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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 08-13-10, 05:32 PM   #1
csavoia
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Carbon Fork durability?

Hey guys, I'm new to the world of track bikes and single speeds since I've been riding mountain bikes my whole life. Usually I never had to worry about riding off of curbs, but now that I have a Specialized Langster with a carbon fork (more importantly no shocks), I'm a bit worried that doing so will hurt my fork.

So, in essence, will riding off of curbs ruin my carbon fork or can it withstand the pressure?
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Old 08-13-10, 06:16 PM   #2
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I have beat on my Langster's fork for 3+ years now, hasn't let me down yet. Just saying...
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Old 08-13-10, 06:45 PM   #3
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my team track takes curbs with no problem. I'm always very scared when I do it too.
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Old 08-14-10, 12:36 AM   #4
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Well, if you get hit by a car you're probably going to break your fork. Happened to me, on a very very nice Leader fork. Other than that I wouldn't worry.
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Old 08-14-10, 01:44 AM   #5
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there's a nice video of a guy doing tricks and jumps on a carbon road bike. the bike didnt explode
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Old 08-14-10, 04:51 AM   #6
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I'm concerned like the OP as well, probably never why I'll buy a carbon frame/bike. On freshly paved asphalt, I'm certain it'll last virtually forever. An imperfect world and road surface and it's why I buy steel bikes. I don't ever intend to replace frames/forks, and carbon makes me feel uneasy for that reason. I can wait for steel to rust, but carbon, I still perceive that as a plastic bike ?
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Old 08-14-10, 04:57 AM   #7
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This is going to be good...

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Old 08-14-10, 09:51 AM   #8
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carbon bikes are fragile like glass
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Old 08-14-10, 11:39 AM   #9
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I seem to have not been specific enough- the frame is aluminum but the fork is carbon/alloy. I figure the same principles still apply though.
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Old 08-14-10, 12:07 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by hairnet View Post
carbon bikes are fragile like glass
Pretty good ad for Raleigh, although the music could be much better.

Carbon is fine. Get a steel fork if you want, but it's not like the carbon one is going to combust. *insert urban legends about carbon here*
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Old 08-14-10, 01:40 PM   #11
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I never said my fears of carbon were based upon personal experience (just seeing another with a crack or fractured carbon part, even what appeared as a deep scratch that I'd wonder would ever be a fault line to crack later or wasn't cracked ?), but that video tends to allay my fears of carbon, except that I know I could find a way to break one if there is a way ? Another thing, no way I could ever ride like that or even attempt it either. BTW, was he wearing any foot retention ?
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Old 08-14-10, 03:48 PM   #12
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I've abused the hell out of my carbon road bike (w/ a carbon fork) for years. It's so durable that it is my bike of choice when I am going some place that I have never been before. I've used it to ride down stairs, hop hundreds of curbs, etc and never felt unsafe on it.

In short, you're fine. Just don't jump stair cases with it (though I have seen people do this carbon rigid mtb forks and they were fine).

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I'm concerned like the OP as well, probably never why I'll buy a carbon frame/bike. On freshly paved asphalt, I'm certain it'll last virtually forever. An imperfect world and road surface and it's why I buy steel bikes. I don't ever intend to replace frames/forks, and carbon makes me feel uneasy for that reason.
Poorly paved roads are one of the reasons I really like my carbon frame/fork.
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Old 08-14-10, 07:27 PM   #13
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Here's a link that carries the same video posted earlier. Most of the rest are horror stories of carbon failure. It's my worst fears that I indicated earlier and like I said, never had a carbon failure as I've never owned one, but frames snapping, steerer tubes that break if not properly tightened, then there are the broken dropouts. Here's evidence, but what happens to aluminum or steel in the same mishap ? Are they destroyed beyond bending them back to alignment ? I'm also wondering how these get repaired. I have done surfboard & boat repair with fiberglass, but for this, where to get carbon fiber to wrap the crack/break and is it some type of 2 part polyester resin/chemical agent mix ?

http://www.bustedcarbon.com/
http://www.bustedcarbon.com/2008/12/...bon-forks.html

I guess what happened to the steerer tube on the Trek pics, that might happen, even to a carbon seat post ?

Last edited by fuji86; 08-14-10 at 07:33 PM.
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Old 08-14-10, 07:41 PM   #14
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you can break anything, just sayin...
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Old 08-16-10, 09:08 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by asherlighn View Post
Poorly paved roads are one of the reasons I really like my carbon frame/fork.
+1

Man, fuji, you are just a fun little barrel of bike myths: carbon is weak, foot retention is bad, hi-ten is awesome . . .

Not trying to rib you, just pointing out something I've noticed.
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Old 08-16-10, 09:17 AM   #16
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...saving up for the Ti, here.

frame that is. Carbon fork, sure.

Last edited by rustybrown; 08-16-10 at 09:20 AM. Reason: Heil Seitan
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Old 08-16-10, 06:40 PM   #17
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Quote:
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+1

Man, fuji, you are just a fun little barrel of bike myths: carbon is weak, foot retention is bad, hi-ten is awesome . . .

Not trying to rib you, just pointing out something I've noticed.
Your trilogy is mythical, where did I say carbon is weak ? where did I say foot retention was bad ? where did I say hi-ten was awesome ? I've argued valid points in every case, not trying to rib you either, but the link I posted, maybe the video was posted from the same link, 2 different stories on the web page wouldn't you say ? I watched the video from the first post, even admitted there was evidence that carbon was durable from it. But after finding the rest of the pics on the web site. I'd have to qualify that now. Might as well tell the whole truth and story rather than dupe someone into believing that carbon can be mistreated and abused ?
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Old 08-16-10, 06:54 PM   #18
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I heard people in F1 racing saying carbons are nice because it shutter and don't crumple, and absorb energy while it does this. You won't get crushed in the hull. Maybe it's about using carbon for what it's meant for and keeping it well maintained. I wouldn't use "racing" weight-weenie carbons for street use.

Aerospokes weren't originally for bicycles right? I thought it was for chariot racing. Do those expl0de? I've seen destroyed ones, but that's when it was used for trick-busting.
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Old 08-16-10, 07:41 PM   #19
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Your trilogy is mythical, where did I say carbon is weak ? where did I say foot retention was bad ? where did I say hi-ten was awesome ? I've argued valid points in every case?
huh? I can't comment on the hi-ten business, but you just said you prefer steel because the strength/durability of carbon makes you uneasy, and you regard it as a plastic bike, and theres a whole thread going where you're trying to defend the disadvantages of foot retention. I think you have a skewed view of what truly is a valid point, as you have a tendency to really play up specific/minor/statistically small portions of the larger argument as a whole.

a LARGE majority of any asploded carbon photos i've seen have been the result of a crash, and many of the others have involved trek products, and steer tubes - a known issue. a simple solution to this design flaw is just don't crash, or buy trek stuff.

of course, sometimes crashing is unavoidable. if that's the case, give the bike a solid once over, don't ride it any more than absolutely necessary, and take it to a bike shop that's good with carbon stuff for a look over by a trained professional.

EDIT/addition: Anyway, the possibility of carbon stuff breaking during a crash is certainly something worth noting, but it's not so much relevant to safety as it is to possible cost.

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Old 08-16-10, 08:35 PM   #20
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I've got a wound up fork on my Godzilla. I've had nom issues with it. It's light as he'll. And IMO I think the wound up for a track fork are as tough as they come. Problem is that they are really expensive. Don't know if the price can be justified though.

Anything can break. I weigh 135 pounds and ice gone through through two bottom brackets but never a fork....

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