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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 07-28-08, 04:57 PM   #1
Zoxe
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Phantom Clyde Noise

Possibly in the wrong forum but as a Clyde, I figured it may help to address a Clyde audience.

Just over a week ago, I bought an '09 Giant Cypress DX Hybrid. 21 speed, suspension at seatpost and front fork, and disc brakes.

I'm 6'3" and 280lbs. We ride 4-6mi every night in subdivisions and bike paths near us, working up 1mi per week with a goal of 50mi/wk over the course of the next month or so.

The Cypress has developed a phantom clicking/rubbing sound in the front and (I think) rear wheels. Initially it wasn't very loud but tonight was worse than normal. (I say 'I think' because soemtimes I think it's the front, sometimes I think it's the rear, and sometimes I think it's BOTH).

It changes speed as I do, one click per wheel revolution. The click doesn't get any quieter when I decelerate hard (don't think it's the brakes rubbing). Seems to stay constant as I turn in either direction. Tonight it started quiet but by mid ride it was pretty loud. Most noticable from 6-10mph, quieter as I go faster.

I am due for a check at the LBS in another 2 weeks but can take it in Wed/Thurs if I'm still scratching my head. I've checked for obviously loose screws but hesitate to wrench too much on it. I'm a mechanical engineer by education but scratching the paint on 'the baby' when it's less than 2wks old makes me twitch.

Ideas?
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Old 07-28-08, 04:59 PM   #2
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knowing most disc brakes ... less something is loose elsewhere .. they can be a common source for 'clicking, squeaking, dead cow sounding' noises ... but something else to check, because of your weight .. would be the pedals ... i busted the ones that came on my bike after only a few miles.
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Old 07-28-08, 05:05 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by -Devil- View Post
knowing most disc brakes ... less something is loose elsewhere .. they can be a common source for 'clicking, squeaking, dead cow sounding' noises ... but something else to check, because of your weight .. would be the pedals ... i busted the ones that came on my bike after only a few miles.

Cool. I'll check the pedals and otherwise keep my eyes on 'em. I don't think it's in the drivetrain because it clicks even when I'm coasting.

The other thing I'm going to do is remove the aftermarket cateye magnet from my front spokes. It's not hitting when I roll it slowly but it's easy enough to check.
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Old 07-28-08, 05:08 PM   #4
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Sounds like the magnet is hitting, on my TCR, it wasnt hitting, but it was close. If i pedaled, or was leaning up over the bars, it would hit. Just try to turn the sensor out away from the magnet a little.
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Old 07-28-08, 05:23 PM   #5
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Check for a loose spoke(s)
Just squeeze adjacent pairs together and see if something obvious appears.
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Old 07-28-08, 05:33 PM   #6
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I was thinking the magnet as well. Can you adjust the bearings on the bike (IE, could you have a little extra play in there that needs adjusting?)

If it's the pedals, it'll tick with each pedal revolution, not each wheel revolution, and quit when you coast.
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Old 07-28-08, 05:45 PM   #7
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yeah its not the pedals if it does it when coasting .. that just really leaves bearings, spokes, brakes, magnet .. or something like a rock stuck in a tire.
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Old 07-28-08, 06:03 PM   #8
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Drat. It's not the magnet. I removed it from the spoke, coasted down the driveway, and phantom noise is as loud as ever. Noticed it's only noisy when I have weight on wheels. I walked it back up the driveway and was nice and quiet.

Not sure on bearing adjustment StephenH. I was kind of thinking bearing noise, but it was still making noise while I turned a few figure 8's in the cul de sac.

I think it may be the spokes as Bill suggested. A few are sprongier than the rest (that's a technical term), and some make a creaking sound when I squeeze them out of rest.

Even if it's not the source of the noise, it looks like I need to adjust some spoke tension. No spoke key here, will prolly just take to the LBS Wednesday and not risk borking a new rim.
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Old 07-28-08, 06:36 PM   #9
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Aha! I think this could be it.

Quote:
Spoke rub

If there is a rubbing/clicking sound when you are riding, but you can't get it to happen when you lift the bike and spin the wheels off the ground, your problem is most likely related to loose spokes. In some cases, the spokes of an under-tensioned wheel will audibly rub against one another where they cross. This will only happen when the bike is carrying the weight of a rider. Try squeezing pairs of spokes together to see if they make the same sound you hear when riding.
From: http://sheldonbrown.com/creaks.html
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Old 07-28-08, 07:16 PM   #10
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Gotta love mysterious noises. They can be a real PITA to track down.
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Old 07-29-08, 05:07 PM   #11
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Crisis averted. Thanks everyone for the ideas.

Bought a spoke key today on the way home and went around both wheels looking for obvious problems. Found that I had a couple of spokes that were not quite flopping in the breeze. I don't have a calibrated eyeball yet, so only addressed obvious issues -- the rest will get hit when I take 'er back to LBS in a week for her 1mo check up.


Tonight's ride was SILENT ... except for the wind and birds (and of course all my huffing and puffing ).
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Old 07-29-08, 05:27 PM   #12
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grats on finding it ... yeah i would get the lbs to true the wheels when you take it in ... but you can use the frame / fork to eyeball how smooth they are ... if when you spin them, there is no major wobble then all is good for now .. (works with brake pads as well if you have rim brakes)
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Old 07-29-08, 09:50 PM   #13
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You could call the shop and see if they can check the tension on the wheels and describe the problem you were having. I don't know what kind of warranty service they offer beyond a 1 month tune, but the shops I have worked in we would have rather done 15 minutes of retensioning than have a customer frustrated with a poorly functioning bike. Most production bikes come with machine-built wheels that have very uneven (compared to properly hand-built) tension, leading to poor performance and a weaker wheel.

I started building my own wheels because I was convinced there was no reason they should ever detension, and the cause must be poorly or inadequetly tensioned spokes. As a bigger guy you should have your wheels built with slightly higher tension than most wheels. Hand tensioned wheels (even if you have to pay a bit to have the whole wheel retensioned) last longer and ride smoother - and quieter.
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