Bicycle Mechanics - I have a large dent in my top tube (steel) how dangerous is riding this?
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03-24-11, 01:12 AM
I don't imagine I could have a catastrophic failure as it is steel and there is no crack in the metal. Opinions?
03-24-11, 01:39 AM
Since there is no crease it should be ok.
03-24-11, 07:37 AM
I can't see the dent, but if it is not directly adjascent to a weld, and there are no creases or cracks, then it is probably OK.
I had a steel mtb frame made with Tange MTB tubing, and it had a huge dent in one side of the middle of the top tube... a dent so large the top tube was actually bent and throwing the frame out of alignment. I 'fixed' the dent by slamming the top tube on the other side with a 10 lb sledge. I raced that bike for several years after and it still lives at my cottage for casual riding.
I have neveer seen a frame fail in the middle of a top tube, so if the dent is in the middle you are likely ok.
Steel rarely has unannounced catastrophic failures because of dents. It tends to have ductile failures preceded by some cracking. Also the top tube is mostly in compression, so it's unlikely to tear apart unless the downtube fails first. So keep an eye on it, and give it a careful inspection from time to time, if and when you see cracks forming that's when to stop riding.
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