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Think you had a bad day...try mine...(kinda long)(5 posts)

Think you had a bad day...try mine...(kinda long)PaulCL
May 11, 2003 6:49 AM
Drove from Cincinnati to Columbus Friday night to join three friends for a riding weekend (www.tosrv.org). 100 miles each Saturday and Sunday.

Saturday: 50 feet out of Columbus, the skies open with torrential rains. 75 of the 100 miles was done in a torrential downpour. We couldn't stop, because we would get really cold since the temp was in the upper 60's. (weather:bad thing #1)

We still manage to average around 20.5mph for the trip - pretty good in those conditions. But, while in Portsmouth (the turnaround spot)I notice my headset is loose. I take it to the mechanic on duty who tells me I need a new one (bad thing #2)

Bad think #3 is the worst. I notice two small cracks in what appears to be the clearcoat on my beloved Ti Colnago just near the entrance of the seatpost. The cracks loop over the weld line on the front of the frame at point the seatpost enters. Two tiny cracks. No bid deal. NOT. Pull out the seatpost and I discover that these are cracks in the frame, not just the gelcoat. The mechanic suggests I not ride the bike anymore. He said: Imagine hitting a pothole at 25mph in a driving rain storm - the seat tube could give way and I'm in the hospital. I am so depressed.

I bummed a ride back to Columbus and came home a day early. Bad thing #4: breaking the news about how much a new frame costs to the wife. She goes on about "warranties" and "how much I paid for it" etc....but, unless I'm mistaken Colnago's are only warrantied for two years - any input on that would be appreciated. I'll take the bike to my LBS that sells Colnago's and get a second opinion.

Can you weld Ti cracks?? The crack is in the area of the seattube above the toptube. I wanted to post a picture, but my camera couldn't focus on something that small.

Now to email Maestro about a new frame: Oh yeah: bad thing #5: Lack of time. I leave for a week's riding vacation in Colorado in less than 6 weeks. I don't have time to browse and shop. I gotta buy. Now.

Signed...depressed Paul in N'thern KY
check with a frame builder who specializes in Ti...Akirasho
May 11, 2003 9:30 AM
Sorry to hear about your woes... but like steel, Ti is repairable... as long as the repairs are made by someone well versed in Ti (and even moreso if they're framebuilders). You'll have to balance out the costs (both the repair and refinishing) over a new frame (I'd still check on the warranty thingy).

Wonder what caused the SAG mechanic to call for a new headset? Being loose in and of itself might not be a significant enough reason for a replacement... was he/she more specific?

Understand on the weather... a bit further to your east, we experienced Heavy Weather and I don't mean with Wayne Shorter, Joe Zawinul, Alex Acuna, Manolo Badrena and Jaco Pastorius. Hopefully, some of that energy dissipated before reaching you guys (while listening to the weather alerts on TV, they announced a lowering of the cloud base at a major intersection about 1 mile from my house, then, via doppler radar, graphically display a storm track that takes it directly over you know who). I've done the torrential downpour thing... and the good side is... you can only get so wet... then, it's academic (chilling notwithstanding). Hopefully, most riders brought along appropriate gear (these rains should have come as no real surprise).

Today is a wash... high winds make riding a... chore at best (whitecaps on the river and birds flying in every direction except forward). Ground is too saturated to do any yard work... so I'll head downstairs and hop on the trainer... wonder if I could get a century in today?

Be the bike.
check with a frame builder who specializes in Ti...PaulCL
May 11, 2003 9:59 AM
Know anybody in the area who does Ti work????

AS for the headset, the mechanic said the headset felt pitted. How you can tell by feel is beyond me. I had to repack grease into the headset a week or two ago when I shot a hose into it. OOPS. Apparently, I didn't tighten it down enough. The headset problem may be academic if I need a knew frame since its for a threaded fork and all new forks are threadless.

I'm glad I'm not riding today. 35-45mph headwinds on a century. I'd rather ride in the rain.

Paul
... wonder if Roark does repair work???Akirasho
May 11, 2003 11:55 AM
I think Roark is out of Indianapolis... so while not in the area... it's not exactly out either! They build and do custom work... and their main business is in Ti fabrication, so it might be worth a call.

http://www.roarkcycle.com/toc.html

If a headset is brinelled enough, you can surely feel it... verified by a distinct indexing or notching as you rotate your stem... but it could have also been caused by contamination in the bearings (which eventually, would lead to indexing). Depending on the type of bearings you have (caged, free, sealed (ain't you a Campy man?)) and the type of headset, repacking might be all that's needed.

Also, might wanna do a Google search for repair sites and info.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&q=titanium+bicycle+repair

Yepper, there's just little sense in riding in winds like these... but, there's little else you can do outside either! Oh well, the garage needs cleaning out...

Be the bike.
Emailed Roark and another ideaPaulCL
May 11, 2003 1:53 PM
I emailed Roark about repairs. I'll call them tomorrow (I'm impatient).

I also called a friend of mine who works for an industrial boiler/furnance company for names of local people who do titanium work. He's calling me tomorrow with some names. The negative is that these guys aren't cyclists (like Roark) but the positive is that they will know what they are doing.

Let's weigh the possibilites: $1000's for a new frame or potentially $100's for a welded one that fits me like a glove??? Did I mention that I'm a cheap bast**d??

By the way...as for the wind. My friend from TOSRV just dropped off my bags. They had a 30mph wind at their backs for the first 50 miles (averaged >28mph) then a cross wind bending them sideways for the next 50 miles. I'd still rather ride in the rain.

Thanks Paul