Odyssey Pedals on 2007 KH24 - rebuild

The Odyssey Jim Cielencki pedals that shipped on my 2007 KH24 have already developed play on the spindle. I have had the unicycle for two months. :frowning:

The right pedal had excessive play, and started to make noise. When I noticed this, I decided to rebuild the pedal (yesterday). During the rebuild, the bearings and races looked to be in great shape, albeit light on the grease. After the rebuild, the play remains.

Does anyone have any good tips for rebuilding these pedals?
Do I need to use more grease along the spindle and on the bearings?
How do you properly tighten the inside nut on the spindle while preventing binding, but at the same time not allowing too much play?

One would hope that the pedals on a $600 unicycle would hold up for longer than two months – especially given the type of use I’ve put on them.

Usage Info:
I am a Level 2 unicyclist with some Level 3 skills.
The largest “drop” I’ve taken is riding off a curb, not even hopping off.
I ride bumpy singletrack every day to work (~5 miles round trip).

I’m sorry I can’t offer any advice as far as rebuilding the pedal, but I find that strange that you’re finding play in your Jim C’s after light usage like that. I’ve taking mine down a number of 5 foot drops and they’re still perfect…except I lost a pin the other day.

Dude, seriously, don’t panic :roll_eyes: It’s sortable very easily.

I used to be much the king of worrying/perfectionism. Which is pretty anal…
But, this was a problem that didn’t even bother me that much at the time, so it’s nothing.

My JC pedals developed play within minutes of hopping on them. All you need to do is to stop riding as soon as it happens and take off the little plastic end cap off the pedal. Then, you will see a nut inside. Unscrew this nut using a socket wrench, and then take that nut out. Inside you’ll find a small washer and yet ANOTHER nut under it, this time just use a little stick and tighten that nut slightly clockwise, ever ever so slightly. Then put in the first nut and screw it all tight. Place the plastic cap on, and it should be fine again.

It’s ALL about the 2nd nut under the washer. The first nut just under the plastic cap just holds it in place.

Do the Odyssey JC pedals that come with the KH have loose ball bearings or cartridge bearings? I’m assuming it has loose ball bearings.

It’s easy to fix the slop in pedals with loose ball bearings. But it’s also fussy. Tighten things up too tight and the pedals don’t spin smoothly. Get things too loose and you have slop. The difference between too tight and too loose can be just an 1/8th of a turn of the nut. It takes some trial and error to get things right.

<trying not to panic>

Sponge, thanks for the tip. I’ll give this a try, but it seems to be a fine line between binding and free-spinning. This was what I meant by the ‘inside nut’ - the one you suggested I tighten…

When I say “excessive play”, it is hardly anal :), though no play would make me really happy! The right pedal pops, pings, and creaks louder than my old dorm bed. The wobble doesn’t take a delicate touch to feel either. Bounce the wheel up and down and you can hear it hitting the spindle, not click click, but bang bang. The LBS said I would need new pedals.

I’ll run through this tonight and see if I can tighten it up. Thanks again for the tip, makes me feel better that you’ve had success in this area (with the same pedals to boot).

John - loose bearings (yes, a bit messy), and you are spot-on with the trial and error. I think I need to be a little more patient with the rebuild process.

The LBS isn’t being all that honest with you. Pedals with loose ball bearings are rebuildable. They all get loose at some point. They all require maintenance at some point.

You can buy replacement ball bearings if any of the ball bearings are damaged. Just be sure to replace all of them at the same time so all of them are the same and in the same condition. Your LBS should have loose bearings in the right size.

Filling the pedal with grease will also help. When the pedals are new they don’t come with a lot of grease inside. Filling them with more grease will stop the clacking. Get grease though the entire spindle. You may have to take the pedal all the way off the spindle to do that. Or rig up something with a grease gun to force grease all the way through the pedal.

A piece of sand or grit inside the bearings will also cause a grinding noise. Flushing them with grease can clean out the grit. If that doesn’t work you may have to soak them in degreaser and give them a thorough cleaning.

When working on pedals I work on them inside a shoe box so I don’t lose any of the ball bearings. Laytex gloves are also handy for keeping your hands clean when working with greasy parts.

Thanks for the detail John.

Before posting the new thread, I did a search for previous pedal posts <gasp>, and found your reference to Boca Bearings. I’ll use that retailer if I lose one, or need to replace damaged ones.

I’ll fill the spindle up tonight as well, I can see that helping. I use the finishline pro grease product, but I also have a teflon grease I’ve used on my Mt Bike BB. The pedal grease on the outer bearings looked almost like oil. Any recommendations there?

… the bacon grease I normally use probably only makes my riding smell better. :slight_smile:

The Boca bearings are for cartridge style bearings (pedals with sealed bearings). I don’t know if they sell the loose ball bearings.

Figuring out the right size for the loose ball bearings is also tricky because the size isn’t stamped on them. That’s why I suggested going to the LBS so you’ll get the right size. Some hardware stores carry loose ball bearings as well, but then you’re on your own to figure out the correct size. But going to a hardware store or bearing supply shop will likely be cheaper than buying the same bearings from a LBS.

You want something that is specified as a bearing grease. And also waterproof.

The Finish Line grease is good. So is Phil Waterproof Grease. Doesn’t really matter as long as it’s a bearing grease. Just stick with the same brand and type of grease. You should avoid mixing different greases.

How to rebuild Odyssey JC Pedals

[LEFT]Wow. I owe you both a beer. :smiley:

I really think the massive amount of grease did the trick, but I’m willing to concede that fussing around with the proper torque on the inner nut certainly helped. :slight_smile: There seems to be a sweet spot there that is very difficult to measure, however the slop disappeared even before I put the nut back on, thanks to the excessive grease.

For those that follow (and use the search feature):

The Pedal:

Quickly clean the pedal. You don’t want any dirt falling back into your clean bearing work before you seal everything back up. Remove the plastic dust cap from the outside edge of the pedal using a screwdriver or small blade.

Place a pedal crank on the spindle (threaded - see first image) end, and a 12mm socket wrench on the outer nut exposed from the removal of the dust cap. Remove the nut (visible below).

Firmly tap the pedal on your workbench to remove the washer.

Before doing this step, ensure you are working over an enclosed space, like a can, or shoebox. Remove the inner nut (visible above) by again using the pedal crank on the spindle end and a 14mm or 15mm socket on the inner nut. Be careful, the bearings are exposed at this point:

While securing the spindle, tap out the bearings into your can or shoebox. Count the bearings, there should be 13. Remove the spindle, exposing the bearings on the opposite side, and tap those bearings into the box. Count the lower bearings, they will be smaller, and there will be 18 of them. Degrease and clean the bearings. Clean the inside of the pedal and the spindle. Using some grease and a small screwdriver blade, reseat the lower 18 (smaller) bearings. Load the spindle up with grease and reinsert into the pedal.

Reseat the upper (larger) bearings, and throw on more grease.

This is the tricky part.
Place the inner nut back on the spindle. Tighten. Does the crank end still spin freely? If not, you’ve overtightened. Loosen the nut 1/8th of a turn and try again. Repeat until the spindle end spins freely, but the pedal does not have any play against the spindle. This may take several attempts, but is worth the effort as it rewards you with a solid pedal. Place the washer back on, place the outer nut on the end, tighten, and pop the dust cap back on.



1 - Pedal.JPG

2 - outer nut.JPG

3 - washer.JPG

4 - bearings.JPG

5 - spindle.JPG

6 - more grease.JPG

Thanks a lot for the write-up, I plan to do this soon and its great to know what I’ll be getting myself into.

Sounds to me like boat trailer bearing grease (which is waterproof) might be a good choice to use.


So glad I found this though Google. I have 3 pairs of these pedals and all 3 have done this. Rebuilding is not a option in my opinion on new pedals. Take em back or just don’t buy these things. I replaced a bottom bracket on 1 bike thinking thats what the POP was. I have replaced them with Animal pedals. The guy at my LBS said he has had a few returns on these. Buyer beware!


I don’t know how much play you guys are talking about but it sounds like you are just being fussy. I have always had a tiny bit of play in my pedals and the only time I ever had failure in the bearing area was on a pair of butterfly pedals which just tore apart like every other butterfly pedal.

A tiny bit of pedal play is something to expect as far as I’m concerned.

I like the sound of the play in pedals… makes the Unicycle sound lighter when it falls instead of just a thud…

You should hear my Jim C’s… they have pretty much no grease in them at all, and only some 30+ year old 3-1 oil lubing them once in a while. They spin for a long time.

Pedal Slop

Nirod an amazing trials rider has had the same snafu pedals on his KH05 for over two years now. They creak, are extremely loose and totaly worn and bent, they have the most play that I have ever seen! They have been in horrible shape since I met him and they don’t seam to affect his riding ability.
He says that he is going to continue using them untill they totaly fall apart!
Is pedal perfection really that important? I don’t know but as long as you are not having problems riding what does it matter? By the way great pictorial writeup!