Profile maintenance q's (search results inconclusive)

Hey everyone, as I not so much enjoy ruining things immediately after owning them, but have become quite successful at it, I have a few q’s that search results have brought up a wide arrange of opionions.

Perhaps answers here will be more up to date, and posters will have changed their thoughts or techniques.

  1. The crank bolts. These are only lubed up with antiseize…no red locktite is needed in here?

  2. The crank bolts. Any specified amount of torque to tighten these up to?

  3. Crank removal. Is a bearing puller the only option for the removal of brand new cranks?

  4. The whole keyway/axle hoopla. Does an average user need to know anything about this? Assuming the only user maintenance would be the removal/installation of cranks…is this something that only needs to be checked on if something doesn’t feel right? (what are some signs and remedies?)

  5. Is there a reason why antiseize is preferred over grease? MY hands are stained grey…and that was only by picking up the wheel and playing with it as I was stopped at each intersection since Darren came through town.

  6. That’s it for now. Any other ‘should knows’?

  1. No Locktite is needed.

  2. Don’t use a hex on a breaker bar or ratchet. Just tighten them very snug with a hex key. If you tighten them to much the washer will break (trust me I know :angry: )

  3. I have one set that I can remove without tools but the bearing puller is the way to go. In my experience, they come right off and don’t ruin the bearing either.

  4. One of my hubs developed a loose axle/ keyway slop. I sent them to Profile and they fixed it for free.
    I kinda think I may have contributed to the problem or even caused it by torquing down to hard during installation with the Profile installation tool. The final bolt tightening process will get them on tight enough don’t reef down to much with the install tool.

  5. The copper anti-seize washes right off. I only use anti-seize as that is what Profile recommends.

  6. Just check the bolts now and then.

  • Frank

Re: Profile maintenance q’s (search results inconclusive)

I personally use blue loctite on the bolt threads.

On the Profile trials and splined KH24s I’ve worked on, there comes a specific point when the crank bolt gets much harder to turn. I figure at that point the bolt is in all the way and nothing more needs to be done. This tightening is different than on a square taper, where that doesn’t happen and it is hard to tell when to stop, especially with a long-handled wrench. So I use a torque wrench for square taper, but not for the splined. If your spacers are improperly chosen, then this could lead to problems, so it’s important to have the proper spacers.

I was trying to design a puller for my Profile cranks because of all the stories I’d heard but when I tried out the bearing puller (on the bearings), everything pulled off nicely and easily. This was partly because I installed everything carefully with plenty of anti-seize from the very beginning, and perhaps partly because of lucky manufacturing tolerances. However, I hold the opinion that most of the horror stories are because of improperly lubed installation, and/or neglect. Every once in a while pull the whole thing apart, clean it up, and re-anti-seize. Keep that happy feeling going.

So far I haven’t had to do anything about the keyway and my Profile doesn’t squeak or make any noise at all.

It pays to be very careful with the anti-seize because it is truly pernicious. It seems to stay in place better than the grease. Copper anti-seize is not necessary; the only difference is the highest temperature it will handle. Unless you are using a titanium axle I’m not sure that anti-seize is strictly necessary. If you keep a few paper towels handy and keep cleaning as you go it seems to spread a lot less.

Coat the outside of the crank bolts with grease because they rust easily. Again, take the time at reasonable intervals considering your ride type and frequency to pull it all apart and clean and relube.

Thanks to John Childs for all his posts on this subject.

I have never used anti sieze on my cranks. NEVER not even the little tube that comes with them. I just slop them up in good bicycle grease with teflon.(I use Finnish Line) I have yet to have any problems either both sets of profiles are smooth and silent. Go over board on the stuff it doesnt cost that much and wont hurt things. It’ll just squirt out the sides when you tighten your cranks down.

I just use a regular set of hex keys to tighten the crank bolt, Greased threads of course.

I say the big thing is simply regular inspection of your hub and cranks, make sure they are tight. And re grease everything every few months.

thanks, all

  1. Is there rubber mallet pounding involved before the crank nut is tightened?

nope they just slide right on, if your hitting them with a mallet something is off…

Even with new profiles use the tool that they provide it works wonders getting cranks on enough so that you can finnish them off with the retaining bolt.

i’ve been using the profile tool to remove the cranks,
just screw it in there and whack it with a ruber mallet, park bench, wall, bit of 2x4 etc.
as long as you hold onto the crank when you whack the tool. its fine.
be carefull if you use it though, i suspect that i’td be quite easy to damage stuff if you got carried away.

however right now my left crank wont come off, and i’ve lent somebody my hammer. its been deformed slightly by grinding too often.

perhaps if you have one then the bearing puller is the best way to go but i like the simple brutality and hammer weilding that goes with the profile tool.

Either the bearing puller or pull it by hand. They claim to be manufactured with precision, but one of my brand new Profile cranks came off by hand. The other wouldn’t budge so I ordered an Evercraft bearing puller from America. I also got a set of 145mm profile cranks with the order, and they both fit snugly and require the bearing puller to remove. It annoyed me to not be able to get the crank off at first because I wanted to anti-seize the splines ASAP since they were creaking and seemed to have neglected to antiseize my hub properly.

I wouldn’t suggest using this method. I haven’t tried it, but from what I understand about profiles on a unicycle, you would risk putting your axle off center by using the profile tool. The tool is designed for using on bicycles, which have an axle that slides out in order to remove the cranks. On a unicycle, the axle is fixed inside the hub, so it is not wise to bash it inwards to get the crank off. The profile tool works well for putting the cranks on, but I don’t use it to take them off. There is quite a lengthy discussion here about the Profile crank tool.

Is there a preferred (by the masses) technique of removing the cranks?

Re: Profile maintenance q’s (search results inconclusive)

I’ve done some research before, and i’ve got some info from Shimano website.

  1. The crank bolts. Any specified amount of torque to tighten these up to?
    -The crank bolts should be tightened to about 400 - 600 in lbs

  2. Crank removal. Is a bearing puller the only option for the removal of brand new cranks?
    -Removal of cranks can be done by using a crank extractor, which screws into the crank, and a spanner is used to operate it to remove the cranks effortlessly.

Which washer did you break? Was it one of the spacers or the funny shaped washer for the flush mount Bitchin’ Bolts? I’ll attach a picture of the Bitchin’ washer so people know what it is. And yes, Profile does call the flush mount bolts Bitchin’ Bolts.

I tighten my Profile cranks up as tight as I dare get them with a hex wrench. When the hex wrench starts to bend they are tight enough. I haven’t had any problems with washers breaking.

It is important to put anti-seize on the bolt threads if you want to get them tight (and you want to be able to get them loose again afterwards). Without the anti-seize you cannot get those bolts tight enough, and you may damage the threads trying.

Attached photo of Bitchin’ Bolts and washer:


The Evercraft bearing puller works well for removing a suborn crank. You can also use the Profile crank tool, but you have to be careful not to knock the axle out of center while using it, and it takes two people to do it – one person to hold the crank and one person to hit the Profile tool with a hammer.

The cranks will be snug when they are new. You may have to use a rubber mallet to get them on the first time (be sure to use anti-seize). Once they have been used they will loosen up and be easier to install and remove. When they are new they will be difficult to pull off the axle. After they have been used a while you’ll be able to remove the cranks without using any tools.

As a general rule, all metal to metal contact should be lubed with anti-seize. This includes the splines and bolt threads.

Hmm, I should be more careful with what I say. I don’t know if I actually bend the hex wrench, but I do get the bolts pretty darn tight.

It’s a 7/32" hex key. It may be hard to find a 7/32" hex key outside of the USA. I got a long 7/32" hex key at Sears (a Craftsman). Otherwise you can use a 5.5 mm hex key, but it’s going to be undersized and I’d be careful about getting it too tight otherwise you might round out the key or the bolt.

OK. Here is my situation (thanks all, for all your responses)

Darren stopped through London today on his way to the US. He will be coming back tomorrow.

By accident, he gave me 170’s instead of 160’s (probably a miscommunication on my part). I would like to be able to give him only the cranks instead of my whole wheel for him to exchange.

The cranks seem (without the aid of any additional tools) to be stuck firmly in place.)

I suppose I’ll just give him the whole package deal tomorrow as he comes though (and drops off London’s copies of U2!)

Oh, That’s going to be difficult. Since the cranks are new they are going to be difficult to remove. You’re not going to be able to get them off with the Evercraft tool without gouging them up, and then they’d no longer look new. If you want to keep them in looking new condition you’ll have to try the Profile crank tool and a hammer along with at least two people and some creativity. Be careful that you don’t end up pounding the axle out of the hub.

The instructions with the Profile crank tool say to put anti-seize on the threads of the crank tool, otherwise no warranty if the axle threads get damaged from the pounding.

Be very careful if you try to remove the Profile cranks yourself with an Evercraft bearing puller. I scratched plenty of paint off mine even when I tried to be careful and put duct tape on the puller arms. If in doubt, just let Darren do it, because it would suck if you had to buy both sets of cranks because of scratched paint. I agree with you that 170s are too long, I asked for 165mm but they were out of stock, so I settled for the long ones.

Rather than say “The cranks will be snug when they’re new”, maybe you should say “The cranks should be snug when they’re new”. One of my new 170mm cranks (like I have mentioned) was not snug and came off by hand. How long do you expect it to take for them to loosen? I’ve ridden mine for almost a year and they are still tight and need the puller (apart from the original loose one). If there is no movement I can’t see how they will loosen in a hurry because there should be no wear and tear. There is no need for a rubber mallet because the Profile crank tool works to put them on easily and effectively, unless you were never given the crank tool with your Profiles.

Thanks John…I’ll just give him the wheel and pay for shipping!

edit: Rowan posted a reply as well. Thanks Rowan

I don’t know how long it takes for the cranks to loosen up. It happens eventually though. It would obviously depend on how often you ride and how aggressively you ride.

My cranks have had a little bit of paint inside on the splines. My cranks have all been the black powder coated cranks. The cranks could loosen up as the paint overspray on the splines gets worn away.

When the cranks are new the peaks on the “V” shaped splines are rough and angular. As the cranks are used the rough parts on the “V” get worn down and the sharp peaks on the “V” will get worn down. As it wears the crank gets easier to install and remove. Just because the peaks of the “V” shaped splines get worn down doesn’t mean that the cranks will be slipping or rocking on the splines. I haven’t noticed the cranks having any movement on the splines even though they have worn down a bit. There is probably some movement on the splines, but it’s not enough for me to notice.

I do have a Profile crank tool (two actually), but I don’t use it very often. I usually use the Evercraft tool to remove the cranks and since the cranks are loose now I don’t even need to use a wrench with the Evercraft tool – I just twist the threaded plunger by hand. I did use the Profile tool when I pressed the axle out of the hub to Loctite the keyway, but otherwise it just sits in the tool chest.

I broke the “Bitchin Bolts” concave washer. I also use a Craftsman hex and that’s what I broke the washers with. I just went too far. I use the same method as you. Just when the hex handle begins to flex a bit, I stop. It was when I first got them.

  • Frank

I have a couple of questions for you wise old men…no offense.

If you just buy profile cranks are they warranteed? I know the cranks and axle are if you buy them, but are the cranks if they are bought alone?

How damaged do they have to be for them to send you new ones? I mean, has anyone ever sent them in and had profile say no? That would be funny.

When they send you new ones do they send you new washers and (hehe) bitchin’ bolts? Mine are kindof rusty.