Having a quiet bike is something we’re obsessed with. The only thing we want to hear is the sound of the tires in the dirt and the suspension doing its job. But, there are many noises that can ruin a ride. Many of the details on our bikes help in having a quiet bike. One is the cable routing that bypasses the internal mysteries. Others are the design of the pivots, the threaded BB and the shape of the chain stays. But the reality is that there remains plenty of sources for unwanted little creaky noises.
First of all, it is good to understand that noises will always come from two surfaces that are in contact. With specific forces on the two surfaces, they will start rubbing and generate noise. So, the general solution is to grease these contact surfaces and tighten the connection. It is also good to know that a tight hardware fit will be quieter for a longer period of time than a loose fit. A tight fit is a good fit.
We have listed the possible sources from our frames below. But noises can also come from one of the many components on your bike. The best thing to do is go through your bike step by step until the noise is gone and learn where the noise came from.
A source of noise to check can be the main pivot. The main pivot has large contact surfaces that can get noisy if they are dry and not tightened properly. Getting the axle out is very straightforward, as well as reassembling. Give the axle, main frame, and chainstay surfaces a good clean, grease all the contact surfaces properly and tighten the axle to 50 nm after adding a little mid-strength Loctite to the thread.
A second source of noise on the frame can be the rocker pivot. The high forces and large movement demand a lot of the axle and can create noises if the axle is dry and not tightened properly. The best solution is to disassemble the axle, clean it, as well as the main frame and rocker link surfaces, and reassemble it with these contact surfaces greased. Don’t forget a little mid-strength Loctite on the thread and tighten the axle to 12 Nm.
Rear Wheel Axle
Our RAAW Rear Wheel Axle is responsible for many jobs and creates a rigid connection between the two seat stays from its keyway shape. The whole axle, nut, and insert on the drive side need to be clean and well-greased on all contact surfaces to avoid noise. The rear wheel axle nut needs to be tightened to 15 Nm.