New bike...smacked by a car...any advice appreciated

Discussion in 'Mountain Bikes' started by SuperSlinky, Aug 30, 2004.

  1. SuperSlinky

    SuperSlinky Guest

    I got my new road bike from Gary Hobbs at GVH bikes Thursday. It is
    (was) a beautiful burnished Cannondale Caad5 with full carbon fork,
    Campy Centaur, and a high zoot Fizik Aliante saddle. Gary did a great
    job of building the bike and getting it to me in time to enjoy the
    weekend with it. It rode like a dream.

    All was good, until this morning commuting to work I was t-boned by a
    car running a red light. Fortunately, the young female driver was able
    to slow down enough to avoid running me over completely. I was thrown to
    the ground and so far I have only noticed a sore left elbow and very
    slightly sore right knee. The bike didn't fare quite as well. She nailed
    the fork and front wheel, possibly the frame and crank on the left side
    as well. I fell over on the right side, and the visible damage amounts
    to gouges on the pedals, rear derailleur, and saddle, and a bent front
    rim.

    After carrying it a mile back home, I see more ominous signs of trouble.
    I knew he bars were out of line, but then I noticed the headset felt
    loose. I reset the preload on the headset to something that felt snug
    but not overly tight, and the headset still felt loose. I torqued down
    the end cap way tighter than I have ever done and most of the slop went
    away, but it seems there is still a tiny bit of slop if I lock the front
    brake and rock the bike back and forth. The drivetrain is out of kilter
    as well making lots of racket. I can try to adjust it later when I have
    the time, but there is no doubt some damage to the derailleur or hangar.

    The question is, what should I demand of the insurance company? Visibly
    the bike looks almost as good as new, but they weren't made to be
    broadsided by cars. The headset situation I find unacceptable and I
    suspect a cracked fork or bent head tube. It was a brand new bike, but
    now I don't completely trust its safety and certainly not its longevity.
    The drivetrain doesn't make me happy either. I'm sure I would have
    eventually bent the derailleur and got the various nicks on my own, but
    in this case somebody else is liable. Should I demand a total loss and
    replacement, or will I be f'ed over by the insurance company and be
    stuck with a damaged bike?
     
    Tags:


  2. jason

    jason Guest

    hey i recomend you ask for insurance money or a replacement bike because
    that is a very expensive bike and it wasnt that old

    "SuperSlinky" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > I got my new road bike from Gary Hobbs at GVH bikes Thursday. It is
    > (was) a beautiful burnished Cannondale Caad5 with full carbon fork,
    > Campy Centaur, and a high zoot Fizik Aliante saddle. Gary did a great
    > job of building the bike and getting it to me in time to enjoy the
    > weekend with it. It rode like a dream.
    >
    > All was good, until this morning commuting to work I was t-boned by a
    > car running a red light. Fortunately, the young female driver was able
    > to slow down enough to avoid running me over completely. I was thrown to
    > the ground and so far I have only noticed a sore left elbow and very
    > slightly sore right knee. The bike didn't fare quite as well. She nailed
    > the fork and front wheel, possibly the frame and crank on the left side
    > as well. I fell over on the right side, and the visible damage amounts
    > to gouges on the pedals, rear derailleur, and saddle, and a bent front
    > rim.
    >
    > After carrying it a mile back home, I see more ominous signs of trouble.
    > I knew he bars were out of line, but then I noticed the headset felt
    > loose. I reset the preload on the headset to something that felt snug
    > but not overly tight, and the headset still felt loose. I torqued down
    > the end cap way tighter than I have ever done and most of the slop went
    > away, but it seems there is still a tiny bit of slop if I lock the front
    > brake and rock the bike back and forth. The drivetrain is out of kilter
    > as well making lots of racket. I can try to adjust it later when I have
    > the time, but there is no doubt some damage to the derailleur or hangar.
    >
    > The question is, what should I demand of the insurance company? Visibly
    > the bike looks almost as good as new, but they weren't made to be
    > broadsided by cars. The headset situation I find unacceptable and I
    > suspect a cracked fork or bent head tube. It was a brand new bike, but
    > now I don't completely trust its safety and certainly not its longevity.
    > The drivetrain doesn't make me happy either. I'm sure I would have
    > eventually bent the derailleur and got the various nicks on my own, but
    > in this case somebody else is liable. Should I demand a total loss and
    > replacement, or will I be f'ed over by the insurance company and be
    > stuck with a damaged bike?
     
  3. On 2004-08-30, SuperSlinky penned:
    >
    > The question is, what should I demand of the insurance company? Visibly the
    > bike looks almost as good as new, but they weren't made to be broadsided by
    > cars. The headset situation I find unacceptable and I suspect a cracked fork
    > or bent head tube. It was a brand new bike, but now I don't completely trust
    > its safety and certainly not its longevity. The drivetrain doesn't make me
    > happy either. I'm sure I would have eventually bent the derailleur and got
    > the various nicks on my own, but in this case somebody else is liable.
    > Should I demand a total loss and replacement, or will I be f'ed over by the
    > insurance company and be stuck with a damaged bike?


    When my bike was run over, there wasn't a huge amount of visible damage,
    either. It took a mechanic to show where pivots had been bent badly, etc.

    I'd suggest doing what I did -- have a knowledgeable mechanic look it over and
    write up a report. My mechanic included in the report his professional
    opinion that "this bike cannot be rided as intended," which I think was key in
    having the insurance co declare it totalled. I was able to actually have the
    mechanic present when the insurance co's appraiser looked the bike over, and I
    think that helped.

    That being said, they still came a few hundred shy of paying replacement cost
    of the bike. They pay "current value."

    According to my mechanic friend, you can have bikes x-rayed to look for
    weaknesses in the metal. Of course, you need someone who can interpret the
    x-ray; don't know who that would be, and it wouldn't be cheap, but might be
    worth it depending on how much the bike set you back.

    --
    monique

    "Get a bicycle. You will not regret it, if you live."
    -- Mark Twain
     
  4. troutboy

    troutboy Guest

    "SuperSlinky" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > The question is, what should I demand of the insurance company? Visibly
    > the bike looks almost as good as new, but they weren't made to be
    > broadsided by cars. The headset situation I find unacceptable and I
    > suspect a cracked fork or bent head tube. It was a brand new bike, but
    > now I don't completely trust its safety and certainly not its longevity.
    > The drivetrain doesn't make me happy either. I'm sure I would have
    > eventually bent the derailleur and got the various nicks on my own, but
    > in this case somebody else is liable. Should I demand a total loss and
    > replacement, or will I be f'ed over by the insurance company and be
    > stuck with a damaged bike?


    Why not have the builder assess the damage for you and provide an estimate ?
    I'm guessing the insurance company will send a rep out who knows shite about
    bicycles, will look at the bike's limited visible damage (as described by
    you in your post) and write up a repair estimate well short of actual repair
    costs. Best to be armed ahead of time with YOUR estimate.

    Since this was a new bike (less than 30 days old), if the insurance company
    does go for replacement, you should get full value, not a depreciated
    settlement.

    T
     
  5. What you paid for it on Thursday.

    I MTB 2004
     
  6. ZeeExSixAre

    ZeeExSixAre Guest

    > in this case somebody else is liable. Should I demand a total loss and
    > replacement, or will I be f'ed over by the insurance company and be
    > stuck with a damaged bike?
     
  7. ZeeExSixAre

    ZeeExSixAre Guest

    > in this case somebody else is liable. Should I demand a total loss and
    > replacement, or will I be f'ed over by the insurance company and be
    > stuck with a damaged bike?


    If there is so much as a nick on the frame, your bike will be labeled
    totaled, because the replacement cost of the frame and fork is going to be
    too expensive compared to getting a new bike. Even at this point, demand a
    complete replacement.

    IMO, if there's much salvageable on the bike, I would see if you could buy
    it back from the insurance company for pennies on the dollar. A friend of
    mine had his $1300 Bianchi hit by a car, and then he bought it back from the
    insurance company for $250. Granted, only the wheels were out of true, so
    it wasn't too big of a deal, and it was a screaming deal at that, but if you
    think there's enough value in the bike, see if you can buy it back. It's
    not insurance fraud at all, either, since the company sets the price.

    --
    Phil, Squid-in-Training
     
  8. Coyoteboy

    Coyoteboy Guest

    Agreed, get your bike builder gary guy to look it over and no doubt he will
    confirm its knackered and you will get a new bike.

    J
     
  9. SuperSlinky

    SuperSlinky Guest

    troutboy said...

    > Why not have the builder assess the damage for you and provide an estimate ?
    > I'm guessing the insurance company will send a rep out who knows shite about
    > bicycles, will look at the bike's limited visible damage (as described by
    > you in your post) and write up a repair estimate well short of actual repair
    > costs. Best to be armed ahead of time with YOUR estimate.
    >
    > Since this was a new bike (less than 30 days old), if the insurance company
    > does go for replacement, you should get full value, not a depreciated
    > settlement.


    One problem I have is that the builder is in Oregon and I'm 2000 miles
    away. It was a made to order bike starting as a frameset and my choice
    of components. The biggest problem I'm finding out is that the damage
    goes well beyond what can be seen. All warranties for every part are now
    null and void. No manufacturer will take responsibility for anything
    ever involved in a collision with a car. To claim any warranty work on
    this bike would be dishonest to the manufacturer. I might tell a little
    white JRA lie for my own benefit, but not for the benefit of an
    insurance company.
     
  10. SuperSlinky

    SuperSlinky Guest

    ZeeExSixAre said...

    > If there is so much as a nick on the frame, your bike will be labeled
    > totaled, because the replacement cost of the frame and fork is going to be
    > too expensive compared to getting a new bike. Even at this point, demand a
    > complete replacement.
    >
    > IMO, if there's much salvageable on the bike, I would see if you could buy
    > it back from the insurance company for pennies on the dollar. A friend of
    > mine had his $1300 Bianchi hit by a car, and then he bought it back from the
    > insurance company for $250. Granted, only the wheels were out of true, so
    > it wasn't too big of a deal, and it was a screaming deal at that, but if you
    > think there's enough value in the bike, see if you can buy it back. It's
    > not insurance fraud at all, either, since the company sets the price.


    Sounds like that bodes well for me. I would say most of the parts are
    probably OK, but I don't trust the frame anymore. These stupid light
    aluminum road frames have a short life span as it is.
     
  11. bomba

    bomba Guest

    On Tue, 31 Aug 2004 03:29:44 +0000, SuperSlinky wrote:

    > One problem I have is that the builder is in Oregon and I'm 2000 miles
    > away. It was a made to order bike starting as a frameset and my choice
    > of components. The biggest problem I'm finding out is that the damage
    > goes well beyond what can be seen. All warranties for every part are now
    > null and void. No manufacturer will take responsibility for anything
    > ever involved in a collision with a car. To claim any warranty work on
    > this bike would be dishonest to the manufacturer. I might tell a little
    > white JRA lie for my own benefit, but not for the benefit of an
    > insurance company.


    And you think they wouldn't be able to spot the difference between a frame
    that had failed JRA, and one that had been hit by a car?

    Get it to a decent LBS (preferably a dealer for the maker of your bike)
    for inspection. They'll be able to give you an honest opinion as to
    whether it's totalled or not. That should give you enough confidence to
    either carry on riding it or request a replacement from the insurance
    company. If it gets the ok, then there's no need to mention the car crash
    should you ever need to use the warranty.
     
  12. SuperSlinky

    SuperSlinky Guest

    bomba said...

    > And you think they wouldn't be able to spot the difference between a frame
    > that had failed JRA, and one that had been hit by a car?
    >
    > Get it to a decent LBS (preferably a dealer for the maker of your bike)
    > for inspection. They'll be able to give you an honest opinion as to
    > whether it's totalled or not. That should give you enough confidence to
    > either carry on riding it or request a replacement from the insurance
    > company. If it gets the ok, then there's no need to mention the car crash
    > should you ever need to use the warranty.


    But you miss the point. More than one source has warned me that the
    manufacturers probably would not pay for warranty work on their parts if
    they knew it had been in an accident, not just now, but at any time in
    the future. I may be able to put one over on them by not telling them,
    but the loss of the warranties are part of the loss that the insurance
    company should compensate for. The insurance company should be made
    fully aware of this problem. If I am ever in the position of choosing
    between lying about the accident, or eating the cost myself, then I
    didn't get full compensation. I would guess that is partly why Phil's
    friend was compensated for his entire bike when only the rims were bent,
    and I'm hoping for a similar result.
     
  13. troutboy

    troutboy Guest

    "SuperSlinky" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > troutboy said...
    > One problem I have is that the builder is in Oregon and I'm 2000 miles
    > away. It was a made to order bike starting as a frameset and my choice
    > of components.


    Oh, I assumed from the wording of your original post that the builder was
    local.

    TS
     
  14. JP

    JP Guest

    Claim the purchase price.
    Get a written statement from maker as to its value.
    Get a written statement from a local expert.
    See your doctor about any remaining aches pains marks anything
    if you haven't already. Stuff shows up afterwards.

    Make a claim for the bike and your associated rental and livery costs
    as well as the value of any damaged clothing, watch, personal effects,
    maybe your laptop was in your backpack, who knows what you were carrying.

    A CAR HIT, KNOCKED DOWN, ALMOST KILLED A CYCLIST!!!!!

    You are an insurance company's nightmare.

    If you have any talent in negotiations you can buy your dream bike with the
    ins check.
    If you engage the services of an accident attorney you may be able to buy
    your dream car.
    I don't know how honest you want to be.
    People stage the kind of stuff you just had happen to you just to collect.

    Good luck,

    JP
     
  15. Jon Bond

    Jon Bond Guest

    "JP" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > Claim the purchase price.
    > Get a written statement from maker as to its value.
    > Get a written statement from a local expert.
    > See your doctor about any remaining aches pains marks anything
    > if you haven't already. Stuff shows up afterwards.
    >
    > Make a claim for the bike and your associated rental and livery costs
    > as well as the value of any damaged clothing, watch, personal effects,
    > maybe your laptop was in your backpack, who knows what you were carrying.
    >
    > A CAR HIT, KNOCKED DOWN, ALMOST KILLED A CYCLIST!!!!!
    >
    > You are an insurance company's nightmare.
    >
    > If you have any talent in negotiations you can buy your dream bike with

    the
    > ins check.
    > If you engage the services of an accident attorney you may be able to buy
    > your dream car.
    > I don't know how honest you want to be.
    > People stage the kind of stuff you just had happen to you just to collect.
    >
    > Good luck,
    >
    > JP


    And then we all pay for it in our own insurance costs.

    Be honest, but don't be a wimp about it. If the headset did what you said
    it did, it sounds like an ovalized headtube at the very least. If the
    drivetrain is really out of whack, check to make sure your front/rear
    triangles are lined up. Put a string around the head tube, then pull it back
    on each side to the dropouts. If the string is closer to the seattube on
    one side than the other, the frame is toast, even if its just 5mms. If there
    are any dents or severe scratching, its toast. check every weld VERY, VERY
    carefully. If you see any discoloration, any scratches running parallel or
    perpendicular to the weld within an cm or so, any of that - its toast.
    Check near the bottle cage bolts too. Check the alignment of the hanger and
    the dropout. If the frame (and not just the der. hanger) are out of
    alignment or crooked - its toast.

    Same goes for the wheels. Check spoke tensions - if there are any loose
    spokes, even if the wheel is still mostly straight, it means you have a bent
    rim (and a good wheel build). They're toast. Hubs not smooth anymore?
    ditto.

    If *anything* is scratched, and you didn't put the scratch there yourself,
    and not just "oh look, the sticker is a little rubbed off", then consider it
    totalled.

    Don't charge them for stuff that's not associated - don't lie. But the
    driver was totally at fault here, so don't feel like you should be nice to
    the insurance company!

    And DEFINITELY have your local bike shop look at it, and write up a
    detailed, signed report. Have a doctor look at anything that still hurts or
    aches, its worth it. Also, contact your auto insurance company, they'll
    probably cover anything the other company doesn't, and they can't raise your
    rates if I remember correctly, since you weren't at fault. Their lawyers
    will go after the other company for the money back.

    Good luck man!

    Jon Bond
     
  16. SuperSlinky

    SuperSlinky Guest

    Jon Bond said...

    > And then we all pay for it in our own insurance costs.
    >
    > Be honest, but don't be a wimp about it. If the headset did what you said
    > it did, it sounds like an ovalized headtube at the very least. If the
    > drivetrain is really out of whack, check to make sure your front/rear
    > triangles are lined up. Put a string around the head tube, then pull it back
    > on each side to the dropouts. If the string is closer to the seattube on
    > one side than the other, the frame is toast, even if its just 5mms. If there
    > are any dents or severe scratching, its toast. check every weld VERY, VERY
    > carefully. If you see any discoloration, any scratches running parallel or
    > perpendicular to the weld within an cm or so, any of that - its toast.
    > Check near the bottle cage bolts too. Check the alignment of the hanger and
    > the dropout. If the frame (and not just the der. hanger) are out of
    > alignment or crooked - its toast.
    >
    > Same goes for the wheels. Check spoke tensions - if there are any loose
    > spokes, even if the wheel is still mostly straight, it means you have a bent
    > rim (and a good wheel build). They're toast. Hubs not smooth anymore?
    > ditto.
    >
    > If *anything* is scratched, and you didn't put the scratch there yourself,
    > and not just "oh look, the sticker is a little rubbed off", then consider it
    > totalled.
    >
    > Don't charge them for stuff that's not associated - don't lie. But the
    > driver was totally at fault here, so don't feel like you should be nice to
    > the insurance company!
    >
    > And DEFINITELY have your local bike shop look at it, and write up a
    > detailed, signed report. Have a doctor look at anything that still hurts or
    > aches, its worth it. Also, contact your auto insurance company, they'll
    > probably cover anything the other company doesn't, and they can't raise your
    > rates if I remember correctly, since you weren't at fault. Their lawyers
    > will go after the other company for the money back.
    >
    > Good luck man!
    >
    > Jon Bond


    While it is tempting to do what JP says, I'm not a very good liar. OTOH,
    if I just get what I paid Gary Hobbs, then I won't see another bike for
    a good 3 weeks or more and loss of use of the bike is one thing that
    bothers me. Gary is on vacation, and by the time I get a replacement
    from him, what is left of the riding season will mostly be over. To get
    a Cannondale with Campy Centaur off a dealer would mean a 2005 R2000 for
    $3k+. I did the string measurement you suggested and I get a difference
    of 1.5mm. The frame is either bent or the dish for the rear wheel is out
    of whack, because one side of the tire is noticeably closer to the
    chainstay than the other. Spokes are somewhat loose in both wheels. The
    front wheel was bent so much it wouldn't turn. The bonehead wrench I
    took it to tried to do a five minute fix on everything and now it isn't
    really representative of the way it was after the accident. He couldn't
    seem to get the idea that I just wanted an evaluation of structural
    damage. There is a rubber mark burned into the paint on the fork right
    where the impact was. It might buff out, but probably not completely.
    The headset play appears to be gone now, but I have no idea what the ape
    at the bike shop did to get it that way. I am reminded again of why I do
    all of my own repair and maintenance. A Cannondale dealer I spoke with
    didn't like the idea of carbon fiber parts that had been in an accident,
    and the carbon fork took most of the force. Talking with these LBS guys,
    I just want to choke all of them. They have a one track mind, always
    trying to sell something. And in a situation like this, you never get
    what you went there for.
     
  17. JP

    JP Guest

    I never said lie.

    There was an accident and you are the victim.
    You have the leverage here to get reimbursed fully.
    Some people would use it for far more.
    I do not offer lectures on morality.
    I'm just pointing out the reality of your situation.
    If you prefer to measure your own forks,
    buff out your frame and hope for the best
    all the while limping around sighing and crying,
    well, that is your business.


    JP
     
  18. supabonbon

    supabonbon Guest

    SuperSlinky <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > I got my new road bike from Gary Hobbs at GVH bikes Thursday. It is
    > (was) a beautiful burnished Cannondale Caad5 with full carbon fork,
    > Campy Centaur, and a high zoot Fizik Aliante saddle. Gary did a great
    > job of building the bike and getting it to me in time to enjoy the
    > weekend with it. It rode like a dream.
    >
    > All was good, until this morning commuting to work I was t-boned by a
    > car running a red light. Fortunately, the young female driver was able
    > to slow down enough to avoid running me over completely. I was thrown to
    > the ground and so far I have only noticed a sore left elbow and very
    > slightly sore right knee. The bike didn't fare quite as well. She nailed
    > the fork and front wheel, possibly the frame and crank on the left side
    > as well. I fell over on the right side, and the visible damage amounts
    > to gouges on the pedals, rear derailleur, and saddle, and a bent front
    > rim.
    >
    > After carrying it a mile back home, I see more ominous signs of trouble.
    > I knew he bars were out of line, but then I noticed the headset felt
    > loose. I reset the preload on the headset to something that felt snug
    > but not overly tight, and the headset still felt loose. I torqued down
    > the end cap way tighter than I have ever done and most of the slop went
    > away, but it seems there is still a tiny bit of slop if I lock the front
    > brake and rock the bike back and forth. The drivetrain is out of kilter
    > as well making lots of racket. I can try to adjust it later when I have
    > the time, but there is no doubt some damage to the derailleur or hangar.
    >
    > The question is, what should I demand of the insurance company? Visibly
    > the bike looks almost as good as new, but they weren't made to be
    > broadsided by cars. The headset situation I find unacceptable and I
    > suspect a cracked fork or bent head tube. It was a brand new bike, but
    > now I don't completely trust its safety and certainly not its longevity.
    > The drivetrain doesn't make me happy either. I'm sure I would have
    > eventually bent the derailleur and got the various nicks on my own, but
    > in this case somebody else is liable. Should I demand a total loss and
    > replacement, or will I be f'ed over by the insurance company and be
    > stuck with a damaged bike?


    Ouch! I've purchased a bike from Gary. If you haven't already
    contacted him, I'd do so especially considering he just sent it to
    you. He responded to my emails within the day or next. Ask him if he's
    had something similar happen with other clients, and if he knows what
    the process is.

    /s
     
  19. SuperSlinky

    SuperSlinky Guest

    JP said...

    > I never said lie.
    >
    > There was an accident and you are the victim.
    > You have the leverage here to get reimbursed fully.
    > Some people would use it for far more.
    > I do not offer lectures on morality.
    > I'm just pointing out the reality of your situation.
    > If you prefer to measure your own forks,
    > buff out your frame and hope for the best
    > all the while limping around sighing and crying,
    > well, that is your business.
    >
    >
    > JP


    I know what you are saying. I guess I shouldn't have said lie. I'm just
    sort of wishy-washy, not very good at negotiating. In my view, a new
    dream bike would just barely make all this hassle worthwhile. All the
    time and energy I have spent on this is now getting ridiculous. All the
    time and energy I spent getting the now damaged bike built, bought and
    set up is also wasted. I doubt that any settlement I'm likely to get
    will make me feel that I was paid for all the trouble.
     
  20. SuperSlinky

    SuperSlinky Guest

    supabonbon said...

    > Ouch! I've purchased a bike from Gary. If you haven't already
    > contacted him, I'd do so especially considering he just sent it to
    > you. He responded to my emails within the day or next. Ask him if he's
    > had something similar happen with other clients, and if he knows what
    > the process is.
    >
    > /s


    Gary in on vacation, but I did call his partner Tom. There isn't a whole
    lot they can do, except build another bike, which will take 3 weeks to
    get to me.
     
Loading...
Loading...