/ Removing a seized pedal

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andrew549 on 23 Oct 2012
Hey in the process of doing up a bike and cant seem to get the non drive side pedal off any advice on how to do so whilst keeping the cranks intact don't care about the pedals as they will be replaced.

Thanks

Andy
aldo56 - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549: You realise it'll be reverse threaded? Apologies if you do!
Dom Whillans on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:
liberal use of penetrating oil followed by repeated smacking with a rubber mallet? usually with the other crank tied up to the chainstay....
aldo56 - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to Dom Whillans: Throw the rubber mallet in the bin and break up "Big Bertha".
Dom Whillans on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to aldo56:
> (In reply to Dom Whillans) break up "Big Bertha".

is it that kind of party? ;O)
i did mean to say that it's the pedal spanner or pedal hex key that you should be smacking btw. if that doesn't work, cut the axle off with a hacksaw and replace the BB.

andrew549 on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to aldo56: Fairly sure I'm trying to turn in the correct way but could always be wrong been trying to turn it clockwise when facing the bike.
aldo56 - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549: You'll want to turn the non-drive side pedal clockwise to undo it. (Assuming it's a standard RHD set up.)
Radioactiveman - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:

put the pedal in a vice and hang off the crank arm.bit of a pain if the crank is still on the bike
Bimbler - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:

Try a longer spanner or slide a bit of pipe over the end to extend the lever, or use a breaker bar on a socket if its got an allen key hole on the inside of the pedal (if that makes sense!)

Also a bit of heat can help,especially if they are alloy. You can try repeated cycles of hot (boiling) then cold water- particularly good if you want to keep the cranks as it wont damage them.

Be patient, it will come off!!
Dave Kerr - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:


WATCH YOUR KNUCKLEs!
3leggeddog on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:
Try all the above, watch your knuckles (if you have any left). I find it helps to strap the oppostite crank to the chain stay using an old toe strap.

When you replace the pedals do not forget to smear them liberally with copper grease. Remove and re grease annually and you'll never have a problem again.
aldo56 - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549: This sort of stuff can also work if you've not got anything to apply heat with: http://loctitefreezeandrelease.com/instructions.htm
thebrookster on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:
A product called Plus Gas is a good release lubricant, I have used on both old Triumph sports cars and old (and not so old) landrovers, plus a bit of use on modern cars for those stubborn bolts, many times better than 3 in 1, WD40 (which really is not a penetrating oil!!).

Another couple of tips, if you get the crank off, put it on a piece of wood and give the pedal a whack, and also try tightening a fraction first, then loosen.

What happens over time is the threads almost sieze together, and possibly also a touch of rust. What you need to do is break this join, which a well judged tap can do. For some reason (I did know, but have forgotten) it is easier to break this join by tightening a touch first, it has to do with how the threads interact I think. Once broken, it should go, unless the threads are really disformed. I would also recommend running a tap through the crank threads before fitting a new pedal to clean em up.
yer maw on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549: simple rule of thumb is pedals tighten the same direction you pedal forward for each side. Plenty release oil and a long spanner or short spanner and hammer, but as recommended watch them knuckles as chain rings can take a lot of skin off!
Liam M - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549: Being particularly weedy, I've always gone for the technique of: getting someone to hold the bike upright and apply the brakes, set the pedal forward and the spanner facing backward. Use something to hold yourself up and stand on the spanner. It should jolt free, so try not to fall over.
nniff - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:

I've been successful in the past by wedging a block of wood under the crank so that it can't move and smacking the hammer/allen key with a hammer. IMHO delicacy has no place in this operation as long as the crank is supported. When you apply enough force the pedal will shift or spanner/allen key will break (or fly across the garage and cause grievous injury to something). The hammer needs to be weighty - you don't want some silly little thing bouncing back at you at the speed of light. It's not a discussion - it's a forceful and one-sided exchange of views!
lorentz - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:

You are going in the right direction. Can definitely vouch for the broken spanner syndrome described in this delicate procedure. My 10mil spanner snapped when I tried to replace my pedals a few years back. Friend's pedal wrench kept slipping, chewing the nut in the process. I had to admit defeat with mine and go to a bike shop. The bloke used a f'in massive pedal wrench to get them off in the end. Turns out they'd been superglued in by the helpful shop I'd bought the bike from originally... (Cheers yeah E**ns!) On the plus side the nice man in the shop removed them for free. Might be worth asking if you're struggling?
andrew549 on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to lorentz: I'm planing to get hold of a crank puller and then take the pedal axle and crank to a bike shop to see if they can remove it.
cousin nick - on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:
Get the crank off. If you can, dismantle the pedal to leave just the spindle. Lock this in a vice and use the leverage of the crank to undo (i.e. grab hold of the BB end of the crank).
If this fails you could try applying GENTLE heat to the seized end (hot air gun, or wave a blow lamp across it repeatedly). DON'T just blast it with a blow lamp.

N
andrew549 on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to cousin nick: I've got it down to just the spindle but don't have a vice or crank puller at uni as that what I would do normally. I've tried boiling water and heating it gently over a flame and it didn't seem to do anything.

Andy
gethin_allen on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:
I'd second the approach of sitting it in a release oil for a while, possibly adding a bit of heat. Aluminium expands more than steel per degree raised so if you warm the crank arm in a cool ~80 degree oven then plunge the pedal axle stub into ice cold water you may be able to free something off. Repeating the soaking and heating cooling procedures may get you somewhere.
PB Blaster is good release oil or otherwise plus-gas as someone said above.

Getting a massive spanner on it could work but I've had a couple of experiences where I've stripped the threads out of the crank arm doing it this way.
M0nkey - on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:

In order:

1. Penetrating oil. This works best over time. 20 mins soaking is good, 24 hours is better. Also, spend some time trying to get some movement into the joint to allow the penetrating oil in. I.e hit it (in any direction) with a mallet, try to tighten/loosen the threads with your spanner and apply more penetrating oil.
2. Bigger spanner. After the oil, try with the spanner you are using (make sure it's a perfect fit). If no success use a bigger spanner, or try the scaffolding pole trick.
3. Blow torch. Make sure penetrating oil is all cleaned off first. Then heat the pedal threads with a blow torch. Plum red is the colour you are aiming for. Try and undo it while it's hot/cooling.
4. Hacksaw the pedal and drill out the leftovers (better to do this on a bench - you might need to tidy up the threads after)

If you are impatient, just go straight to 4 - it's the only dead cert to work.
thebrookster on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to andrew549:

To be perfectly honest, unless cost is a major issue here, if you get to the stage of drilling out, I would seriously be considering replacing the crank!

Yes, the old one will still work, but after you have subjected it to the punishments of heat, hammers and large amounts of leverage, it ain't ever going to be what it used to be ;)

Another option, seeing as you have it seperate from the bike, take it down to a local garage, chances are they will have a vice. Explain to them what you are trying to do, chances are they'll have it off in seconds, making you look like a fool in the process. Maybe take the price of a pint with you to grease the palms??
andrew549 on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to thebrookster: Its currently soaking in penetrating fluid so will try tomorrow or take it to a garage/bike shop and see if they can do anything.

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