Bicycle Mechanics - Front Wheel Locking Tabs- What do they do
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01-18-06, 10:00 AM
We had a serious accident at work tonight when an operator was riding an old bike when the front wheel came off. Suspected broken elbow and wrist.
The bike has wheel nuts and not quick release levers.
The bike was not fitted with the locking tabs on the front wheel.
Question: What do the locking tabs do?
Do they prevent the wheel nuts coming lose or prevent the wheel falling out of the forks if the nuts do become lose?
01-18-06, 10:12 AM
The tabs you're talking about on the dropouts of the fork are meant to decrease the likelihood of the front wheel coming out if the axle nuts or quick release lever are loose. They do not, in any way, prevent the axle nuts or quick release lever from loosening. It is the operator's responsibility to make sure the axle nuts or quick release lever are as tight as they should be before every ride.
01-18-06, 11:35 AM
You may also hear such tabs referred to as 'lawyer lips', which is a concise statement of their origin & usefullness.
The tabs help protect the manufacturer from liability when a rider does not maintain/check his equipment. The also serve to reduce the effectiveness of a front QR.
01-18-06, 11:49 AM
And most cyclists will file 'em off.
I hate them.
I despised them til my Teledyne Titan fell over sideways in the back of the van and bent/broke the fork tip off one side of the fork. Got lax about the side to side restraints and the QR fork clamp evidently wasn't enough. Now I worry about the same thing happening to the bent, and have given up on filing down the bikes that have them.
01-18-06, 12:30 PM
Got lax about the side to side restraints and the QR fork clamp evidently wasn't enough.
A properly tightened qr would not have come off under this circumstance and I strongly suspect you hadn't tightened yours enough.
Many roof racks hold the bike by the fork dropouts with a qr skewer which is the only thing that keeps the bike from falling over sideways since the back wheel is just held with a strap around the bottom of the rim. They sustain sidewinds and cornering forces just fine. They were around and worked well before the Lawyers Lips were invented.
A properly tightened qr skewer won't come off, lips or no lips. The lips are there to protect the manufacturer from being sued by the careless or inept.
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