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I'm somewhat of a newbie, when it comes to bikes, so please forgive me if I don't know the exact terms for specific parts. I recently bent the largest crank ring on my Trek 820 mountain bike. I bent it back out of the way, and now I have just been riding on the 2 smaller rings until I can get it fixed. Also, my left peddle has been loose for quite a while, and I often have to stop and tighten it so the nut holding the peddle doesn't come completely loose. The current crankset is an SR Suntour 28/38/48.

I went to my local bike shop where I bought it, and they wanted to sell me a Shimano crankset with some sort of "bottom piece". I'm assuming he was talking about the little axle/bearings the peddles attach to. They wanted $70 + $25 to install (+tax), which I thought was way too expensive considering I only spent about $250 on the whole bike when it was new. I'm only looking to spend up to $50.

I only ride the bike around town, mostly on streets and sidewalks, so I am not putting that much stress on it. What would you guys recommend I replace the crankset with? Does it matter if other cranksets are 22/32/42 ? My gearing is a Shimano Altus. One shifter says 7-speed and there are 3 settings on the other. Also, what special tools do I need to pick up to install the new crankset?

Thanks in advance for any help you may provide :thumbsup:
 

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The price they quoted you seems fair for a crankset, bottom bracket and installation. If you can find a better deal on the parts, and want to get into bicycle maintenance, take it.

Be advised though that you'll spend at least $25 on tools for removal & installation, depending on what you don't already have in your tool box. Take a look at Park Tool's web site for the removal and installation process (http://www.parktool.com/repair/readhowto.asp?id=103). In summary, you'll need a crank puller, a bottom bracket adapter, a square drive for the BB adapter, and an 8mm allen wrench. I highly recommend using a torque wrench, though you can do it without one.

The $25 cost the shop quoted you includes the use of those tools, removal, installation, and presumably adjustment of your front derailleur. If you want to use this as a jumping off point to begin performing your own maintenance, great, soak up the info on the Park Tool website and go at it. But if you're only trying to save a buck and don't imagine you'll be doing something like this anytime soon, I suggest you pay your shop.
 
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