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Routine maintenance for seatpost?

Old 07-16-21, 12:41 PM
  #1  
Chuckles1
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Routine maintenance for seatpost?

I was chasing down a noisy drivetrain, or so I thought. After regreasing and adjusting pedals, regreasing GXP crank bearings, the noise persisted; but only when seated. Ah hah, the seat post was creaking. I pulled it and it had visible beads of water on the thin coating of grease. I rammed a thin towel on end of a dowel down the seat tube, dried and regreased the seat post, and now I have a quiet bike.

My question is, do people pull the seat post on a regular basis to avoid this? If so, how often?

It's muggy as the devil lately, so perhaps it's only an issue in high humidity. I plan to pull the seatposts on my other bikes next rainy day, as one of them is making noise similar to the one I just fixed. Seat post was the last place I would have suspected. In the future, it will be the first. Beats servicing bearings that are fine, like I just did...
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Old 07-16-21, 01:23 PM
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I would say that you normally dont touch your seatpost unless you need to adjust it or if, like in your case, have any kind of trouble. Depending on how it claps, running your seat post up and down will make it worn and torn.

So the short answer is no!
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Old 07-16-21, 01:40 PM
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I agree with the noob. Why touch it until you need to do something with it or it is in fact causing you an issue.

If spending all your time fiddling with your bike is more enjoyable than taking it riding, then by all means fiddle away.
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Old 07-16-21, 01:43 PM
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Interesting problem, perhaps because I've never seen it.

Or maybe the salt microcrystals from my sweat absorb any moisture that might sit on top of my seatpost.

I'd think once a year (perhaps at the beginning of summer) would be plenty. Also a good time to inspect the seatpost carefully, looking for incipient cracks.
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Old 07-16-21, 01:48 PM
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Might consider a seat post that doesn't have a hole in top to allow sweat to get into the seat tube. I don't think I've had such a seat post since a kid.
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Old 07-16-21, 02:34 PM
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Most of my miles are dry with the occasional wet day and I pull the seatpost, clean, and put a light coat of grease on it every 2 years. Usually this is overkill for my conditions but yours may need it more or less often. Check it in a year and adjust your inspection times accordingly. The one thing you don't want is a stuck seat post from corrosion due to lack of grease, anti-seize, CF paste, etc.
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Old 07-16-21, 02:35 PM
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If you have been on this forum for any length of time you have to have seen many, many threads that start out something like; "I just tried to remove my seat post and it's completely stuck. How can I get it out?" This is the result of corrosion due to neglect and you really want to avoid it. I remove my seatposts at least once a year, more if ridden in rain a lot, and wipe them and the interior of the seat tubes clean and regrease both.
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Old 07-17-21, 12:02 AM
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Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
If you have been on this forum for any length of time you have to have seen many, many threads that start out something like; "I just tried to remove my seat post and it's completely stuck. How can I get it out?" This is the result of corrosion due to neglect and you really want to avoid it. I remove my seatposts at least once a year, more if ridden in rain a lot, and wipe them and the interior of the seat tubes clean and regrease both.
i think that depends on what frame material you use. I mostly ride carbon and aluminum frames and never had such issue. I rather have the problem with the seat post not being stuck enough and slides down (on carbon frames).

But for steel frames/seat posts i guess it can be a problem?!
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Old 07-17-21, 01:10 AM
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I suspect many of the stuck seat posts are the result of zero grease combined with salt and rain. I doubt I pull mine out more than every few years, and it isnít an issue. I have had to cut seat posts out of frames (not my own), but often it is a post that wasnít greased to begin with and hasnít been adjusted in 20 years.

Obviously if you have or suspect a problem, it makes sense to pull the post because it is so easy.

If you have an issue with a carbon post/bars/whatever slipping then start using carbon assembly paste. It makes a world of difference, and is the appropriate substance for that joint type.
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Old 07-17-21, 02:35 AM
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One possibility is that the post is too far down inside the seat tube if you're running your saddle a little lower. If you chop a couple of inches off of it then it won't tick anymore.
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Old 07-17-21, 03:15 AM
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Originally Posted by jccaclimber View Post
If you have an issue with a carbon post/bars/whatever slipping then start using carbon assembly paste. It makes a world of difference, and is the appropriate substance for that joint type.
Oh, trust me, iíve tried it all. 4 different types of carbon grip paste etc. Im currently in a reclaim process for my current bike. Iíve gone through everything including switching seat post (the frame have a custom fit so I can only use OEM seat posts), returning the frame to the factory that returned it and claimed that they had solved the issue, but after approximately 500 km I noticed that it had slipped 2-3 cm. Tried several times with more carbon paste, higher torque, but still slips. The only thing that worked was to put strips of electric insulation tape in a few layers down the seat tube. But on a $6000 new bike, that not a solution Iím satisfied with.
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Old 07-17-21, 04:21 AM
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Routine maintenance should include removing the seatpost, cleaning and re-greasing it every year. I do this on every bicycle when I give it a tune up. With the seatpost out I also check the torque on the saddle clamping mechanism to insure it is secure. If the seatpost is secured with a quick release I also lubricate it which makes it easier to operate.
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Old 07-17-21, 06:27 AM
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I check every seat post that comes into the non-profit shop and maybe one percent have a problem, sometimes caused by abuse, seldom by neglect. The exception is the aluminum post in a steel frame--that's a watch-out situation, and yearly maintenance should be required.

I once cycled a couple of hundred miles on a wet crusher fines path (Katy Trail) and had to completely disassemble, clean, and regrease the entire bike. The first clue was creaking in the seat post clamp. Then creaking in the brake calipers. Then poor shifting. That crap got into everything. That was the only time I had to maintain the seat post as a result of riding conditions.
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Old 07-17-21, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by NextDIYikeproj View Post
Oh, trust me, iíve tried it all. 4 different types of carbon grip paste etc. Im currently in a reclaim process for my current bike. Iíve gone through everything including switching seat post (the frame have a custom fit so I can only use OEM seat posts), returning the frame to the factory that returned it and claimed that they had solved the issue, but after approximately 500 km I noticed that it had slipped 2-3 cm. Tried several times with more carbon paste, higher torque, but still slips. The only thing that worked was to put strips of electric insulation tape in a few layers down the seat tube. But on a $6000 new bike, that not a solution Iím satisfied with.
I hate to say it, but it sounds like that seat clamp/tube interface either wasnít properly designed, or wasnít properly manufactured. The manufacturer of a $6k bike should know better.

Do you have a picture?
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Old 07-17-21, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by jccaclimber View Post
I hate to say it, but it sounds like that seat clamp/tube interface either wasnít properly designed, or wasnít properly manufactured. The manufacturer of a $6k bike should know better.

Do you have a picture?
Thats my point of view to.

im too much of a newbee to post pictures here yet, so soon. 😉👍

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Old 07-17-21, 07:56 PM
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Originally Posted by NextDIYikeproj View Post
i think that depends on what frame material you use. I mostly ride carbon and aluminum frames and never had such issue. I rather have the problem with the seat post not being stuck enough and slides down (on carbon frames).

But for steel frames/seat posts i guess it can be a problem?!
It really doesn't. Aluminum seatposts firmly stuck in aluminum, Ti or steel frames are common problems. A carbon seatpost can also get stuck in a metal frame. About the only combinations unlikely to get stuck are a carbon post in a carbon frame and a Ti seatpost in a Ti frame and that assumes the frame doesn't have an aluminum seat tube inner collar.
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Old 07-19-21, 10:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
One possibility is that the post is too far down inside the seat tube if you're running your saddle a little lower. If you chop a couple of inches off of it then it won't tick anymore.
Interesting; the post is surprisingly long. But why would a shorter post be quieter?

Also, thanks for all replies. The takeaway for me is grease it thoroughly and forget it for a year or two unless it starts creaking. Aluminum frame bike, BTW.
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Old 07-19-21, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Chuckles1 View Post
Interesting; the post is surprisingly long. But why would a shorter post be quieter?
Because the post and seat tube flex when you're riding and they have just enough difference in size for the post to tick towards the bottom where the clamping forces don't extend.

I use a cheap 1 1/8in mini tube cutter and it takes about 2 minutes to cop it off. Works for steerer tubes as well.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Husky-1-...-111/303666106

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Old 07-19-21, 01:33 PM
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What lubricant do you apply to the seat post? Thanks
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Old 07-21-21, 12:29 PM
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I generally ride in the dry, and my seatposts get wiped down and regreased only when I have to pull them to fit it in the trunk of the car. And even then, not every time. So far, no issues - if a seatpost feels a bit stuck, a light thwack with the palm of my hand is usually enough to get it loose.
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Old 07-21-21, 01:14 PM
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I live in the humid southeast and this is my routine:
I remove the seat posts from my bikes usually once a year or after I've ridden in the rain, which is seldom. I (usually) flip the bike upside down before I take it out so that no debris falls down into the bottom bracket.

While upside down, I clean inside the seat tube, the seat post, lightly re-grease the post and install, then flip the bike back to adjust and tighten. I've been doing this for about 40+ years now and, knock on wood, I've never had a post stick on any of my bikes or any I worked on as a mechanic (as far as I know) back in the day.

Update: What I have found over the years is that the bikes that came in to the shop that did have a stuck seat post, the seat post and the bike frame were two different materials (i.e. seat post was aluminum and bike steel - galvanic corrosion) or steel/steel that simply rusted due to neglect outside - usually kids bikes where we had to raise the seat.


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