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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 03-08-09, 03:39 PM   #1
BA Commuter
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That Dang Clicking Sound!

Recently, I've been getting that infamous clicking sound as I crank. Its not just when pedaling hard. I removed the pedals and lubed the shafts, tightened the bottom bracket cups, checked the chain and spokes, but I'm still hearing it slightly.

I tried to do one thing and see what worked or what made a difference. It appears to be the bottom bracket. I used a blade screwdriver and tapped the cups with a small sledge to tighten it up. The problem is on my Jamis Commuter. Is there a special tool to tighten the bottom bracket cups?
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Old 03-08-09, 03:47 PM   #2
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You talking about something like this?

http://www.parktool.com/products/det...=25&item=BBT-9
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Old 03-08-09, 05:34 PM   #3
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Check your crank bolts and chainring bolts.

I would suspect either of those long before the bottom bracket.
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Old 03-08-09, 06:20 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by TrekJapan View Post
You talking about something like this?

http://www.parktool.com/products/det...=25&item=BBT-9
I think the normal low end shimano stuff uses this:
http://www.parktool.com/products/det...25&item=BBT-22
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Old 03-08-09, 06:47 PM   #5
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I solved this by ignoring it for about 8000 miles; I decided it's just a noise, I knew what it was and wasn't worried about it. I finally got a new BB when I was ordering some stuff anyway and remembered to do it. I think the new BB was about $14, so not really worth doing much to fix the old one, though I suppose almost all BBs cost more than the cheapo that I used. Still, the $14 one now has about 8000 miles on it and still hasn't started to make noise.
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Old 03-08-09, 07:45 PM   #6
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Thanks, it does look like the BBT-22 or less expensive 32 is the right tool. I'll find out tomorrow morning if I stopped the clicking.

IJM - I tried to ignore it, but it bugs me to sound like the bicycling version of a metronome!
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Old 03-08-09, 07:50 PM   #7
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IJM - I tried to ignore it, but it bugs me to sound like the bicycling version of a metronome!
I deal with that by listening to audiobooks while riding. Either that or screaming at the headwinds.
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Old 03-09-09, 08:40 AM   #8
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What do you mean you "lubed the shafts?" You should put grease on the threads of the pedals. Tighten the pedals very hard.

Sometimes, there's a click or creak that seems to come from your cranks or pedals but it's really in the saddle or handlebars. Try spraying WD-40 where the seat meets the seatpost and where the handlebar meets the stem.
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Old 03-09-09, 08:50 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by BA Commuter View Post
Thanks, it does look like the BBT-22 or less expensive 32 is the right tool. I'll find out tomorrow morning if I stopped the clicking.
Please update whether or not you were able to fix it. I have the same bike, will probably encounter the same problem.
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Old 03-09-09, 08:51 AM   #10
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Dang clicking noise = shoe laces.

The best is the click from a shoe lace hitting the bottle cage or chain guard.
"what the heck is that noise?" 5 miles later, "oh, my shoe lace!"
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Old 03-09-09, 08:52 AM   #11
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Shoelace??
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Old 03-09-09, 08:54 AM   #12
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I've got a similar issue on a 1983 Raleigh Marathon. I'm resisting the urge to dig into the bototm bracket until I get other bikes up and running in case it gets more involved than an evening's worth of work. I'm hoping that if it needs new parts I can scavenge them off my wrecked parts bike.

EDIT: Yeah, I've had the shoelace thing happen to me too. Although that's not the issue this time.
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Old 03-09-09, 08:55 AM   #13
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Buy and use a bottom bracket tool designed for your bb, banging it around with a screwdriver and hammer isn't going to cut it. If, after, cleaning and re-greasing pedal threads and crank arms, the noise is still present, remove, clean, and re-grease the bottom bracket as well as the bottom bracket shell. Re-install and tighten both the bottom bracket and non-drive side cup to correct torque and check. I do this at least 3, 4 times a year and it takes care of any clicking noises 99% of the time. If that doesn't work you'll likely need to replace the bb. itself. Oh yeah, another source of clicking, the seat post. Remove, lube lightly and re-install. I don't like any noise coming from my bike other than the sound of the freewheel clicking when coasting, I relentlessly chase down every other sound and fix.
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Old 03-09-09, 01:18 PM   #14
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Don't forget chainring bolts.
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Old 03-09-09, 01:22 PM   #15
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Make sure your seat post is greased and tight. I spent money having my BB tightened, and checked everything else I could think of on my bike. It was a clicking/ticking noise every time I pedaled. Sometimes was worse than others. I finally took out my seat post, re-greased it, re-tightened it and no more noise. This bugged me for about two months before I finally got it fixed.
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Old 03-09-09, 01:43 PM   #16
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Had an annoying click on my Fuji road bike. Found out it was my shoe hitting the excess bit of cable sticking out from the front derailler. That one took awhile to figure out.
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Old 03-09-09, 02:22 PM   #17
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I have one other possibility: take out your stem and grease it before re-inserting it into your headset. Once I had this clicking sound and it was from the force I was pressing on my handlebars while really hammering on the pedals. It went away after greasing my stem.

Another time I had the clicking sound was actually from a bad bottom bracket. I replaced it with a Shimano UN54 that has a plastic cup on one side. The plastic part helps eliminate clicking from the two parts of the bottom bracket rubbing against each other. It is only a $20 part, but you do need the right tools (bottom bracket tool + crank puller) for the job.
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Old 03-09-09, 02:36 PM   #18
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When replacing the crank, remember to tighten it, ride for about 1 mile, then tighten again. Especially if you have a square taper (old stuff I know but still around a lot). If you ride more than a few hundred yards with any kind of power with a loose crank, you'll do possibly irreparable damage to the crank.
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Old 03-09-09, 02:44 PM   #19
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The last time I had a creaking, it was my seatpost. Drove me nuts for a couple of weeks as I looked through the drivetrain, trying to figure it out. I don't remember how I figured it out, but when I did, I pulled right over where I was on the road, removed the seat, cleaned it and the seat tube, and put the seat back in and tightened it down. Creak was gone!
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Old 03-09-09, 03:18 PM   #20
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Try turning the volume on your ipod up, that fixes all kinds of annoying sounds.
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Old 03-09-09, 03:22 PM   #21
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I've had an annoying click while pedaling a few times and it was ALWAYS the pedals. Not saying yours is for sure, but you might try swapping the pedals with different ones for testing purposes. One time, the pedal thread inside my crank was slightly stripped. New crank arm solved it that time.
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Old 03-09-09, 03:46 PM   #22
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Happy to report, no clicking sound today!

I did previously tighten, lube and check all of the schtuff that was suggested, but it appears it was the bottom bracket cups. They look like this one and the Park Tool BBT-22 or 32 fits the bill...

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