beginner and quick-release skewers.

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Paul, May 3, 2003.

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  1. Paul

    Paul Guest

    I appreciate that this is probably a really basic question but here goes.

    I have noticed that toothed, circular piece of metal that contacts the frame under the QR lever
    itself has 'bitten' through the layer of paint and into the aluminium frame beneath. It's a
    miniscule depth but I suppose that after a number of wheel removals it when the QR position moves
    slightly it might wear a fine groove into the frame.

    Does this indicate that the QR is too tight or is this ok? I've seen some articles that state that a
    wheel should be removeable as soon as the QR lever is opened and others that say that after a wheel
    is in position the QR should be tightened a few turns before closing.

    The QRs on my bike start to meet resistance at about 50% through their arc when closing (about 90
    degrees to the axle) which, according to another article is a sign that they're about right.

    I'm sorry if this is really basic stuff but, as a beginner, I'm trying to start to move my
    maintainence skills beyond just cleaning and lubing and avoiding running off the the bike shop for
    simple repairs. Equally though, as a beginner, I recognise my lack of knowledge alongside the
    potential of wheels falling off whilst riding!

    Thanks in advance to anyone who could take the time to enlighten me.

    Kind Regards,

    Paul
     
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  2. S. Anderson

    S. Anderson Guest

    "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I appreciate that this is probably a really basic question but here goes.
    >
    > I have noticed that toothed, circular piece of metal that contacts the
    frame
    > under the QR lever itself has 'bitten' through the layer of paint and into the aluminium frame
    > beneath. It's a miniscule depth but I suppose that
    after
    > a number of wheel removals it when the QR position moves slightly it might wear a fine groove into
    > the frame.
    >
    > Does this indicate that the QR is too tight or is this ok? I've seen some articles that state that
    > a wheel should be removeable as soon as the QR lever is opened and others that say that after a
    > wheel is in position the
    QR
    > should be tightened a few turns before closing.
    >
    > The QRs on my bike start to meet resistance at about 50% through their arc when closing (about 90
    > degrees to the axle) which, according to another article is a sign that they're about right.
    >
    > I'm sorry if this is really basic stuff but, as a beginner, I'm trying to start to move my
    > maintainence skills beyond just cleaning and lubing and avoiding running off the the bike shop for
    > simple repairs. Equally though, as a beginner, I recognise my lack of knowledge alongside the
    > potential of wheels falling off whilst riding!
    >
    > Thanks in advance to anyone who could take the time to enlighten me.
    >
    > Kind Regards,
    >
    > Paul
    >
    >

    You really can't have them too tight. Generally, if you're an average person and you feel a little
    discomfort in your palm while closing the lever because it seems fairly tight, you're in the ball
    park. You shouldn't be able to close it very easily so that you don't even notice it's tight, and
    you shouldn't have the urge to put a bar on there to get more leverage either. You will definitely
    chew through the paint, which is a good thing, because you're wanting to get a good purchase on the
    metal underneath for effective clamping force. Eventually, after enough wheel removals, you'll have
    little rings of no paint where your QR's hit the frame. This is normal and a good thing.

    Cheers,

    Scott..
     
  3. Relax, everything you stated about your QR is correct. I have those same marks on the dropouts on my
    bikes, and both of them are steel. The QR cam squeezes the frame with considerable force when
    tightened properly, and some metal displacement in to be expacted. this might actually help the
    skewer to hold better.

    As to the lever meeting resistance at about 50% on the way (sticking straight out from the frame),
    this is where it's supposed to meet resistance.

    May you have the wind at your back. And a really low gear for the hills! Chris

    Chris'Z Corner "The Website for the Common Bicyclist": http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
     
  4. Kalukis

    Kalukis Guest

    Actually, you can have them too tight. My mechanics say that if you tighten them down too much (as I
    had been doing), they can actually start to bind up the hub bearings. Scott's advise about meeting
    resistance about 90 degrees seems about right.

    And yes, biting through the paint is normal; better that that the asphalt biting into your back!

    -Kalukis

    "S. Anderson" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:p[email protected]...
    > "Paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    > > I appreciate that this is probably a really basic question but here
    goes.
    > >
    > > I have noticed that toothed, circular piece of metal that contacts the
    > frame
    > > under the QR lever itself has 'bitten' through the layer of paint and
    into
    > > the aluminium frame beneath. It's a miniscule depth but I suppose that
    > after
    > > a number of wheel removals it when the QR position moves slightly it
    might
    > > wear a fine groove into the frame.
    > >
    > > Does this indicate that the QR is too tight or is this ok? I've seen
    some
    > > articles that state that a wheel should be removeable as soon as the QR lever is opened and
    > > others that say that after a wheel is in position
    the
    > QR
    > > should be tightened a few turns before closing.
    > >
    > > The QRs on my bike start to meet resistance at about 50% through their
    arc
    > > when closing (about 90 degrees to the axle) which, according to another article is a sign that
    > > they're about right.
    > >
    > > I'm sorry if this is really basic stuff but, as a beginner, I'm trying
    to
    > > start to move my maintainence skills beyond just cleaning and lubing and avoiding running off
    > > the the bike shop for simple repairs. Equally
    though,
    > > as a beginner, I recognise my lack of knowledge alongside the potential
    of
    > > wheels falling off whilst riding!
    > >
    > > Thanks in advance to anyone who could take the time to enlighten me.
    > >
    > > Kind Regards,
    > >
    > > Paul
    > >
    > >
    >
    > You really can't have them too tight. Generally, if you're an average person and you feel a little
    > discomfort in your palm while closing the
    lever
    > because it seems fairly tight, you're in the ball park. You shouldn't be able to close it very
    > easily so that you don't even notice it's tight, and you shouldn't have the urge to put a bar on
    > there to get more leverage either. You will definitely chew through the paint, which is a good
    thing,
    > because you're wanting to get a good purchase on the metal underneath for effective clamping
    > force. Eventually, after enough wheel removals, you'll have little rings of no paint where your
    > QR's hit the frame. This is
    normal
    > and a good thing.
    >
    > Cheers,
    >
    > Scott..
     
  5. On Sat, 03 May 2003 17:23:39 +0100, Paul wrote:

    > I appreciate that this is probably a really basic question but here goes.
    >
    > I have noticed that toothed, circular piece of metal that contacts the frame under the QR lever
    > itself has 'bitten' through the layer of paint and into the aluminium frame beneath. It's a
    > miniscule depth but I suppose that after a number of wheel removals it when the QR position moves
    > slightly it might wear a fine groove into the frame.

    This is not a problem. The paint there is not going to survive no matter what -- used to be, frame
    builders would chrome plate the dropouts to get a little better wear, but of course chrome does not
    give as good a grip.
    >
    > Does this indicate that the QR is too tight or is this ok? I've seen some articles that state that
    > a wheel should be removeable as soon as the QR lever is opened and others that say that after a
    > wheel is in position the QR should be tightened a few turns before closing.

    The issue here is not the tightness of the QR, but the "lawyer lips" on the front fork. Years ago,
    someone sued because they forgot to tighten their QR, and fell as a result. They argued that the
    bike design was faulty for allowing the front wheel to come off when the QR is open. Of course, that
    is the point of a QR, but the plaintiff won the case based on questionable expert witnesses. So, we
    now have QR front hubs that cannot be removed without loosening the QR a few turns. This has the
    effect of producing more, not fewer, maladjusted QRs, but the US legal system functions that way.
    >
    > The QRs on my bike start to meet resistance at about 50% through their arc when closing (about 90
    > degrees to the axle) which, according to another article is a sign that they're about right.

    Just about. Look at your palm after you close the QR. There should be an impression in your palm
    from the lever.

    When I started riding, I did not use enough pressure on my QR. In a minor accident, the wheel came
    off, and the fork dug into the pavement. This destroyed the fork.

    BTW, the guy who responded that the QR can be too tight was wrong. If the bearings bind from the
    tightened QR, then the reality is that the bearings are maladjusted, not the QR.

    --

    David L. Johnson

    __o | A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored _`\(,_ | by little statesmen
    and philosophers and divines. --Ralph Waldo (_)/ (_) | Emerson
     
  6. Paul

    Paul Guest

    Thanks to you all for taking the time to reply, it seems that I'm ok.

    Thanks again,

    Kind Regards, Paul
     
  7. "David L. Johnson" <[email protected]> wrote in news:[email protected]:

    <snip>

    > The issue here is not the tightness of the QR, but the "lawyer lips" on the front fork. Years ago,
    > someone sued because they forgot to tighten their QR, and fell as a result. They argued that the
    > bike design was faulty for allowing the front wheel to come off when the QR is open. Of course,
    > that is the point of a QR, but the plaintiff won the case based on questionable expert witnesses.
    > So, we now have QR front hubs that cannot be removed without loosening the QR a few turns. This
    > has the effect of producing more, not fewer, maladjusted QRs, but the US legal system functions
    > that way.

    That's why I took a file to my fork and shaved those bad boys off. I'm not going to get dropped
    from a race or group ride while fumbling with my QR. They are called "quick release" skewers for
    a reason. You should have them tight enough to hold your wheel in place, but loose enough that
    you don't have to fight with them to take your wheel off quickly. Once you have them adjusted,
    you shouldn't have to turn the end cap at all, just crank the lever up / down to remove / replace
    the wheel.

    Hope this helps,
    - Boyd S.
     
  8. Mark Janeba

    Mark Janeba Guest

    David L. Johnson wrote:
    > BTW, the guy who responded that the QR can be too tight was wrong. If the bearings bind from the
    > tightened QR, then the reality is that the bearings are maladjusted, not the QR.

    I agree mostly and with your other comments, but I think *everything* can be overtightened.

    I have in my junk box some Campy Record (70's record) skewers that were overtightened - one
    stretched at the threaded portion so that the thread pitch visibly changes as you move along the
    skewer. I have another broken one that stretched even more.

    I didn't break these (but I've broken innumerable other parts from overtightening, usually with a
    panicked "Oh Sh**!"). I was told (when they got donated to my parts box) of the user who was a
    real gorilla.

    I *did* break another skewer on my Yakima rack. I think it was a Maillard, it had alloy endcaps -
    the cap on the cam end split. More overzealousness on my part, when I had a tandem on the roof.

    So be careful - it isn't easy, but you really can overtighten the skewer.

    --
    Mark Janeba remove antispam phrase in address to reply
     
  9. John Everett

    John Everett Guest

    On Sat, 3 May 2003 13:06:38 -0400, "S. Anderson" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >You really can't have them too tight.

    Not true. I have a friend whose husband maintains her bikes. He likes to keep the skewers REALLY
    TIGHT. Once while he was away she needed to remove the front wheel to get the bike onto her car
    rack. She wasn't strong enough to open the skewer so pried it open with a large screwdriver,
    resulting in damage to the paint on the front fork.

    When she arrived at the race and told me about the problem, I had her go release my front skewer.
    She was amazed that it was so easy for her to open.

    Point is, the lever has a fairly significant mechanical advantage. It produces considerable clamping
    force with only moderate lever pressure.

    jeverett3<AT>earthlink<DOT>net http://home.earthlink.net/~jeverett3
     
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