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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 8:02 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2011 10:55 am
Posts: 2920
Location: Dorset
What scares the hell out of me is the quick release hubs (and my wheels) on my 1985 Raleigh :?

Especially going 40 + mph down Bullbarrow Hill in Dorset :(


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 8:39 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Tue Nov 18, 2008 10:49 am
Posts: 4061
Location: A veritable floating palace
It depends.

Superlight, weight weenie stuff that was only ever meant to be used for one season should probably be inspected regularly. But anecdotally, I'd say failure of parts like bars to be an exception rather than the norm.

Saying that, I've broken three stems and one handlebar, and none of them were particularly lightweight.

Get steel ones. :-)


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 9:44 am 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Fri Aug 02, 2013 8:43 am
Posts: 47
If you want to be really paranoid, the aluminium skin on a 747 is only a few mills thick! :D


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 10:00 am 
Geoff Capes
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Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:33 pm
Posts: 956
Location: On my laptop somewhere..
widowmaker wrote:
What scares the hell out of me is the quick release hubs (and my wheels) on my 1985 Raleigh :?

Especially going 40 + mph down Bullbarrow Hill in Dorset :(



While fettling and fixing I found a crack in the alu bolt housing of my rear wheel Shimano q/r skewer yesterday. This was on my Klein pulse, which has rearward facing drop outs.. I appreciated the relative comfort that I noticed this in.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 10:19 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2011 10:55 am
Posts: 2920
Location: Dorset
saulus wrote:
widowmaker wrote:
What scares the hell out of me is the quick release hubs (and my wheels) on my 1985 Raleigh :?

Especially going 40 + mph down Bullbarrow Hill in Dorset :(



While fettling and fixing I found a crack in the alu bolt housing of my rear wheel Shimano q/r skewer yesterday. This was on my Klein pulse, which has rearward facing drop outs.. I appreciated the relative comfort that I noticed this in.


I think is shall give the bike a good old clean then inspect it before I ride it next :!:


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 10:26 am 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader

Joined: Sat Jul 21, 2007 9:48 am
Posts: 6976
Location: Bristle
i bent a set of bars once, while trying to throw my hack bike over a tree.

Never damaged a set any other way....


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 10:43 am 
Old School Hero

Joined: Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:07 am
Posts: 165
If you're that paranoid, have a look at these :).

Having said that, I'd be paranoid as to whether they're cro-mo or not...


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:00 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2013 7:24 pm
Posts: 303
Location: New Brunswick, Canada
BITD, when I rode rather more hard-core than I do today, we regarded light aluminum bars (defined as anything under 170g for quality straight bars of the day) as 1 season only bars. We regarded 150g as the lightest practical bars for normal users. Some manufacturers offered lighter ones, but they were never intended for long-term use, Syncros for one said as much.

Now, knowing that a bar should be replaced annually under hard riding didn't make it happen. I broke 3 or 4 bars over the years, excluding bar-end caused failures. All of them failed near the stem clamp, and all of them failed somewhat slowly, first buckling and bending. None simply snapped catastrophically.

In '98 I switched to a Profile carbon straight bar, it came with an "unconditional lifetime warranty", which I exercised 2 times, both times when bar end clamps damaged the ends of the bar in a crash. The carbon bar itself hasn't ever failed me. The on on the bike now has been there for 14 years, including a year or 2 of pretty rugged use, and many more effectively languishing in the basement.

Aluminum bars absolutely will fail in extended service, just as an alumimum frame, stem, seatpost or aircraft will eventually fail. Aluminum has a finite fatigue life. That means that any cyclic load, even well below its load carrying ability, will eventually cause a fatigue failure. A crack will begin, it will spread, the part will fail. This is why a low-end steel frame typically carries a lifetime warranty, but alu frames, no matter the quality, get 5 year warranties from most makers.

Aluminum structures are built for a certian life expectancy. Most alu frames will outlive their owner's need, but some fraction will fatigue in service. 150 gram bars have a very finite fatigue life, and any regular mountain biker would be wise to replace them annually. On a cruiser or dedicated trundle-about-road-bike, the same bar might last 20 years.

So, just like the aluminum frame, the bar deserves a careful checking over every few months. Any sign of a crack should be checked carefully. Any crack identified is terminal to the piece, and it should be replaced post-haste.

J


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:09 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Sat Jul 13, 2013 8:01 pm
Posts: 2925
^^^ What's your take then on NOS / good used cond Answer Hyperlight bars ?


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 16, 2013 3:28 pm 
Old School Hero

Joined: Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:07 am
Posts: 165
NOS should be ok. As Stumpy said, aluminium 'tots up' all the stress it receives and will crack after a certain threshold.


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