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  1. #1
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    Strange Noise Up Front

    Hello everyone. I've been lurking and reading for about a week and a half now, but this is my first post.

    Over the weekend I noticed a strange noise coming off my front wheel. It's hard to describe, but its some sort of creaking, tinny, metallic sound. I've checked to make sure it wasn't the brakes rubbing, but beyond that I can't tell. The hub maybe? Or the front fork?

    The sound is only noticeable when I'm riding on pavement. I don't hear it at all when I'm on the trails, just pushing it, or just spinning the wheel.

    The bike's an '04 Trek 8000.

    Any ideas? Until I get to know my way around the bike more (my wrenching's been limited to chain cleaning and the like), I'm at a loss.

  2. #2
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    Cool-blue Rhythm Can I help?

    Quote Originally Posted by Belisarius
    Hello everyone. I've been lurking and reading for about a week and a half now, but this is my first post.

    Over the weekend I noticed a strange noise coming off my front wheel. It's hard to describe, but its some sort of creaking, tinny, metallic sound. I've checked to make sure it wasn't the brakes rubbing, but beyond that I can't tell. The hub maybe? Or the front fork?

    The sound is only noticeable when I'm riding on pavement. I don't hear it at all when I'm on the trails, just pushing it, or just spinning the wheel.

    The bike's an '04 Trek 8000.

    Any ideas? Until I get to know my way around the bike more (my wrenching's been limited to chain cleaning and the like), I'm at a loss.
    First off, I'd like to take the Opportunity to congratulate you on an excellent purchase. I own a Trek 4500, but it might as well be an 8000 for all the upgrades I've put on it. I been riding for a while now, and my Trek is my best friend. As for the noise up front, You say you checked your rims to make sure brakes not rubbing. But, have you checked and tightened your skewers? In case you don't know what they be, they fit through the hub and hold your wheel on your fork . It is really easy to overlook them. It might be your front hub. Do you have loose spokes? That might be it too. How often do you ride? If none of the above is wrong, then try this: Holding your brakes to prevent the bike from moving, push down hard and compress your fork. If it squeaks, then take it to your dealer. My quess, in that case is that your seals may be loose or going out. It could even be the spring. That said, I don't think that's it. Only squeaks on pavement huh? This may be dumb to ask, but could it be tire whine. They won't whine off road, but on the pavement my kinetics whine awefully. They aren't built for the road, so it's a little hard on them. After you try everything I suggested, write back and let me know. You can contact me at mikey42186@yahoo.com if you like. I am happy to try to help as much as I can.
    Last edited by mikey42186; 07-25-2004 at 09:42 PM. Reason: said something wrong

  3. #3
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    Mikey, thanks for the suggestions. I've tightened down the skewer and pumped down on the fork. Neither seems to be the problem. It could be a spoke, but I'm not sure how to check them. I assume it involves pulling the tire and the tube? Even then though, I'm under the impression they are tightened to pretty specific tolerances.

    I know its not just tire whine - eight years of offroading (in vehicles) have given me a pretty good ear for it. Though it does seem to hit on a revolution basis. It sounds similar to the tire whine, but higher-pitched, more metallic.

    If I were pressed, my guesses would be something internal in the hub, or the spokes. Though I didn't expect either to be acting up yet. The bike's only two-ish months old. I ride 3-4 times a week up at a park with some pretty decent singletracks, but it doesn't sound anywhere near the level others on the board mention. Roots, rocks, ruts, and water. No 3 to 4 ft drops. No water I ride through deep enough to catch the hub.

  4. #4
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    New question here. Wierd

    Quote Originally Posted by Belisarius
    Mikey, thanks for the suggestions. I've tightened down the skewer and pumped down on the fork. Neither seems to be the problem. It could be a spoke, but I'm not sure how to check them. I assume it involves pulling the tire and the tube? Even then though, I'm under the impression they are tightened to pretty specific tolerances.

    I know its not just tire whine - eight years of offroading (in vehicles) have given me a pretty good ear for it. Though it does seem to hit on a revolution basis. It sounds similar to the tire whine, but higher-pitched, more metallic.

    If I were pressed, my guesses would be something internal in the hub, or the spokes. Though I didn't expect either to be acting up yet. The bike's only two-ish months old. I ride 3-4 times a week up at a park with some pretty decent singletracks, but it doesn't sound anywhere near the level others on the board mention. Roots, rocks, ruts, and water. No 3 to 4 ft drops. No water I ride through deep enough to catch the hub.
    I know you've probly already checked, but check your again to make sure brakes don't rub. I didn't even think of it until you said it whines on a revolutionary basis. I assume you mean as it hits a specific spot each time, it squeaks. Lift your bike and give a good hard spin on both tires while you watch the rim. It won't necessarily be a major rub. Just barely making contact would cause a high pitch whine though. I doubt you would notice it off road. When off road, you have other things to worry about, like concentrating on where your going. I had the same problem when I installed my new fork. I had bumped the brakes kinda, and they were rubbing on one point of the wheel as it went by. Other than that, I'm stumped. If it isn't your brakes, then I would have to go with your guess that it may be inside of your front hub. It just doesn't sound like you've had the bike long enough to be having hub trouble. Write back and let me know. Mikey42186

  5. #5
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    Readjusted the brakes this morning (they weren't rubbing before, but were something fierce after I pulled out the skewer) - in a free spin they don't rub at all. But that sound is still there.

    I don't want to, but I may have to cave and take it up to the LBS. At least see if they can diagnose it. It's difficult to describe the sound over a BBS...

  6. #6
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    My ears must have been deceiving me...

    Turns out it was the seatpost. Pulled it, cleaned it, tightened everything down, and the noise is gone. Must have been some strange inner ear perception thing that projected the noise out front...

  7. #7
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    You beat me to it

    Quote Originally Posted by Belisarius
    Turns out it was the seatpost. Pulled it, cleaned it, tightened everything down, and the noise is gone. Must have been some strange inner ear perception thing that projected the noise out front...
    Its always hard to tell exactly where a noise is coming from on the bike. But you found that out already!

  8. #8
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    That's for Sure!

    Quote Originally Posted by SwissBuster
    Its always hard to tell exactly where a noise is coming from on the bike. But you found that out already!
    I've been an avid offroader (4x4, not mtb) for something like eight years now. I'm far more used to tracking noises in a vehicle, but there the noise is usually accompanied by a vibration or rattle that can give its location away.

    Of course, I can also swap differentials, pull hubs, and extract sheared axle shafts, but anything beyond the most basic bike maintenance leaves me scratching my head.

    Time to learn a new game, I suppose!

  9. #9
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    I was just about to suggest removing the seat post, clean and grease and put it back in. I had something similar, drove me nuts. I finally pulled the cranks off took out the bottom bracket, cleaned everything greased the threads and all. I put everything back together. Convinced I'd fixed it I went for a ride. It was still there. I was so annoyed. I took the pedal axels out and cleaned and greased them too. Sure enough it turned out to be the pedals squeaking. Like I said it drove me nuts, but the sweet sound of a smooth running bike was workth the work.
    I like to ride bikes.

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