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  1. #1
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    crank/bottom bracket noise/play

    When I did my shock air sleeve maintenance last week, I had to remove the cranks to get to the bolt for the shock. Today when I was riding, I noticed a rumbling feeling/sound coming from the bottom bracket or drivetrain. I just checked for play in the bottom bracket and noticed that the non-driveside crank was about 2-3mm out further than it should be, indicated by a shiny clean part. I bumped it really hard with the palm of my hand and it slid in. Thinking that my cranks weren't tight enough, I tightened the drive-side as tight as i thought i could get away with without breaking something... still if I bump the drive-side, the non-driveside comes out about 2mm.

    Do I need to tighten the bottom bracket and then try to tighten the cranks again? The bottom bracket is a race-face x-type on a 2009 giant trance. I don't currently own a bbt9 tool or wrench to tighten it. I don't think I can get the cranks any tighter than they are right now. In doing the air sleeve maintenance, before my ingenious idea of cutting the chain guard with a dremel (to get access to the bolt head I removed about 1/4 inch off of the mrp chain guard), I had tried to remove the drive-side bottom bracket cup with a large pair of vice grips. I'm unsure if it actually moved. I gave up on the vice grips fairly fast.
    Last edited by drwx; 05-28-2012 at 02:12 PM.

  2. #2
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    The BB seems unlikely to be your problem. What crankset do you have?

    It seems to me that something must be obstructing the tightening. Perhaps something (small pebble, plastic/metal piece, etc.) is lodged in your non-driveside crank preventing it from being tightened properly?

  3. #3
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    I think they are race face ride. They are whatever came with the bike originally.

    Sent from my SGH-I897 using Tapatalk 2

  4. #4
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    I did a little search and turned up installation instructions, but I'm not certain it's your crankset. Does yours have the ISIS drive spindle thingy (the 'EXI interface')? If so:

    Are you 100% certain the right side is all the way in to the spindle?

    Unless you don't have the 'EXI' thing, the only other I can think of is maybe the crank bolt threads (on the RH side) are stripped? (I expect not, since you can tighten it.)

    I do recall reading that Race Face says you can't (generally) overtighten the RH bolt. They said it must bottom out.

  5. #5
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    Press Fit BB?

    I have riddin ht's for years that come with cartridge type BB or the outboard style bearings I now have a FS mtb with a "press fit" BB with a SLX crankset. The bike is only 3 months old and now I have a creaking noise from the crank/bb area. Does a "press fit" BB have any service or maintenence? Or is it like a cartridge type? Use and replace as needed? I will also follow all the above suggested cures for the "creaks" on the other thread. Thank you for all comments and suggestions.

  6. #6
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    I agree with jsilva, the bottom bracket is not likely your problem. It's takes dedicated tools to remove or loosen external cup type bottom brackets like yours; not likely you loosened it with a set of vice grips. If you had loosened (backed out) the bottom bracket cup, the crankarms should then be tighter along the spindle, not looser.

    Any chance that you lost some of the spacers which were on the spindle? Sometimes the presence of spacers are not immediately apparent due to them being camouflaged by grease and accumulated dirt, only to fall off of the axle or the crankarm once they've been disassembled. When you reattached the drive-side crankarm and rode the bike, did the crankarm seem tight on the bottom bracket spindle? Does the chain line seem better when the 2~3mm gap was on the drive-side or the non-drive side? If the drive-side-crankarm and bottom bracket spindle interface is secure, then I'd make the assumption that a spacer was inadvertently lost and just put new ones on the side of the spindle that allows proper chainline and front shifting (I'm guessing the rumbling noise you heard/felt was the chain or rings striking the front derailleur cage due to unstable chainline).
    Go on ahead, I'm gonna take a breather.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by jekramerjr51 View Post
    I have riddin ht's for years that come with cartridge type BB or the outboard style bearings I now have a FS mtb with a "press fit" BB with a SLX crankset. The bike is only 3 months old and now I have a creaking noise from the crank/bb area. Does a "press fit" BB have any service or maintenence? Or is it like a cartridge type? Use and replace as needed? I will also follow all the above suggested cures for the "creaks" on the other thread. Thank you for all comments and suggestions.
    At the risk of thread jacking and hopefully with the OP's indulgence I'll take a stab at a reply.

    Press fit bottom brackets are similar to external cup bottom brackets, except that the cups are pressed into the frame as opposed to threaded in. In terms of maintenance, it's the usual wipe off the dirt and grime, avoid direct spray with pressure washer, avoid degreasers near the bearing, drill-a-hole-on-the-bottom-bracket-shell-to-allow-water-to-escape, pack the bearings with fresh grease, and replace the cartridge bearings when they're worn out. The quick maintenance is as you wrote "use and replace as needed."

    Many threads on the forum regarding where creaking noises come from; vast majority of the cases come from inadequate application of grease to surfaces which contact each other. If the creaking persists, do chime back in to let the forum know what you've tried so we can help brainstorm other possible causes.
    Go on ahead, I'm gonna take a breather.

  8. #8
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    I have the press fit bottom bracket and used the blue locktite gel around the outer surface of the bearings where it meets the frame cup. The bike has been noise free for several hundred miles now. The bearings did not seem any harder to get out and you should let the locktite set before riding the bike.

  9. #9
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    If I'm missing a spacer, it would be on the drive side. I didn't need to remove the other crank. I looked around in the garage and didn't see anything on the floor that looked like a spacer. Would it just look like a washer? I don't remember seeing anything fall off after I pulled the crank off. The spacer may have already been missing.

    Sent from my SGH-I897 using Tapatalk 2

  10. #10
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    I'll second winter's idea on missing spacers, though like my suggestion (i.e. the spindle not in all the way) I imagine that would result in unfixable side-to-side movement of the crank arms. Is that what's happening? What you wrote initially sounds like the crank arm would come out and then you could push it back in.

    First I would recommend verifying if the crank assembly moves side to side or if indeed one arm is actually coming out.

  11. #11
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    With both arms on and everything tight, i can bump the drive side and have the non drive side come out about 1-2mm. I can then bump the non drive side and get it to go back in.

    I'm going to take it apart again tonight and check for obstructions. I don't think i dropped a spacer.

    Sent from my SGH-I897 using Tapatalk 2

  12. #12
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    here's the manual... there are "spacers" but they usually stick to the crank arms after first install and they actually prevent the cranks from over tightening against the bearing seals more than fill space..? usually if there is side to side play it's most likely you didn't clean well and re-grease the spindle and inside the arm of the drive side crank and dirt got in there and prevented you from tightening all the way down

    http://www.bike-components.de/bedien...s_am_crank.pdf
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  13. #13
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    That makes sense. Removing the cranks is about a 5 minute process, so I'm going to start there when I get home.

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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by drwx View Post
    That makes sense. Removing the cranks is about a 5 minute process, so I'm going to start there when I get home.

    Sent from my SGH-I897 using Tapatalk 2
    ya.. clean everything really good.. like tooth brush and q-tip clean. That includes the bolt and the threads for the bolt too....cranks arms get dirty and when you take it apart a lot can fall onto areas that need to be really clean. Then coat with an even film of grease before re-assy. you really have to crank down on that bolt too.. if you got a torque wrench it's even better.
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  15. #15
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    i read through the document. it looks like the bottom bracket is just the opposite of what i thought it would be. if you are looking at the drive side cup, turning counter-clockwise tightens it (step 3) ? that is just the opposite of what i would expect. that is the direction that i was initially trying to turn the cup to get it off. i think it may be possible that it tightened enough to cause the tiny gap.

  16. #16
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    that wont matter... the cranks clamp down onto the bearings races not a set distance. there is a lip on the spindle that butts to the inside of the bearings race and then the bolt and crank arm clamp to the other side of the race. the cranks don't actually clamp across the 2 bearings but only the one on the drive side (if I remember the race face interface correctly) most like Sram and Shimano use the non-drive side bearing as the side to side holder, with the drive side bearing floating on the spindle and allowing it to do the work of keeping it from going up and down or forward and back.. make sense? not sure if I described that well..
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  17. #17
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    i fixed this when I got home. I took the crank off again, hit the splines with some cleaner, regreased everything, reassembled, and checked for side to side motion. there was none. my assumption is that some gunk got into one or more of the splines and was preventing the cranks from going all the way on.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by drwx View Post
    i fixed this when I got home. I took the crank off again, hit the splines with some cleaner, regreased everything, reassembled, and checked for side to side motion. there was none. my assumption is that some gunk got into one or more of the splines and was preventing the cranks from going all the way on.
    Congratulations! Mystery solved!
    Go on ahead, I'm gonna take a breather.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by drwx View Post
    i fixed this when I got home. I took the crank off again, hit the splines with some cleaner, regreased everything, reassembled, and checked for side to side motion. there was none. my assumption is that some gunk got into one or more of the splines and was preventing the cranks from going all the way on.
    ya.. what i was thinking... glad you got it!! now go ride and get it all gunky again
    Going to try and bring Trail Tire TV back. go take a look... http://trailtiretv.blogspot.com/

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