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Dropout styles, vertical better?

Old 09-25-15, 08:43 AM
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bill meyer
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Dropout styles, vertical better?

So I'm building a gravel/cross frame and have some socket style dropouts from Nova I plan to use,
NOVA SEMI-VERTICAL ROAD DROPOUT SOCKET :: DROPOUTS :: Nova Cycles Supply Inc.

They have a semi vertical axle slot, but I'm starting to have second thoughts about that due to some axle slippage I've had in the past on different bikes. Most notably on my old steel stumpjumper with similar axle slots, I recall having to really crank down the skewer to keep it from slipping out under power. All my frames since have had vertical slots, so obviously no issue with that anymore.

To go to a vertical dropout I'll have to rethink the whole rearend, as the CS's I have have a 13mm end and these are the only dropout's I could find to fit those CS's.

I suspect this is a non issue for most and I'm just a weenie when it comes to cranking down the skewer, but wanted to hear what other's thought.
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Old 09-25-15, 09:22 AM
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Interesting, I had no idea they still made those semi-vertical dropouts. What was the point?
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Old 09-25-15, 10:27 AM
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a trifle of wiggle room. [My steel Pinarello CX frame has a Semi Vert with an adjuster screw, slitted stay insert , not socket type]

Building a Tight clearance short chainstay frame.. then you may have to use Vertical to put wheels in with Pumped up Tires.

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Old 09-25-15, 10:30 AM
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Are those new? Vertical dropouts have a forward slant to them so they can clear the derailleur, but that's not that great for clearances. Adding more slant doesn't seem like a good idea.
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Old 09-25-15, 10:39 AM
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Are you using good skewers? The medium quality Shimano and QBP all steel skewers (esp the skewer rod itself) with the offset levers, when set up so they start engaging when the lever is sticking straight out and then closed completely should hold just fine. Bike races were ridden with exactly that 80 years, using completely slip happy horizontal dropouts.

Big advantage of vertical drops: faster wheel changes. They do allow you to safely be careless re: adequate quick release adjustment. Big advantage of horizontal drops: makes doing to a single speed/internally geared hub/fix gear child's play. (Also allow you to use a Campy NR derailleur with a 28 tooth cog by pulling the wheel all the way back.) You do have to pay more attention to your QR; the same attention that was needed the first 80 years of QRs. Big advantage of semi-vertical drops: is there one? That they are a sorta/sorta?

Edit: if you really care about keeping your wheel in place, you will never use non steel QR skewer rod. Basic fall sophomore year engineering. You can only stretch that rod a fixed amount. (More means either more work to close the lever or less clearance when it is open.) And by the laws of mechanics of materials, the force you can get out of a stretched rod is based only on the amount you stretch it, the area (ie, the diameter) of the material and its modulus of elasticity. The first two are fixed. You can only stretch the rod so much. You are limited by the hub axle as to how big a diameter you can go. So it is all the modulus of elasticity. Steel has a modulus twice that of titanium and three times that of aluminum. In other words, steel is the only worthwhile QR skewer material to consider if you really want to get your QRs tight.

Ben

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Old 09-25-15, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
a trifle of wiggle room. [My steel Pinarello CX frame has a Semi Vert with an adjuster screw, slitted stay insert , not socket type]

Building a Tight clearance short chainstay frame.. then you may have to use Vertical to put wheels in with Pumped up Tires.
I've used horizontal dropouts on my roadbike for years without any problems. I've just gotten into the habit of getting the QR tight (which would seem to be a good thing for a Cross bike too).

The biggest issue is that running 25mm (or larger tires), and have rear bottle cage brackets, then a fully inflated tire is a tight fit around the bolts for the bottle cage.

Your short, semi-vertical dropouts would have less of an issue, but still keep in mind clearance with the seat tube. Fenders?
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Old 09-25-15, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by bill meyer View Post
They have a semi vertical axle slot, but I'm starting to have second thoughts about that due to some axle slippage I've had in the past on different bikes. Most notably on my old steel stumpjumper with similar axle slots, I recall having to really crank down the skewer to keep it from slipping out under power.
Are you using an enclosed-cam quick release? If not, that could be the problem. Modern open-cam quick releases are designed for vertical dropouts and don't have the holding power of the enclosed-cam design.
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Old 09-25-15, 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I've used horizontal dropouts on my roadbike for years without any problems. I've just gotten into the habit of getting the QR tight (which would seem to be a good thing for a Cross bike too).

The biggest issue is that running 25mm (or larger tires), and have rear bottle cage brackets, then a fully inflated tire is a tight fit around the bolts for the bottle cage.

Your short, semi-vertical dropouts would have less of an issue, but still keep in mind clearance with the seat tube. Fenders?
The bikes that work best for me weight balance-wise have very short chainstays so fenders, seattubes and derailleur clamps are always in issue. I cut a neat elliptical cutout in my fender for the seattube and more if necessary for the derailleur clamp. Works very well and is basically unseen when the tire is in place. I have also run the fender forward of the gusset between the chainstays instead of behind. Also works nicely.

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Old 09-25-15, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney
Big advantage of semi-vertical drops: is there one? That they are a sorta/sorta?
They seem like they'd have all the disadvantages of both styles, without enough of the benefits of either. I thought they were just a transitional thing on the way to the vertical dropouts we see everywhere now.
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Old 09-25-15, 01:51 PM
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the biggest disadvantage to horizontal dropouts is with fenders. If you aren't using fenders, the slipping axle thing is pretty annoying, I would rather not deal with that myself.
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Old 09-25-15, 03:59 PM
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Third attempt at a funny today- I feel that we 'mericans have become too fashion focused sometimes. Like now we don't like fenders unless they follow the curve of the tire with no change in the fender/tire clearance. Reminds me of the difference between some cultures who are ok with their partners having a bit of chunk. Instead of our "view" of sexy needing flat abs and no love handles. There are plenty of really nice riding bikes with horizontal drop outs and fenders. Andy. (who isn't trying to call out Eric, just that his comment got my brain going)
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Old 09-25-15, 06:42 PM
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yeah, every time someone mentions fender line, I try to remember back in the days when horizontal dropouts were all you would see, and what we did about fender line. I guess we just didn't give a ****. But as a framebuilder, I have a certain amount of pride in such things. Plus, my bikes tend towards the close-coupled side, and then there is no extra room for the tire to come out. That's the way my road bike is, depending on the tire.
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Old 09-26-15, 08:01 AM
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bill meyer
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Yeah, not sure what the point of these are, but the horizontal movement rearward is minimal, so fenders and tire clearance shouldn't be much of an issue, esp since I like longish chainstays. Still, wish these were vertical.
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Old 09-26-15, 09:47 AM
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If you want vertical slots just do it. You have a couple options-

Nova supplies a MTB dropout of the same style which has the same socket size. The CS to SS angle is less but since you like "longish" stays the SS attachment to seat tube may be fine. And... there's no reason the seatstays have to intersect at the top tube. A sleeve or plate at the SS to ST works well. I like this look better anyway and use it most of the time.

Second option would be to use the vertical road drop of the same style and use smaller tipped stays. They're plenty beefy. Hopefully you can find one with the right size at the BB. You're building with lugs?

Third option- Use "breezer" style drops and braze the stays.

Another thing I've done is use a socket style dropout (because I like the appearance) and remove the SS socket and braze the seatstays directly to the hood to achieve the desired angle.
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Old 09-27-15, 01:33 PM
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Good stuff here, never thought much about dropout styles. I'd go with those 54 degree one's from Nova, but that puts my SS's about 2-3" below the seat clamp, not sure I'd like the look. I think I'll just stick with these since I have everything, and as said above folks have used horizontal style's forever.
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Old 09-28-15, 07:32 AM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
Are those new?
They were when the frame left Italy, I bought it New, in 1990..

[ an odd mix of their road fork crown and touring fork like clearances for It ]
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Old 10-05-15, 12:33 PM
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Quick releases: It depends a bit on your pattern of use. I mostly tour which to me means that I have tools with me at all times. As a result quick releases are not really of great interest. I use the similar skewers that tighten with an allen wrench. The assembly is very positive, the look is cleaner, they are lighter, less wind drag. I really can't see a reason for a quick release. One could tape a spare key somewhere just in case, but I remember bikes pre-quick release and the absence of a QR was never really a problem.

Vertical drops, as this is your first build they are a slight bit more difficult to get right. Depends on your process and tooling, but they can need to be adjusted/redone. While it my not be pretty, you could deal with a fractional change on horizontals after they were set.
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Old 10-05-15, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
yeah, every time someone mentions fender line, I try to remember back in the days when horizontal dropouts were all you would see, and what we did about fender line. I guess we just didn't give a ****. But as a framebuilder, I have a certain amount of pride in such things. Plus, my bikes tend towards the close-coupled side, and then there is no extra room for the tire to come out. That's the way my road bike is, depending on the tire.
There is a better way to make horizontal dropouts that helps with both finders and close coupling. Incorporate a horizontal slot ala the norm but have it open, not to the front but down at the forward end so the center of the axle makes an "L" lying on its side traveling the dropout then coming out. (I have no idea why this isn't standard practice. It works really well. I have it on my fix gear. Allows almost 2" of travel and the tire to be almost touching the seattube when running a 23t cog, yet real ease of pulling the wheel to flip. If there are negatives, I haven't seen them in my first 13,000 miles.

Ben
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Old 10-06-15, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by MassiveD View Post
Quick releases: It depends a bit on your pattern of use. I mostly tour which to me means that I have tools with me at all times. As a result quick releases are not really of great interest. I use the similar skewers that tighten with an allen wrench. The assembly is very positive, the look is cleaner, they are lighter, less wind drag. I really can't see a reason for a quick release. One could tape a spare key somewhere just in case, but I remember bikes pre-quick release and the absence of a QR was never really a problem.

Vertical drops, as this is your first build they are a slight bit more difficult to get right. Depends on your process and tooling, but they can need to be adjusted/redone. While it my not be pretty, you could deal with a fractional change on horizontals after they were set.
Good point, I've been considering non QR attachments, and since I always have tools as well, why not.. Not my first build, 3rd, but both my previous frames I did vertical drops, had no major issues getting them right so I'll likely screw these up. ):

Last edited by bill meyer; 10-07-15 at 07:17 AM.
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