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Old 10-20-11, 07:15 AM   #26
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If I go to another shop then I'll have to go through the whole "let's try this, lets try that" song and dance all over again.
Not necessarily ... you could take it to another shop, tell them exactly what you and the other mechanics have done so far ... and they might be able to tell you: "Here's your problem" ... and fix it.

I've been in that sort of situation.
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Old 10-20-11, 07:19 AM   #27
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Not necessarily ... you could take it to another shop, tell them exactly what you and the other mechanics have done so far ... and they might be able to tell you: "Here's your problem" ... and fix it.

I've been in that sort of situation.
+1
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Old 10-20-11, 07:25 AM   #28
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Time for another shop. There are plenty of places that can fix that. If you ride hard in muddy conditions sprockets and chains can wear quickly. Do you ride in mud and water a lot? I already asked once. Do you kknow how many miles you have put on the bike?
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Old 10-20-11, 07:27 AM   #29
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Put a chainstay protector on it for now such as a Lizard Skin.
Dd LBS try swap out of FD, raise/lower it, &/or adjust limit screws?

Last edited by bike_boy; 10-20-11 at 08:56 AM.
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Old 10-20-11, 07:37 AM   #30
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How can I get in touch with someone besides this Heather person at Specialized? All she will tell me is to take it back to the shop. The shop is wanting to "experiment" some more. Is there someone higher up at Specialized I can contact?

"I would send this email to the president of Specialized, the district manager, customer service," How can I find out who these people are? I've spoke with CS but like I said earlier, they tell me to take it back to the shop.
Hey there Sknhgy!

Write a personal but certified letter to:

Mr. Mike Sinyard CEO
Specialized Bicycle Corporation
Morgan Hill, CA., USA

Include within the letter your personal experiences with the bicycle. Make certain that you include the number of times that you've taken this lemon to the LBS for repair. Make certain that you give dates. Explain how it appears as though your getting " the run-around-treatment". Explain to him that you are dependent solely upon a well-conditioned bicycle with which to commute.

Make certain that you tell him that this problem has been ongoing ever since the first day you got it home. Let him know that you took it to the nearest Specialized Bike Shop, only to have them say that the problem was resolved, when only a day or so later, the problem would reappear. It has reappeared six times in a row. Everytime it reappears, you take it to the Specialized "experts", at the Specialized LBS. Let him know, that you're not doing anything unusual with the bike. You've owned bikes before and that this one is the strangest and most problematic.

Tell him about Heather and the run-around scenario and that you don't want to deal with Heather or the "experts" anymore. Tell him that you bought a new bike, with the expectations of being able to ride it. Also, let him know that you sacrificed many things and chose Specialized because of its stellar reptutation for bicycle quality and customer service. Make sure that you mention the fact that you were considering other bikes from other manufacturers, but selected "Specialized" in preference to the others, because of their reputation.

Let him know that even after this tedious ordeal, you would still like to continue to do business with Specialized, because you would like to maintain your high level of respect for the Specialized company and their products. Tell him that all you really want is what you thought you bought not eight months ago, a new bike!

Then finally, ask "Mr. Sinyard", what you should do.

(Send this letter as Priority Mail and make certain that you track it)

- Slim

PS.

Thus far, you've done everything you should have been expected to do. If the LBS you've been taking it to, is an authorized Specialize dealership, then you've completed your obligations in terms of making the required effort to resolve the problem. You shouldn't have to take your bike to multiple bike shops. You've done enough and you've suffered enough. Enough is enough!

Last edited by SlimRider; 10-20-11 at 08:00 AM.
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Old 10-20-11, 08:51 AM   #31
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Time for another shop. There are plenty of places that can fix that. If you ride hard in muddy conditions sprockets and chains can wear quickly. Do you ride in mud and water a lot? I already asked once. Do you kknow how many miles you have put on the bike?
Miles? Maybe a few hundred. Mostly double track with some single track. I don't ride hard. I'm 56 years old. I can make it through intermediate level single track trails but I certainly don't blast through anything. I keep my bikes up. I've ridden my entire life and I know how a bike should work. No mud, other than creek crossings, no water.
One of the fixes tried by the shop was to upgrade to a Shimano crankset. In doing so they moved the chainline inwards but didn't bother to remedy that. The mechanic told me he "adjusted it out." That caused a problem; Now, since the chainsuck happened again, there was very little room between the chainrings and the chainstay. I'm sure this occurance of chainsuck has bent some teeth on the middle chainring due to the chain forcing itself through the small opening.
There are deep groves in the chainstay from the chain gouging its way through the gap.

Slimrider - Thank you for the information. I will definitely send Mr. Sinyard a letter.
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Old 10-21-11, 10:08 AM   #32
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Lots of possible causes for your problem:
Mal-positioned front derailleur
Chain too long (hence lack of tension on lower gears)
User error.

Yup, I said user error. If you have a setup with a wide range of gears, then inevitably the chain will be too slack on some combinations. So when changing down from big ring to small ring, you should change the rear to a larger ring *first*. This will help maintain chain tension.

Even the pros drop a chain now and then - I seem to recall someone did it in the TDF and lost their jersey.
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Old 10-21-11, 02:40 PM   #33
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Yea. They keep telling me I don't know how to shift.
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Old 10-21-11, 03:00 PM   #34
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Yea. They keep telling me I don't know how to shift.
Shifting is not rocket science. Even if it did require some type of prerequisite know-how, this should have been explained to you at the point of purchase, or they should have given you a manual of instruction for properly riding this lemon.

I fear you're on your way to small claims court! However, first see how the letter works out with the CEO. Make certain that you file with small claims at least a month, before your components warranty wears out.

- Slim
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Old 10-21-11, 05:42 PM   #35
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Yea. They keep telling me I don't know how to shift.
That's quite possible.

Do you ease up on your pedalling before you shift?
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Old 10-21-11, 06:03 PM   #36
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That's quite possible.

Do you ease up on your pedalling before you shift?


I hadn't looked closely at teh photo earlier but judging from his photo, the chain is dry, very dirty and does not look to be in good operating condition. Very dirty to be blunt. If I were a rep and saw that, I'd say it was your fault.

MTB's are ridden in dirt mud across streams etc but they need to be cleaned and well lubed to function properly. I've ridden through streams and mud but the drivetrain doesn't look anything like that poorly maintained bike picture you posted. I'd bet that if my roadbike looked like that, it wouldn't function properly either.

8 months, poor performance and a poorly maintained drive train? I' say your chances are poor trying to get your money back.

Some people think they can buy a mtn bike and that it should perform well no matter what. Not true, they need to be maintained, cleaned and lubed (more often than road bikes).

To be honest, I wouldn't show that picture to a rep, or even another mtn biker.
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Old 10-21-11, 06:07 PM   #37
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If that's the only shop you can get to, then do it yourself.
http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help
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Old 10-21-11, 06:09 PM   #38
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That's quite possible.

Do you ease up on your pedalling before you shift?
I'll just add to the above, shift before the hill, not while climbing, spinging the pedals with very little push. Also you need to be in the correct gear to rotate the drivetrain quickly while pedaling very easy. If you are in a way too high gear it takes too long for the chain to shift and easing off needs to be so long you slow down too much.
If you're not totally clear on this, have them show you, and have them watch you shift in the parking lot.
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Old 10-21-11, 06:19 PM   #39
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Hey there Sknhgy!

So how is all of this advice making you feel?...Do you feel that much of it is unwarranted?...Do you feel that most of the advice here is off the mark?...How do you feel?...Perhaps, you're now convinced that you're not shifting properly.

Perhaps you're beginning to think that you're to blame for your last six trips to the LBS.

Do you feel at all responsible for not maintaining or neglecting your bike?...Is that what you feel has happened?

- Slim
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Old 10-21-11, 06:24 PM   #40
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not maintaining or neglecting your bike?...Is that what you feel has happened?
Take a look at the picture, it says it all. If you file a claim, what do they do? Take a pic then send it to the rep. Be glad I ain't that rep.
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Old 10-21-11, 06:30 PM   #41
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8 months, poor performance and a poorly maintained drive train? I' say your chances are poor trying to get your money back.
+1
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Old 10-21-11, 06:34 PM   #42
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Put a chainstay protector on it for now such as a Lizard Skin.
Dd LBS try swap out of FD, raise/lower it, &/or adjust limit screws?
Did the OP answer this question?

If the shop did not do that ... yet another reason to take it to another shop.


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One of the fixes tried by the shop was to upgrade to a Shimano crankset. In doing so they moved the chainline inwards but didn't bother to remedy that. The mechanic told me he "adjusted it out." That caused a problem; Now, since the chainsuck happened again, there was very little room between the chainrings and the chainstay. I'm sure this occurance of chainsuck has bent some teeth on the middle chainring due to the chain forcing itself through the small opening.
And here's another reason to take it to another shop. Sounds like it's possible your shop doesn't really know what they are doing if they keep making mistakes like that.

BTW - bent, broken or worn teeth will cause shifting issues. Did you get the chainring replaced as soon as you noticed the bent teeth? Are they bent or just worn?

Another question ... how often do you clean your drivetrain?


A quick glace through Zinn's Cycling Primer and I see that there are several suggestions to fix the problems mentioned by the OP, most of which the OP has not mentioned trying.

sknsgy, before you entertain any ideas of pursuing a refund (after 8 months of riding in the dirt??), or small claims court or anything, you'd better be able to detail exactly what your shop did to try to fix the problem.

Visit 1 - shop mechanic cleaned drive train
Visit 2 - shop mechanic installed chain catcher
Visit 3 - shop mechanic upgrade to a Shimano crankset
Etc. etc.

And then I'd advise having a look at some bicycling books (which you should be able to acquire from the library) to see if there are other solutions which you (or the shop) have not tried yet. If your shop won't try them, another shop might be willing to try those solutions.

There are, no doubt, books that will teach you how to shift as well. That's not the shop's responsibility ... that's yours.

Last edited by Machka; 10-21-11 at 07:19 PM.
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Old 10-21-11, 09:02 PM   #43
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Hey there Sknhgy!

So how is all of this advice making you feel?...Do you feel that much of it is unwarranted?...Do you feel that most of the advice here is off the mark?...How do you feel?...Perhaps, you're now convinced that you're not shifting properly.

Perhaps you're beginning to think that you're to blame for your last six trips to the LBS.

Do you feel at all responsible for not maintaining or neglecting your bike?...Is that what you feel has happened?

- Slim
To answer your question Slim; Some of the advice seems sound, some sounds like it's coming from armchair mechanics. Makes me feel a bit angry. Seems like there's an awful lot of chainsuck experts all of a sudden.

I KNOW HOW TO SHIFT.
THAT DRIVETRAIN IS NOT DRY. IT IS MAINTAINED.

I use Epic Ride semi-dry lube. About every other ride I brush the chain with a toothbrush, wipe it with a rag, then apply a drop of lube to each roller. The excess is removed. If you look at the picture, the chain is clean and so are the teeth. I was riding on dusty double track. There is going to be some dust on the bike. On that day I rode for a short while behind a group on horses. One reason I turned around was because they were raising a cloud of dust.
I maintain my bikes.
You can't tell me a dusting of dust is going to cause chain suck. Do any of you ever ride off road? From some of the recent comments, I don't think you do. That chain is in no way stiff.
My comment on shifting was meant to be sarcastic.
I have other bikes and I've ridden gravel screening covered trails like the Katy for days on end and my drivetrain has gotten filty but there has never been a hint of chainsuck. Just really dirty chains.

But thanks all, for the comments. Kind of gives me an idea of what the customer rep may ask me. This should help me prepare for that conversation. I dropped the bike off at the shop today and the rep is supposed to be there next week.
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Old 10-21-11, 09:07 PM   #44
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should probably have cleaned it off before hand if you didn't want comments about it being dirty then
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Old 10-21-11, 10:02 PM   #45
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Sounds to me like Specialized should "warranty the shop", not the bike, if you catch my drift. If a mechanic can't get a bike to work straight after six visits, they suck, plain as that.

I can only guess two reasons why you haven't taken it elsewhere yet -- either this is the only Specialized shop in your area and you want the work to stay covered by warranty, or there's no other shop at all.
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Old 10-21-11, 10:38 PM   #46
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To answer your question Slim; Some of the advice seems sound, some sounds like it's coming from armchair mechanics. Makes me feel a bit angry. Seems like there's an awful lot of chainsuck experts all of a sudden.
I KNOW HOW TO SHIFT.
THAT DRIVETRAIN IS NOT DRY. IT IS MAINTAINED.
.
Ha ha Yeah, some of us build our own wheels, bikes, ride 70,000 miles, maintain our own stables etc while others can't maintain a drivetrain or shift a bike properly? Yeah, armchair mechanics.

I'm sure others will agree, look at the picture, your bike is filthy and is not maintained properly. Be sure to show that pic to the rep, I'm sure he'll get a good chuckle out of your claim..

In the meantime before you file your claim, let's play a little arm chair mechanic maintenance game. OP says he doesn't ride his bike across streams, I have but I clean my drivetrain immediately after knowing it won't function properly with gunk on it. I also clean my drivetrain after every 2 or 3 rides and I only ride my MTB in the dirt.

Now compare the rollers on my bike to the rollers on his chain. More importantly, take a look at huge build of of gunk on his middle ring, which I'm sure is also present on his small ring.

My drive train is dirty at this moment under my standards but will be cleaned before the next ride, but it is immaculate compared to his system in normal riding conditions.

Good luck with that "I want my money back" claim!

Take a look at my rollers and the middle and small chainrings.


mtbchain by gulpxtreme, on Flickr

Now take a look at the OP's mess of a drivetrain. Check out the gunk on his middle ring. Tell me which system will operate properly and which system is maintained by an armchair mechanic and chain suck expert?


006 by gulpxtreme, on Flickr


Here's an even closer look at the OP's clean defective drivetrain. Check out the crud I underlined with red. I myself would be embarrassed to bring up this issue to a rep knowing my rings looked like this. This isn't a warranty issue, it's a poor maintenace issue.


0062 by gulpxtreme, on Flickr

Riding across a stream, which the Op doesn't do.

Last edited by Mr. Beanz; 10-21-11 at 11:15 PM.
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Old 10-22-11, 08:05 AM   #47
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Blimey, I'm the first person who suggested 'user error' and look what it has triggered!

MRBeanz, my drivechains are considerably grubbier than the OP's; the gunk is unlikely to make the chain drop off unless it bridges the gap between the small and middle ring. Also, in his original post he said that the shop had replaced the crankset once.

My money is on a chain that's too long coupled with minor errors in shifting technique.
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Old 10-22-11, 08:26 AM   #48
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MRBeanz, my drivechains are considerably grubbier than the OP's; the gunk is unlikely to make the chain drop off unless it bridges the gap between the small and middle ring. Also, in his original post he said that the shop had replaced the crankset once..
According to the original post, his current problem is that the chain wrapped around the small ring.

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Old 10-22-11, 09:33 AM   #49
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The OP says he has bike experience so I doubt his shifting technique would be the issue. If a mtn bike has to clean to shift, it is news to me. I am thinking he should take it to a builder and see if it wasn't manufactured with some part out of line. Mistakes happen even with all the jigs they use. I wouldn't ask for my money back but for a different bike. Rent one just like it and take it for a ride and see if that one works. The company owes you a different bike if that is what is wrong, not your money back unless they have a satisfaction guarantee.
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Old 10-22-11, 09:42 AM   #50
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If a mtn bike has to clean to shift, it is news to me. .
Really? Any bike with a clean drivetrain will perform much better than one covered in crud. A bike with crud on the chainrings is more likely to get the chain wrapped around the little ring.
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