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"Self-extracting" crank bolts are evil. Some questions...(10 posts)

"Self-extracting" crank bolts are evil. Some questions...Eug
May 20, 2003 3:51 PM
OK, I tried what was suggested in this thread and ended up bleeding all over my tools.

In short, I tried using the self-extracting bolts from my Ultegra set on my 105 splined cranks to remove it, so that I could install my Ultegra crankset. As I was supposed to, I installed the washer, then the bolt, and then the cap, and then turned counterclockwise. It was my fault of course but I guess I didn't put the end-cap on all the way and it got stuck as I was turning the bolt. I stripped a thread and little shards of aluminum then pierced my thumb... #*@$#*^%@

So basically I'm gonna go out and get a real crank puller for splined cranks.


1) Does this happen not infrequently? I know I'm an idiot, but the cap seems kinda flimsy.
2) How much is a tool for the cap? Two allen keys in the holes don't seem to work. It also seems like if that cap ever seized you'd be up the creek.
3) Is there any problem with just using the bolt from my 105? I'd much rather just do that and use a real crank puller later if I need to remove the crankset. It seems like normal 105 bolts would fit no problem.
re: "Self-extracting" crank bolts are evil. Some questions...cdhbrad
May 21, 2003 5:27 AM
I don't trust them myself and got the Park Tools needed to do the job, a pin spanner to remove the lockring and a crankpuller for the splined crank spindle. Go to and they have a section on removing these cranks, with part numbers, photos, etc.
Hope you didn't ruin the crankarm when that thread stripped.
If you get the proper tools, you won't have to use the 105 bolts.
Good Luck.
I've not had any problems with the self-extracting bolts...davet
May 21, 2003 6:21 AM
...but I always lube the crankbolt threads, washers, the inside if the dustcover and the dustcover threads. Do this when you install your Ultegra crankset and save yourself grief later.
What's wrong with the standard 105 bolts?Eug
May 21, 2003 7:27 AM
If I get the proper crank puller, what's wrong with just using the 105's bolts? They're not self-extracting and might weigh a couple of grams more, but other than that I don't see a problem.

It's not as if I'm gonna be removing my crank arms on the road (ie. when I don't have my puller with me) or anything.
What's wrong with the standard 105 bolts?cdhbrad
May 21, 2003 8:55 AM
Nothing, if they fit the threads in the spindle(I have never tried those in an Ultegra BB) and have a proper sized washer to snug the crankarm to the spindle. You would probably want to find some dustcaps to keep the threads on the crankarm clean though.
Saved by self extracting bolts!LC
May 21, 2003 9:12 AM
Well not actually me, but a lady I was riding with anyway. The chain jammed so tight between the crank and the BB/frame that even three big strong men could not get it out. Good thing that it was a Ultegra crankset so that we could remove the crankset out on the road and free the chain. Unless you want to carry around a crank puller, you would have no way to get out of jam like that.
Saved by self extracting bolts!cdhbrad
May 21, 2003 11:47 AM
I don't disagree that they are good for that sort of situation, where you either fix the problem or walk home. For "at home" maintenance, I still prefer to remove the retaining ring with a pin spanner, remove the crankbolt, then use a crank puller to remove the cranks. Just force of habit from the square taper days, I suppose.
Same thing herelaffeaux
May 21, 2003 2:10 PM
On my MTB I had a really bad case of chain suck and the chain was jammed where it was not coming out. I was able to remove the cranks and reinstall it trail side with a mini-tool.

I'm not sure why you'd prefer a crank-puller to an allen wrench for removing cranks. I've never had a problem with them. It's not often that manufacturers make it easier to work on bikes, but this in one.
Maybe if those caps didn't seem so delicate...Eug
May 21, 2003 2:48 PM
Anyways, so far I've never had chain suck bad enough to require removing the cranks. (Got my MTB about 5 years ago or something like that.)

Knock on wood...
re: "Self-extracting" crank bolts are evil. Some questions...Calvin
May 21, 2003 10:09 AM
Any loose part can simply fall off. That can happen with these caps, or retaining-rings, but it is not common. The system seems to work well, but the rings need to be in fully tight.

See for one tool option the SPA-2. It has good leverage for getting the ring tight: