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Creaking Cranks - Help?! (VIDEO)

iLukeKendalliLukeKendall Posts: 160
edited June 2014 in MTB workshop & tech
I'm currently having problems with an annoying creaky sound coming from my cranks/bottom bracket area. It's especially noticeable when under load such as climbing.

A video of the noise can be found here: - It does this on both sides/cranks, I only had enough phone memory left to film one side!

Basically, the bottom bracket (HollowTech II) was installed by a local bike shop along with a new SLX crankset about a month ago. A week later, I changed the crankset to the same SLX crankset but with a larger BCD and chainrings, but kept the same shop-fitted BB as it was exactly the same.

After the second ride, I've started to notice this creaking, which is also starting to happen under normal pedalling.

I know it's not the seatpost as it happens when out of the saddle climbing. I know it's not the pedals because it makes noise when putting pressure directly on the crank arm and not the pedals. Therefore I'm assuming it has to be the crankset or the bottom bracket.

This evening, I've disassembled the crankset, checked that the BB is tight (which it is, very!) and cleaned, re-greased and reassembled everything, ensuring there is no dirt or grit inside the crank area, and the noise is still continuing (video filmed after reassembly).

Does anyone have any suggestions as to what else could be causing this irritating creaking?

Many thanks for any advice!
Whyte 29-CS • Canyon Ultimate • #CCWMTB • Strava Profile


  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    If it was fine after the shop did it, but not after you did it, you're doing something wrong.
    Too much preload, too little preload, pinch bolts not done up properly?
    Not much else it can be.

    ps try wearing shoes. That was disgusting.
    I don't do smileys.

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  • iLukeKendalliLukeKendall Posts: 160
    I only seem to recall it making a noise on the last 3 rides since I've installed the new cranks, so it must be my fault.

    I'll try loosening the preload tomorrow night, I might be doing it up too tightly.

    PS. What's so bad about bare feet?!
    Whyte 29-CS • Canyon Ultimate • #CCWMTB • Strava Profile
  • Video here showing you how to service Hope Bottom Brackets but from about 6 mins in it shows you exactly how to reassemble your bb and cranks.
  • iLukeKendalliLukeKendall Posts: 160
    Thanks for all the advice guys.

    So after...

    • Adjusting the star preload nut and crank arm bolts three times;
    • Removing the cranks, cleaning, re-greasing and reassembling;
    • Disassembling the bottom bracket, cleaning, re-greasing and reassembling;
    • Removing pedals, cleaning, re-greasing and re-attaching;
    • Removing seat post, cleaning, re-greasing;
    • Checking chainring bolts were tight;

    ...the creaking continued.

    I decided to check the rear end of the bike, and discovered the rear QR was a little loose (still tight enough to hold on the wheel), and I decided to check the tightness of my cassette.

    Turns out the cassette lock ring had another 4 or 5 clicks on it to tighten, which, after re-attaching the wheel and doing the QR up tightly, seems to have solved the problem!

    Amazing how something at the other end of the bike can sound so much like the creak is in the crank area.

    Still, at least the bike's pretty much had a full service now!
    Whyte 29-CS • Canyon Ultimate • #CCWMTB • Strava Profile
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