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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    California
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    Unhappy "Broken" M324 pedals

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    Waah! My new pedals are broken already!

    Last fall I installed new Shimano M324 pedals on my "do everything" bike. The M324's have a platform on one side and a SPD mechanism on the other. I picked them because they don't use plastic in the bearings, and because an online review claimed they were still going strong at 15000 miles.

    These pedals have now been ridden more than 100 miles but much less than 1000. The bearings are already loose. When used as platform pedals, they click. When used as SPDs, they sound like rock crushers.

    The Shimano docs show that they use a cup, cone, and locknut just like wheel hubs. OK, I know how to adjust that. However, the cone and locknut are both buried inside the pedal body. Tightening the locknut requires using two concentric sockets. Shimano sells a toolset for this, but it costs as much as the pedals, and besides, Google can't find a North American source for it.

    Perhaps I can MacGyver a toolset. However, getting at the locknut requires first removing the pedal's outer frame. Removing the frame requires removing the reflectors I just added!

    Waah! (unhappy girl) Waah!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    355
    I wouldn't Macgyver a toolset. For something like this, not easy, and your results wouldn't likely be nice.

    They aren't broke, I don't think, but it sounds like they do need adjustment. How old are they? If less than a year, take them back to the LBS from whence they came, and they will take care of it. It's a warranty thing. If more than a year, but clearly not abused, I'd still take them back to the LBS from whence they came, and chances are, they will help you out. If you got them online, then, well...

    Take them to your LBS! They will adjust them and charge you a small amount to do so, certainly less than buying those tools.

    My recommendation.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    2,309
    defintely take them back to the bike shop you bought them at and see if they can help you. It sounds like it may even be a warranty item. Shimano is very good about warranties, and a good lbs will go to bat for you.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    California
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    Quote Originally Posted by lunacycles View Post
    They aren't broke, I don't think, but it sounds like they do need adjustment.
    Well, yes, they're not broken. However, they're as good a broken if I can't adjust them.

    Quote Originally Posted by lunacycles View Post
    How old are they? If you got them online, then, well...
    I think I bought this set several years ago from an eBay seller who was liquidating their unused unneeded parts. One of them has a Shimano date code from January 2005. I have a more recent set (also via eBay) that was intended for an indoor trainer. I'm probably now going to put that set on the outdoor bike - and then buy a third set so the trainer can have a set that's never seen the outdoors.

    Quote Originally Posted by lunacycles View Post
    Take them to your LBS! They will adjust them and charge you a small amount to do so, certainly less than buying those tools.
    I wouldn't mind buying the tools - except they don't seem to be available!

    Edit: OK, with some more Googling, I did find the tools at biketoolsetc, but nowhere else.
    Last edited by laura*; 07-11-2009 at 02:46 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    355
    So I guess I am confused: is there still a problem? I am not sure I understand what you are asking for as far as "advice" goes. You said originally the price of the tools was as much as the pedals (so I assumed you meant why bother) in addition to not being able to find them, and the advice was offered to take them to the LBS who certainly can adjust them for a lot less than the price of the tools...but now you say you don't mind buying the tools? Were you just trying to find a source for the tools?

    My mantra about the LBS was simply to suggest they can be your best resource when you can't do it on your own, even if you bought your parts online. I used to buy a lot of stuff off of EBay, but it is times like these (when something breaks) when I realize I am often better off supporting the LBS.

    Hope it works out for you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Between the Blue Ridge and the Chesapeake Bay
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    5,226
    I have those pedals on my commuting bike with thousands of miles on them (probably 5000). I've never had any problem. You can overtighten pedals, so maybe that's what happened. Maybe not; it's hard to tell from your description. But definitely take them to a local bike shop and see if they can fix them for you. If they can't and you decide to replace the pedals, do consider buying them from a local bike shop so you can go back if there are any problems, as well as support local businesses.

    Best of luck to you. Crunchy pedals do not sound like fun.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    California
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    Quote Originally Posted by lunacycles View Post
    So I guess I am confused: is there still a problem? I am not sure I understand what you are asking for as far as "advice" goes.
    The tools ended up being $45 for what are essentially two sockets. The price I found in my earlier searches was $60 to $90 (depending on foreign exchange rates.)

    Prior experience says that when a special "tool" is not readily available, often that's because there's an alternate way of doing the task with generic tools. So - I was hoping someone had a trick to hold the "cone" steady while I tighten the locknut with a standard socket. I was also posting as a form of product review.

    Quote Originally Posted by lunacycles View Post
    My mantra about the LBS was simply to suggest they can be your best resource when you can't do it on your own, even if you bought your parts online.
    There's ten or so LBS's that I'd consider local enough to bike to, but I've not found any of them to be the perfect LBS for me. Perhaps they've fragmented the local market too much...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Between the Blue Ridge and the Chesapeake Bay
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    There are several local bike shops that I go to, depending on how much time I have and what I need. My favorite is actually over 100 miles away, but I don't get there too much anymore. Whenever I go to DC, however, I do try to stop in and say hi and get something.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    California
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    371
    Quote Originally Posted by tulip View Post
    You can overtighten pedals, so maybe that's what happened. Maybe not; it's hard to tell from your description.
    As in maybe they were overtightened from the factory? Perhaps that is what happened. When they were new they wouldn't spin on their own at all. I found that useful to flip them over (SPD to platform) - by lifting a foot for half a pedal stroke.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Between the Blue Ridge and the Chesapeake Bay
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    Quote Originally Posted by laura* View Post
    As in maybe they were overtightened from the factory? Perhaps that is what happened. When they were new they wouldn't spin on their own at all. I found that useful to flip them over (SPD to platform) - by lifting a foot for half a pedal stroke.
    I misunderstood the problem. It's easy to overtighten them when you attach them to the crank, but that doesn't appear to be the case with your pedals. I don't know, sounds like you got sold some bum pedals that were damaged somehow in their previous life. I have no other suggestions, but I hope you get them working properly soon!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    California
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    Interim update:

    The special tools arrived. I spent three hours per pedal taking them apart, removing the original grease, being careful to not lose any of the itty bitty bearing balls, inspecting the parts, and reassembling them with new grease.

    Right now I think I have them adjusted a bit too tight. However, the rockcrusher sound is gone!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    California
    Posts
    371
    Another update:

    I loosened the bearings a tiny bit - about 1/6th of a turn. I bike commuted all of last week and the pedals now seem fine. Previously there had also been a click! clack! click! clack! sound in sync with my pedaling cadence. That sound is finally also gone.

    The real test will come the next time I wear my SPD equipped shoes...

 

 

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