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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Dean, feel free to move this if you feel the need....

Last Thursday, I went on a group ride, dubbed "UORE" -- Urban Off-Road Exploring -- led by a few members of the local club. It amounted to a riotously fun excursion through areas of my hometown I never knew existed, and riding through them as if they were technical trails!

It beat me up pretty good, as I rode 30 minutes to get to the start point after work, and we were rolling for over 2 hours before I peeled off for home. I had one wipeout, that gave me a touch of trail-rash, but the bike came out worse at the end of it all.

CLACKITY-CRACK-CREAK! all the way home, to and from work the next day, and so on, until I found the causes.

All my suspension pivots needed attention, and I required more preload. That was the easy part.

My rear wheel, a 2+ -year-old Mavic 819, SPLIT along the valve hole, a 4-inch crack that flexed like it was cheap pot metal!

Thankfully, I was able to put a newer wheelset on the bike, thanks to my generous sister, who told me I could have back the wheelset I bought for her bike six months ago. (She's ridden about 10 miles in that time....)

My deduction is: lotta miles, lotta hard riding, lotta ME on the bike, just made the wheel give up when it encountered too much pounding; I rode harder that night than any other time since buying this bike.

Be a Boy Scout, stay prepared, and your rides won't be abruptly cut off! (Nor will your health, that could have been ugly with one more little jump!)

50 Posts
Excellent point! Earlier this summer a friend who I ride with stopped by my office and told me he has to replace both wheels (about 3 1/2 years old). It's a road bike, doesn't see rough riding, but a lot of miles. Both of his wheels had cracks all around the rims - we had just been riding a few days earlier, on some pretty good climbs and decents. I don't even want to think about what might have happened had one of them given out going downhill at the speed we were riding.
Another guy we ride with noticed the frame was cracked on his brand new, not even a month old, carbon bike - found that while cleaning it the night before a ride.
My DH thinks I'm overly anal as I, at the very least, wipe down my bike after every ride (and I clean it pretty thoroughly about every week to week and a half) and look it over, especially if I've been hard on my bike. I average close to a 100 miles a week, which isn't much for a lot of you, but I'm not easy on my bikes, either. They were made to ride and have fun with!! And while I'm not taking my commuter out on technical singletrack, it sees enough potholes and curbs to do damage at some point. My Cross bike doubles as my roadie with a swap of a wheelset, so I pay special attention to it after hard rides.
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