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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Occasionally, I get a ticking sound that occurs exactly every two rotations of the cranks. It would make total sense to me if it was exactly one revolution, but I don't understand what could cause it to be every 2 revolutions. By process of elimination I'm guessing the chain, but it still doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Ideas?
 

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Pusher of Pedals
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Sounds like you may need to grease the bottom bracket cups' threads and the spindle on the crankset. My MTB is making the same noise with every revolution because I've been too lazy to take it apart and give it its biannual lubing. And lube the chain.
 

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If it's the same reagrdless of which chainwheel or cog, them I'd agree that the BB may be the culprit. If different cogs change the amount of revolutions to the noise it's probably the chain and not the BB.
 

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Had a similar problem today ...

About 13 miles into my 40 mile ride, I got the ticking sound every revolution, instead of your two. I wasn't about to turn around and go home, as I got further into my ride, the ticking got louder, it became more of a loud click. I originally thought it was the BB at first, then as I got thinking, maybe it could be the pedal. I think I have the worst luck w/ pedals. Anyhow, the sound was more annoying than $h!t, so I finished my ride quickly. Got home, took off the pedal, replaced it w/ a new one, and BINGO, the click was gone. Took her out for a short spin, and all is good! So, check your pedals as well!
 

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Try checking the chain VERY closely to make sure all the links are properly flexible. I had a very regular thump in my MTB drivetrain because 3 of the links were seized together and couldn't move...I'd imagine 1 or 2 stiff links might cause a click.
 

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Yep, likely chain. More lube usually does the trick. If you are using a wax lube, you need to relube about every 50 miles. I would get the click because I usually lubed every 100 miles or so. Lubed more often, and clicking disappeared.
 

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Quick link?

Do you have a quick link on your chain? Superlinks that I've used from Lickbike seem to develop a "ticking" sound after a few hundred miles. Other brands seem less susceptible to this.
 

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Diesel Engine
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I would also discount other sources - do you have a loose cleat screw, is the front derailleur cable hitting the back of the crankarm, etc. Resonance through the frame often "moves" a sound making it seem like it is coming from somewhere else.

I once had a similar noise that caused me great aggravation changing pedals, working on bottom brackets, etc. when in the end the noise originated from the saddle. Took weeks to figure it out and 20 seconds to fix with a few drops of oil.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Since it only happens sometimes, I'm guessing it only happens in certain gear combinations. Since it's exactly every 2 revolutions instead of 1, I don't see how it could be the FD cable, a pedal, or the BB. I don't have a quick link or anything. I have a stock dura-ace chain. I'll take a closer look at the chain.
 

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I had the exact same issue earlier this week! After getting my BB serviced, it was still happening. After lubing things and checking out a bunch of stuff, it came down to something insanely basic. My rear wheel skewer needed to be cranked down just a touch tighter, and now the problem is gone. It took a few frustrating rides, constantly stopping and tightening stuff, but at least I narrowed it down instead of doing everything at once, so now I know what the problem was.
 

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Big ring?

Greg Smalter said:
Occasionally, I get a ticking sound that occurs exactly every two rotations of the cranks. It would make total sense to me if it was exactly one revolution, but I don't understand what could cause it to be every 2 revolutions. By process of elimination I'm guessing the chain, but it still doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Ideas?
If you're getting this noise only in the big ring, then a chain link could easily be the source. Your big ring is 53 teeth, and a chain on a typical road bike is often 106 links. Do the math.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Kerry Irons said:
If you're getting this noise only in the big ring, then a chain link could easily be the source. Your big ring is 53 teeth, and a chain on a typical road bike is often 106 links. Do the math.
That's what I was looking for. So, you're correct it's only the big ring. But, it's only certain gear combinations (the more cross-chaining, the more likely the sound). So it's almost like one link has a pin sticking out or is somehow wider and is touching the FD when other links are not. I've checked it though, and don't see anything weird about any of the links.
 

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I have had a ticking noise coming from a threaded valve stem rubbing against the valve hole. Tried most of the other things listed here first, then I changed the tube to a smooth valve, problem solved.
 

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This is the best reply ever! Great insight!
 

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I had a similar problem a few weeks ago after putting on a new chain. It only happened in the big ring, starting at 3-4 cogs from the bottom, with the noise getting more noticeable as I shifted to a lower cog. It turned out the problem was due to the chain occasionally hitting the outer plate of the rear derailleur as it passed by the lower derailleur pulley. I just took a file to the outer plate of the rear derailleur and knocked off a few thousandth of an inch, and the noise is now gone. As for why the noise was only occasional, I assume it was due to slight differences in the width of the chain. FYI, I am running an SRAM 9 speed chain.
 
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