Carbon Steerer Issue



unicorntrainer

New Member
Feb 9, 2013
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Hey guys,

I apologize if I am posting in the wrong place. Please let me know so that it will not happen again.

Anyway, I'm a mechanic at a local bike shop and I was cutting a lady's carbon steerer tube. I did the whole "use a guide, turn 180 degrees, yada yada, more guidelines." Now even though I did this, which I have done at least 20 times since working there, the steerer tube splintered a little bit on the outside. It wasn't too bad and it went only about half an inch down. I still put it and the headset back together and nothing felt out of the ordinary. The lady doesn't weigh more than 110lbs. and the stem was clamped below the splinter (which should relieve some stress, right?). Is this safe? Or is it absolutely necessary to do something about it?

Thanks in advance.
 

CAMPYBOB

Well-Known Member
Sep 12, 2005
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Post a picture. I've seen some pretty weird cuts go a lot of miles without failure. I've seen them splinter when the tape was pulled off, too. Some guys will score with a razor knife to help avoid nicks and splinters.

Got to make the situation known to the customer and let them make the call.
 

unicorntrainer

New Member
Feb 9, 2013
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Unfortunately, I don't have access to it to post a picture. It's one of our regular customers, so I can call her to bring it back in. I suppose I could draw a diagram if that would help at all.
 

tonyzackery

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Dec 23, 2006
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I don't think it's an issue. Preaching to the choir I'm sure, but top cap pressure is to basically pre-load the headset bearings anyway. As long as the stem bolts are on either side of the compression plug and tightened properly, there won't be any issues. Strictly a cosmetic issue (that won't be seen anyway) to me.

Next time, suggest you wrap the steerer with vinyl electrical tape and that will mitigate splintering. FWIW, I use a cheap chop saw with a fine tooth blade to cut mine.
images
 

unicorntrainer

New Member
Feb 9, 2013
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Thank you very much. You have just relieved a lot of worrying. The fact that them stem is squeezing against the compression plug, which is below the splinter, seems to be like it should be safe. You guys are awesome.
 

tonyzackery

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Dec 23, 2006
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Awesome? Nah. Glad to be of some assistance though./img/vbsmilies/smilies/wink.gif
 

oldbobcat

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Aug 31, 2003
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Originally Posted by CAMPYBOB .

Post a picture. I've seen some pretty weird cuts go a lot of miles without failure. I've seen them splinter when the tape was pulled off, too. Some guys will score with a razor knife to help avoid nicks and splinters.

Got to make the situation known to the customer and let them make the call.
Never did that to a customer's bike, but I did it to my own, even with taping. Without the woven top layer these steerers are touchy, but there are so many layers . . . I just put a drop of super glue in there and clamped on the stem.
 

CAMPYBOB

Well-Known Member
Sep 12, 2005
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" . . . I just put a drop of super glue in there and clamped on the stem."

Same here. I used clear nail polish. I've added clear epoxy to the tool box since then.

I haven't tried my small jeweler's saw, but I did buy the finest hacksaw blades MSC had.