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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 12-19-05, 09:16 AM   #1
1fluffhead
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Chainring bolts alloy vs. steel

I am tearing through some chainring bolts lately. I stripped two of the heads when tightening and then when I was installing new ones, the heads just snapped off as I was tightening the new ones down. I don't think that they were defective, I think I just used too much force between the allen wrench and the chainring bolt tool. Which pissed me off even more! I am thinking that I am going to switch to steel and using jb weld.

Is there a better way to keep these things tight and does steel make any noticable difference on how often they work themselves loose?
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Old 12-19-05, 09:43 AM   #2
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I have to use some serious threadlocker on my allow ones to keep them from coming loose. They still creak like crazy. I'm going steel from now on.
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Old 12-19-05, 10:03 AM   #3
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That's a really strange place to try to save some weight... I don't have any trouble with cheap steel ones and a little bit of grease...
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Old 12-19-05, 10:06 AM   #4
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They come in different lengths and some use washers. Check that you are tightening against the ring and the crank and not just the two rings together.
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Old 12-19-05, 10:21 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2manybikes
They come in different lengths and some use washers. Check that you are tightening against the ring and the crank and not just the two rings together.
Double that. I was getting flex in my crank and it turned out to be my chainring bolts - possibly salt eroded the loctite bond, but when they were left to dry, they remained bonded to each other, but spinning freely in the bolt holes. Using the shops chainring bolt spanner is oddly enough a lot more effective than a slotted screwdriver or a butter knife, at least for me.

On another bike, same bolts, but a (I guess thicker) Sugino chainring on a shimano crank (instead of ofmega/ofmega) they're just greased and I broke three of them just putting them on.

And these are "alloy" ones that are a steel alloy. At least that's what the rust tells me. I think chainring bolts are pretty much breakable and that alloy vs steel isn't going to make much of a difference.

Shopping for washers now.
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Old 12-19-05, 11:41 AM   #6
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you don't want chainring spacers. get track bolts, which are the right length to run a single ring with no spacers. spacers let it move around and they gradually loosen up the bolts. the only time i'd use spacers is in a pinch to get a good chainline if you cant/dont wanna change spindle length or move the ring to the other side on the spider. but the spacers are only a few mm difference anyway...
i've broken chainring bolts by overtightening, it is definitely frustrating. i was shocked when a pack of 5 sugino track bolts was 9 bucks!!!!!! but they're really nice. i used normal CR bolts and spacers for a long time and i definitely recommend trackbolts instead if you can.
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Old 12-19-05, 11:50 AM   #7
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Its really easy to over torque chainring bolts and the cheap ones really can't take it. I would always go with a good set of steel ones that are of the right size for your set up.

Borrow a torque wrench and see what your doing. The alloy ones are typically designed for 50-80 inch pounds which is not a lot of force.
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Old 12-19-05, 12:58 PM   #8
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Alumium chainring bolts are a joke if you are serious about your bike. I have snapped enough ("barrel" side) to ever use them again.
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Old 12-19-05, 01:36 PM   #9
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seconded.

aluminium chainring bolts are for the birds. the female side either crack or the male side heads pop off when tightened down too hard. and for some reason, rattle loose alot quicker. probably because you can't get them down tight enough.

they are absolute junk.

for those trying to save weight, there are easier and more practical places to do it, like getting kevlar bead tires.
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Old 12-19-05, 01:57 PM   #10
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Thanks for confirming my suspicions about alloy being garbage for this application.

Just ordered 2 sets of steel ones from my lbs. I am getting them for $6.95/set which surprised me a little because I saw them for so much more everywhere else. Lucky for me he was just placing the order with his rep. when I called him. Now I just have to make it until wed. when his order comes in.

Not sure why DiegoFrogs thought that there was a weight issue, but I could care less about a few grams on my chainring bolts. I would rather them stay tight. If I really had any intention of lossing weight on the bike I would ditch the Brooks.
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