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Help! Stuck Crankarm!!!(10 posts)

Help! Stuck Crankarm!!!crosscut
Jan 6, 2003 7:32 PM
It's winter and time to do my winter overhaul. Everything is going fine. I'm replacing cables, brake shoes, took my derailleurs off and cleaned and lubed them.

Then I got to the cranks. They are Dura-Ace splined. Been on the bike about a year and a half. Connected to an Ultegra BB, English thread. Nothing uncommon there. The drive side came off smooth. The non-drive side crank arm is STUCK! The are the self-extracting kind. It's like the splines are welded together.

Anyone else have this sort of problem? How did you solve it?

Thanks in advance.
re: Help! Stuck Crankarm!!!biknben
Jan 7, 2003 5:41 AM
I'd recommend removing the self-extracting bolt and using a conventional crank remover. The handle of a crank remover may give you more leverage.

I currently use self-extracting bolts and will give the allen wrench a wack with a hammer to get it started if I can't get it. I'm hesitant to offer that as a tip but sometimes you have to improvise.
re: Help! Stuck Crankarm!!!KeeponTrekkin
Jan 7, 2003 7:06 AM
No disrespect intended but I'd be pretty nervous about whacking an allen wrench. They're not that strong and not the best choice for high torque use. Biknben is probably right that an impact will free the bolt. You might consider a hex drive set for your socket wrench (can deliver much more torque) or an impact tool with hex drive socket(torque plus impact and the impact tends to seat the wrench so it is less likely to "cam out".)

Another benefit of the hex drive set is that you need one if you ever want to use a torque wrench so you know how tightly you're setting those fittings.

I wouldn't work on a bike or car without one.

Anyone have a recommendation for whether or how to lubricate the fittings when it's time for reassembly?

Good luck

re: Help! Stuck Crankarm!!!pa rider
Jan 7, 2003 9:55 AM
there is another option to help. I was in the army and learned leverage is your friend. I drove track vehicles and we used cheater bar to break nuts loose.

All a cheater bar is a pipe you lay over your socket bar to extend the leverage. I do this for breaking bottom brackets loose by slipping my old mtb handlebar over my socket wrench. If you do have a long pipe that will slip over the crankarm remover I would use it. Saves strain on yourself.

As for the lube I only put a light coat on the spline area because I know I'll rust the bottom bracket. My lbs did that on my mtb spline bottom bracket. I may get heck from Kerry or C40, but the old saying was that grease would slide the crank arm in further on a square taper bb, but I don't see how it could hurt a spline bb. You can only push it in the full way. Not unless someone can explain to me about the soft alumunium in the crank arm spline needing no grease.

I destroyed one crank arm this year because I didn't install the arm on the whole way. This was my first spline crankarm and didn't know you can strip the spline inside the arm so easily. That's what you get to save weight.

Grease is your friendKerry
Jan 7, 2003 4:56 PM
For square tapered cranks, I "handle the axle with greasy fingers" to put a very light coat on the tapers. For splines, no amount of grease is too much, and it's best to install them without the self-extractors in place so you can be sure they go on "easy." The first good bike I ever bought had grease on every metal-metal or metal-paint surface, and I've kept it up ever since. These discussion boards are just rife with frozen seat posts, bars, stems, cranks, bottle mount bolts, spoke nipples, etc. etc. etc. I would guess that 75% of the grease I use on the bike is not for bearings or threads. Experience, both personal and vicarious, tells me that on average, bike shops cannot be trusted to properly grease the parts on your bike.
re: 2nd using crank rider
Jan 7, 2003 9:43 AM
I took my off this weekend to check my bottom bracket and had to use the crank arm remover. I bloody my knuckles because it was on tight. My lbs forgetting to put some grease on the spline. I took my mtb crank off with the self extracting bolts since I had the spline lubed.

I ride in wet weather and this salt in winter doesn't help either. If you ride this type of weather maybe it's better to take the crank off once in awhile.

I once had a mtb crank freeze to the bottom bracket and my lbs put it in a vice and heated the arm with a torch. You know the one plumbers use to solder their pipes. Heating up the crank arm in the area where it is seize expands the two materials. But I do remember my crank arm was black after getting it off. I was putting a new one on anyways.

I would hate to do this to a durace crank. Hope you can get some wd40 to soak in the area. I wait for the lube to soak in before trying the crank arm remover tool.

also try WD-40cyclopathic
Jan 7, 2003 7:45 AM
btw crank and BB axle, BB and bolt; soak for 10min may help
what about ammonia?retro
Jan 7, 2003 8:50 AM
Never have had to use it, but the standard fix for stuck alloy seatposts in a steel frame is to drip ammonia in and let it stand. Supposedly dissolves the corrosion that's causing the problem. If it's just torqued down tight that won't help, but if you installed it without lubing the spindle (I do), it could be corroded.
piss on it?cyclopathic
Jan 7, 2003 3:28 PM
I've never tried, maybe by accident on longer brevets when I get too tired to throw leg off the bike to relieve bladder 8-) can't comment

Since it's self-extractor, I'd try first to remove extractor cap and get crank bolt out, lube, put back and try again. Then maybe tap it off with 2x4 block and hammer if it doesn't work..

On a side I always grease things /seatposts, BB caps, axles/. First thing on new bike I do I remove BB and grease BB cap threads, because 4 years later when it goes south there's no way you can get it out otherwise.
re: Help! Stuck Crankarm!!!MR_GRUMPY
Jan 7, 2003 10:59 AM
Before you use a torch, take it to a shop and have them try a "pickel fork". It will leave marks on the inside of the arm where it doesn't show. They could protect the bottom bracket area also.