Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    lazy piston
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    373

    Ion 16 - play in suspension

    Hello everyone.

    I've recently built up an Ion 16 to replace my old Helius FR from 2007. Here's the pic just in case:



    However it seems to have a little problem with play in the suspension. I think I've narrowed it down to the upper pivot, the one where the ET-K is. When I grab the frame by the top tube and rock the wheel with the other hand back and forth, the seatstays seem to be flexing too much around that pivot and I feel a definite play. It's not the wheel because I've tried two different ones.

    Shock removal does not affect the amount of play, but loosening the 4 mm hex bolt in the pivot increases it - that's why I believe the problem lies in that pivot. However I can't tighten it enough to remove all play, I'm afraid I'll strip the threads or damage the bolt.

    The frame is brand new and I've had three rides on it only. Bringing the bike to a shop to have someone check it is not an option because where I live, a rare person has heard of Nicolai bikes, let alone has any experience in fixing them.

    Any advice on what else I should check or do to eliminate the play? It's not huge and does not seem to affect how the bike rides but I'm used to totally play-free suspension bikes like my previous Nicolai or my current Turner. Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    yet another stupid german
    Reputation: raschaa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    222
    Hey Mr. Smith^^

    seeing that at that pivot there are angular bearings that should be play free with 5nm on the bolt, they are most likely not the culprit. Same on all other pivots except for the horst-links. I would check those.

    - put bike in workstand
    - remove rear wheel
    - remove bolt at ET-K, while unscrewing push on the bolt to press the insert on the opposite side out of the seat stay, remove and then push out insert on other side.
    - now you can take the seat stay and easily check the horst-link pivots for play. if they do have play, loosen grubscrew on inside of the pivot (3mm hex) and then tighten up the 4mm bolt to 2.5nm. if it's still not play free go on up, but more than 4nm+/- should not be necessary.
    - obviously, on both sides

    all other pivots have angular contact bearings and these need only minimal preload to be play free.

    post back how it goes!

  3. #3
    lazy piston
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    373
    Thanks for your input raschaa! However I've already tried taking the ET-K apart and failed. For some reason I can't press out the insert opposite to the bolt, even with the help of a plastic mallet. The seatstay just flexes outwards, and that's it. I've even tried to tie the seatstays together with a sturdy rope to prevent them from flexing but the ET-K insert seems to be stuck.

    I think I'll try tightening the horst-link pivot just a little to see if it has any effect on the play.

  4. #4
    yet another stupid german
    Reputation: raschaa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    222
    Wait! maybe that is the problem...

    In this case I would rule out something being wrong first (and it would be nice if you can use the ET-K as designed^^). I would remove that complete seatstay and have a look at it and get that ET-K out..

    - as above...
    - remove derailleur
    - remove preload screw and caps at horstlink.
    - there is a 15mm axle that you need to get pushed out of the pivot, but its rarely very tight, the pressfit is just in the 2 alu tabs of the seatstay. when that is out you can just pull up on the seatstay and then remove it with the stuck ETK from the rocker... a wooden dowel or aluminum <15mm will work fine, I have a lathe and make all those tools myself

    maybe there is something wrong where the ETK seats in the stay and its not resting against the bearing decently and that causes the play...

    I'm online another 2hrs. and will support where I can...

  5. #5
    lazy piston
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    373
    Well, I've already tightened the horst link pivots and... it did the trick! Or at least it seems so. I've given each pivot about 1/16 of a turn and now the play is gone. I'll keep checking it periodically though - well, I would do it anyway, the paranoid that I am

    Looks like on the new frames there's only the horst link pivot that can "wear in" with time and may need adjustment now and then, and all other ones are no longer adjustable, am I right? I'm used to my old Helius FR where each pivot could be adjusted individually - which was a nice feature but at the same time gave a lot of headache when I was looking for that single pivot that was causing play. In most cases it was the swing arm pivot though.

    As for the ET-K I think I won't touch it for now (anyway I wasn't going to change the geometry) but I'll remember your advice and will sort it out if the need comes.

    raschaa thanks a lot for your help! Good to know there are people like you around this forum!

  6. #6
    yet another stupid german
    Reputation: raschaa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    222
    OK, since you had an FR you know your way around the old preload adjusters... once they have settled in they rarely need adjusting.

    my 2 nics get a complete tear down and rebuild once a year and the needle bearings on my Ion20 lasted 4 years (and didn't even look that bad...)

    but I couldn't sleep at night not knowing why my ETK is stuck in the seatstay...

    rock on!

  7. #7
    lazy piston
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    373
    Quote Originally Posted by raschaa View Post
    OK, since you had an FR you know your way around the old preload adjusters... once they have settled in they rarely need adjusting.
    That's right, I did a full rebuild of the frame twice and plan on doing a third one before retiring it.

    Quote Originally Posted by raschaa View Post
    but I couldn't sleep at night not knowing why my ETK is stuck in the seatstay...
    Well, I for one would omit this option at all if I could, this bike ought to be low and slack and IMHO does not need the high setting. Maybe guys at Nicolai had read my mind and welded it all together But you surely do have a point. Perhaps I will look into this one of these days.

  8. #8
    "Its All Good"
    Reputation: Whafe's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    10,715
    Awesome work raschaa, great to see this sort of help.... Fantastic..

    Smith, how are you liking the Ion16?
    The_Lecht_Rocks: whafe - cheeers - may i offer an official apology for the wagon wheeler "dis-belief"

  9. #9
    yet another stupid german
    Reputation: raschaa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    222
    Hey Whafe!

    No problem, glad to help where I can...

    Don't know if you caught this one? A bit of Ion16 tech with some pics by JJ.

  10. #10
    lazy piston
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    373
    Quote Originally Posted by Whafe View Post
    Smith, how are you liking the Ion16?
    I haven't had a chance to put it through a proper test yet - I've only had a few rides around town to check if I put everything together right. However I have 3 or 4 trips to the mountains planned for this season so the bike is going to see lots of action.

    For now I can say that in comparison with the Ion, my 2007 Helius FR looks archaic, with all its "speed holes", geo and travel adjustments, QR dropouts and 1 1/8" headtube. Don't get me wrong, it was a fantastic bike and the longest living in my stable, however the Ion is a huge step forward: 142x12 axle, tapered headtube, lower center of gravity, lower leverage ratio, slacker angles, PM brake mount, much cleaner looks. The guys at Nicolai seem to have done everything right with the Ion.

  11. #11
    lazy piston
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    373
    Quote Originally Posted by raschaa View Post
    Don't know if you caught this one? A bit of Ion16 tech with some pics by JJ.
    Sure I did, thanks! That one is a good thread and helps a lot to understand what the new pivots look like from inside.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 69
    Last Post: 11-13-2013, 02:07 PM
  2. Replies: 5
    Last Post: 06-13-2013, 04:22 AM
  3. Play in suspension pivot
    By Mr_Melin in forum Bike and Frame discussion
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 11-02-2011, 12:48 PM
  4. Banshee Rune Suspension Play?
    By darkslide18 in forum Banshee Bikes
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 10-30-2011, 11:53 PM
  5. Pivot Mach 5 rear suspension play
    By magixuser in forum Pivot Cycles
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 06-28-2011, 09:07 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •