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Should Independent Fabrication be responsible...QUANDRY(13 posts)

Should Independent Fabrication be responsible...QUANDRYcustomsteel
Dec 1, 2003 9:54 AM
Indy Fab built my frame to their specs using their fit guidelines and is too big. The frame is a steel Planet X with tighter road geometry and used for my one and only bike for road and singletrack. It was built in Feb 02 and was ridden mainly on road until this summer when it was ridden on singletrack almost exclusively. The road feel felt fine but once I got it on the trail a few miles it just felt way out of whack. Mainly stand over height, but the TT feels a little long as well. If I bail my nuts are toast. As I said before it feels fine on the road, but for dismounting and such its not the correct fit at all. I'm 6'5" and have a huge inseam to my pubic bone and they settled on a 64cm frame(I didnt get the geo or have any phone conversations with them about the geo they settled on prior to building).
So my question is this: Should Independent Fabrication be held responsible and take back the frame and build one that fits even if I have to kick in a few bucks or upgrade to ti???? I dont think that I should be stuck with such an expensive custom frame if it doesnt fit.
My measurements=their geometry=my dollars=custom frame that doesnt fit=unhappy cyclist. What should I do and what sould IF do.
Dec 1, 2003 10:01 AM
You didn't sign off on the specs? What kind of standover clearance do you have? No offense, but I'd think anyone spending that kind of coin on a frame should know the basics of frame geometry and fit. I'd say it's a bit late to complain...
At this point, you own it,TJeanloz
Dec 1, 2003 10:20 AM
You MIGHT have a leg to stand on if you received the bike, took it for a spin around the shop's parking lot, and said: "no way - this isn't right." You've had the bike for almost TWO YEARS (since Feb 02), and you're just now thinking it doesn't fit right?

That aside, with custom bikes you have to take it on faith that you will like the end product. If you don't like the end result, you really can't argue about it. It's very hit-or-miss, though good builders rarely miss. I would say that for somebody your size, you should have known from the start that a custom builder like Lennard Zinn would be better suited to designing your bike. Let's face it, building a bike for somebody your size is not easy, and there isn't a lot of reference material to help the builder out. They did their job, to the best of their abilities, and if that's not good enough after two years, shouldn't really be held to account for it.
February 2002?djg
Dec 1, 2003 10:24 AM
You've been riding the bike for nearly two years and NOW you're unhappy and want it replaced?

There's no harm talking to them, but I wouldn't be at all confrontational about it and I'm not sure I'd expect much of anything at this point. It's one thing to ride the bike a couple of months and then say that you've tried and tried but just cannot get the fit dialed in properly and are really unhappy. 21 months down the road just seems way--WAY--past any reasonable point for accepting (or rejecting) what they did for you.
February 2002? Heck, even Performance would laugh! nmMShaw
Dec 1, 2003 11:25 PM
no way...C-40
Dec 1, 2003 10:39 AM
Anyone who purchases a custom frame should have a very good idea of the required geometry based on some previous bike that didn't fit quite right, before buying a custom.

The goal of a custom is to provide a solution to a problem with an existing stock frame, such as a TT or HT that is too short or a STA that needs to be changed.

Determining the correct standover height is one of the easiest things to do. Take your current bike and block up the wheels until you get saddle-like crotch contact, standing over the frame in bare feet. Measure from the floor to the top of the top tube. This is your cycling inseam. Subtract 4cm to get an appropriate standover height. From this dimension, there is only one size frame that would be vertically "ideal".

As for the top tube feeling long, what length stem do you use? They make more than one size, you know. Unless you are already using a sort stem, the obvious solution is to try a shorter stem.

Another possible reason for the TT feeling too long is the saddle fore/aft position. Hopefully, you're aware of the method for measuring the position of your knee relative to the bottom bracket, and have the saddle adjusted properly.
IMHO, it takes some serious cajones to ask IF to take it backDave Hickey
Dec 1, 2003 10:41 AM
As all the others have said, 2 years is a little outside the test ride phase.
2 months is probably even too long (nm)ColnagoFE
Dec 1, 2003 11:44 AM
It was fine as a road bike, but not a singletrack bike?PdxMark
Dec 1, 2003 11:25 AM
So they built you a bike that fit for your original intended use for one year, but then you changed your use of it and NOW it's not the right fit? Wow. You have quite a sense of entitlement.

The first house I bought was OK before we had kids, but after kids the house felt too small. Rather than buy a different house, I apparently should have sued the seller for not taking into account my changed use of the house.
That was my first thought, but Planet X is a 'cross bike (nm)TJeanloz
Dec 1, 2003 11:40 AM
Can't you just shrink the frame?the bull
Dec 1, 2003 6:45 PM
Just thought I would let you know how silly you are by being, by being as silly myself!
Well harsh my mellowwooglin
Dec 1, 2003 8:27 PM
The basic problem is this. A cross bike that fits can be made to work ok (just ok) on the road. But a road bike that fits can't really be used on real dirt because you'll crunch the family jewels. So you're right. If they built you a bike that you clearly intended to use mostly for cross it sounds too big. But after 2 years you don't have a leg to stand on. Expensive lessons suck.
This is nuts- and I'm not talking over an open fire!trekmtnrider
Dec 2, 2003 7:56 AM
Return a 2 year old frame?? Maybe Subaru will take back my car because the brake pads wore out after 55,000 miles- or maybe Nike will take back my tennis shoes because the white is not white anymore from running on trails (they are road running shoes afterall!)- NOT! What are you thinking??

You bought a bike from a great manufacturer and are using a bike for 2 very different things. Road riding vs trail riding (on a cross bike no less) require very different geo's/fits. Of course one is not going to be 100% right.

Holding them responsible is absurd.