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Steel bike failure. Is this manufacturing or something else?

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Steel bike failure. Is this manufacturing or something else?

Old 12-01-19, 05:30 PM
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Slowridr
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Steel bike failure. Is this manufacturing or something else?

How would this happen? I'm was just googling all city bikes as I'm looking at the mr pink and came across this. Was wondering about what went wrong. I thinks it's a all city macho man but I could be wrong

https://www.fox7austin.com/news/man-...g-manufacturer
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Old 12-01-19, 05:49 PM
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Assuming it goes to trial, it will be up to a jury and/or judge to decide the facts of the case based upon the evidence provided by both sides. Since we aren't privy to any of that evidence, I think the only reasonable thing to do is sit and wait, and hope each side receives a fair hearing. (I have a considerable degree of sympathy for both sides.)

It is also worth keeping in mind that even if the plaintiff himself has no desire to go to court, his health insurance company would file a suit on his behalf, to recover the expenses.
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Old 12-01-19, 06:23 PM
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That crease in the downtube makes me wonder if someone didn't run headfirst into a curb, but how clean those welds came apart makes me question the integrity of the bike's construction.
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Old 12-01-19, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
That crease in the downtube makes me wonder if someone didn't run headfirst into a curb, but how clean those welds came apart makes me question the integrity of the bike's construction.
yes I noticed the bend in the down tube as well. I am wondering if somebody had to run into something and cause damage to the down tube. When the down tube came off the created too much force at the top tube and pried that off. It does seem as though the separations at the welds are pretty clean on the top tube.

the one thing I find curious about the article is that it says he was grateful at happened there at the fence rather than down a little farther with no fence to catch him. I would think if there were no fence the most he would have wound up with is a broken wrist or collarbone rather than a neck injury and facial issues.
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Old 12-01-19, 06:54 PM
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“Macho Man Flat Bar”. No es macho.

The bend in the downtube is consistent with the top tube head tube joint failed first, followed nearly immediately by the down tube head tube joint failure.

p.s. These kind of failures led to CPSC regulation of bicycles.

Those of us who forget the past are doomed to, you know, forget like other things, like your car keys, or even your own phone number.”

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Last edited by mr_bill; 12-09-19 at 07:15 AM.
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Old 12-02-19, 12:52 PM
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The street runs parallel to the fence that Ronnie managed to face plant into in a manner that his injuries indicate was an endo. No glancing blows to Ronnie, just a straight on face plant.

Why was Ronnie riding straight into a fence. The welds look to be intact, no cracking. The failure on the bicycle looks more like the metal frame failed right next to the intact welds. Could be bad tubing or heat stress from improper prep before welding. Ronnie injuries and the damage to the bicycle both indicate that Ronnie was riding hard at the time he crashed face first into the fence.

I am not buying that Ronnie was just riding along and suddenly his bicycle just fell apart.
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Old 12-03-19, 07:27 AM
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The welds look ok to me, from the brief view of the video. It appears that the tubing sheared just behind the welds. There had to be at least some sort of dynamic stress on the frame; however a properly constructed steel frame should be able to handle a lot of stress without the head tube shearing completely like this.
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Old 12-03-19, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Moe Zhoost View Post
The welds look ok to me, from the brief view of the video. It appears that the tubing sheared just behind the welds. There had to be at least some sort of dynamic stress on the frame; however a properly constructed steel frame should be able to handle a lot of stress without the head tube shearing completely like this.
The company should have settled this quietly. He'd have to have been doing something quite extraordinary to explain away a catastrophic failure like this. If it really did fall apart like this and that's confirmed by witnesses and a video (I'm not assuming that's true, his lawyer claims it), then there's no way the manufacturer isn't on the hook for defective product liability.
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Old 12-03-19, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
Ronnie injuries and the damage to the bicycle both indicate that Ronnie was riding hard at the time he crashed face first into the fence.

I am not buying that Ronnie was just riding along and suddenly his bicycle just fell apart.
Do you have any expertise on this subject? Falling from a standstill into a fence can cause a lot of damage, particularly if the force of the head smacking the fence is concentrated on a nose.
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Old 12-03-19, 09:26 AM
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One thing is for sure, that dude isn't faking injury
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Old 12-03-19, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by john m flores View Post
Do you have any expertise on this subject? Falling from a standstill into a fence can cause a lot of damage, particularly if the force of the head smacking the fence is concentrated on a nose.
How dare you challenge the Bike Forum Imaginary Science Forensic Team!

The amount of logic jumps people commit to get to a conclusion on these threads is always hilarious. I have no idea where and how someone would land if their bike fell apart as described while riding at any speed, it's just not a situation people face enough to know what happens. Where do the front wheel and handlebars go when that happens? Where do your hands end up if you're still clutching the handlebars? Does the back of the bike pitch down forward or up backward?

I'm not trying this one at home.
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Old 12-03-19, 11:06 AM
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Up to the jury to decide, but looking at the video, it appears that at 1:20, you can see a bulge in the tubing, behind where the frame broke. Think it would take some force to create a bulge in the tubing, unless I'm looking at it wrongly.
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Old 12-03-19, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by john m flores View Post
Do you have any expertise on this subject? Falling from a standstill into a fence can cause a lot of damage, particularly if the force of the head smacking the fence is concentrated on a nose.
What direction would he have had to been riding to impart a direct impact on his nose on the fence and then transfer all of the force into his neck and spine shoving it directly backwards? What speed do you believe he would have had to been going to impart with such a high degree of force?

My Bachelor degree in physics and work in the field, my postgraduate work in naval nuclear propulsion and engineering (including material stress, welding and failures), as well as having collateral duties as a military and corporate safety officer do provide some insight with this situation.

What are your expertise?
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Old 12-03-19, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
I have no idea where and how someone would land if their bike fell apart as described while riding at any speed, it's just not a situation people face enough to know what happens. Where do the front wheel and handlebars go when that happens? Where do your hands end up if you're still clutching the handlebars? Does the back of the bike pitch down forward or up backward?

I'm not trying this one at home.
Let's assume for a moment that the head tube joints failed prior to face plant, as alleged by the plaintiff's attorneys.

Actually, you can try this one at home, with zero risk unless you are completely clumsy.

Another home physicis project in your eat-in kitchen.

Take two kitchen chairs, space them such that you can put your front and rear tires of your bike on the seats. The height of the seats is the "road." Put your bike tires on the seats and stand on the drive side of the bike. You'll want to hold on to the top tube with your right hand throughout this experiment, you'll figure out why.

Push down on the saddle with your free (left) hand. Which way does the bike want to move? What keeps it from moving that way? (One triangle is the seat stays, chain stays, and seat tube, plus rear wheel, the other triangle is the seat tube, top tube, down tube, head tube, fork, plus front wheel.)

Now, while holding onto the frame at the top tube, remove the chair under the front wheel. Imagine the down tube, handlebars, fork, plus front wheel are no longer attached to the frame.

Now, push down on the saddle again with your other (left) hand. Which way does the bike want to move? Right, clockwise pivoting on the back wheel, so now slowly lower your bike with your right hand. (Convieniently, you haven't had to destroy it in this kitchen experiment, so you can use the still attached front wheel as a rest while you think about this next part. Use your imagination.)

What part of the bike is going to contact the road? (Drive side pedal? Non-drive side pedal? Or chain wheel?) So you've been rotating clockwise down so far, but now you are also going to be pitched either toward the non-drive side (in two cases) or the drive side (in one case). And continue the clockwise motion about the new contact point.

As to what is holding onto a handebar that isn't attached to anything do for you? Again, you are in the kitchen, grab a rolling pin. Imagine you are sitting on the saddle and holding onto your rolling pin handlebar. Put some of your weight on that rolling pin handlebar. Useful? Nope.


Pretty much the only catastrophic bike failure as devastating as the "death fork" failure is a head tube failure. (At least with the "death fork" the handlebar still does something, sort of.)


Which is why "Those of us who forget the past are doomed to, you know, forget like other things, like your car keys, or even your own phone number.”


As far as the physics and forensics "experts" on the internut? Yeah.


Challenge to the dent in the downtube surely means it must have been a curb, or abuse, or head on into the fence (really?), that caused this joint failure. You are right, could have been. It's possible that that tiny bend in the downtube PRECEDED the joint failure. Unlikely, but possible. Surely you can find a picture on the internut of such a tiny bend in the downtube together with a catastrophic joint failure?

I'll wait.


-mr. bill

Last edited by mr_bill; 12-05-19 at 08:35 AM.
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Old 12-03-19, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by CB HI View Post
What direction would he have had to been riding to impart a direct impact on his nose on the fence and then transfer all of the force into his neck and spine shoving it directly backwards? What speed do you believe he would have had to been going to impart with such a high degree of force?

My Bachelor degree in physics and work in the field, my postgraduate work in naval nuclear propulsion and engineering (including material stress, welding and failures), as well as having collateral duties as a military and corporate safety officer do provide some insight with this situation.

What are your expertise?
I did not mean to turn this into a pissing contest of who knows more. I was genuinely wanted to know if you had any expertise that led to your assertions. Did you work as a safety officer include training or analysis of accidents such as this?

I have no expertise in accident analysis but I do have a degree in structural engineering and thus know a little bit about physics. Imagine someone riding alongside a fence at 10mph when the downtube-headtube weld catastrophically fails.This causes said rider to veer directly towards the fence at approximately 10mph, perhaps a bit less. This happens so suddenly and unexpectedly that he's still trying to figure out what is happening and is thus still holding on the handlebars. Unable to take evasive action, he runs right into the fence. Let's assume he's 150 lbs and that his face - specifically his nose - is the first point of contact, striking the fence at about 10mph. F=ma and all of that jazz minus whatever give (if any) in the fence - we don't know if it is chain link or something more substantial and unforgiving - and that sounds like a fair amount of force to apply to a nose that wasn't designed for that kind of stuff. Enough to nearly rip his nose off? Enough to push his neck and spine I don't know, but I don't think you have to be traveling at an excessive speed to cause significant damage when colliding with a fence.

Here's something from Harvard Medical School about whiplash:

For example, if you are sitting in a stationary car that's hit from behind by a car moving at just 10 miles per hour, the force from the collision can briefly put 9 Gs of force on your neck (a G is the gravitational "pull" of the earth). It's not difficult to imagine how one or more structures of your neck could be injured under these circumstances.
SOURCE: https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsl...ticle/Whiplash
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Old 12-03-19, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
Let's assume for a moment that the head tube joints failed prior to face plant, as alleged by the plaintiff's attorneys.

Actually, you can try this one at home, with zero risk unless you are completely clumsy.

Another home physicis project in your eat-in kitchen.

Take two kitchen chairs, space them such that you can put your front and rear tires of your bike on the seats. The height of the seats is the "road." Put your bike tires on the seats and stand on the drive side of the bike. You'll want to hold on to the top tube with your right hand throughout this experiment, you'll figure out why.

Push down on the saddle with your free (left) hand. Which way does the bike want to move? What keeps it from moving that way? (One triangle is the seat stays, chain stays, and seat tube, plus rear wheel, the other triangle is the seat tube, top tube, down tube, head tube, fork, plus front wheel.)

Now, while holding onto the frame at the top tube, remove the chair under the front wheel. Imagine the down tube, handlebars, fork, plus front wheel are no longer attached to the frame.

Now, push down on the saddle again with your other (left) hand. Which way does the bike want to move? Right, clockwise pivoting on the back wheel, so now slowly lower your bike with your right hand. (Convieniently, you haven't had to destroy it in this kitchen experiment, so you can use the still attached front wheel as a rest while you think about this next part. Use your imagination.)

What part of the bike is going to contact the road? (Drive side pedal? Non-drive side pedal? Or chain wheel?) So you've been rotating clockwise down so far, but now you are also going to be pitched either toward the non-drive side (in two cases) or the drive side (in one case). And continue the clockwise motion about the new contact point.

As to what is holding onto a handebar that isn't attached to anything do for you? Again, you are in the kitchen, grab a rolling pin. Imagine you are sitting on the saddle and holding onto your rolling pin handlebar. Put some of your weight on that rolling pin handlebar. Useful? Nope.


Pretty much the only catastrophic bike failure as devastating as the "death fork" failure is a head tube failure. (At least with the "death fork" the handlebar still does something, sort of.)


Which is why "Those of us who forget the past are doomed to, you know, forget like other things, like your car keys, or even your own phone number.”


As far as the physics and forensics "experts" on the internut? Yeah.


Challenge to the dent in the downtube surely means it must have been a curb, or abuse, or head on into the fence (realy?), that caused this joint failure. You are right, could have been. It's possible that that tiny bend in the downtube PRECEDED the joint failure. Unlikely, but possible. Surely you can find a picture on the internut of such a tiny bend in the downtube together with a catastrophic joint failure?

I'll wait.


-mr. bill

I'm going to pass on the kitchen experiment, but I think the actual event of such a failure would be so chaotic that meaningful prediction of the rider's landing position is highly unlikely. The interaction of the suddenly disconnected tubes and the front wheel would, I suspect, be highly dependent on the turning angle and speed at the time of the failure, a dynamic the kitchen experiment can't capture. Do the tubes strike the wheel? Where--spokes or tread?

The handlebars are worse than useless in this scenario. I think there's a fair chance you might end up with them smacking you right in the face.

I think we're also assuming both joints fail simultaneously. I could easily imagine that one fails and then the second one fails a very short time afterwards. The rider might try to adapt to the first break, probably not knowing what exactly happened, then collapse completely when the second one went. That first attempt at adaptation could do all sorts of things to the orientation and direction of the bike.
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Old 12-03-19, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
I think we're also assuming both joints fail simultaneously. I could easily imagine that one fails and then the second one fails a very short time afterwards. The rider might try to adapt to the first break, probably not knowing what exactly happened, then collapse completely when the second one went. That first attempt at adaptation could do all sorts of things to the orientation and direction of the bike.
No, they probably didn’t fail simultaneously. Just assuming the top tube failed first. With a failed top tube there is one thing you absolutely do not want to do. Front brake.

-mr. bill
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Old 12-03-19, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
No, they probably didn’t fail simultaneously. Just assuming the top tube failed first. With a failed top tube there is one thing you absolutely do not want to do. Front brake.

-mr. bill
I'm pretty sure I wouldn't recognize a top tube failure before I was reacting to the weird sensation.

Don't know whether I'd brake, turn or whatever.

I hope you're not speaking from experience.
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Old 12-03-19, 04:49 PM
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According to the article, there is a video of the actual accident, as well as witness accounts. Neither have been provided.

We have the basic chicken or the egg problem. Did the crash cause the bike to break, or did the bike breaking cause the crash?

The description is poor as to how he struck the fence? Head in 90° angle, or glancing from the side, perhaps catching the handlebars?

The news story says a fence like the one in the film, so that could be from an entirely different place.

The downtube bend looks a lot like a front end crash bend.

Thinking of typical frame mechanics. Just riding along, the top tube is under compression and the downtube is under tension.

A top tube break would tend to be minimally displaced.
A downtube break would tend to do a stretching tear rather than a compression tear.

The photos don't show any rust in the joint, so likely not a slowly progressing crack.

Whew, as always, we need more details. Was that double butted tubing? Butts cut off? Non-butted thinwall tubing? Crack propagation? Better view of how and why the accident occurred, etc.
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Old 12-03-19, 05:00 PM
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All City Bicycles Macho Man Flat Bar



https://allcitycycles.com/bikes/macho_man_flat_bar

It is supposed to be:
Frame: 612 Select double-butted CroMoly tubeset, double bottle cage mount, 135 mm rear spacing, 1-1/8" headset, English BB
Fork: 612 Select double-butted CroMoly, tapered fork blades, lugged crown & matching dropouts w/IS disc tabs
With their notes on 612 Select:
https://allcitycycles.com/blog/what_is
You may have noticed that many of our models now come with a little tubing decal on the seattube that reads "612 Select." You may also be asking yourself, what the heck is that? Well my friends here is your long overdue explanation.

We spend a crazy amount of time designing our frames, dialing in not just the geometries but the tubing diameters, wall thicknesses and butting profiles to get the feel of the bike just right. We do this not just on one frame size, but across them all, making sure that each size of every model is precisely tuned to give the rider the experience and thrill that they’ve come to expect from a bike wearing the Hennepin Bridge headtube badge.

It’s a process and result that we’re quite proud of, so we decided to give our proprietary blend of double-butted 4130 Cro-Moly tubes a name. That name is 612 Select.
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Old 12-03-19, 05:33 PM
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One expects that this to be a single event.

Frame cracks and rider crashes... or...
Rider crashes and frame cracks.


There is another possibility.

Rider has a hard front-end collision, but walks away from the event with a bent frame and a stressed toptube/headtube joint as well as a stressed downtube/headtube joint. Possibly even developing cracks.

This initial crash could have happened any time, months, or years prior, or perhaps even during a "test ride" at the shop from an unknown previous rider.

Rider continues to ride bike, ignoring other signs like noises or changes in handling.

Close inspection of the cracked portions of the frame should show evidence of rust, or smooth wear indicative of a slowly developing event, vs a rapid tear.
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Old 12-03-19, 08:24 PM
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still don't get how he hit that fence when riding parallel to it, strange
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Old 12-03-19, 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Flip Flop Rider View Post
still don't get how he hit that fence when riding parallel to it, strange
This will be one to check back on in a few months, if there is a followup with more video and crash reconstruction.

Could he have clipped his handlebars on a post, driving himself into a sharp turn into the fence?

Perhaps one should look at the bike path design.
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Old 12-03-19, 09:23 PM
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I guess steel isn’t always so real.
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Old 12-03-19, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by john m flores View Post
I did not mean to turn this into a pissing contest of who knows more. I was genuinely wanted to know if you had any expertise that led to your assertions.
Fair enough. Such a question in A&S is virtually always a challenge. I am happy to see yours is not.

Originally Posted by john m flores View Post
Did you work as a safety officer include training or analysis of accidents such as this?
Yes, a special course in it.

Originally Posted by john m flores View Post
I have no expertise in accident analysis but I do have a degree in structural engineering and thus know a little bit about physics. Imagine someone riding alongside a fence at 10mph when the downtube-headtube weld catastrophically fails. This causes said rider to veer directly towards the fence at approximately 10mph, perhaps a bit less. This happens so suddenly and unexpectedly that he's still trying to figure out what is happening and is thus still holding on the handlebars. Unable to take evasive action, he runs right into the fence. Let's assume he's 150 lbs and that his face - specifically his nose - is the first point of contact, striking the fence at about 10mph. F=ma and all of that jazz minus whatever give (if any) in the fence - we don't know if it is chain link or something more substantial and unforgiving - and that sounds like a fair amount of force to apply to a nose that wasn't designed for that kind of stuff. Enough to nearly rip his nose off? Enough to push his neck and spine I don't know, but I don't think you have to be traveling at an excessive speed to cause significant damage when colliding with a fence.
The video showed a steel fence that had as near zero give as a material can get. The fence had portions with cross slats which likely gave the guy the nose damage.

The bicycle tubing looks most like a brittle fracture - a closer inspection than the photo would be needed to confirm. So the bicycle manufacturer is at fault for that, but such failures are also associated with a shock to the metal. So, I do not believe the "I was just riding along" claim. I might have believed him if he had said that he had just come off a wheelie or had bumped into a curb trying to ride up onto a sidewalk. But the video does not show a sidewalk next to the fence. I could also see a deep pot hole causing the shock resulting in the failure.

Now, if he was riding parallel to the fence and the bicycle suddenly veered left or right with the failure, the riders conservation of momentum would have thrown him off the bicycle mostly parallel to the fence. His injuries are not a glancing blow with the fence and he admits to going face first into the fence.

And Ronnie claims he is lucky the fence was there to catch his fall. Mountain bikers that do crazy stuff and 30 year combat veterans generally know how to fall on the ground in a manner that minimizes injury.

Without knowing the real story of what Ronnie was doing with the bicycle, I would be reluctant to award him more than 50% of proven damages.
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