Structural Integrity Compromised with Frame Damage? Please advise.

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Doctor Morbius, Nov 18, 2004.

  1. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    I have a question for the frame experts on this forum. I Received a bike shipped UPS Wednesday. Everything looks great except the non-drive rear seat stay is pretty chewed up. There is also a little damage on the rear chain stay near the axle. As you can see from the first pic, it appears to have been chewed up by the rear cassette. The metal is gouged pretty badly and you can even feel a couple of barbs if you run your fingers over it. This is definitely more than just a few paint chips or I wouldn't be concerned over it.

    Yes, I know that a bike is supposed to be shipped with the rear wheel attached but this one wasn't. Why they would have done this is beyond me. Even the rear skewer was loose in the bike box and not in the accessories box along with the front skewer. The accessories box was taped shut so it couldn't have just fallen out. Other than this everything was packaged well and there was no other apparent damage. The bike looks great otherwise.

    Will this affect the structural integrity of the frame? I weigh a hefty 240 Lbs and don't want to be stuck with a bad frame, especially considering that I have no warranty through Raleigh as I purchased it through ebay. I certainly am not bashing ebay as I've had excellent experiences with them and have purchased several items through them including three other bicycles. All of them arrived in excellent condition.

    I'm sure the seller will consider this to be the result of bad package handling through UPS, but I'm inclined to think otherwise. I did pay for insurance so I wouldn't be left with no recourse. I have emailed the seller but have not yet heard anything back from them. If they don't respond I will be forced to give my first negative feedback.

    Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you in advance.
     
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  2. mjw_byrne

    mjw_byrne New Member

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    That looks awful. I don't think I'd feel happy riding it, especially if I weighed 240 lbs. Although it's a hassle, I think you should try to get it replaced. If you're riding along and the frame snaps you're in a world of hurt.
     
  3. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

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    UPS doesn't insure against bad packing and that's the song and dance you will get from them .The responsibility for making it right(taking it back and giving refund) is thru the seller.Good luck.
     
  4. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Do you believe the damage to be mostly cosmetic or does it look worse than that? Thanks.
     
  5. martin_j001

    martin_j001 New Member

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    It definitely looks as though the metal has been gouged. Its hard to tell how deep it is from the pictures, but if you can feel barbs that aren't paint, then its probably worth trying to get it replaced. I weigh about the same as you do, and I know I wouldn't ride that. I had a Giant TCR frame that I got replaced using the warranty due to a hairling crack in either metal or paint below the donwtube at the headtube junction. Good luck though, and I hope you and the seller can come to some kind of arrangement.

    Jeff
     
  6. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

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    Regardless of what I or anyone else thinks(or guesses), would you have bought it like that?
     
  7. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Appears the gouge is over the end of the tube where the dropout plug is behind it. If so, don't believe the gouge will give you any trouble since the weld is holding the bottom of the tube together from the compression loads.

    It could depend on how the dropout is installed into the tube end, if any stress was created before welding. Can't tell how deep the gouge is from the picture, but if it's less than .010 or .020, that would be good.

    If it was mine to keep, I'd sand off the damaged paint to look for cracks, blend out the sharp edges of the gouge, then repaint and ride it. I'd check for cracking when lubing the chain, but wouldn't expect any problems.

    Like boudreaux said, I'd try hard to get the seller to make it right.....he should know how to pack bikes and be responsible.
     
  8. artmichalek

    artmichalek New Member

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    Exactly, you can't really tell from looking at it how far into the tubes the drop outs are inserted. There should be quite a bit of metal under there, so I wouldn't worry too much. You might want to send the pictures to the manufacturer and see what they think.
     
  9. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    No I would not have purchased the bike in that condition. Perhaps if there were paint chips and the seller stated such but not with gouges to the frame. Thank you for responding.
     
  10. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Thank you all for responding.

    I have heard from the seller and he has suggested that I ship it back for a refund. Personally, I feel that the shipping costs should be born by him as it is not my fault for receiving the bicycle in damaged condition. I have sent him a reply stating that, should he have another 56cm '04 Supercourse, I would like to exchange it rather than get a refund. I also suggested that should he have a 56cm frame that he could just ship that as I have the tools to swap the components to a non-damaged frame, except for the headset.

    This weekend I plan to take the bike to a couple of local Raleigh dealers to get their input. I will also ask how much it will cost to repair or replace the frame should the seller be willing to provide a partial refund.

    Again, thanks for your replies. I'll be checking to see if there are any new responses so post away. Looks like Christmas won't be coming to the Morbius household this year. :(
     
  11. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Well, unfortunately it looks as though I've been screwed on this deal.

    I did receive a response from the seller offering a refund. I emailed him back and asked him if the refund would be a full refund and include the shipping charges I'd already paid and if I would be reimbursed for the cost to ship it back. His follow up was very cryptic. The email simply stated "what did you decide?". It didn't answer my question. I didn't think I should eat the shipping costs to and from the seller. The shipping cost to me was approx $55 with insurance. I don't know how much the return charges would have been.

    I sent him another email suggesting there were three options.
    1) Send a call tag to pick up the damaged bike and send another 56cm in its place. He said he didn't have any more.

    2) Send a call tag to pick up the bike and refund the cost of the bike and the shipping charges I had already paid for. I thought this fair since I was not responsible for the damage to the frame.

    3) I suggested the seller offer a partial refund. He actually did reply and asked "how much of a refund" and I replied back stating $50, which I thought was very reasonable considering the damage (see pic). It has been a week since I sent that email and I haven't heard anything back from him.

    So I guess I'm screwed with no recourse. The name of the seller is Joe's Auction. I've read where there have been other buyers that have had similar issues to mine although not as bad. I had even contacted a few of them to see if their bikes were shipped with the rear wheel loose and they had been.

    I felt I had no option other than give the seller a negative feedback, which is something I really didn't enjoy doing. However, perhaps the seller will now pack bikes the proper way with the rear wheel attached to the bike and the front fork turned 180 degrees. I checked the box my bike came in and there was plenty of room to have done that. I'm certain he will try to blame UPS for this, however, the box arrived unscathed with nary a mark on it.

    http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQgotopag...dsperpageZ50QQsosortorderZ1QQsosortpropertyZ1

    I just noticed that the seller has a 56cm 2003 Supercourse for sale for a $500 opening bid. Caveat Emptor.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=7298&item=7118119090&rd=1

    Dear joesauction,

    I just gave you negative feedback. Had you been more responsive in contacting me I doubt I would have done this, however, I felt you left me no choice. The box you shipped my Raleigh Supercourse in has plenty of room for the rear wheel to be properly attached to the bike for shippment. I know because I've done it. From some of your other feedbacks it seems I'm not the only one with paint chips or similar issues. This is NOT the fault of UPS mishandling the package.

    I bid, won the auction and paid promptly. All I wanted is what was advertised - a Supercourse in brand new condition. This is unfortunate as I would have liked to have purchased other bikes from you in the future.
    :(

    EDIT: This has been my only negative experience on ebay. It has also been the most costly.
     
  12. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    I'd just chalk this one up to experience, repair the paint and ride the bike. To me, shipping is just one of the risks in doing business via ebay; obviously a risk vs price tradeoff here whenever you're doing mail-order business.

    If you really want to inspect what you're getting, and have the bike in your hands when you pay money, and have warranty/service support after the sale, you go to the LBS or local builder and likely pay more for these "extras".

    I'll bet you saved enough on this bike to help ease your pain. Other than the shipping damage, how do you like the ride?
     
  13. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Haven't ridden her. She's still unassembled in my storage unit. I have been waiting for responses from the seller in case it was to be shipped back. I'll be putting her together over Christmas.

    Except for the damage in the pictures above everything is pristine. I'm very impressed with the build quality even though it is a Raleigh and is not considered a high end bike. Seems like other brands get all the glory these days (Trek, Specialized, etc.) All of the welds are nicely ground and the paint looks to be very well done. The Shimano 105 and Ritchey components speak for themselves. I'm very pleased with the bike, just not in the way business was conducted. As you said, "live and learn".

    In the meantime I picked up this little jewel (see pics). It's an '03 Specialized Allez Sport that has just under 1000 actual miles on it. I know the guy I bought it from and he keeps all of his bikes in immaculate condition. Except for the electrical tape on the handlebars :rolleyes:, this thing is mint. The rear tire has plenty of life left. The cost was about $375 which included the gas to drive 5 1/2 hours round trip to pick it up. Not a bad deal for a bike that had a list price of over $800.oo.

    The handling on the Allez Sport is very responsive and it accelerates quickly. Too bad I can't hold it there once I'm up to speed! :D
     
  14. rule62

    rule62 New Member

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    Nice going on the Allez Morbius...but one question. Are you sure you have exhausted all avenues as far as placing a freight damage claim with UPS? It sure seems like you could collect for this type of damage on an insured shipment. Will the shipper just not pursue the claim or has UPS already said no dice?
     
  15. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

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    You cannot collect damages from UPS for poor packing on the shippers part.The insurance from usp covers loss or damage by THEM. FWIW, I think the offer of a refund should have been taken, and the shipping eaten. Sometimes it don't pay to try and hold the high ground for every nickel.
     
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