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Old 07-12-12, 01:22 AM   #1
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Is there harm in continuing to use my pedal with pitted bearing track?

I have BMX-style flat pedals on my bicycle. The right side pedal felt notchy and I bought some Phil grease and serviced it by cleaning and regreasing which turned out to be pretty easy. I found that the spindle where the BBs ride has a two pits I can see and feel with a screwdriver. The pits are less than 1mm in size. The entirety of the spindle is black except the track where the BBs ride and that portion is silver. I've got the pedals to where they spin freely and there is no notchy feeling even with the pitted bearing track.

Is there any harm in continuing to ride on these pedals in this condition? I assume the pits will grow over time and operation will deteriorate, but is it unsafe to continue riding like this? Or should I just replace these pedals now? I guess it just feels a bit wasteful to throw these away when they seem otherwise ok.

Something that surprised me when I disassembled the whole thing was that the bearings are not sealed. The bearings closer to the crank arm have an opening so the grease is exposed and the outside bearings only have a plastic dust cap. The BBs inside are loose.

Last edited by jsdavis; 07-12-12 at 01:28 AM.
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Old 07-12-12, 02:00 AM   #2
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No problem at all, only a racer need even consider the minute effect on running friction.

I would re-evaluate the bearing adjustment every thousand miles or so, but these will likely be fine for the next good long time.
I bought a Raleigh SuperCourse new in 1976 or so, and one pedal's bearing cone had a pit or two in it when I investigated a bit of roughness when I got home. The shop wouldn't offer any compensation at all because I had disassembled it, so I rode it, even toured on it, for several years after, with the pitted cone still in there.

Of significant concern when rebuilding pedals is whether the locknuts are good and tight against the cones.
Especially on the left pedal, any lack of tightness might have the cone trying to tighten itself against the bearings, which I see occasionally on pedals that are on older bikes.
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Old 07-12-12, 03:03 PM   #3
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They won't suddenly lock up or fall off. Ride 'em until they get too wobbly or crunchy to bear then replace them.

You might be surprised at how many years that takes.
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