Frame Inspection Following an Accident

Aug 17, 2007
121
0
36
Yotsuya, Tokyo
#1
This one is for all the techies out there.

If you saw my Tamagawa Blues post, you'll know that I bumped wheels with a mama-chari hard enough to buckle my front wheel. I know the damage on the front wheel necessitates a new one, but I was wondering about damage to the frame.

1) the frame is a low-end Trek aluminum; low end carbon fork
2) there "appears" to be no structural or cosmetic damage
3) there is a tiny irregularity (2 mm) in the sanded weld on the left-side weld where oversized down tube meets head tube (the paint isn't buckled or chipped, so I don't know if it's always been there and I simply didn't notice it until now)
4) no cracks or scratches in paint anywhere so I suspect only the tires (and my left hip - now a fetching shade of midnight blue with a diagonal raspberry slash a la early Chagall) made contact

My question is this: Must I take the frame to a reputable mechanic for a post-accident inspection?

If so, who should I take it to? What do they do to test the frame's integrity?

I read a few horror tales on the Internet, although I did not find anyone who'd actually had a catastrophic frame failure while bombing along a three-lane highway during peak commuting hours. (Saw a nasty video of some poor chump jumping a very long set of concrete steps on a tragically ill-equiped kid's bike: front wheel and head tube disintegrated on impact with the bottom stairs, and he got a free ride in an ambulance). So, if there appears to be no damage, is it safe to rely on an inexperienced visual inspection and rebuild my bike?

P.S. I want to buy a bike repair stand - the kind that clamps the seat tube or top tube and suspends the entire bike solidly. Anyone got one to sell or know a shop where I can get one at a moderate price?
 

Philip

Speeding Up
Feb 15, 2007
765
7
38
Setagaya
#2
Carbon crash replacement policy

Hi Andrew,

Lucky you purchased a Trek :D They run a "crash replacement program" - this is from the US website:

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What if I crash my carbon frame or part?

Carbon crash replacement policy

Assessing any damage done to a carbon fiber part requires more experience than is needed to inspect metal parts. If you crash or impact your bike and the force of the impact is absorbed by a carbon part, we strongly encourage you to replace the part, even if there are no indications of damage. If such a crash or impact occurs, Trek offers a crash replacement program for carbon parts, substantially reducing any replacement cost. To take advantage of this program, contact your local Authorized Trek Dealer.


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Cheers,

Philip
 
Aug 17, 2007
121
0
36
Yotsuya, Tokyo
#5
Thanks for Your Suggestions!

Thank you all for your imput here. I was out of Tokyo last week, hence the belated response. I will follow up the suggestions.

Do any of you know where I can buy a bicycle repair stand - the kind that clamps the top or seat tubes and suspends the bike so that both wheels are off the ground?

Cheers,
Andrew
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,516
213
83
Noda
japanichiban.com
#6
Thank you all for your imput here. I was out of Tokyo last week, hence the belated response. I will follow up the suggestions.

Do any of you know where I can buy a bicycle repair stand - the kind that clamps the top or seat tubes and suspends the bike so that both wheels are off the ground?

Cheers,
Andrew
Mosty shops don't stock the stands but if you ask them they'll order you one. Ask to look at their (cattledogs) and pick out one you like...
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#7
Hey Andrew, hope you've got the bike sorted out after the prang...

Cycle Yoshida has basically put the contents of all their distributer catalogs online, so it's a good place to go to see what products are available in Japan.

http://www.cycle-yoshida.com/accessory/workstand_menu.htm

You can order from them, or, as Edogawakikkoman says, one of your LBSs probably has the same catalogs in their shop, so you can get them to order it for you.