removing cranks, no puller

What’s the best way to remove stubborn cranks if you don’t have a puller?

Re: removing cranks, no puller

Best: buy or borrow a puller and then use it. Pullers are typically available at the LBS -or- take it to LBS and have them pull it off.

2nd best(?): use a bearing/pulley puller.

3rd best(?): pry/wedge it off with a large screw driver or small pry bar. work slowly shifting from side to side of crank (so as to work it off fairly straight). I do not recommend this option.

Get a puller. It will be a lot cheaper in the long term. The crank/hub interface is the weakest bit of the uni as is worth looking after.

Re: removing cranks, no puller

Carefully hacksaw through the crank where it wraps around the taper. If you don’t nick the taper you can install another set of cranks with no problem. :slight_smile:

Seriously, get a puller. They don’t cost very much and they’ll keep your cranks in good shape for the next install.

put your wheel on a work bench, place a chisel or punch throught the spokes to the back of the crank to be removed and one biggish tap with a mallett

(or you could just buy a puller/extractor and be equipmewnt and component friendly, i havent damaged anything YET, but i doubt its a very good method to use)

Thanks for the replies. I do need a puller, it’s just my nearest LBS would be across 5,000 miles of ocean. We do have a hardare store here though; I will look for a bearing puller.

If you have an auto shop, you might want to try there. be sure to bring the cycle in with you and ask them what they would suggest. They might know something we don’t.

Ah, right. Time to be serious.

I had to use a bearing puller once to remove a crank. It had somehow fused itself to the spindle, and the mechanic before me had stripped out the threads the puller screws into. As I recall it was a real bitch because the three arms of the bearing remover wouldn’t grasp the crank properly.

If the bearing puller (plan B) doesn’t work then you can try plan C. It worked for me with that rusted-on crank.

  1. Take the wheel off the rim.

  2. Find a way to support the wheel horizontally by only the crank. Cut a U-shaped slot in a piece of angle iron and fit it around the spindle and between the bearings and the crank. Lock the iron into a vice or something so it is solid. This is going to be the anvil. Thick plywood might work, too. Improvise.

  3. Spend an hour chilling the hub and spindle. Pack it in ice, or throw it in the freeze locker of a local restaurant or something. Getting it good and cold contracts all the metal.

  4. Quickly place the spindle onto the “Anvil”. Quickly heat the crank gently with a torch. If it’s aluminum just warm it with the hot air just past the flame. If it’s steel you can hit it directly with the hot part of the flame. Did I mention you should work quickly? You want that spindle to still be ice cold when you attempt the next step.

  5. If the wheel doesn’t fall out on it’s own then place a coin in the hole over the crank spindle to act as a washer, set a big screwdriver or drift punch on top of that and whack sharply with a hammer to drive the spindle out. Don’t be too gentle - you’ve only got a few seconds until the spindle heats up and expands. The wheel should fall free.

  6. Catch the wheel. (Easiest done if you put something soft under it beforhand. :slight_smile: )

If that doesn’t work then you could try it again from the beginning, or find a way to whack it off with a chisel from the other side (see above post), or grind/saw/vice-grip-chew it off (see other above post).

Good luck,


Buy a puller if it is at all possible!

carjug, Who has been there, done that, and bought a puller after he messed up a Coker wheel!

If you are anywhere near an auto parts store, buy a battery cable puller. They are designed to be used to pull the cable end loose from the battery post and are relatively inexpensive. The best part is that they fit perfectly over the crank.

If you can not find a puller try taking the nuts off and riding it around. Be carefull not to ride it once they get loose.

you can have my crank puller, now that i’m selling my uni which needed it… well, the cranks used to fall off so technically it didn’t need it. i was going to give it to sam but looks like you need it more. pm me if you want it. i’ll send it to you for free.

Re: removing cranks, no puller

Remove the nut and ride. Stop as soon as you feel play in the crank.

This is not a good method of course, but might work if other methods

Klaas Bil - Newsgroup Addict

be sure to remove the saddle and simply sit on the seat post. this is far more comfortable - tennisgh22 on the comfort of Savage unis