
    Last edited by seanile; 04-09-13 at 10:09 PM.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  2. #2
    ot.net slave
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    Pedals are pretty common as a cause of creaks, grease the threads and the flat contact point between the crank and pedal.

    - Joel

  3. #3
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    thanks, but i always have grease on the pedal threads as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by seanile View Post
    -have done the original setup it without the pedal on the left arm (drive side pedal is stripped so it's stuck on there for now), new setup never had pedals, just body weight on the bare arm.
    right arm still having a pedal shouldn't matter as only manipulating the left arm produces a creak that is very obviously from the left side near the bb and crank arm junction.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  4. #4
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    42...
    "What goes up a hill on three legs, and comes down on four?"
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-10-13 at 07:49 PM.

  5. #5
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    nah, i figured i'd ask around for ideas that i'm capable of executing (i'm a mechanic), before paying to have someone troubleshoot.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  6. #6
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    "...drive side pedal is stripped so it's stuck on there for now..."

    Not totally pertinent to the discussion, but the pedal threads can be economically repaired with a Heli-Coil insert.

  7. #7
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    not the pedal threads, the allen key hole, and there's no wrench mount for it so now that the allen key option is gone i can't do jack ****.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  8. #8
    Senior Member
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    You could try mashing a slightly oversized Torx key into the hole, or if the pedal's too tightly in to do that, then remove the crankarm and preferably put it in a vice (use a cloth or something to protect it), try and strip the pedal destructively and then use something like Stilsons on it to wrench the bugger off.

  9. #9
    Senior Member due ruote's Avatar
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    If you're giving up on the pedal anyway, couldn't you remove the body, stick the spindle in a bench vise and turn the crank arm?

  10. #10
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    can we get past the pedal?
    it has nothing to do with the problem; if i really wanted to get the pedal out, all i would need is a drill and a regularly threaded screw because the pedal is reverse threaded. but i haven't done that yet because i don't want it out just yet.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  11. #11
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    Can you get the sound standing up as well as sitting? Seats and posts are notorious non-obvious creak points.

    Shimano : Click :: Campy :: Snap :: SRAM : Bang

  12. #12
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    i can get it to creak by leaning the bike against the wall, holding the brake and stepping on the non-drive side crank arm at both 9 and 3 oclock (not even straddling it).
    once it creaks, i have to move it to the opposing position (3 or 9) to make it creak again.
    like i said in the original post, i've greased the actual post, the binder bolt, the interface between the collar and frame, etc.
    the creak is most definitely coming from down there..
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  13. #13
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Toss it into the Charles River. That will Fix it.
    AKA the Float Test.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-10-13 at 08:33 PM.

  14. #14
    Senior Member TiBikeGuy's Avatar
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    I once had a friend's bike that had one of these mystery creak, as he stand up and cranked on the left side, it creaked. Thought it was a drive-train problem. Tightened every nut and bolt. Later found that it came from the handle stem...when he stood up he put weight on the left side of the handle grips causing the stem to creak..
    Ride Safe - Be Alert, Be Seen, Be Predictable

  15. #15
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    i actually just replaced the stem 3 times throughout this problem (trying to find a good reach after moving to drops).
    same result regardless of the stem/handlebar.

    i've tried to add, i guess it slipped by. if you put your ear to the bottom bracket area, you'll hear that it's the source of the creak. nowhere else.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  16. #16
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    You could just have a stripped crankarm.

    Shimano : Click :: Campy :: Snap :: SRAM : Bang

  17. #17
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    thanks for the input, but please read my post, specifically the bits about the "new setup"
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  18. #18
    S'Cruzer pierce's Avatar
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    This sure seems like a square taper creak to me. maybe that crank arm has the wrong type of square taper (JIS vs ISO or whatever). maybe its stretched, distorted.

  19. #19
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    thanks, but i ordered the phil wood iso specific, and the protype is also iso specific, sugino 75s are iso as well so i'm certain they're mated properly.

    re the "stretched, distorted" comment, please refer to the "new setup" part i included in my initial post.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  20. #20
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    This may sound stupid, but try swapping the crankarms to the wrong side of the bike, Its gonna make it toughter to put weight on them, but is the creeking swaps sides, then you know its a crank arm issue, if it stays on the same side then its a BB or frame issue.

  21. #21
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    hmm. that's a pretty good idea, i'll try that. thank you.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  22. #22
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seanile View Post
    thanks, but i ordered the phil wood iso specific, and the protype is also iso specific, sugino 75s are iso as well so i'm certain they're mated properly.

    re the "stretched, distorted" comment, please refer to the "new setup" part i included in my initial post.
    Yes, nothing in the history of production has made is past quality control unless it was 100%

    I don't get the attitude that has someone asking for help and then being a dick to those that offer it.

    Shimano : Click :: Campy :: Snap :: SRAM : Bang

  23. #23
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    would you like me to not precede my responses with "thanks"?

    where exactly am i coming across as a dick?
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

  24. #24
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seanile View Post
    would you like me to not precede my responses with "thanks"?

    where exactly am i coming across as a dick?
    Right here:
    Quote Originally Posted by seanile View Post
    thanks for the input, but please read my post, specifically the bits about the "new setup"
    Maybe english isn't your first languange, and apologies if it isn't and I'm just projecting here, but if it is, blowing off the suggestion of a stripped crankarm and directing me to [re] read your first post isn't much other than snarky.

    What do you think you're going to find out if it is indeed a crankarm specific problem? Because my experience dictates that you'd find a stripped crankarm.

    Shimano : Click :: Campy :: Snap :: SRAM : Bang

  25. #25
    Sheriff of Nottingham seanile's Avatar
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    so when you suggest i have a stripped crank arm, i'm not supposed to point you toward the part where it says it's brand new out of the box and only just installed for the 1st time ever, and that it's made from a reputable manufacturer like Sugino...nevermind that it's their premier track crank?

    and then, when it mimics the exact same results of the crank arm that was mounted, i'm still supposed to believe that it's a reasonable assumption that a brand new sugino 75 crank arm is stripped?

    no.

    so i said thanks for the input, but i don't think that's the issue because of the stuff i've already written and don't believe i should need to be writing again.

    what i'm looking for is someone who might know a bit about why a brand new crankarm, on a brand new bottom bracket, makes the same damn sound as the old crankset on the old bottom bracket, when the creak is clearly being emitted from that region.

    idk, maybe i've done everything i can with it and should yield that my fear of having a cracked frame is probably legit.
    Last edited by seanile; 04-10-13 at 11:43 PM.
    2014 Sketchy CX | 2014 Firefly MTB | 2014 Meriwether Touring | 2012 Horse Road | 2012 Giant Defy 3 | 2011 Geekhouse Rockcity | 1991 Eddy Merckx Corsa Extra Team Weinmann

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