Creaking crank sound : LUSENET : Mountain Bike Hash Forum : One Thread

I seem to have a recurring problem with my crankset. I use a Shimano XT Hollowtech for my Santa Cruz Superlight and on recent trips to the forest, I noticed that whenever I crank hard on the pedals, I hear this clicking/creaking sound coming from the crank area. The sound is like a double click (click click) for every revolution turned. It only happens when I pedal hard. I've serviced the bottom bracket twice to no avail. BTW I'm using TIME ATAC pedals. Any ideas?

(Joe, I remembered you had a similar prob when we rode together near Amir's place, nr. the equestarian club I think).

-- matt (, August 21, 2001


My problem was the bearing on the rear hub. If your wheel is new or if you haven't submerged your hub in water, your hubs should be ok.

Have you tried greasing the splines on your crank? That might help. The pedal bearings might also be culprit.

-- Joe (, August 21, 2001.

The clicking sound could come from the bottom bracket. Most probable cause: The crankarm is not tightened hard enuf. OR the bottom bracket is not the right size.

-- IceCube (, August 22, 2001.

Just to elaborate on the above. Remove your crank arms from the BB, and clean the splines on the BB and the corresponding splines on the inside of the crankarm. Then regrease it and re-install the crankarms. Make sure it is tight enough. I'm unfamiliar with how much torque you need for the XT Hollowtech crankset, but because it is not a taper fit crankset, you can probably honk it down pretty tight.

Before you reinstall the cranks, make sure your BB has been installed correctly. Make sure the BB cups are not loose. Remember that the right side cup is reverse-threaded.

If you need more information, I find the mtbr techtalk board very useful: mtbr drivetrain discussion

If all else fails, pass your Santa Cruz Superlight to me and I'll help you get rid of that useless load of crap ;-)

-- Joe (, August 23, 2001.

Phantom creaks? Good opportunity to toss the XT and bb for XTRs.

If the clicking sound still persists, at least you know it wasn't coming from the xt cranks you just threw away.

Eliminating that, try tightening the front derailleur and the seatpost collar. A techno geek once told me that pedalling torque twists the seat tube, causing any loose fixtures bolted on to it to creak ie: seatpost collar and front derailleur.

Other suspects: rear skewers, loose spokes? Good luck.

-- james yap (, August 30, 2001.

I`ve finally solved the creaking problem!!! Taking a day off work on Thurs., I spent half of the afternoon at KSH TTDI to settle this prob once and for all. Ok, first they serviced my BB (again, for the third time). Nothing...the sound is still there. Then they tighten the chainrings...again nothing. We basically dismantled the whole bike with no positive results (shock mount, seatpost, headset and swingarm). I was really pissed off and about to sell the bike to a kid for 20 bucks when Alan suggested to check the main pivot. It turned out that the nut holding the pivot was loose!! So he unscrewed it and put some grease and retighten and WALLA! No more creak! Problem solved, and the kid went away disappointed. I can now ride in peace!!!

-- matt (, August 31, 2001.

I had creaky cranks on my bmx and my cranks were only 6 mths old.So I asked around and someone told me to take my cranks completely off.Then clean the splines with degreasing stuff.Then clean the cups and the hole and to make sure that they were spotless.It worked for me!the creaking happens when the cranks have been recently been taken off and put back on, and dirt/sand getting in and on them.hope it helps.

-- Ben Cattroll (, December 01, 2002.

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