Broken stem, the sequel?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Chris Zacho "Th, Mar 13, 2004.

  1. Tags:


  2. Here's another one:

    http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml02/02228.html

    That's three different stems, by three different
    manufacturers, all suffering the same type of failure,
    the handlebars falling off! And all have the same in
    common with mine: Two bolts holding a face plate onto a
    vertical surface!

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

    Chris Zacho ~ "Your Friendly Neighborhood Wheelman"

    Chris'Z Corner http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
     
  3. G.T.

    G.T. Guest

    Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    > Here's another one:
    >
    > http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml02/02228.html
    >
    > That's three different stems, by three different
    > manufacturers, all suffering the same type of failure, the
    > handlebars falling off! And all have the same in common
    > with mine: Two bolts holding a face plate onto a vertical
    > surface!
    >

    So. Just because manufacturers built a product before they
    understood that product doesn't mean there is an inherent
    problem with the design.

    Greg
     
  4. G.T.

    G.T. Guest

    Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    > From: [email protected] (G.T.)
    >
    >
    >>So. Just because manufacturers built a product before they
    >>understood that product doesn't mean there is an inherent
    >>problem with the design.
    >
    >
    >>Greg
    >
    >
    > So, You're saying that 3TTT and Profile Designs don't know
    > how to make handlebar stems? :-3)
    >

    No, I'm saying that they DIDN'T know how to make TWO-BOLT
    stems. Please note the words in capitals.

    Greg
     
  5. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On Sun, 14 Mar 2004 01:22:18 GMT, "G.T." <[email protected]> may
    have said:

    >Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    >> From: [email protected] (G.T.)
    >>
    >>
    >>>So. Just because manufacturers built a product before
    >>>they understood that product doesn't mean there is an
    >>>inherent problem with the design.
    >>
    >>
    >>>Greg
    >>
    >>
    >> So, You're saying that 3TTT and Profile Designs don't
    >> know how to make handlebar stems? :-3)
    >>
    >
    >No, I'm saying that they DIDN'T know how to make TWO-BOLT
    >stems. Please note the words in capitals.

    Perhaps the problem is that there is no two-bolt design that
    is as robust as one with four. Since three different
    manufacturers have had the same kind of problem, I'd say
    that there's enough of a pattern to say it's the design
    itself, not its execution. One would be a random error; two
    a concidence. Three is prudently regarded as a pattern until
    proven otherwise.

    --
    My email address is antispammed; pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail.
    Typoes are not a bug, they're a feature.
    Words processed in a facility that contains nuts.
     
  6. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    > From: [email protected] (G.T.)
    >>So. Just because manufacturers built a product before they
    >>understood that product doesn't mean there is an inherent
    >>problem with the design.

    Chris Zacho wrote:
    > So, You're saying that 3TTT and Profile Designs don't know
    > how to make handlebar stems? :-3)

    Isn't that what you're saying? And I'm not disagreeing. One
    of my favorite expressions is "They improved it until it
    didn't work". I find many examples lately.

    --
    Andrew Muzi www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1
    April, 1971
     
  7. Chris Zacho "The Wheelman <[email protected]> wrote:
    > A couple of weeks ago I posted about my quill road
    > stem that stripped out at the handlebar clamp
    > (removeable face).

    > It seems I may not be the only one having trouble
    > after all...

    > http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml01/01044.html

    Profile Stiffy. These broke at a weld, I believe. Their two-
    boltness is not relevant.

    > http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml00/00192.html

    Icon stems. These were recalled because the bolts broke (I
    assume it was the bar clamp bolts). That's relevant, but it
    suggests that the bolts were under-specified, either too
    small or not a good enough steel.

    This is important, but it doesn't suggest that the design
    is intrinsically flawed, since most such stems have not
    been recalled.

    Also, both of these recalls are three years old.

    If you are paranoid about your stem, get a Salsa. I'm sure
    there's somebody out there that's broken a Salsa, too, but
    what matters is the rate, and anecdotally that's low.
     
  8. G.T.

    G.T. Guest

    Werehatrack wrote:
    > On Sun, 14 Mar 2004 01:22:18 GMT, "G.T."
    > <[email protected]> may have said:
    >
    >
    >>Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    >>
    >>>From: [email protected] (G.T.)
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>>So. Just because manufacturers built a product before
    >>>>they understood that product doesn't mean there is an
    >>>>inherent problem with the design.
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>>Greg
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>So, You're saying that 3TTT and Profile Designs don't
    >>>know how to make handlebar stems? :-3)
    >>>
    >>
    >>No, I'm saying that they DIDN'T know how to make TWO-BOLT
    >>stems. Please note the words in capitals.
    >
    >
    > Perhaps the problem is that there is no two-bolt design
    > that is as robust as one with four. Since three different
    > manufacturers have had the same kind of problem, I'd say
    > that there's enough of a pattern to say it's the design
    > itself, not its execution. One would be a random error;
    > two a concidence. Three is prudently regarded as a pattern
    > until proven otherwise.
    >

    So I should throw away my perfectly servicable Raceface two-
    bolt stem and buy a four-bolt?

    Greg
     
  9. BaCardi

    BaCardi New Member

    Joined:
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    This is the 1st I've heard of this stuff happening to threadless stems, but is it coincidence or a flaw in the design like the original poster implied?

    Perhaps it isn't the fact that its the 2 bolt design that is dangerous. Maybe it's because its that all 2 bolt vertical designs are what's dangerous.
     
  10. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On Sun, 14 Mar 2004 03:37:55 GMT, "G.T." <[email protected]> may
    have said:

    >Werehatrack wrote:
    >> Perhaps the problem is that there is no two-bolt design
    >> that is as robust as one with four. Since three different
    >> manufacturers have had the same kind of problem, I'd say
    >> that there's enough of a pattern to say it's the design
    >> itself, not its execution. One would be a random error;
    >> two a concidence. Three is prudently regarded as a
    >> pattern until proven otherwise.
    >>
    >
    >So I should throw away my perfectly servicable Raceface two-
    >bolt stem and buy a four-bolt?

    If you wish to panic, by all means. If you wish to be
    rational about it, then take a moment periodically to
    lightly stress the bars in a manner that will tend to cause
    any incipient faliure to be visible, and see if either bolt
    boss is showing signs of pulling away from the main body of
    the stem. If they aren't, then I would be of the opinion
    that it's perfectly safe to ride on wthout worry.

    There probably are some two-bolt clamps which are
    sufficiently well designed and made that their half life to
    failure exceeds the probable life of the bike...but given
    the fact that a pattern may be emerging, it is simply
    prudent to be a bit more cautious until more data becomes
    available. It may be that there really is no actual pattern,
    or it may be that the entire problem is in the choice of
    materials, or possibly the materials and the design both
    contribute to the failures. Of course, given the lack of
    details in the recall notices, it's quite possible that one
    (or more) of the CPSC recalls does not derive from cap loss
    at all. One of the stems has a design that looks (to me) tailor-
    made for a failure at the point where the stem narrows near
    the steerer clamp. Unfortunately, with their usual lack of
    precision about the nature of the failure involved, the CPSC
    has not provided enough information for a consumer to make
    any kind of informed decision about the seriousness of the
    alleged defects, or even to draw a real conclusion about the
    nature of them.

    Still, the potential for the interrelation merits a slightly
    greater amount of diligence in occasional inspection of possibly-
    similar units since if a failure there *does* occur, the
    effects can be fairly nasty. If the cap stays on but loses
    tension, it's possible that it will just be inconvenient. If
    the failure is particularly ill-timed, of course, it can be
    worse than that. Simply knowing that there *may* be a
    problem does not reasonably predicate a scorched-earth
    approach to addressing it, but it is equally unwise to
    summarily dismiss the possibility that the problem may be
    more global than has been disclosed to date.

    --
    My email address is antispammed; pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail.
    Typoes are not a bug, they're a feature.
    Words processed in a facility that contains nuts.
     
  11. Werehatrack

    Werehatrack Guest

    On 13 Mar 2004 18:58:22 -0800, Benjamin Weiner <[email protected]>
    may have said:

    >If you are paranoid about your stem, get a Salsa. I'm sure
    >there's somebody out there that's broken a Salsa, too, but
    >what matters is the rate, and anecdotally that's low.

    According to someone who I met while bashing through the
    trails at a nearby park, if your riding style and loads
    can break a Salsa, you have far more to worry about than
    stem failure.

    --
    My email address is antispammed; pull WEEDS if replying via e-mail.
    Typoes are not a bug, they're a feature.
    Words processed in a facility that contains nuts.
     
  12. Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:

    > Here's another one:
    >
    > http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml02/02228.html
    >
    > That's three different stems, by three different
    > manufacturers, all suffering the same type of failure, the
    > handlebars falling off! And all have the same in common
    > with mine: Two bolts holding a face plate onto a vertical
    > surface!

    Salsa have a design where the front clamp has a lip machined
    into it which interlocks with a complementary one on the
    stem. The lip takes most of the downwards force off the
    bolts. They may have patented the design, but it shows
    someone has thought about it.
     
  13. From: [email protected] (Benjamin=A0Weiner)

    >If you are paranoid about your stem, get a Salsa. I'm sure
    >there's somebody out there that's broken a Salsa, too, but
    >what matters is the rate, and anecdotally that's low.

    Not paranoid, At least not about stems (I don't believe
    they're "out to get me" anyway. LOL). But I am still dubious
    about the design. Yes four bolts makes sense. However, I
    have My LBS looking into getting me a Cinelli "Frog". Very
    light, stiff, and with three bolts holding the retaining cap
    on the top, not the front.

    Problem solved :-3)

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

    Chris Zacho ~ "Your Friendly Neighborhood Wheelman"

    Chris'Z Corner http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
     
  14. Frank Knox

    Frank Knox Guest

    "G.T." <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    > > From: [email protected] (G.T.)
    > >
    > >
    > >>So. Just because manufacturers built a product before
    > >>they understood that product doesn't mean there is an
    > >>inherent problem with the design.
    > >
    > >
    > >>Greg
    > >
    > >
    > > So, You're saying that 3TTT and Profile Designs don't
    > > know how to make handlebar stems? :-3)
    > >
    >
    > No, I'm saying that they DIDN'T know how to make TWO-BOLT
    > stems. Please note the words in capitals.
    >
    > Greg
    >
    I had a 3TTT stem that broke. It easily could have left me
    dead or with serious injuries. That they are willing to
    market such crap shows a callous disregard for my safety. I
    will never under any circumstances buy another of their
    products again, or a product made by any known business
    associate of theirs.

    American and Japanese components look better than ever to
    me.
     
  15. Frank Knox

    Frank Knox Guest

    "Zog The Undeniable" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    >
    > > Here's another one:
    > >
    > > http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml02/02228.html
    > >
    > > That's three different stems, by three different
    > > manufacturers, all suffering the same type of failure,
    > > the handlebars falling off! And all have the same in
    > > common with mine: Two bolts holding a face plate onto a
    > > vertical surface!
    >
    > Salsa have a design where the front clamp has a lip
    > machined into it which interlocks with a complementary one
    > on the stem. The lip takes most of the downwards force off
    > the bolts. They may have patented the design, but it shows
    > someone has thought about it.

    I've been using one of these for over a year without
    problem, and I'm a heavy rider. I replaced the Cinelli bars
    I had with Nitto bars this weekend. In light of recent
    threads, I took time to carefully examine the Salsa. It
    looks as good as the day I first installed it. We need to be
    able to trust folks who make our stems and bars. I believe
    Salsa deserves that trust.
     
  16. Frank Knox

    Frank Knox Guest

    "Chris Zacho "The Wheelman"" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    From: [email protected] (Benjamin Weiner)

    >If you are paranoid about your stem, get a Salsa. I'm sure
    >there's somebody out there that's broken a Salsa, too, but
    >what matters is the rate, and anecdotally that's low.

    Not paranoid, At least not about stems (I don't believe
    they're "out to get me" anyway. LOL). But I am still dubious
    about the design. Yes four bolts makes sense. However, I
    have My LBS looking into getting me a Cinelli "Frog". Very
    light, stiff, and with three bolts holding the retaining cap
    on the top, not the front.

    Problem solved :-3)

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

    Chris Zacho ~ "Your Friendly Neighborhood Wheelman"

    Chris'Z Corner http://www.geocities.com/czcorner FYI:
    Cinelli, 3TTT, and Columbus are divisions of the same
    company, so the Frog comes from the same folks who brought
    us the fragile Mutant stem.
     
  17. Dvt

    Dvt Guest

    Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    > Problem solved :-3)
    >
    > "May you have the wind at your back. And a really low gear
    > for the hills!"
    >
    > Chris Zacho ~ "Your Friendly Neighborhood Wheelman"
    >
    > Chris'Z Corner http://www.geocities.com/czcorner

    Off-topic, but I find your sig hard to distinguish from your
    posts. Any chance I could convince you to delineate your
    signature from the text of the message? For example, with a
    couple of dashes followed by a space as shown below?

    --
    Dave dvt at psu dot edu
     
  18. G.T.

    G.T. Guest

    dvt wrote:
    > Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    >
    >> Problem solved :-3)
    >>
    >> "May you have the wind at your back. And a really low
    >> gear for the hills!"
    >>
    >> Chris Zacho ~ "Your Friendly Neighborhood Wheelman"
    >>
    >> Chris'Z Corner http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
    >
    >
    > Off-topic, but I find your sig hard to distinguish from
    > your posts. Any chance I could convince you to delineate
    > your signature from the text of the message? For
    > example, with a couple of dashes followed by a space as
    > shown below?
    >

    And which proper newsreaders ignore during replies when
    done that way.

    Greg
     
  19. Dvt

    Dvt Guest

    Chris Zacho The Wheelman wrote:
    > From: [email protected] (dvt)
    >
    >
    >>Off-topic, but I find your sig hard to distinguish from
    >>your posts. Any chance I could convince you to delineate
    >>your signature from the text of the message? For
    >>example, with a couple of dashes followed by a space as
    >>shown below?
    >>--
    >>Dave dvt at psu dot edu
    >
    >
    > Sure. How's this?
    >
    > - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
    >
    > "May you have the wind at your back. And a really low gear
    > for the hills!"
    >
    > Chris Zacho ~ "Your Friendly Neighborhood Wheelman"
    >
    > Chris'Z Corner http://www.geocities.com/czcorner
    >

    Much more readable. Thank you.

    I learned something recently, which was also pointed out by
    G.T. in this thread. If you include the string "-- ", many
    newsreaders will recognize that as the beginning of a
    signature. When the reply button is pressed, the signature
    is not included in the response. I find that handy.

    Notice the space after the two dashes -- it's part of the
    code. I don't know if the code needs to be at the start of
    the line. The first sentence in this paragraph is a sort
    of test; if that isn't recognized as the beginning of a
    sig, the two dashes probably need to be at the beginning
    of a line.

    Sorry for the topic drift.

    --
    Dave dvt at psu dot edu
     
  20. Matt O'Toole

    Matt O'Toole Guest

    dvt wrote:

    > I learned something recently, which was also pointed out
    > by G.T. in this thread. If you include the string "-- ",
    > many newsreaders will recognize that as the beginning of a
    > signature. When the reply button is pressed, the signature
    > is not included in the response. I find that handy.
    >
    > Notice the space after the two dashes -- it's part of the
    > code. I don't know if the code needs to be at the start of
    > the line. The first sentence in this paragraph is a sort
    > of test; if that isn't recognized as the beginning of a
    > sig, the two dashes probably need to be at the beginning
    > of a line.
    >
    > Sorry for the topic drift.

    No problem -- I learn something new every day! I wonder how
    it deals with "--" used as an em dash...

    Matt O.
     
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