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  1. #1
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    What's up with noisy FSR Pivot bearings?

    Any idea if cartridge bearings would be covered under warranty? I have had my 04 enduro for less than a year and the bearings at the main pivots are super squeaky and creaky. I took the other pivots apart to isolate the noise to the main pivot. All the bearings feel gritty.

    I only have like 400 miles on it. I don't ride in muddy conditions. My 2000 enduro pivots never made a peep, even after a few thousand miles. So what's up with the crappy bearings? Are there better cartridge bearings to be had?

    Thanks...

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by FSRguy
    Any idea if cartridge bearings would be covered under warranty? I have had my 04 enduro for less than a year and the bearings at the main pivots are super squeaky and creaky. I took the other pivots apart to isolate the noise to the main pivot. All the bearings feel gritty.

    I only have like 400 miles on it. I don't ride in muddy conditions. My 2000 enduro pivots never made a peep, even after a few thousand miles. So what's up with the crappy bearings? Are there better cartridge bearings to be had?

    Thanks...
    I don't want to sound like a smart ass, but have you checked your seat to see if the noise is coming from it? sometimes dirt gets under the saddle and seat rails that makes a squeeking noise. I have had several friends and myself included that saved ourselves the money on the bearings when they were not needed. 2 other friends spent the money only to find that it was the seat and not the bearings making the noise.
    Last edited by SALAS331GT; 11-13-2005 at 01:00 AM. Reason: spelling

  3. #3
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    My '06 SJ FSR is Creaking horribly!

    Hmmm...Seat post creaking? Not on my '06 SJ FSR, but I have creaking nonetheless.

    I got my SJ last Monday and have three rides on it so far. The creaking is horrendous. Standing, seated, whatever. It creaks loudly. Cranks and bottom bracket have been removed, cleaned, teflon-coated and properly torqued to specs.

    When I ride, it creaks. To test it while stationary, I stand beside my bike in the garage, right grip of the handlebar in my right hand, slightly lean the bike over and with my left foot press on the right pedal slightly and the bike CREAKS. Now, stand the bike up, grab the top tube with both hands and press down, and the bike CREAKS LIKE AN OLD MAN.

    Seat and seat tube are therefore taken out of the equation. All bolts are clean and properly torqued.

    Anyone have any idea? I got rid of my last bike because I got sick of creaking. The reviews on SJ FSRs did not reveal clues that I would have to deal with creaking...

    Anyone?
    Michael

  4. #4
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    Sorry to hear that

    I'd take it back to the shop, which it sounds like you have done. I think specialized warrantys the complete bike for one year.

    I would ask the shop to remove the rear shock so the rear suspension linkage can be moved freely and easily and see if any of the pivots are creaking.

    I took apart the 2 smaller pivot points holding the shock linkage and was able to move the main pivot on it's own. It creaked like crazy with zero load and just a small amount of movement. I think the cartridge bearings are crap.

    HTH

  5. #5
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    Creaking in my '06 SJ FSR also... Help, I want to ride tomorrow!!!

    Me Too! I've had the bike for about 80 miles mixed On/Off road now and a creak in rear shock linkage has become increasingly more persistant. It seems like it is coming from the forward most linkage where the head of the shock mounts to the frame (at the top tube) Is this a pivot point or is it fixed. If it's a pivot point, can I lube it? If it's a fixed mount point, should I tighten it? (BTW, tried that already...)

    If you've got the 411, give it up quick because I'd love not to miss a great San Diego ride tomorrow...

    (In any case, I'll visit LBS when I can and post what I find out.)

    Thanks.



    Quote Originally Posted by azdrawdy
    Hmmm...Seat post creaking? Not on my '06 SJ FSR, but I have creaking nonetheless.

    I got my SJ last Monday and have three rides on it so far. The creaking is horrendous. Standing, seated, whatever. It creaks loudly. Cranks and bottom bracket have been removed, cleaned, teflon-coated and properly torqued to specs.

    When I ride, it creaks. To test it while stationary, I stand beside my bike in the garage, right grip of the handlebar in my right hand, slightly lean the bike over and with my left foot press on the right pedal slightly and the bike CREAKS. Now, stand the bike up, grab the top tube with both hands and press down, and the bike CREAKS LIKE AN OLD MAN.

    Seat and seat tube are therefore taken out of the equation. All bolts are clean and properly torqued.

    Anyone have any idea? I got rid of my last bike because I got sick of creaking. The reviews on SJ FSRs did not reveal clues that I would have to deal with creaking...

    Anyone?
    Michael

  6. #6
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    My '05 SJ FSR 120 started creaking loud when it was a few weeks old, and here's how I got rid of the problem:

    - Open the pivot bolts and wipe away all dirt and grease from the bolts and the bearings. If I remember correctly, also the bearings had detachable rubber covers so you could take them off and wipe them clean.

    - Add LOTS of clean vaseline to every bearing and bolt and tighten the bolts with a torque wrench. All excess vaseline will squirt out when the bolts are tightened, but enough will be left in to prevent dirt from getting in between the bolts and the bearings ( which causes the creaking)

    - Wipe away any leftover vaseline with degraeser and enjoy your silent ride. My SJ has performed flawlessly after the operation. Your LBS would probably do the same operation.

  7. #7
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    Interesting. I just picked up my 06 SJ, haven't even gotten a trail ride in yet, and noticed when I leaned on the seat, I heard some creaking. I hope this doesn't continue because it will drive me nuts.

  8. #8
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    from Specialized web site

    Found this on the S website. It was under the FAQ section at the top of the Stumpjumper FSR page. Not sure whey they say not to use synthetics. I know that some synthetics will attack rubber gaskets and seals - may be afraid of the same with the bearing seals.

    I assume that this applies to the newer models as well...worth a shot anyway. Make sure you wipe off the excess as motor oil will attract dirt.



    Rear suspension squeak
    Question
    I have a 1998 FSR Extreme. I have developed a loud squeak or creak in my rear suspension. Are the pivot points supposed to be lubed, if so, how and with what?

    Answer
    At 9/28/99 11:18 AM we wrote -
    Yes, the pivot points should be lubed after every wash, or after every couple of rides.

    The best lube I've found is good old motor oil. Do not use synthetic oil. Just put a few drops on the top of each pivot, let it soak in, and then wipe off the excess.

    This should fix the squeek. If it doesn't go away, it might be time to have all the pivots serviced. Check your owners manual or visit your local Specialized dealer for the details on a full-servicing.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by sthrnfat
    Found this on the S website. It was under the FAQ section at the top of the Stumpjumper FSR page. Not sure whey they say not to use synthetics. I know that some synthetics will attack rubber gaskets and seals - may be afraid of the same with the bearing seals.

    I assume that this applies to the newer models as well...worth a shot anyway. Make sure you wipe off the excess as motor oil will attract dirt.



    Rear suspension squeak
    Question
    I have a 1998 FSR Extreme. I have developed a loud squeak or creak in my rear suspension. Are the pivot points supposed to be lubed, if so, how and with what?

    Answer
    At 9/28/99 11:18 AM we wrote -
    Yes, the pivot points should be lubed after every wash, or after every couple of rides.

    The best lube I've found is good old motor oil. Do not use synthetic oil. Just put a few drops on the top of each pivot, let it soak in, and then wipe off the excess.

    This should fix the squeek. If it doesn't go away, it might be time to have all the pivots serviced. Check your owners manual or visit your local Specialized dealer for the details on a full-servicing.
    Check the date:
    "Answer
    At 9/28/99 11:18 AM we wrote - "

    The current pivots use sealed cartridge bearings, which can't be lubed externally anyway.

  10. #10
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    Smile Found it!

    After removing each bolt in the suspension, wiping them down carefully even though they were new, and putting a light coat of Phil Wood lube on them prior to properly torquing them down per specs, it was the last one I came to that was the culprit: Lower shock pivot bolt. Imagine!

    The lower shock pivot bolt. It had a very slight rocking in it when alternately pushing down and pulling up on the top tube while holding the rear tire against the ground. My wife first noticed it when I had her place her fingertips on each bolt as I did the push/pull routine over and over. I removed the bolt and washers, wiped it down, put some Phil Wood on it, torqued it properly, and that baby is as silent as a mouse. It seemed as though the washers were not seated properly between the bolt and swingarm. I put over thirty miles on it this weekend. Love this bike now!

    Michael

  11. #11
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    I found the problem on my bike as well. The shock mount in the swing arm link was loose. I took it to the shop and one of the mechs there had a 05 Expert and was familiar with all the creaks. It took him longer to walk 15 feet to get to the allen wrench than to tighten the bolt and fix it. The bike is solid and quiet.

  12. #12
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    creak, creak, creak, creak, creak, creak

    I've had my '06 Stumpjumper FSR Expert less than two months and have been getting in some nice rides and love my new ride. Last night I got in some road miles and the creaking similar to what's been described here became readily apparent. I think it had been making some noise before this, but it was more obvious on the road. It was audible with every revolution of the pedals but also when I stopped pedaling and bounced up and down a bit.

    I still have a free tune-up coming from the shop (Fat Tire Farm in Portland, OR) and I'm planning on taking it in. In the meantime, I will check the bolts as described in other posts here.
    free-flowing meat waves of possibility...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by azdrawdy
    Hmmm...Seat post creaking? Not on my '06 SJ FSR, but I have creaking nonetheless.

    I got my SJ last Monday and have three rides on it so far. The creaking is horrendous. Standing, seated, whatever. It creaks loudly. Cranks and bottom bracket have been removed, cleaned, teflon-coated and properly torqued to specs.

    When I ride, it creaks. To test it while stationary, I stand beside my bike in the garage, right grip of the handlebar in my right hand, slightly lean the bike over and with my left foot press on the right pedal slightly and the bike CREAKS. Now, stand the bike up, grab the top tube with both hands and press down, and the bike CREAKS LIKE AN OLD MAN.

    Seat and seat tube are therefore taken out of the equation. All bolts are clean and properly torqued.

    Anyone have any idea? I got rid of my last bike because I got sick of creaking. The reviews on SJ FSRs did not reveal clues that I would have to deal with creaking...

    Anyone?
    Michael

    I had the same problem on my 06 Stumpy FSR. Creaking after 1 hour of riding. I found that the bolts and metal sleeve bearings that attach the ends of the shock to the frame had no visible lubrication on them. The bolts had score marks fom metal-to-metal rubbing. Removing and greasing them solved the problem. I understand that older Stumpy FSR's had DU bearings which did not require lube. Evidently, Specialized forgot to modify thier factory proceedures to add lube when they switched to metal sleeve bearings.

    After about 3 months the creaking returned and it was solved again by relubing.

  14. #14
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    Might want to check this:

    Got a new SJ a couple weeks ago. Started getting creakage thru the first ride. Thought it might be the BB. However, when I got home and went to put the bike away, I noticed some play in the suspension when lifting the bike. Turned out to be that the lower shock bolt/link was coming out. It wasn't loctited at the factory like the SJ user manual says the bolt is supposed to be! Tightened it up and all is still good. I figure I'll have to do it proper with loc-tite before long though.

    Ride On!

  15. #15
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    tighten your seats guys or gals. believe it or not I had the same problem(s). The creak/click is caused by the seat (very common issue when walking right out of the shop). The squeak is caused by the pivots (usually occurs after several hours of riding).
    so if you can't tell the difference just follow this advice: If you just got the bike about a week ago, try tightening the seat first.
    I took the whole suspension apart before i found out about that it was the seat. I wasted so much time that I could have been riding.
    Several rides later, then, I heard the squeak. Now, that was the pivots. A little bit of oil here. A little bit there......quiet as an owl in motion.

  16. #16
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    I second the lower shock bolt

    My '06 stumpy expert creaked and clicked right out fo the shop. A little locktite on the lower shock bolt and the problem was easily solved. Looks like they did forget something there!

  17. #17
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    Im having the same problem with my 2 week old FSR comp.
    But Im a little mixed up. some people are saying lube the bolts and some are saying use locktite. Is this dependant on the bolt causing the the problem? also what kind/brand of lube and lock tite should be used. maybe some one could post a pic with some lables to show what gets what.

    thanks,

    Eric
    Three out of the four voices in my head say, "Go for it!"

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wedgy
    Im having the same problem with my 2 week old FSR comp.
    But Im a little mixed up. some people are saying lube the bolts and some are saying use locktite. Is this dependant on the bolt causing the the problem? also what kind/brand of lube and lock tite should be used. maybe some one could post a pic with some lables to show what gets what.

    thanks,

    Eric
    My post on lubing the bolts referred to the bolts and sleeve bearings on either end of the rear shock. The pre - 2006 models had DU (soft) bearings in the shock eyes that did not require lube. My 06 has metal sleeve bearings which squeeked until I lubed them. Any type of lubricating grease should do the job. Pull the bolts out, coat the unthreaded section with grease and re-install. Make sure you don't lose the fiber washers on either end of the rearmost shock eye bearing. I used water resistant grease made for boat trailer wheel bearings but standard automobile grease should work fine.

    Based on the other posts, it looks like you should also make sure that all of the suspension pivot bolts are tight. These are the bolts that go into the points where the various frame parts pivot or rotate as the back wheel goes up and down . To keep them from loosening, you can add Loctite (blue grade) to the threads. These suspension pivots have sealed ball bearings and don't normally need lubrication.

  19. #19
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    cool, that makes it much more clear. Im sure it will be even more clear when Im in front of my bike and can see what parts you are taking about.

    thanks
    Three out of the four voices in my head say, "Go for it!"

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    08 Kona Unit 2-9

  20. #20
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    My 03 SJ FSR developed quite a bit of suspension noise that took awhile to isolate. At first, it was the cartridge bearings where the seatstays attach to the shock link. Replaced those (they were visibly trashed, as somehow the covers had become damaged and all sorts of grime got in there). A couple months later, the noise returned. During an extensive breakdown of the rear suspension that did not finding any bad bearings, I found that the BOLT that attached the seatstays to the shock linkage was actually bent ever so slightly, allowing some play under riding conditions, which caused the bolt to loosen slightly. But, the parts fit tight enough that the noise was not replicatable under controlled shop conditions. Tricky, tricky.

    If you've got a noise, there's SOMETHING going on. Check/clean the seat and seatpost first. If that isn't it, check all of your suspension bolts for tightness, lubrication, and/or loctite. If that isn't it, check your bearings. If that's not it, check your cranks/pedals/bb. If that's not it, start looking for cracks!

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