Crank Arm Loosening

I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but my pedal crank arms keep loosening on my
unicycles. I tighten them to the point where I think I’ll break the crank arm
bolts and they still manage to loosen up.

These are not the cotter pin style crank arms either.

The red Loctite stuff doesn’t seem to have any effect on keeping the
bolts tight.

Also, I just received my Coker a few weeks ago and after about 10 minutes one of
the crank arms was loose.

Signed,

Louie Loose-Crank

RE: Crank Arm Loosening

> Use the mallet method, once on each side should be enough. Then tighten it
> with a nice torque wrench.

I never had a rubber mallet, or a torque wrench. Both are better to use if you
have them, but I instead pounded carefully with a regular hammer and tightened
carefully with a conventional wrench.

But more than one cycle. When first installing the cranks, I might pound and
tighten 5 times or so, but once the cycle has been ridden only one or two times.
The key thing is to keep them tight, with frequent re-tightening.

I had good success with the old ‘Piece o Schwinn’ I used to use for trail
riding, by giving the cranks a good tightening with a wrench before every trail
ride. If you make it a habit along with filling up your water bottle or putting
on your helmet, just do it before each ride.

Enjoy, John Foss, the Uni-Cyclone http://www.unicycling.com

“Oh dear! I think I broke something.” - Kris Holm, talking not about his body
parts, but about the edge of a bar-b-que grill he had just been riding on

Re: Crank Arm Loosening

When I put cranks on, first I snug the nut down a bit. Then, with the unicycle
propped up on a block of wood from the bottom side, I beat on the crank I’m
tightening down with a rubber mallet. A couple whams on it and I can tighten the
nut another turn or so. Then I beat it again with the hammer and snug the nut
again. Use of the mallet means less stress on the nut, and less chance of
stripping the threads. I end up hammering and tightening about a dozen times
until I’m not really making progress anymore. Then I do the same for the other
side. If I feel a crank get a bit loose while I’m riding it, (like popping in
and out of “neutral” when you hop on it) then I hammer and tighten some more,
and then it’s usually good for a while. The rubber mallet is just so I don’t
mash the larger female threads that you need to pull the crank back off with a
crank puller.

That’s how to get cranks on tight. Keeping them really tight like this keeps the
square hole in the cranks from wearing out too quickly. But if you get the
cranks on nice and tight and the nut still comes loose, it’s not loctite that
you need. You just need a new crank. The square hole isn’t quite square anymore,
and the small amount of movement that a not-quite-so-square hole allows also
allows the nut to work loose.

Hope this helps

Chris Reeder

Tony Ferlazzo wrote:
>
> I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but my pedal crank arms keep loosening on
> my unicycles. I tighten them to the point where I think I’ll break the crank
> arm bolts and they still manage to loosen up.
>
> These are not the cotter pin style crank arms either.
>
> The red Loctite stuff doesn’t seem to have any effect on keeping the
> bolts tight.
>
> Also, I just received my Coker a few weeks ago and after about 10 minutes one
> of the crank arms was loose.
>
> Signed,
>
> Louie Loose-Crank

Re: Crank Arm Loosening

When I put cranks on, first I snug the nut down a bit. Then, with the unicycle
propped up on a block of wood from the bottom side, I beat on the crank I’m
tightening down with a rubber mallet. A couple whams on it and I can tighten the
nut another turn or so. Then I beat it again with the hammer and snug the nut
again. Use of the mallet means less stress on the nut, and less chance of
stripping the threads. I end up hammering and tightening about a dozen times
until I’m not really making progress anymore. Then I do the same for the other
side. If I feel a crank get a bit loose while I’m riding it, (like when you can
feel it pop back neutral when you ride away from a pogo session) then I hammer
and tighten some more, and then it’s usually good for a while. The rubber
mallet is just so you don’t mash the larger female threads that you need to pull
the crank back off with a crank puller.

That’s how to get cranks on tight. Keeping them really tight like this keeps the
square hole in the cranks from wearing out too quickly. But if you get the
cranks on nice and tight and the nut still comes loose, it’s not loctite that
you need. You just need a new crank. The square hole isn’t quite square anymore,
and the small amount of movement that a not-quite-so-square hole allows also
allows the nut to work loose.

Hope this helps

Chris Reeder

Tony Ferlazzo wrote:
>
> I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but my pedal crank arms keep loosening on
> my unicycles. I tighten them to the point where I think I’ll break the crank
> arm bolts and they still manage to loosen up.
>
> These are not the cotter pin style crank arms either.
>
> The red Loctite stuff doesn’t seem to have any effect on keeping the
> bolts tight.
>
> Also, I just received my Coker a few weeks ago and after about 10 minutes one
> of the crank arms was loose.
>
> Signed,
>
> Louie Loose-Crank

Re: Crank Arm Loosening

When I put cranks on, first I snug the nut down a bit. Then, with the unicycle
propped up on a block of wood from the bottom side, I beat on the crank I’m
tightening down with a rubber mallet. A couple whams on it and I can tighten the
nut another turn or so. Then I beat it again with the hammer and snug the nut
again. Use of the mallet means less stress on the nut, and less chance of
stripping the threads. I end up hammering and tightening about a dozen times
until I’m not really making progress anymore. Then I do the same for the other
side. If I feel a crank get a bit loose while I’m riding it, (like when you can
feel it pop back neutral when you ride away from a pogo session) then I hammer
and tighten some more, and then it’s usually good for a while. The rubber
mallet is just so you don’t mash the larger female threads that you need to pull
the crank back off with a crank puller.

That’s how to get cranks on tight. Keeping them really tight like this keeps the
square hole in the cranks from wearing out too quickly. But if you get the
cranks on nice and tight and the nut still comes loose, it’s not loctite that
you need. You just need a new crank. The square hole isn’t quite square anymore,
and the small amount of movement that a not-quite-so-square hole allows also
allows the nut to work loose.

Hope this helps

Chris Reeder

Tony Ferlazzo wrote:
>
> I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but my pedal crank arms keep loosening on
> my unicycles. I tighten them to the point where I think I’ll break the crank
> arm bolts and they still manage to loosen up.
>
> These are not the cotter pin style crank arms either.
>
> The red Loctite stuff doesn’t seem to have any effect on keeping the
> bolts tight.
>
> Also, I just received my Coker a few weeks ago and after about 10 minutes one
> of the crank arms was loose.
>
> Signed,
>
> Louie Loose-Crank

Re: Crank Arm Loosening

>I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but my pedal crank arms keep loosening on my
>unicycles. I tighten them to the point where I think I’ll break the crank arm
>bolts and they still manage to loosen up.
>
>These are not the cotter pin style crank arms either.
>
>The red Loctite stuff doesn’t seem to have any effect on keeping the
>bolts tight.
>
>Also, I just received my Coker a few weeks ago and after about 10 minutes one
>of the crank arms was loose.

Cotterless crank arm bolts or nuts are intended to keep tight crank arms tight.
I would recommend against using them to tighten loose crank arms.

To tighten cotterless crank arms, place one end of the axle on a block of wood
with wheel horizontal. Pound one crank arm on tight with a rubber mallet (rubber
hammer) or place a another block of wood on the crank arm and pound on this
wooden block with a steel hammer (regular hammer). Now tighten the crank arm
bolt or nut. Repeat the above as many times as you like or until the bolt or nut
remains tight after pounding the crank arm.

Turn the wheel over and repeat the above for the other crank arm.

Sincerely,

Ken Fuchs <kfuchs@winternet.com>

Microsoft has finally found someone it can’t bully into submission: US
Department of Justice - http://www.usdoj.gov/atr/cases/ms_index.htm Yahoo links

Re: Crank Arm Loosening

Chris Reeder wrote:
> I end up hammering and tightening about a dozen times until I’m not really
> making progress anymore.

12 times? That seems like overkill. You wouldn’t want to do that with
aluminum cranks as the square hole will deform and get bigger which might
wreck the cranks.

Since the cranks are coming loose on more than one of your unis, it probably
is that they just aren’t on there all the way and aren’t tight. Use the
mallet method, once on each side should be enough. Then tighten it with a
nice torque wrench.

If that doesn’t work, then it might be that the cranks have a rounded hole
instead of the square.

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Re: Crank Arm Loosening

Kevin Gilbertson wrote:

> Chris Reeder wrote:
> > I end up hammering and tightening about a dozen times until I’m not really
> > making progress anymore.
>
> 12 times? That seems like overkill. You wouldn’t want to do that with
> aluminum cranks as the square hole will deform and get bigger which might
> wreck the cranks.
>
> Since the cranks are coming loose on more than one of your unis, it probably
> is that they just aren’t on there all the way and aren’t tight. Use the
> mallet method, once on each side should be enough. Then tighten it with a
> nice torque wrench.
>
> If that doesn’t work, then it might be that the cranks have a rounded hole
> instead of the square.
> –
>

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