Trying to track down weird clicking noise from my bike

jhkuo

New Member
I am trying to get rid of some weird noise from my bike, I am hoping someone here might know the cause of it.

When I brake and lock the front wheel while stationary, rock the bike back and forth hard, the bike makes a sharp clicking noise, it sounds like a switch being flipped or something. After close inspection, I think the noise comes from the red circled area, where the fork and bike frame join.

I took the front fork out and found two rings fixed inside the front tube (where the fork goes in), one at the top and one at the bottom, these rings rotate freely, but not fitted tightly enough and do allow some side to side movement.

Does anyone knows what might cause the clicking noise?

 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
Your headset is most likely loose - I.e. not tightened enough. The 'rings' are cartridge bearings.

loosen stem clamp bolts (i.e. the two on the rear of the stem, then sloghtly tighten the pre-load bolt on the top od stem. Rock bike back and forward, and/or bounce front end. If it clunks or rattles, tighten pre-load a little more. Once the clunk goes, and the bars still turn smothly, then tighten up the two stem clamp bolts.

Remember the top bolt is onlt for adjusting, the rear clamp bolts hold it together.

Whilst you have it in bits, worth slapping some greese round the bearings and checking they spin freely, then grease up the stem lightly where the spacers and handlebar clamp (gets rid of any little clicks).

If you can't tighten up the headset and it still turns smoothly, then I'd suggest getting the bearings replaced.
 
OP
jhkuo

jhkuo

New Member
I did exactly what you said by tightening the top cap (bolt) much more than I've done before, the clicking noise is now gone!! :-)

Thanks for your brilliant advise Fossyant!
 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
Well done - I shouldn't have typed it so fast - look at all those mis-typed words.......eeek.

So long as the steering is still smooth and light then job done.
 
OP
jhkuo

jhkuo

New Member
The steering is tighter than before, but it's a price I am willing to pay for clickless headset :-)
 

MJN

New Member
Location
Bristol
You may have overtighted it. Try backing it off a fraction - the difference between too loose and too tight can be very small and it's easy to overshoot in either direction. Either case can lead to premature bearing wear.

Mathew
 
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