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  1. #1
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    First set back..broken spoke

    Well today i was going to set out on a metric century, i got about 2.5 miles in made a hard 90 degree turn and hurt a pop. I broke one of my back spokes off at the hub. So much for that metric century. I called the shop i bought my bike at a mere 4-5 weeks ago, and they said they would fix it and true it for around 20$, the setback is that the shop is an hour away and they want my bike for a week to do this. I cant afford the gas to drive down there till at least friday when i get paid let alone afford to drive down there a week after that to pick it back up. There is no local shop in town. So if i go that route then i am looking at not being able to ride my bike for two weeks. Plus my brother from downstate is coming up this weekend to ride with me. I am pretty mad about this, since like i said the bike is just over a month old (although probably a bit over 400 miles on it), but i expected not to have wheel problems with it for a while.

    So i guess i am just kind of ranting and picking everyones brains. Is it possible to replace and true it myself, as a complete novice to repairing, it seems like one of the more difficult repairs on a bike? i have heard if they all arent tensioned properly i will probably have more popping off in the future? would it make sense just to upgrade from the stock rims on my Trek 7100? Any thoughts suggestions or comments are much appreciated. Thank you

  2. #2
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    I would think a bike that new , should be repaired at no charge . I just bought a new Schwinn 2 weeks ago , and if one of my spokes went pop! I'd want it repaired without a charge . Should be cover by some kind of warranty . kirby

  3. #3
    Bikezilla Mazama's Avatar
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    Depends on the bike, spoke count, rider weight and the spoke(s). Do you care to share more details?
    14,000 miles and rolling...

  4. #4
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kirby999 View Post
    I would think a bike that new , should be repaired at no charge . I just bought a new Schwinn 2 weeks ago , and if one of my spokes went pop! I'd want it repaired without a charge . Should be cover by some kind of warranty . kirby
    Should be but the other side is that shops offer a 30 day FREE tuneup. That is when the spokes should have been retensioned. But if the OP sklipped town, the shop can claim negligence on the consumers part. It would hold up in court!

    You should have had the spokes retensioned at 200-300 miles. Especially knowing you're a clyde! I'm betting the OP figured it was too far to travel for a free tuneup resulting in a more expensive repair now. And chances are the other spokes are weakened a this point. If you don't rebuild the wheel with new spokes, it's a gamble. Might get another 200 miles before th next teardrop falls!

    You're going to nickel and dime your bike to death now. If you chose the $20 fix, make sure the guy tensions the other spokes as well. But don't be surprised if more break during the repair.

    I know by experience that Trek takes care of their customers. If I were you, I'd email Trek and explain that your new bike is popping spokes and that you're very dissappointed. They just might tell you to take the wheel in for a free replacement. THEN your shop has no choice but o replace the wheel.

    If that happens, don't be a cheeser! Take the wheel in for service and maintenance before it fails!
    Last edited by Mr. Beanz; 06-30-08 at 06:41 PM.

  5. #5
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    I took my bike back to the shop for a broken spoke last month after having the bike for almost a year. They replaced the spoke free of charge. He commented that he hated to charge me for anything relating to a Bontrager wheel. I'm on my third rear wheel and haven't spent a penny in the shop on wheels. Now spending on other stuff ... that's an entirely different story!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
    Should be but the other side is that shops offer a 30 day FREE tuneup. That is when the spokes should have been retensioned. But if the OP sklipped town, the shop can claim negligence on the consumers part. It would hold up in court!

    You should have had the spokes retensioned at 200-300 miles. Especially knowing you're a clyde! I'm betting the OP figured it was too far to travel for a free tuneup resulting in a more expensive repair now. And chances are the other spokes are weakened a this point. If you don't rebuild the wheel with new spokes, it's a gamble. Might get another 200 miles before th next teardrop falls!

    You're going to nickel and dime your bike to death now. If you chose the $20 fix, make sure the guy tensions the other spokes as well. But don't be surprised if more break during the repair.

    I know by experience that Trek takes care of their customers. If I were you, I'd email Trek and explain that your new bike is popping spokes and that you're very dissappointed. They just might tell you to take the wheel in for a free replacement. THEN your shop has no choice but o replace the wheel.

    If that happens, don't be a cheeser! Take the wheel in for service and maintenance before it fails!
    Pretty much hit the nail on the head with this. I wasnt noticing any problems with the bike since i bought it and figured i didnt really need to drive all that way to have them clean my drivetrain and give me my bike back. Another lesson learned in my cycling adventures. When i talked to the guy on the phone he said that they offer a tune-up anytime within the first year so i am still good on the tune-up (which i will do when i get this wheel fixed), wish i would have done it a little sooner. The shop seems pretty fair and reasonable, they have alot of awards for service and i even though it sucks that i might end up paying 20$ for the spoke replacement i cant blame them at all. I just dont want to wait a week before i can get it down there and then a week for them to fix it. My friend took his wheel to the same shop 6 months after buying it to have it trued he got down there and they ended up doing it for free even after he had used his tuneup.

    Also thanks for the advice about trek i might give that a try while i am waiting and that way i know i would be set - as long as a regularly maintain it.

    This is my first real bike and i have never had a spoke pop on any of the x-mart bikes i had while growing up so i just figured it was a remote possibilty. Granted i never rode an x-mart bike 400 miles in its lifetime let alone a month. Lesson learned about maintenance.

  7. #7
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    [QUOTE=Mr. Beanz;6976065]
    You should have had the spokes retensioned at 200-300 miles. Especially knowing you're a clyde! I'm betting the OP figured it was too far to travel for a free tuneup resulting in a more expensive repair now. And chances are the other spokes are weakened a this point. If you don't rebuild the wheel with new spokes, it's a gamble. Might get another 200 miles before th next teardrop falls!
    QUOTE]


    Per your advice, I asked my LBS to re-tension the spokes on my new FX at 300 miles, I actually mentioned it twice, but the guy told me I didn't need to, he also went on to tell me that it would make it difficult to true the wheel in the future because it "uses up the available adjustments", or something to that effect.

    Well of course I had a spoke pop yesterday at the 550 mile mark, one day before I was planning on bringing it in for its first tuneup. What good is worrying about future adjustments if the wheel need to get replaced or rebuilt!!??

    I went trough this on the first bike I bought there 8 months ago, and of course had to replace the wheel with a much stronger one, but I am now 145 pounds lighter than before.

    I'm a bit annoyed to say the least, that they didn't want to re-tension my rear wheel, and I'm beginning to suspect needing a new wheel may have been the plan.

    Well that's my small rant to add to this thread. I think they could have simply re-tensioned the wheel for me, after all I did buy two bikes in 8 months and was going to purchase a new Trek 520 touring bike in a couple of months, but I am going to go elsewhere now.

  8. #8
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Yers sir JakeReed Dude. I say if a shop doesn't do it, it's cause they are too scared and worried that they can't do it correctly. I've actually had a guy freak out when I took a wheel in to be trued. That's when I started doing my own.

    They say what they can to avoid doing it cause it takes some time to do it properly. Like I say, if the shop says it doesn't need tension, then they don't know what they are talking about, find another shop! Best thing to do is do it yourself, not really that hard with a bit o patience.

    BTW, that guy is full of it! Using up the slack for adjustments. Haha! The spokes are different lengths for different rims. Hardly believe someone would design a wheel to take up every thread on the spoke

    You ned a new shop! My bet is he was trying to get out of doing it!
    Last edited by Mr. Beanz; 06-30-08 at 07:26 PM.

  9. #9
    Metadata World Peace CKey_Cal's Avatar
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    I just popped a spoke today also and noticed a few others were loose. I asked the mechanic at the LBS if it was something I could fix myself - just by tightening the spokes. He mentioned that alot of customers try to do it themselves (true the wheel) but they end up screwing it up. My LBS is is only charging me $12 tho and I should have it back tomorrow night. I think you may have to bite the bullet and have a professional do it.
    All men are by nature equal,
    But differ greatly in the sequel.

  10. #10
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bhammer View Post
    I just popped a spoke today also and noticed a few others were loose. I asked the mechanic at the LBS if it was something I could fix myself - just by tightening the spokes. He mentioned that alot of customers try to do it themselves (true the wheel) but they end up screwing it up. My LBS is is only charging me $12 tho and I should have it back tomorrow night. I think you may have to bite the bullet and have a professional do it.

    I've had shop guys do more harm to my wheels than good. It's easy to make a wheel look straight. I can do it in about 2 mintues. To make sure you don't bind a spoke is different. I place a black dot on each spoke with a Sharpie marker. As I make adjustments, I keep an eye on the mark to make sure the spoke does not turn with the nipple. Quite often they do. IF you have bladed spokes, its' much easier to notice.

    I've watched shop guys true my wheels within 5 minutes. Makes me wonder how in the world did they make sure the spokes didn't bind. When I get on the road and the wheel is clicking and ticking, I know they didn't.

    Truing is easy! If you want to pull the rim to the left, loosen tow spokes form the right, then tighten the spoke coming from the left. And vice Versa

    Adding tension is easy too! Turn each nipple 1/4 turn, one at a time while verifying each spoke does not bind. If it still feels a bit loose repeat the process. Then fine tune the strightness(true).

    If you go into a bike shop, you can squeez a few spokes on anew wheel and get the feel of the tension needed. OR there is the plucking sound. I did it then checked it with the tensionmeter, right on!

    Read SheldonBrown.com on wheelbuilding.

  11. #11
    If you fail, make it epic AndrewCO's Avatar
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    Here's a good link to help with wheel building and truing.


    Of course the site is down right now.
    Last edited by AndrewCO; 06-30-08 at 09:25 PM.
    "When the legend becomes fact, print the legend." - From: 'The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance'

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