I have been for 3 rides this week although I haven’t detailed them individually. They have all been comparitively short. Last Monday as it was a nice day I went out for about 38 miles in rolling countryside, plenty of ups and downs but fairly gentle ones. During the ride the bike developed a mystery clicking/tapping noise that I couldnt pinpoint. It only happened when pressure was applied to the pedals as in in climbing. I thought at first maybe the saddle was loose or a loose spoke as I have known these to be the source of annoying noises in the past but it wasnt enough to annoy me too much and persevered to the end of the ride, about 38 miles.
I put the bike on the workstand when I got back and tried to diagnose the source but couldn’t find anything, I checked the wheel bearings, spokes, saddle and found nothing. Next I mounted the bike on the turbo trainer and set the drag to very high to replicate a hill climb and I thought I could hear a similar noise but couldn’t pinpoint it while I was riding so I got my wife to listen around the bike while I pedaled. She thought it was either pedal or bottom bracket area. I swapped the pedals for some old ones I had and still the noise was there. Next I stripped out the bottom bracket, it’s a Shimano Hollowtech so not much hassle to do that, couldn’t find anything obviously wrong so I re-assembled it and tried again on the turbo trainer and it seemed the noise had gone so I hoped that was the problem solved.
I was unable to ride on Tuesday so on Wednesday I went out for a ride, hoping to do about 30 miles. All was well for a few miles and then the noise came back, but even more regular than before and now I could hear it was with every revolution of the pedals so I diagnosed the bottom bracket. I cut short the ride to 20 miles to get back to sort it out. I replaced the bottom bracket, again with an old one, that I hadn’t thrown away. When I bought my new compact chainset there was a new bottom bracket included so I had fitted that and kept the old one fortunately. I fitted that although it had a slightly damaged seal, a little ride under pressure, even though only a couple of hundred yards produced no noise. So I was straight indoors and online to locate a new one so that I could fit it before Saturdays club ride.
Today I went for another short ride with my friend Cyril but I chose a hilly route just to make sure I had diagnosed it correctly. All was well, a nice quiet ride however hard I climbed. So now I await the delivery of the new replacement. Hopefully that will arrive tomorrow but if not I can stick with the temporary one for Saturday I guess.