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Can a pedal be un-removable? Schwinn Letour 3

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Can a pedal be un-removable? Schwinn Letour 3

Old 04-15-20, 04:39 PM
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Arthur Peabody
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Can a pedal be un-removable? Schwinn Letour 3

I tried to help a neighbor who had broken a pedal on his Schwinn Letour 3 (it appears to be a very cheap bicycle). It was broken where the axle enters the pedal. I put my biggest wrench, a 12-incher, on it. Neither of us could make it budge. It's an alloy crank. The pedal looks to be screwed into the crank arm. I've been replacing my own pedals for 50 years, so I know how to do it.
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Old 04-15-20, 04:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Arthur Peabody View Post
I tried to help a neighbor who had broken a pedal on his Schwinn Letour 3 (it appears to be a very cheap bicycle). It was broken where the axle enters the pedal. I put my biggest wrench, a 12-incher, on it. Neither of us could make it budge. It's an alloy crank. The pedal looks to be screwed into the crank arm. I've been replacing my own pedals for 50 years, so I know how to do it.
And you're certain you didn't have the LH crank and were tightening it?
Heat it a little with a torch to break it free.
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Old 04-15-20, 04:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Unca_Sam View Post
And you're certain you didn't have the LH crank and were tightening it?
Heat it a little with a torch to break it free.
Even better, heat it with a heat gun and spray some Loctite Freeze and Release spray on the back side where the other end is. As it cools the release lube will get sucked into the thread.
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Old 04-15-20, 05:05 PM
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Before you do the heat/cold treatments, spray some Kano Kroil or PB Blaster on liberally, tap the end of the pedal axle with a hammer to get it started soaking in, and wait overnight or longer for it to do its magic.
And make certain that you are turning the right direction, left pedal is left-handed threaded.
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Old 04-15-20, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by dsbrantjr View Post
Before you do the heat/cold treatments, spray some Kano Kroil or PB Blaster on liberally, tap the end of the pedal axle with a hammer to get it started soaking in, and wait overnight or longer for it to do its magic.
And make certain that you are turning the right direction, left pedal is left-handed threaded.
The idea is to "ring" it, not smash it. I use the box end of an old 7/16-5/8" wrench and use quick, light taps. Wrench size varies with part size.
The vibration helps the oil to migrate to where it needs to go. Apparently, the "ringing" assists the capillary action of the oil.

Last edited by Bill Kapaun; 04-15-20 at 05:55 PM.
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Old 04-15-20, 06:56 PM
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I know how to deal with stuck threads. I know how pedals are threaded. I noticed another neighbor had left the frame of a junked bike out for the trash. I removed its pedals easily. My question stands unanswered.
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Old 04-15-20, 07:00 PM
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If push comes to shove there's always the drill. Use a dull bit and it'll heat it up at the same time. I have quite a few dull bits if you need one...
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Old 04-15-20, 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Arthur Peabody View Post
I know how to deal with stuck threads. I know how pedals are threaded. I noticed another neighbor had left the frame of a junked bike out for the trash. I removed its pedals easily. My question stands unanswered.
If you don't mention it, we gotta ask if you know the left pedal is lefty-tighty.

You say you know how to deal with stuck threads. You say you know how to do it. Some people have good suggestions and you've tossed them aside. What else have you tried besides your biggest wrench?

To answer your question, yes, it's possible for a pedal to be unremovable.
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Old 04-15-20, 07:28 PM
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In 15 years of working in bike stores, I only ever encountered one pedal that almost beat me. Ended up extending a 12-inch adjustable wrench with a Park frame straightener tool. It's surprising what a difference four feet of persuasion can make.

That tool happened to be handy, but you can probably extemporize something providing similar leverage. My rule: whatever you need to solve some seemingly impossible mechanical problem is within ten paces of where you're standing.

In fact, come to think of it, just a week ago I was fooling around at home, trying to back a Campagnolo Ultra-Torque bottom bracket cup out of a frame. That cup was as immovable as the pedal had been. So I took the bike off my Aldi repair stand, pulled off the top part of the stand, and stuck that pipe over the handle of a 1/2" drive ratchet wrench. I thought the ratchet would give first, but the cup finally started turning. Success.

Last edited by Trakhak; 04-15-20 at 07:43 PM.
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Old 04-15-20, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Arthur Peabody View Post
I know how to deal with stuck threads. I know how pedals are threaded. I noticed another neighbor had left the frame of a junked bike out for the trash. I removed its pedals easily. My question stands unanswered.
You didnít actually ask a question in your OP. To answer the thread title: There is no doubt that the pedal can be removed. The crank or pedal may not be salvageable, but the pedal CAN be removed.
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Old 04-15-20, 08:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Bigbus View Post
If push comes to shove there's always the drill.
This won't work if the pedal is bonded (welded?) into the crank arm.

Originally Posted by Rogerogeroge View Post
If you don't mention it, we gotta ask if you know the left pedal is lefty-tighty.
I've been changing pedals for 50 years, both left and right. As I mentioned in my second message, I removed both pedals of another bike a few minutes later.

Originally Posted by Rogerogeroge View Post
You say you know how to deal with stuck threads. You say you know how to do it. Some people have good suggestions and you've tossed them aside. What else have you tried besides your biggest wrench?
It's the owner's call. He had to go. I don't want to promise him that I'll succeed when I can't. We're not friends, just neighbors. He's 45 years younger, so we may not read each other well.

Originally Posted by Rogerogeroge View Post
yes, it's possible for a pedal to be unremovable.
In the sense that it was made that way, rather than corroded on?

Originally Posted by Trakhak View Post
In 15 years of working in bike stores, I only ever encountered one pedal that almost beat me.
These are bikes people bring into shops. This fellow is riding around with 1 pedal, seems to think that's okay. I think he'll ride on 1 pedal, or junk it, before he takes it to a shop. It's a throwaway bike. Some cranks are made so you can't remove the chain rings. Some hubs are made so you can't remove the cogs.
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Old 04-15-20, 08:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Arthur Peabody View Post
Some cranks are made so you can't remove the chain rings. Some hubs are made so you can't remove the cogs.
Ah, I understand your question now. No - all pedals are removable. I am certain that no pedal was ever permanently fixed on the crank arm by design. Especially one with wrench flats.
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Old 04-15-20, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Arthur Peabody View Post
In the sense that it was made that way, rather than corroded on?
It wasn't made that way. Most likely a galvanic reaction between the steel pedal spindle and the alloy crank arm. Or possibly corrosion, but I doubt the oxidation of the spindle would prevent removing it with brute force. Galvanizing can be the equivalent of welding, i.e., a four foot cheater bar isn't going to remove it without snapping it off.
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Old 04-15-20, 08:15 PM
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If they were installed, they can be removed. I made a video a few years ago with some tips and tricks that might be helpful for stuck pedal removal.

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Old 04-15-20, 09:23 PM
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I had a tough one a year ago and iced the pedal axle for ten minutes and it came off fairly easily. This was after using a 4 pound hammer and a heat gun that couldn't get it off.
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Old 04-15-20, 09:36 PM
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I had a Schwinn Le Tour III years ago. Decent enough bike for its time.

As with all Schwinn bicycles from that decade the pedals were removable. I assembled hundreds of Schwinn bikes when I worked in the local shop and every single one required installation of the pedals.

Schwinn bikes back then had the occasional quirky part but the pedals were absolutely standard.
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Old 04-15-20, 09:42 PM
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Old 04-15-20, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by aggiegrads View Post
Ah, I understand your question now. No - all pedals are removable. I am certain that no pedal was ever permanently fixed on the crank arm by design. Especially one with wrench flats.
I wouldn't put it beyond someone welding a pedal spindle into a steel crank arm. But, that is less likely with a steel spindle and aluminum crank arm.

If the pedal is broken and non-repairable, I'd go by the theory of nothing you can do can make it worse.

Perhaps put the crank arm in a vise and use a cheater, or even a really large pipe wrench.
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