What parts do I need to put this back together?

I've lost some pieces going for a ride but I'm not sure what exactly. I think I'm missing the end cap to the crank and maybe a spacer.

I was heading out and the left crank arm came loose, around 180 degrees to where it normally would be. When I unclipped from it the whole arm came off the bike.

I've put the arm back on but it feels like the chainring & pedals are a bit loose. There's probably about 1cm of play laterally where the cranks move together so I think there might be a missing spacer.

What parts do I need & what do I need to do to get everything back together?

There are two bolts (pinch bolts?) on the crank which are still in place, but were loose.

The bike is a 2019 Giant Fastroad SL-1. I think the bottom bracket is Shimano.

With cranks on

enter image description here

With cranks off

Axel 1/3 Axel 2/3 Axel 3/3 Crank 1/3 Crank 2/3 Crank 3/3

  • 3
    FYI the word 'SHIMANO' printed on the crank arm is a dead giveaway Mar 11, 2020 at 11:53
  • The specs on Giant’s site say that the crankset is a Shimano RS400, which is the model number for the Tiagra crank.
    – Weiwen Ng
    Mar 11, 2020 at 12:12
  • 1
    @Scottmeup The BB isn't involved here (it's just the bearings pressed into the frame). The bolts are all part of the crank. Mar 11, 2020 at 12:19
  • 1
    @WeiwenNg Nope. Tiagra is 4700, 4500. RS400 is an less expensive 'non series' model. Mar 11, 2020 at 12:22
  • 1
    +1 for a well-documented problem. Excellent photos.
    – Criggie
    Mar 12, 2020 at 18:35

2 Answers 2


Shimano Hollowtech II cranks use two pinch bolts to secure the crank to the axle. From your picture it looks like you have those. You are missing the plastic end cap, and you may possibly be missing a washer that sits between the crank and the frame. There is no spacer, the play is probably because the crank arm is not fully on the spindle.

To install the crank you just slide the crank on the axle (you may need to drive it home with a mallet), hand tighten the end cap to set bearing preload (this is important!) then do up the pinch bolts to proper torque with a torque wrench.

Park Tool has a great article and video that shows you how these cranks go together: https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/crank-removal-and-installation-two-piece-compression-slotted

However, you may have a serious issue. The crank slides on to splines on the axle, and should not be able to rotate even if the pinch bolts are loose. If your crank arm became loose and rotated 180 degrees the steel axle has likely significantly damaged the internal splines of the alloy arm. If this happens the crank will not stay tight on the axle and will work its way off again.

Update following more info and pics from OP:

The crank splines don't look too badly damaged, so I'd give re-installation a try. If the crank comes loose again then you'll want to replace it.

I checked the RS400 crank manual and there does not seem to be a washer between the arm and BB bearing. You need an end-cap obviously. Googling for 'Shimano Hollowtech stop bolt' yields end caps for various crank models, but not RS400, I think a basic plastic one will fit. A bike shop can help you get the right part of course.

Installation is straightforward but there are a couple of things that must be done right.

  1. Setting bearing pre-load with the end cap. A special tool is needed The Shimano part is TL-FC16, they only cost US$5.

  2. The pinch bolts must be done up simultaneously and to the correct torque, for which you need torque wrench.

You can do the basic assembly and get a bike shop to check it and use a torque wrench to do up the bolts.

If you end up replacing the crank Shimano RS400 cranks are relatively inexpensive (I once bought an older used set for US$35 on Ebay). However, what I would do is upgrade to a proper Tiagra crank to match the rest of the drivetrain (RS400 being a slightly lower level, and cheaper 'non-series' item).

  • Further to AA's answer, here is a Youtube video showing a similar left crank being removed. youtube.com/watch?v=TCDcJ1W9Doo
    – user39927
    Mar 11, 2020 at 11:54
  • The proper term for the end cap may be the fixing bolt, e.g. universalcycles.com/shopping/… and yes, it’s important!!
    – Weiwen Ng
    Mar 11, 2020 at 11:59
  • 2
    @kaz I've given practically the same answer for folks with square taper. If the SQ bolt is loose and the crank works it's way off the axle, same result. Hollowtech with a much greater diameter 25mm axle spreads the load over a much bigger area. Mar 11, 2020 at 12:32
  • 1
    @Scottmeup The bright surface you see on the tops of the splines in the crank arm is where the axle damaged the crank. Check update to my answer on what to do going forward Mar 11, 2020 at 14:07
  • 1
    @ArgentiApparatus The FC-RS400 parts diagram is si.shimano.com/pdfs/ev/EV-FC-RS400-4106.pdf Mar 11, 2020 at 15:53

There is an item Shimano calls a crank Plate Pin, which is that black plastic plate visible on your crank, and circled in the diagram below (4). It has a little pin which should stop the crank coming off in this situation, yours must have been damaged if the crank came off and it should be replaced. Many internet commenters scorn them but has worked for me before when a Hollowtech II crank came loose; I noticed early and stopped to tighten the crank, nothing became damaged. IME plate pins come in two sizes, so you would want one with a road series part name.

I see two options, depending on how damaged your crank is, you either just need an 'end cap' (1), a new 'crank plate pin' and appropriate tools and guidance to refit your crank, or you need to replace one or both cranks entirely depending on the damage done. It's not clear to me from distance if either crank is damaged beyond use, but the spinning 180 degrees is not promising, this might be when the crank was nearly off the spindle anyway, or worse. It's up to you how much damage you can detect and what you think is the best course you can trust when you pedal hard.

All of the small parts pictured would come with a new crankset. Part (5) is visible in your photos on the spindle.

When you refit Hollowtech II cranks the instructions say to check the tightness after 20km (or so) of riding.

enter image description here

  • 1
    From the pictures the OP still has the plate pin/stop plate.
    – Rider_X
    Mar 11, 2020 at 18:51
  • @Rider_X thanks, I had noted that in the first sentence, however I have now clarified that it must be damaged and need replacing
    – Swifty
    Mar 12, 2020 at 6:43

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.