My Litespeed rant.

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Woogoogle, Jan 22, 2003.

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  1. Woogoogle

    Woogoogle Guest

    My Litespeed mountain bike failed spectacularly today. After going up a local hill down the other
    side and back home all on the road, I was accelerating on a flat road to go home. All of the sudden
    the head tube separates from the down tube and top tube. I was blessed in that it didn't happen on
    the descent of Portola Park road or Moody/Elena and I only got some very mild road rash and a
    cracked helmet. I put some photos at
    http://www.printroom.com/ViewAlbum.asp?userid=Yetanotherwoo&album_id=127225,

    Is that gold colored stuff a bad weld indication? It's odd that it's on both the down tube
    and top tube.
     
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  2. Ari

    Ari Guest

    jesus christ! what a spectacular failure! wow owow owowow!

    "WooGoogle" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > My Litespeed mountain bike failed spectacularly today. After going up a local hill down the other
    > side and back home all on the road, I was accelerating on a flat road to go home. All of the
    > sudden the head tube separates from the down tube and top tube. I was blessed in that it didn't
    > happen on the descent of Portola Park road or Moody/Elena and I only got some very mild road rash
    > and a cracked helmet. I put some photos at
    >
    http://www.printroom.com/ViewAlbum.asp?userid=Yetanotherwoo&album_id=127225,
    >
    > Is that gold colored stuff a bad weld indication? It's odd that it's on both the down tube and
    > top tube.
     
  3. S. Anderson

    S. Anderson Guest

    I'm not sure it's the weld that failed actually. It would appear the weld is intact and the tube
    itself failed. I'm not sure about the properties of titanium but it is possible it was overheated
    during welding and that may have weakened the tube. Time to contact Litespeed for your free
    replacement!!

    Cheers,

    Scott..
    --
    Scott Anderson

    "WooGoogle" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > My Litespeed mountain bike failed spectacularly today. After going up a local hill down the other
    > side and back home all on the road, I was accelerating on a flat road to go home. All of the
    > sudden the head tube separates from the down tube and top tube. I was blessed in that it didn't
    > happen on the descent of Portola Park road or Moody/Elena and I only got some very mild road rash
    > and a cracked helmet. I put some photos at
    >
    http://www.printroom.com/ViewAlbum.asp?userid=Yetanotherwoo&album_id=127225,
    >
    > Is that gold colored stuff a bad weld indication? It's odd that it's on both the down tube and
    > top tube.
     
  4. Looks like some areas of the break are older than others - some look bright and others look dull, is
    this the case? Might have had a crack there for a while. One of the pictures shows the break
    parallelling the rainbow mark of a heat affected section. Might be heat effect on the tube, the weld
    itself seems fine.

    What do litespeed say?

    Duncan Bourne

    WooGoogle wrote:

    >My Litespeed mountain bike failed spectacularly today. After going up a local hill down the other
    >side and back home all on the road, I was accelerating on a flat road to go home. All of the sudden
    >the head tube separates from the down tube and top tube. I was blessed in that it didn't happen on
    >the descent of Portola Park road or Moody/Elena and I only got some very mild road rash and a
    >cracked helmet. I put some photos at
    >http://www.printroom.com/ViewAlbum.asp?userid=Yetanotherwoo&album_id=127225,
    >
    >Is that gold colored stuff a bad weld indication? It's odd that it's on both the down tube and
    >top tube.
     
  5. --------------79B5F1158A9B7A6FCF0BFDF4 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
    Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

    The welding appears to be fine.

    This is a classic failure. My best guess (as an Engineer) is that the top tube cracked at the bottom
    of its joint with the head tube some time ago (why I do not know, could have been a tube
    imperfection but more probably insufficient stress relieving of the joint/weld). This cracking
    overloaded the joint between the down tube and the head tube (which then started cracking at the
    bottom). Both indicate a classic flexure/tension failure. As time went by and the joints flexed, the
    cracking of both joints proceeded. This resulted in the dull cracked areas. Finally when enough of
    the tubes had separated, the stress was high enough on the remaining material that the entire thing
    let go and you had the catastrophic failure. This is seen as the newly torn area where the tear is
    bright and shiny . The older injured areas are duller. Both the old and new tears are clearly shown
    in the photos. See your dealer about a replacement.

    Hopefully your description and excellent photos will be useful to others and encourage them to
    inspect their frames periodically.

    If your injuries are severe, you might want to seek the services of a lawyer, well versed in cycling
    and product liability.

    Hope this helps,

    Ernie

    WooGoogle wrote:

    > My Litespeed mountain bike failed spectacularly today. After going up a local hill down the other
    > side and back home all on the road, I was accelerating on a flat road to go home. All of the
    > sudden the head tube separates from the down tube and top tube. I was blessed in that it didn't
    > happen on the descent of Portola Park road or Moody/Elena and I only got some very mild road rash
    > and a cracked helmet. I put some photos at
    > http://www.printroom.com/ViewAlbum.asp?userid=Yetanotherwoo&album_id=127225,
    >
    > Is that gold colored stuff a bad weld indication? It's odd that it's on both the down tube and
    > top tube.

    --------------79B5F1158A9B7A6FCF0BFDF4 Content-Type: text/html; charset=us-ascii
    Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

    <!doctype html public "-//w3c//dtd html 4.0 transitional//en"> <html> The welding appears
    to be fine.
    <p>This is a classic failure. My best guess (as an Engineer) is that the top tube cracked at the
    bottom of its joint with the head tube some time ago (why I do not know, could have been a tube
    imperfection but more probably insufficient stress relieving of the joint/weld). This cracking
    overloaded the joint between the down tube and the head tube (which then started cracking at the
    bottom). Both indicate a classic flexure/tension failure. As time went by and the joints flexed,
    the cracking of both joints proceeded. This resulted in the dull cracked areas. Finally when
    enough of the tubes had separated, the stress was high enough on the remaining material
    that the entire thing let go and you had the catastrophic failure. This is seen as the newly torn
    area where the tear is bright and shiny . The older injured areas are duller. Both the old
    and new tears are clearly shown in the photos. See your dealer about a replacement.
    <q>Hopefully your description and excellent photos will be useful to others and encourage them to
    inspect their frames periodically.
    <r>If your injuries are severe, you might want to seek the services of a lawyer, well versed
    in cycling and product liability.
    <s>Hope this helps,
    <t>Ernie <br> <br>
    <u>WooGoogle wrote: <blockquote TYPE=CITE>My Litespeed mountain bike failed spectacularly
    today. After going up <br>a local hill down the other side and back home all on the road, I
    was <br>accelerating on a flat road to go home. All of the sudden the head <br>tube
    separates from the down tube and top tube. I was blessed in that <br>it didn't happen on
    the descent of Portola Park road or Moody/Elena <br>and I only got some very mild road rash and a
    cracked helmet. I put <br>some photos at <br><a href="http://www.printroom.com/ViewAlbum.a-
    sp?userid=Yetanotherwoo&album_id=127225">http://www.printroom.com/ViewAlbum.asp?userid=Yetanothe-
    rwoo&album_id=127225</a>,
    <v>Is that gold colored stuff a bad weld indication? It's odd that it's <br>on both the down
    tube and top tube.</blockquote> </html>

    --------------79B5F1158A9B7A6FCF0BFDF4--
     
  6. I am sure Mark Hickey (and the other Ti welders out there) will set you straight, but IMHO, the
    parts were not welded properly. The dark areas (as shown in pic #2) are an indicator that there was
    oxygen contamination during the welding operation.

    --
    ==================
    Kraig Willett www.biketechreview.com
    ==================
     
  7. Pete Russell

    Pete Russell Guest

    You might want to CLEAN and inspect your bikes once in a while it was a pre existing crack you might
    have seen this if there wasn't a layer of dirt on your frame.

    Pete "E & V Willson" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]... The
    welding appears to be fine. This is a classic failure. My best guess (as an Engineer) is that the
    top tube cracked at the bottom of its joint with the head tube some time ago (why I do not know,
    could have been a tube imperfection but more probably insufficient stress relieving of the
    joint/weld). This cracking overloaded the joint between the down tube and the head tube (which then
    started cracking at the bottom). Both indicate a classic flexure/tension failure. As time went by
    and the joints flexed, the cracking of both joints proceeded. This resulted in the dull cracked
    areas. Finally when enough of the tubes had separated, the stress was high enough on the remaining
    material that the entire thing let go and you had the catastrophic failure. This is seen as the
    newly torn area where the tear is bright and shiny . The older injured areas are duller. Both the
    old and new tears are clearly shown in the photos. See your dealer about a replacement. Hopefully
    your description and excellent photos will be useful to others and encourage them to inspect their
    frames periodically. If your injuries are severe, you might want to seek the services of a lawyer,
    well versed in cycling and product liability. Hope this helps, Ernie

    WooGoogle wrote: My Litespeed mountain bike failed spectacularly today. After going up a local hill
    down the other side and back home all on the road, I was accelerating on a flat road to go home. All
    of the sudden the head tube separates from the down tube and top tube. I was blessed in that it
    didn't happen on the descent of Portola Park road or Moody/Elena and I only got some very mild road
    rash and a cracked helmet. I put some photos at
    http://www.printroom.com/ViewAlbum.asp?userid=Yetanotherwoo&album_id=127225, Is that gold colored
    stuff a bad weld indication? It's odd that it's on both the down tube and top tube.
     
  8. Mark Hickey

    Mark Hickey Guest

    "Kraig Willett" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I am sure Mark Hickey (and the other Ti welders out there) will set you straight, but IMHO, the
    >parts were not welded properly. The dark areas (as shown in pic #2) are an indicator that there was
    >oxygen contamination during the welding operation.

    I'm avoiding this thread actually... D'Oh! I WAS avoiding this thread. ;-)

    I wouldn't want to give the impression I'm "piling on" one of my competitors. It sounds likely there
    may be legal proceedings and my random thoughts based on a few low-res photos *could* be taken as
    something more.

    The one thing I am curious about though - is this frame made from
    3/2.5 or 6/4 tubing? I'm guessing it's butted tubing as well...

    Mark Hickey Habanero Cycles http://www.habcycles.com Home of the $695 ti frame
     
  9. Belij3

    Belij3 Guest

    >you might want to seek the services of a lawyer, well versed in cycling and product
    >liability.

    I will not print my thoughts about that statement.
     
  10. Jkpoulos7

    Jkpoulos7 Guest

    > Time to contact Litespeed for your free replacement!!

    And a lawyer for your injuries etc. due to a defective product.
     
  11. Woogoogle

    Woogoogle Guest

    [email protected] (Aljan12) wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Curious also.... Could there have been previous,undetected damage? How did you acquire the bike?
    > Are you the original owner? AL

    In answer to all the questions so far: I wasn't hurt very badly at all, just wish I could get a new
    frame AND helmet out of it. I'm the original owner, weigh about 150 pounds, it's a 3-2.5 frame,
    unbutted, and actually haven't ridden the bike off road much since 1999 more and more trails around
    here get closed, and I cleaned and inspected that particular area the previous week( if it rains
    every day, don't bother to clean off the bike every day ). I'm sending the bike back to the retailer
    for warranty review.

    Was just finishing up a six hour ride up and down the Santa Cruz mountains so I feel lucky that it
    didn't happen when I was near a car on a descent or at high speed.

    FWIW, I've had a previous bike fail in the same area, I inspected it that fateful day and could see
    no damage and I could feel nothing odd in the area but the ride felt odd the previous day. On a trip
    to the post office about one mile away, the frame cracked on the down tube.
     
  12. Although the design dates back to the 1980s or earlier, the Trilateral Commission, Al Quaeda and
    International Communism have conspired to keep the lid on this lifesaving technology.

    http://sheldonbrown.com/airbag-helmet.html

    Carapace Completed Umber Somewhere in the Western Hemisphere
     
  13. Pat Clancy

    Pat Clancy Guest

    "FWIW, I've had a previous bike fail in the same area...."

    Most of us go through life without having one failure of the type you describe. Certainly you're
    not heavy at 150 lbs, and maybe it's just a statistical fluke that you've had two similar failures.
    But have you reviewed your riding style to see if there's anything you're doing to contribute to
    the problem?

    Pat Clancy
     
  14. Pete

    Pete Guest

    "Sheldon Brown" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Although the design dates back to the 1980s or earlier, the Trilateral Commission, Al Quaeda and
    > International Communism have conspired to keep the lid on this lifesaving technology.
    >
    > http://sheldonbrown.com/airbag-helmet.html
    >
    > Carapace Completed Umber Somewhere in the Western Hemisphere

    April 1 is awful early this year.

    Pete
     
  15. "Sheldon Brown" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Although the design dates back to the 1980s or earlier, the Trilateral Commission, Al Quaeda and
    > International Communism have conspired to keep the lid on this lifesaving technology.
    >
    > http://sheldonbrown.com/airbag-helmet.html
    >
    > Carapace Completed Umber Somewhere in the Western Hemisphere

    Yo, bubba, you have that in John Deere?

    --
    Curtis L. Russell Odenton, MD (USA) Just someone on two wheels...
     
  16. Alan

    Alan Guest

    And who can forget Joan Claybrook's attempt at engineering a safer motorcycle? The thinking was that
    the front wheel has to do too much - both steering and braking - so why not build a motorcycle that
    steered with the BACK wheel. They even built one, complete with outriggers to prevent falls, and
    surprise, surprise! It was safer! That was because none of the testers could control the thing above
    about 15-20 mph.

    Be very thankful they didn't turn their attention to bicycles.

    --

    alan

    Anyone who believes in a liberal media has never read the "Daily Oklahoman."

    "Sheldon Brown" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Although the design dates back to the 1980s or earlier, the Trilateral Commission, Al Quaeda and
    > International Communism have conspired to keep the lid on this lifesaving technology.
    >
    > http://sheldonbrown.com/airbag-helmet.html
    >
    > Carapace Completed Umber Somewhere in the Western Hemisphere
     
  17. Woogoogle

    Woogoogle Guest

    [email protected] (Pat Clancy) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > "FWIW, I've had a previous bike fail in the same area...."
    >
    > Most of us go through life without having one failure of the type you describe. Certainly you're
    > not heavy at 150 lbs, and maybe it's just a statistical fluke that you've had two similar
    > failures. But have you reviewed your riding style to see if there's anything you're doing to
    > contribute to the problem?
    >
    > Pat Clancy

    Actually I must pretty poor at handling:). Broken 3 mountain bikes in pretty much the same place,
    but this one had obvious bad discoloration near the welds. I keep the bikes around forever and ride
    every other day at least. Did ride lots in some very technical rocky downhill stuff, where I just
    let up off the brakes as much as possible in the hills around Austin, TX, and hold on for dear life.
    The other bike was a steel bridgestone. Never had a road frame fail on me.
     
  18. Jimbob

    Jimbob Guest

    "WooGoogle" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > [email protected] (Pat Clancy) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > > "FWIW, I've had a previous bike fail in the same area...."
    > >
    > > Most of us go through life without having one failure of the type you describe. Certainly you're
    > > not heavy at 150 lbs, and maybe it's just a statistical fluke that you've had two similar
    > > failures. But have you reviewed your riding style to see if there's anything you're doing to
    > > contribute to the problem?
    > >
    > > Pat Clancy
    >
    > Actually I must pretty poor at handling:). Broken 3 mountain bikes in pretty much the same place,
    > but this one had obvious bad discoloration near the welds. I keep the bikes around forever and
    > ride every other day at least. Did ride lots in some very technical rocky downhill stuff, where I
    > just let up off the brakes as much as possible in the hills around Austin, TX, and hold on for
    > dear life. The other bike was a steel bridgestone. Never had a road frame fail on me.

    Lance - is that you?
     
  19. [email protected] (Pat Clancy) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > "FWIW, I've had a previous bike fail in the same area...."
    >
    > Most of us go through life without having one failure of the type you describe. Certainly you're
    > not heavy at 150 lbs, and maybe it's just a statistical fluke that you've had two similar
    > failures. But have you reviewed your riding style to see if there's anything you're doing to
    > contribute to the problem?
    >
    > Pat Clancy

    I wouldn't call it a fluke or blame the user's 'riding style' for the failure. I've had 3 frames
    fail in the last 8 years, one the same way as the original poster's - complete separation of the
    front end. My friends have had numerous failures as well. Light frames have very little design
    margin, and a significant number of them fail in 3-5 years if they're ridden frequently. It's not
    overloading or unreasonable treatment, it's fatigue.

    Fortunately for manufacturers, most frames aren't ridden frequently and are replaced with newer
    models every couple of years.

    Dietrich
     
  20. Bfd

    Bfd Guest

    [email protected] (Dietrich Wiegmann) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > I wouldn't call it a fluke or blame the user's 'riding style' for the failure. I've had 3 frames
    > fail in the last 8 years, one the same way as the original poster's - complete separation of the
    > front end. My friends have had numerous failures as well. Light frames have very little design
    > margin, and a significant number of them fail in 3-5 years if they're ridden frequently. It's not
    > overloading or unreasonable treatment, it's fatigue.
    >
    Can you identify who makes and what kind of frames these "light frames" that fail in 3-5 years? When
    you say ridden frequently, what kind of yearly mileage are you talking about? What kind of riding do
    you do? Mtn? Road? Cyclocross?
     
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