Jun 23 2010

Chain Ring Bolts: The Untold Story

I rode our tandem into work this morning. Heading up Rainier Avenue with a little added pressure to the pedals, I felt the crank suddenly give.

The last few times out I had noticed some squeaking, especially on the hills, so I was intending to bring the tandem into RE Cycles before the STP. Now I had to get it in before the ride to Crystal this Saturday!

I brought it in during the noon hour and it didn’t take long for the tech to identify the problem – the rear chain ring on the timing chain was practically falling off the bike! How come I didn’t see that?

It turns out that five of the six chain ring bolts had loosened and fallen off, so the chain ring, which is comprised of two parts, had separated. Rather than just replace the bolts, I had them keep the tandem to see if it had sustained any damage from event. That part of the story is still ongoing, but the moral to Part I of the story is to faithfully inspect your bike INCLUDING checking your chain ring bolts!


  1. Tailwind

    Good thing that you found the problem otherwise Karen would have to do all the pedaling on the tandem! That wasn’t your plan was it? :-)

    (Also good advice about checking the bolts. Those are ones that are usually overlooked so I will add them to my inspection routine.)

  2. blueneck

    I checked mine the other night. Looks good.

  3. Woodworth

    Clearly an indication that the bike is too worn and must be replaced with something faster, lighter, and costlier.

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