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Old 11-18-08, 07:49 PM   #1
Wiggle
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Crashed hard, is my front wheel faulty?

I just had a pretty nasty crash. I was biking down a slight downhill on Saturday night and then bam I was instantly (it seemed) on the pavement. It was dark, but I had my lights on and nothing was on the road to hit, I don't even think I hit any rough spots on the road. When I crashed I just felt a big jolt and heard a loud snap as I went flying off the front of the bike. A car was coming in the opposite direction and I thought I hit the car because of the noise... I later found out that was the noise of my clavicle breaking I came down on my right shoulder/chest area hard. When I was aware again, my bike was behind me and I was laying in the middle of my lane, the motorist passing stopped and ran over as he saw it all. I asked him what happened cause I was confused, he said I was riding in the middle of my lane when I just went over the front violently, he worried I hurt my neck but it was fine. The bike itself had little damage, the back rack was bent and my bars got shifted a but no indication that a car or anything else besides the ground hit it. The guy stayed and talked with me and then offered to bring me to the hospital. Thanks to the adrenaline I didn't feel that bad so I just got him to drive me home. I later decided to go to the hospital and found out my clavicle was broken nicely.

Anyhow, its all kind of a mystery but today my dad went and took the front wheel of my bike and noticed that the bearings were very rough in it. I can't figure out what threw me off the bike, is it possible these bearings seized? My bike is a Trek 7100 only a few months old and well maintained. The brakes were not locked up or anything but there were some dark brake pad marks on one side of the rim.
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Old 11-18-08, 11:54 PM   #2
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Who knows? I had a nasty spill when my clipped in foot collided with the front fender, which dug into the tire, resulting in an abrupt stop. Doesn't sound like that's what happened to you, so I don't have a guess.
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Old 11-19-08, 08:46 AM   #3
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Well maintained? If the bearings are rough, the bike is NOT well maintained.
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Old 11-19-08, 09:47 AM   #4
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I wasn't aware that was something I needed to be doing on a bike 5 months old with less than 1000km. I never noticed roughness when spinning the wheel around (I did this 2 nights ago when tweaking my brake pad toe-in). I did all the regular stuff, lubed chain, adjusted brakes, kept tire pressure correct, dried it off if exposed to rain etc...
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Old 11-19-08, 12:07 PM   #5
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You tweaked the pads, that would make a difference and /or change the tension on the front brakes. Maybe you thought you feathered the front brakes but because of the changed, it stopped you in your tracks. Front brake will do that!

Rough beaings don't throw you. They might add a small amount of resistance but not that much. The brake marks left on your rim is prolly when you hit the brakes. Plus maybe the wheel was not true so you hit a high spot on the rim. That will do it!
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Old 11-19-08, 02:12 PM   #6
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Maybe you ran over a stick, which jumped into the spokes. Or perhaps when you adjusted the brake pads you didn't do them up quite tight enough.
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Old 11-19-08, 02:16 PM   #7
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You tweaked the pads, that would make a difference and /or change the tension on the front brakes. Maybe you thought you feathered the front brakes but because of the changed, it stopped you in your tracks. Front brake will do that!

Rough beaings don't throw you. They might add a small amount of resistance but not that much. The brake marks left on your rim is prolly when you hit the brakes. Plus maybe the wheel was not true so you hit a high spot on the rim. That will do it!
I'm also wondering about the brakes, but I tested them quite a bit after adjusted so I knew how they felt. Once I'm feeling better, I'm going to go by the LBS and have them look at the bike.
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Old 11-19-08, 02:20 PM   #8
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Maybe you ran over a stick, which jumped into the spokes. Or perhaps when you adjusted the brake pads you didn't do them up quite tight enough.
Brake pads weren't twisted out of place or anything.
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Old 11-19-08, 02:49 PM   #9
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check the spokes and fork for stick marks.
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Old 11-19-08, 03:24 PM   #10
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No. Your wheel is not faulty. Just 'cause you were "just riding along" and something happened, it doesn't automatically clear you of any guilt. There is no way that your (potentially) "faulty" front wheel caused your accident.

But for fun, you should go in ranting and raving into your LBS and see what you can get, screaming that it's their fault.
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Old 11-19-08, 04:19 PM   #11
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but there were some dark brake pad marks on one side of the rim.
Check the wheel to see if it's out of true and the high spot being on the black marks. If you adjusted the brake and even if you knew the feel, the wheel going out would make a difference. Plus, a wheel can go out of true within seconds without warning!
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Old 11-24-08, 07:51 PM   #12
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Was it after dark? If so, you may have dropped the front wheel into a bit of irregularity on the pavement and scooped the bike out from under you too fast to realize it was happening.

FWIW, if you're gonna have a bad crash, that's the best way....to have it happen so fast you can't see it coming, rather than a slow crash at high speed that you CAN see coming, but cannot recover from, no matter what you do.
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Old 11-25-08, 03:41 PM   #13
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The brake marks have me thinking some more... maybe the QR was loose, one side of the axle dropped out of the dropout, and jammed?
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Old 11-25-08, 06:02 PM   #14
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There isn't any fur in the spokes or anything is there? You know, squirrel, fox, raccoon, small bird (well, it'd have to be feathers..)?
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