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Tandem Cycling A bicycle built for two. Want to find out more about this wonderful world of tandems? Check out this forum to talk with other tandem enthusiasts. Captains and stokers welcome!

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Old 12-16-07, 10:20 AM   #1
born2pdl
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Trek T2000 Seat Tube Trouble

There is a flaw inside our rear (Al) seat tube. While inserting an aluminum seat post, it meets slight resistance as it passes the tube/weld junction. Then upon (attempting) removal, the seat tube bites into the post. It's a desperate battle to get that post back out! The post ends up scarred with deep zig-zag ruts.

I've used a long round file trying to remove burrs or imperfections at and around that tube junction. Then I followed up with sandpaper on a dowl. Then I've sanded the post smooth again and repeated. Same steps and results, 3 times in a row.

Currently running a 1-inch suspension post in a shim sleave but would like to run matching (27.2mm) bontrager x-lite posts.

Any ideas or suggestions?
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Old 12-16-07, 11:02 AM   #2
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Take it back to the shop that sold it to you and have them either:

1. Ream it out, or
2. Obtain a replacement frame for you from Trek.
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Old 12-17-07, 10:54 PM   #3
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That would be nice, but the shop I bought it from is accross the continent, and no longer a trek dealer. Any other aluminum frame owners experience something like this?
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Old 12-17-07, 11:25 PM   #4
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You seem to know just were this defect is so you might consider buying one of several style honing tools.
Check into a Flex Honing Tool or a Stone Honing Tool either will do the job. A small cylinder hone may be the best choice for this job.
You can Google these so you can see just what they are.
You can pick one up at any auto store by the way for under $20 Brake Cylinder Hone
Put some oil on it and run it up and down the troubled area a few times and check.
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Old 12-18-07, 05:51 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by born2pdl View Post
That would be nice, but the shop I bought it from is accross the continent, and no longer a trek dealer. Any other aluminum frame owners experience something like this?
Any Trek dealer should be able to handle the warranty claim if you're the original owner...
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Old 12-18-07, 02:27 PM   #6
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Yes. But TG is right, a Trek dealer should be happy to help you out. If that's not an option, any well-equiped bike shop should have a seat tube ream.
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Old 12-21-07, 12:42 PM   #7
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Thanks for the input. I've got access to a hone so I'll try that first, then the lbs.
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Old 12-21-07, 01:16 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by born2pdl View Post
Thanks for the input. I've got access to a hone so I'll try that first, then the lbs.
Be careful-you'll be in a worse spot than you are if you take out too much. I'm pretty sure that seatposts need to be a close fit for the first 6 inches or so below the clamp.

Just go easy and check frequently.

Rick
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Old 12-23-07, 11:40 PM   #9
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Don't be too sure that Trek will replace the frame. After numerous phone calls and e-mails to Trek, including photos, about a flaw in our frame we got no answers nor satisfaction. We have a T2000 that has developed a dimple at the weld of the top tube to the captian's seat post. (It is not a ding nor was the bike ever hit or damaged.) In speaking with the representative at Trek he stated that several engineers agree that the problem may be in the weld but the frame would only be covered for replacement if it failed. This answer was unacceptable to me but I have no other options at this time. We are still riding the frame but keep a constant eye on the developing dimple. We love the bike but hate the fact that we must constantly be prepared for a potential frame failure.

I was surprised at Trek's lack of concern for reasons of product liability and even more surprised as I am (make that was) a loyal Trek owner having three currently including a 2006 carbon fiber 5200. That's over $6000 in Trek bikes in one year! It seems customer loyalty has no place in Trek's business plan.

This frame is our second as the first was damage by the shop when they clamped it on the top tube. That frame, the one with the developing dimple, was sent out as a replacement. I contantly wonder if a welding problem was the reason why it was not assemblied as a complete bike.

Tandem Edge
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Old 12-24-07, 06:07 AM   #10
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s I am (make that was) a loyal Trek owner having three currently including a 2006 carbon fiber 5200. That's over $6000 in Trek bikes in one year! It seems customer loyalty has no place in Trek's business plan.
Trek is probably on solid ground in that, so long as you own the tandem, it will be covered under warranty in the event a crack develops at the weld joint, at which time they will either replace or give you a fair credit based on prorated use of the frame towards the purchase of a new trek tandem.

That said...

If you haven't done so, write a polite and non-threatening, matter-of-a-fact letter to John Burke that expresses your concern for your spouse's and your own safety right up front, along with you disappointment with the buying experience of your Trek T2000, what your expectations were, and how it's changed your view of Trek.
Mr. John Burke
President, Trek Bicycle Corp.
801 West Madison Street
Waterloo, WI 53594-1379

Include a specific request as to what you're looking for in the way of a remedy from Trek so that your letter is actionable (they're not left to guess what it is you're looking for) and requires some type of response, e.g., sorry, no can do or here's what we propose. Include a color photo of the flaw to remove all doubt to the new audience what it is you're referring to. Include the names of who you've spoken with at Trek and the dates associated with those discussions. As part of the remedy you might also ask them to provide you in writing with a description of the warning signs that a flawed weld will exhibit if the flaw propagates into a crack that would lead to a frame failure so that you can: a) be able to monitor the frame's integrity with respect to your spouses and your personal safety and, b) provide it to your insurance company in the event of a catastrophic failure from undetected warning signs so that they can pursue any necessary legal remedies.
The latter part about the insurance company is a bit over the top not having seen the dimple that you're referring to or understanding what if any photos were provided to the engineers and/or if the frame was sent back for inspection. It's only offered as an example of how to demonstrate your concerns in very concrete business terms that will ensure your letter is sent to their legal department for review where it is more likely that someone will quickly determine that the cost of a remedy would far outweigh a future risk. Safety and risk are the two key hot buttons that should remain in the forefront, not aesthetics or anything that would diminish from the more serious and immediate concern, assuming that is your concern.

Disclaimer: I'm not a lawyer, don't pretend to be, and didn't sleep at a Holiday Inn Express last night. This is just what I would likely do in a similar situation if I was concerned about the integrity of a new frame that I had purchased which clearly had what I perceived to be a serious flaw that called into question the reliability, integrity and safety of the frame. Of course, if I had concerns that a frame was truly unsafe I can assure you that I wouldn't put my wife on it. I don't mind having dents and dings in non-stressed / non-critical sections of frame tubes, but if a weld was truly suspect, that's a horse of a different color.

Last edited by TandemGeek; 12-24-07 at 06:39 AM.
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Old 12-24-07, 06:40 AM   #11
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Thanks for the input. I've got access to a hone so I'll try that first, then the lbs.
Let's see... void warranty and then take it back to the dealer: good strategy.

Hey, I'm a guys-guy to and do all of my own fixin' as well. However, when I've had new frames that had problems that I was sure I understood and knew how to fix (drilling, tapping, and installing helicoils in suspension pivots, reaming and facing frames, etc), I still contacted the company that built the frame to discuss the fix and implications on my warranty. In other words, I didn't mind doing them the favor and saving them the expense of shipping and labor by fixing their quality escape; however, in doing so I wanted assurance that my warranty would not be voided. Clearly, running hone through a cylinder isn't and shouldn't be a bit deal, but...

Eyes wide open, that's all I'm sayin'.

Last edited by TandemGeek; 12-24-07 at 06:51 AM.
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Old 12-24-07, 10:26 AM   #12
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I will take Tandem Geek's advise and write to Mr Burke at Trek and see what his stand is on the "dimple". It seems odd, it's unacceptable where I work, to have customer concerns and issues rise to a point where executive management must become involved. We have a grass roots policy of delighting the customer and meeting customer expectations whether that customer be an employee, the community, a stockholder or the person purchasing the services. We supply numerous industries with metal finishing services. Writing to an executive of a company to resolve a problem, at least in my little world, exhibits a broken system in customer service.

You do bring up another point .... how does the dimple affect the structural integrity of the frame? That I do not have an answer but maybe Mr Burke and his crew can figure that one out. Thanks for the address and advice .... I will send a letter with photos this week and keep all updated on the results.
Tandem Edge
PS- Tandem Geek is one contributor to this forum that we should all be glad to have on board. His replys are always filled with excellent information ... keep it up Geek.... thanks.
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