02 May 2013

Broken Threads

While perusing the web, I came across a blog that featured photos like this one:

 There hasn't been a new post on "Busted Carbon" in nearly two years.  However, its author found enough material to keep it going for three years.

Here's another choice shot:

Imagine going more than 70 KPH and, suddenly, your bike's frame splits behind the head tube.  Your handlebars and wheels fly out from under you.  

No mention was made of what happened to that bike's rider.  I hope he or she fared better than this one:

In previous posts, I mentioned that I resisted the "tri-spoke" wheel fad of about two decades ago.  Although I tried a set and liked the ride (for fast rides, anyway), I didn't buy a set after seeing one fail like this:

One of the few carbon-fiber components I've ever owned was a pair of mountain bike handlebars I--in one of my more misguided moments--installed on my Jamis Dakota.  I don't remember what brand the bars were.  But I distinctly recall how they failed when I jumped a creek in Vermont because they ended up like this:

Those strands are as sharp and jagged as shards of broken glass.  After my bars failed that way, I was so glad that I never had a carbon fiber seat post!


  1. Reminds me that I need to call about that broken carbon bike.

  2. Scary! I think I'll stick to steel!

  3. Steve--I hope the manufacturer replaces it.

    Betty--I agree.

  4. I had a Davidson that I had an original Specialized Tri-Spoke that I got USED from a friend after I started racing in Time Trials. I used it almost everyday except at Como Street. I had put close to 30,000 miles on it, I sold the bike with it as I wanted the new lighter versions.

    I never had one come undone, but I don't go stump jumping with them.

  5. I will tell you that I do not use nor like any frame other than STEEL. All of my bikes are steel framed. I do a lot of hills and steel climbs better. The thing with carbon is you can do a minor crash and it all looks ok but there may be cracks that will let loose at the worst time. Then your looking good in your 3 piece bike as 9 of the 18 wheels behind you say HOWDY!

  6. Gun Nut--I agree with you on steel frames, which are all I ride. And what you say about carbon is absolutely right: It can sustain damage invisible to the naked eye. And, when something carbon fails, it usually does so without warning.