Specialized Sequoia Elite -- Throwing the chain

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by wineandkeyz, Jul 29, 2004.

  1. wineandkeyz

    wineandkeyz New Member

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    I wonder if anyone else has encountered this problem. My wife and two other women in our neighborhood all own Specialized Sequoia Elite bikes (with Shimano 105 derailleurs, etc.). All three bikes have problems with throwing the chain, usually when going from the middle to smaller chain ring.

    We husbands all ride different bikes (Cannondale, Fuji, and Performance), but with the same 105 hardware. And none of us has yet thrown a chain on our own bikes. At first we thought maybe the women were doing something wrong, but when we've tried the Sequoias, the same thing happened. All three Sequoias have been back to the shop for adjustments, but the problem still crops up.

    Could there be some quirk with the Sequoia Elites that is causing this?
     
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  2. badger_biker

    badger_biker New Member

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    I have an 04 Elite with about 800 miles and haven't had that problem, however I've only shifted down to the inner ring a hand full of times. I have had the chain get thrown to the outside once. It may just be the derailleur stop that needs adjusting although you would think the shop that looked at them would have tried that.
    I'm a little disappointed with the ease and occational failure to shift from the middle to the upper ring. Have they encountered that problem? I'm new to STI shifters so maybe it is common.
     
  3. wineandkeyz

    wineandkeyz New Member

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    Yeah, I think they've had that problem, too. But where they've seemed to have the most trouble -- and frustration -- is when they're going up a hill and throw the chain trying to go the smallest ring.
    But it just seems too coincidental that the three Elites (one is an '03, the other two are '04s) have this problem but none of our other bikes do.
     
  4. KakenBetaal

    KakenBetaal New Member

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    I have the sirrus elite and it does the same thing, although I think the derailleur needs adjusting and I just haven't gotten round to it. If I go to the granny gear while I'm still a couple gears up on the rear sprocket, then it doesn't happen.
     
  5. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Here are a couple of articles that may help you out. I have an Elite also and love it. All except the saddle anyway. That thing is torture, as are most saddles.

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/derailer-adjustment.html

    http://www.parktool.com/repair_help/howfix_frontderailleur.shtml
     
  6. kjoffe

    kjoffe New Member

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  7. daveornee

    daveornee New Member

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    Eight things I can think of effect this:
    1. Inner stop... and the shop most likely checked/adjusted that first
    2. Height of the derailer... also likely checked at the shop
    3. Angle of the derailer.... maybe or maybe not checked/adjusted
    4. Chain line.... 50/50 in my estimation if it is likely or even likely that it is checked.
    5. The chain itself can be an issue with lateral flexibility. Even new chains vary considerably in flexibility by up to 50%. How a chain falls off the middle ring to the inside is also a matter of shaping of the chain ring teeth and side plate shaping of the chain.
    6. Chain length can contribute if the chain is too long you may be getting too much slack
    7. Rear derailer B-tension adjustment
    8. Derailer chain ring mismatch. If 105 is designed for 52/42/30 and you are ruuning smaller chain rings, then shifting won't be as well controlled.

    Take a close look at the Front derailers, chain rings and chains of the various bicycles that shift well and compare/contrast them to the troubled ones.

    However, even if all these things are perfect... or at least operating within specification... it can still happen. You might want to install a device that will always keep it from happening: Jump Stop by N-Gear.

    Many shops carry Jump Stop for resolving this issue and you can order direct:

    <http://www.gvtc.com/~ngear/whatis.html>
     
  8. dimayers

    dimayers New Member

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    I was considering buying the Sequoia Elite for my wife...she loved the frame geometry, ride, and general feel of the bike after test riding (although during her ride hadn't shifted the triple). After reading this thread, I decided to take it for a quick spin on the bike before making the purchase. After ten minutes of riding, the chain had come off 3 times during shifts on the triple. The guy at the bike store said that triples can "be expected to throw the chain". I told him I have a Waterford w/Ultegra triple I've ridden 2,000 miles without ever throwing the chain. The guy just shrugged. The people at this bike store were generally rude and unhelpful (let me know if anyone wants a recommendation on what bike store to AVOID in Charlotte NC).

    Anyway, I'm convinced that there is something strange with the Sequoia shifting that warrants checking out before you buy. We took our business to the nearest Trek dealer, where my wife bought a Trek 1500....and absolutely loves it!
     
  9. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Tripples can be expected to throw the chain? The guy at your LBS is full of it!

    Sorry to hear all of you are having trouble with the Sequoia. I have the '04 Elite and haven't had any problems related to the drivetrain. In fact the only problem I'm having (now that I've swapped saddles) with 1,250 miles on it is some grinding in the rear wheel bearings. That should be covered under warranty. My 1 year is up November 5th. By then I'll be done with riding for the year unless it is unseasonably warm this fall.
     
  10. KakenBetaal

    KakenBetaal New Member

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    I doubt very much that it's anything more than mis-adjustment. I now have near perfect shifting in front after moving the FD as close as possible to the large chainring - my LBS had left about 3-4mm clearance there. (Thanks to Sheldon Brown's site)
     
  11. davidbod

    davidbod New Member

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    I just got an 04' elite for my wife and when I got it home I went over it carefully. Apart from some minor adjustments I performed, there was lots of noise coming from the rear wheel. I made the wife take it back the next day to the LBS. Turns out the settings for the hub were too tight and it was the bearings making all the noise.

    The only reason a bike would throw a chain is if its not properly set up or something is bent/broken. I've ridden her bike and put it through all of the gears to make sure its adjusted properly and can't get the chain to come off.
     
  12. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    That's great, but anyone paying for a new bike shouldn't have to learn how to re-assemble it themselves....the LBS is supposed to have a mechanic who final checks and adjusts all this stuff before it's delivered. It really amazes me how an LBS unable or unwilling to adjust a FD can stay in business.
     
  13. KakenBetaal

    KakenBetaal New Member

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    I've a reasonable amount of tolerance for my LBS since they've performed great, and one failure on my FD isn't really a biggie. But we digress, this has nothing much to do with my point, which was that shifting problems with Specialised Sequoias/Elites are most likely just adjustment issues, not a fault with the design.
     
  14. RSSrsvp

    RSSrsvp New Member

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    I encountered the same problem on my Sequoia Elite that I purchased just last Saturday. I threw the chain shifting from the middle to the small gear several times while test riding the bike. The salesman then took it out for a ride and encountered the same problem. They adjusted the front derailleur several times and assured me that everything was ok. I then went home and I next took the bike out again for a real ride last Sunday. I promptly threw the chain again a few times. I returned the bike to my LBS and insisted that they either fix it or replace it.

    I also called Specialized on Monday and was informed that they had discovered a problem with the original Shimano HG-73 chain (in the middle of the production season) that was on the bike, and they recommended that my LBS switch the chain to a Sram PC-69. According to Specialized, the Shimano chain was too rigid and didn't have enough flex. Specialized assured me that this would correct the problem. I picked up my bike on Wednesday with the new Sram chain on it and took it out for another ride. Instead of throwing the chain when I shifted from the middle to the small gear, the opposite was happening, and I was throwing it when shifting from the small to the middle. I returned the bike to my LBS, and was told that I was not shifting correctly. I then insisted that they test ride the bike. Two different salesmen and one of their mechanics encountered the same problem, so it definitely wasn't my shifting technique.

    The manager of the store promised to speak to his Specialized representative and do whatever necessary to fix this problem. I picked up my bike on Friday and they had changed the crankset and the bottom bracket upon instructions from Specialized. They gave me a TruVativ Elita crankset and a FSA Isis bottom bracket. I will be testing the bike later today and hopefully this will fix the problem as aside from this throwing the chain problem, I really like the bike.
     
  15. RSSrsvp

    RSSrsvp New Member

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    I took my Sequoia Elite out for an extensive ride today, and it seems that the changes that my LBS made have done the job. No Matter how many times I shifted, I couldn't throw the chain. If the bikes in question are still under warranty, I would take them back to the LBS where they were purchased. Insist on the same changes that Specialized authorized my shop to make. Tell the shop to contact their representative at Specialized as this condition can be corrected.
     
  16. skydive69

    skydive69 New Member

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    I just turned 1000 miles on my Sequoia Elite and it has not thrown a chain once, or done anything else but give me enormous pleasure. That being said, I pick up my new Roubaix Pro tomorrow! :D
     
  17. RSSrsvp

    RSSrsvp New Member

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    Incidentally, one of the salesmen in my LBS remarked that it is not uncommon for a manufacturer to encounter shortages in their parts inventory and substitute components from the originally listed ones during a production run. He hinted that this might have been the problem on the Sequoia Elite. He mentioned that the Specialized would know if this had been the case from the bike's serial number.
     
  18. abadoki

    abadoki New Member

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    My wife's '03 Elite had the same problem as other have had, "throwing the chain". We took it back to the LBS that we purchased it from, several time to have them adjust the bike. It continued to throw the chain, until it finally broke the chain and we had to remove a link. After, shorthening the chain the problem seems to have gone away. But, thanks for the heads up the Specialized's answer to this problem, if she has this problem again in the future, I think we will ask the LBS to contact Specialized and have them change some of the parts.
     
  19. RSSrsvp

    RSSrsvp New Member

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    You should check on what the purchase date is. I believe that we have only have a one year warranty on these bikes. At the very least you should insist on the Sram PC-69 chain which was Specialized first recommendation to correct the problem that they gave to my LBS.
     
  20. ride4fun

    ride4fun New Member

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    My wife has an 04 Sequoia Comp that developed this problem after a month of riding. Our LBS tried to ajust the derrailer, but to no avail. Then they somehow determined there is a design problem with Specialized's crank used on this bicycle, and they replaced it with an Ultegra crank - all for free under warranty. The bike works perfectly now and my wife is very happy riding it. I am so satified with my LBS that I will definitely be buying my Roubaix through them:)
     
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