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Left crank completely stripped on tour in the middle of Myanmar.

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Left crank completely stripped on tour in the middle of Myanmar.

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Old 01-01-14, 06:51 AM
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BF123
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Left crank completely stripped on tour in the middle of Myanmar.

Hey guys! I'm riding a stock LHT through Myanmar. The past two days was done on the worst rocky road I had ever ridden in my life. Today, I was going to start pedaling on a good road, though the catch was it had constant 20 degree inclines. Five minutes of hard pushing in, my pedal started wobbling, and I find out that my left crank's thread is completely stripped. Nothing left. Given that I am in the middle of Myanmar (though Mandalay is a day away), what would you recommend? I'm going to walk around tomorrow, but I am doubtful I can find a replacement crank. Right now, my solution is duct-taping the pedal to my shoe and giving it an inside push every few rotations. Wobbling wobbling. Hahaha...
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Old 01-01-14, 06:54 AM
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Or anyone have any suggestions of shops in Mandalay? Thanks!
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Old 01-01-14, 07:50 AM
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Originally Posted by BF123 View Post
Or anyone have any suggestions of shops in Mandalay? Thanks!
if you're catching a pickemup truck into mandalay, they usually drop you off around
the corner of 84th & 35th. you'll be landing in "bicycle alley," a whole mess of bike
shops, but sadly all they have is burmese knock-offs of chinese knock-offs
of department store bikes.

there is one decent shop not too far from there with some parts and accessories.
the owner tours and has some mtb and touring stuff on hand. they've also got
a groovy mechanic dude who can re-build wheels. check out the 100-lb cast
iron truing stand!

they've got a crapload of used and damaged bikes in the back. if nothing new on
hand, i'm sure they've got some piece-parts to get you going.

the shop is on the north side of 37th (east-west street) between 76th and 78th
(north-south streets). that would be about 6-8 blocks due south of the railway
station.
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Old 01-01-14, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
if you're catching a pickemup truck into mandalay, they usually drop you off around
the corner of 84th & 35th. you'll be landing in "bicycle alley," a whole mess of bike
shops, but sadly all they have is knock-offs of chinese knock-offs of department
store bikes.

there is one decent shop not too far from there with some parts and accessories.
the owner tours and has some mtb and touring stuff on hand. they've also got
a groovy mechanic dude who can re-build wheels. check out the 100-lb cast
iron truing stand!

they've got a crapload of used and damaged bikes in the back. if nothing new on
hand, i'm sure they've got some piece-parts to get you going.

the shop is on the north side of 37th (east-west street) between 76th and 78th
(north-south streets). that would be about 6-8 blocks due south of the railway
station.
Awesome help..
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Old 01-01-14, 08:00 AM
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I wonder where this stripped thread is located on the crank, the left pedal thread? Could it be due to incorrect assembly at the airport or at the LBS?
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Old 01-01-14, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by ak08820 View Post
I wonder where this stripped thread is located on the crank, the left pedal thread? Could it be due to incorrect assembly at the airport or at the LBS?
probably cross-threaded the pedal when assembling after the flight. the threads were
weakened and just gave out.

he also has the option of doing a helicoil thingy. prolly lots of run-o-the-mill garages
or machine shops or motorcycle repair places can do that....maybe....if they have the
reverse-threaded tap and coil for the left side crank. too bad it's left side....spark
plug helicoils should work for the right.
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Old 01-01-14, 10:56 AM
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Ah, might have been that. Sigh. Thanks for the rec for the Mandalay shop! Not sure if there will be helicoil in Myanmar, but I'll try. Anyone know how to disassemble a LHT stock crank? Today, I unscrewed the first nut cap thingy, and a bunch of locals were just trying to hammer the crank out from the square spindle. Not sure if you could do that. I'm not too familiar with the technical aspects of the matter.
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Old 01-01-14, 11:22 AM
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The crank arm extractor thread interface surrounds the bolt (with it's washer)
holding the arm on the square taper BB spindle.

it should have been brought with you, (or at least, I'm of the type to bring one)

Hope the hammer technicians dont damage the bike more, in the repair attempt.





You have a contact at home to airmail another crankarm to you?
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Old 01-01-14, 12:13 PM
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Unless you are replacing the crank arm right now, I would stop trying to remove it. If it's just the pedal threads, and the pedal is falling out, could you find a piece of wood dowel or something to use as a "pedal" until you can get it properly fixed? Hammering on it could damage the frame or bottom bracket. If nobody has the correct tool and you are removing it for replacement, try riding around on flat ground with the fixing bolt out. The crank should come loose, just don't stand when you're riding.
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Old 01-01-14, 08:27 PM
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Originally Posted by likebike23 View Post
Unless you are replacing the crank arm right now, I would stop trying to remove it. If it's just the pedal threads, and the pedal is falling out, could you find a piece of wood dowel or something to use as a "pedal" until you can get it properly fixed? Hammering on it could damage the frame or bottom bracket. If nobody has the correct tool and you are removing it for replacement, try riding around on flat ground with the fixing bolt out. The crank should come loose, just don't stand when you're riding.
+1 on this. I was thinking you might want to use a long bolt with a couple of nuts & washers as a temporary pedal replacement.
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Old 01-01-14, 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by likebike23 View Post
Unless you are replacing the crank arm right now, I would stop trying to remove it. If it's just the pedal threads, and the pedal is falling out, .
If nobody has the crank remover, I think the only way you are going to get the crank arm off is with a hack saw, and once off it is off forever. So, DO NOT REMOVE IT unless you already have the replacement.

If possible, can you find some two part epoxy glue to glue the pedal in place? Fiberglass resin might also work as a glue if there are any marinas nearby.

If you think anybody could fabricate a pedal out of a piece of wood and a long bolt that you could lock onto the crank arm with two nuts on the bolt threads, that might get you to where you can get some better parts. If so, make sure you have the wrenches you need to remove the bolt they install and perhaps a spare jury rig pedal in case it fails.

Specificaly what I am thinking is a piece of wood like a 2 by 4 that is about 4 inches long with a hole, say 5/16 or 3/8 inch diameter thru it. Then a bolt about 5 inches long with some washers and nuts. Slide a washer onto the bolt, then the board, then another washer, then thread a nut onto the threads but do not thread it so tight the board will not turn. Then stick the remaining threads thru the pedal hole in the crank arm. Then tighten another nut onto that bolt threads to lock it on the crank arm. Something like this would likely not last more than 100 miles, but should get you on your way. IF you do this, might not be a bad idea to carry some wrenches that fit on the nuts, a few spare nuts, etc.

I do not think this was cross threaded as suggested above, I suspect it was not tightened on good enough at the airport. Pedals are threaded in using threads that will loosen over time if they are not tightened enough on installation. I once heard that in the days of the penny farthing, if the bearings locked up in a pedal that it could break your leg or ankle, but the safety factor was that they threaded the pedal in so that a failed bearing would instead loosen the pedal instead of breaking your ankle. And that is why one pedal is left hand threaded. I have no clue if this is true, penny farthings went out of favor before I was born, but I can understand the logic if it is true.
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Old 01-02-14, 10:01 AM
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It is fixed! For now. It seems pretty sturdy though--just did a sweet 70km on it. Well, (1) is the problem--stripped threads. (2) is my makeshift solution to cycle around town. I then went to visit an awesome mechanic in Pyin U Lyn, who did (3), (4), and (5). (3)--I'm not sure how he did it (I was walking around the market at that time), but he cut new threads into the crank. (4), he screwed a bolt with threads on the inside and outside (specially cut, too, perhaps?) into the inner side of the crank, using the newly cut crank threads. (5), he screwed the pedal into the bolt. It feels really sturdy so far, so fingers crossed. After the repairs, he invited us for a fantastic lunch.
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Old 01-02-14, 10:09 AM
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No, left-hand threading on the left pedal is so that precession (which is a *way* stronger force than friction) will tend to tighten the pedal. Back when both pedals were right-hand threaded, the left pedal would *always* loosen itself. They figured that one out in the 1800's. But I do agree that pedals should be installed snugly- wobbling around in the threads can't do them any good, even if the wobbling tends to tighten the pedal.

edit- Very clever fix by the mechanic! The bolt and the pedal will both tend to tighten themselves with precession. If he had put the head of the bolt in the other side of the crank arm, then it would have loosened up immediately...

edit edit- You'll need to replace that crank arm soon. It has been weakened a lot. Please don't stand on the pedals or put undue force on it until you can get it replaced.

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Old 01-03-14, 08:52 AM
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You are literally "on the road to Mandalay, where the old flottilla lay. You can here their paddles chunking from Rangoon to Mandalay..." ? Probably one of the most politically incorrect songs in English. Why do I like singing it
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Old 01-04-14, 12:25 AM
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Originally Posted by BigAura View Post
+1 on this. I was thinking you might want to use a long bolt with a couple of nuts & washers as a temporary pedal replacement.
+1 This is one of the most common fixes of my Burning Man Camp (Hardware). It'll do until you get to civilization and replace the whole arm.
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