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  1. #1
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    After adjusting my quill stem I hear "crunchy crunch"

    To start, this is an old frame with a steertube that had a normal amount of surface rust for its age. It was cleaned out when I put it together, but not completely.

    I decided to drop the stem down a little. I loosened, dropped it 1cm, and started tightening. I did the exact number of turns to tighten as what I did to loosen it, but the stem still rotated rather easily. So, I tightened it a bit more till it was in there reasonbly securely--though I had to put a little more torque into turning the bolt than I usually would.

    Now, I hope this is easily explained by the fact that the steertube's has some inner surface rust and that I dropped the stem down a little, but now when turning I hear a slight crunchy sound. I'm imagining two possibilities, though neither is quite clear to me:

    #1: Pushing the stem down let some surface rust fall into a gap (what gap?), which is causing the sound when I turn.

    #2: Tightening the quill in the old steertube caused it to crack and expand at that spot, somehow (not sure exactly) causing the crunchy sound.

    "Crunch" is a bit extreme for what the sound actually is. Also, after tightening that much I loosened it a bit to see what happens and the stem still seems secure enough. #1 seems more likely for a few reasons, but since I'm not exactly sure I thought I'd ask all y'all.

    Please, I hope to only hear from those who've experienced something like this. My idle speculation is enough--I don't need everyone else's.

  2. #2
    Senior Member VT tallbike's Avatar
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    The quill probably expanded the steerer slightly and flaked off some of the rust into your bearings. Probably time to take it all apart and repack your bearings. At least that's the only thing I can think of that could've happened

  3. #3
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    I just repacked them. But yea, I'm glad that's what comes to mind for someone else--rather than something more extreme. I also imagine the reason that the stem wasn't staying in place with a normal amount of tightening was because there was some surface rust that gave it some play.

    So, even though the flaked rust scenario is the only thing that really seemed plausible, I just started to get paranoid.

    Come to think of it, I'm pretty sure I remember this sound coming from the headset before I repacked the bearings. I think I'll just live with it now.

  4. #4
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    I might be speculating if I answer this.

  5. #5
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    I knew I was inviting some smart-ass remark. If you read this board, you know what kind of idle speculation I was talking about. If you can only understand things in a purely literal way, no *****, speculation is all that can be done.

    "Dude, don't ride that! You should take it apart because your bike is going to expload when you least expect it."
    Last edited by bexley; 05-23-08 at 04:00 PM.

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