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PostPosted: Wed Oct 02, 2013 11:37 pm 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:04 pm
Posts: 1802
Location: A wretched hive of scum and villainy...
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Dan, what I meant was a second look at the pics shows absolutely no sign of brazing, and red paint is on the crown where it joins the column.

I see what you mean, Keith, there definitely isn't any braze below the crown race seat and bearing race.

However, I think the crown race seat, which was cast into the top of the crown, has broken away with the steerer from the main crown casting itself.
There are signs of braze on the steerer at the top of the crown race seat, above the bearing race, but none below in the body of the crown or on the steerer tube.

So I would suggest that the braze only penetrated approximately 5mm down into the top of the joint (the easily heated thin section), leaving only a 0.5mm thickness of cast crown material (26.4mm OD seat - 25.4mm OD steerer/2) just below the bearing race to support all the fork loads. This can be seen as the thin grey/black line around the inside edge of the steerer hole in the crown. Correctly fabricated, this section would normally have a wall thickness of around 2.8mm including, as it should, the wall thickness of the heavily butted steerer tube.

The untouched red paint on the upper surface of the crown would also suggest that the post-paint prep work on the fork was poor, too. The resulting small gap between the top surface of the crown and the lower surface of the bearing race would only have made the situation worse. The bearing race needs to be pressed firmly down onto a flat square machined surface to run safely and freely.

All the best,


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 2:19 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 2:04 am
Posts: 2
That's scary! I bought one of these frames 2 weeks ago and had it built up as a frame swap. I didn't use the fork as I had an Easton ec90sl lying around. I did have a look at the frame before it was built up and it seemed to be reasonably welded although the paint finish was pretty average with uneven paint and signs of overspray on the inside of the frame. The frame alignment was ok and the complete bike rides quite nicely. I was distinctly underwhelmed with the fork and did wonder whether they were ever supposed to be matched with the frame. I am shocked that a fork bearing the sarto name could be so poorly made. Planet X were not forthcoming with the frame's provenence or the tubing material but I reasoned that the reputation of a high end established firm such as sarto was reassurance enough and that Planet X wouldn't sell a fake .
Planet X have withdrawn all the frames from the website but there should be an immediate recall. From experience the customer service is fine but pretty slow.
Thanks for bringing this to my attention.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 10:19 am 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sat Jul 03, 2010 1:36 pm
Posts: 20
Location: SHEFFIELD
Of course we wouldnt sell a fake , this is a Sarto made frame and they have a good reputation , we are in touch with Sarto over this situation and looking for both answers and resolutions ..

We are contacting customers going to offer customers an alternative fork , or of course a full refund .

One issue is of course there isnt a great supply of inch threaded forks , columbus have offered us some of their nice carbon minimal 1" carbon forks but these arent threaded so we will offer these probably with a stem and headset (which we are sourcing) , plus we are asking the likes of Battaglin , Guerciotti , Tommassini if they have any availably stocks of inch threaded chrome forks that might look good with this frame . I do believe we have a batch already in stock that came with the Sab acquisition and we are checking these.

When we have all the options gathered we will of course do our best to get everyone sorted so they are satisfied


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 10:29 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 17, 2013 10:25 pm
Posts: 1262
Round of applause for Planet X dealing swiftly with this situation

Image


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:25 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 04, 2013 2:04 am
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I'm impressed at the response and the speed of it. Praise where it's due and my faith in the company re-established. @daveplanetx I wasn't trying to imply that the product was fake . I have always had good customer service from Planet X when I speak to someone on the phone but I do think that the email route is slow and can be unreliable.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:46 am 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sat Jul 03, 2010 1:36 pm
Posts: 20
Location: SHEFFIELD
Yes you are indeed correct about current email times .

We are trying to sort it but getting extra staff up to speed and trained isnt an instantaneous fix , and we are grinding our way to improving this but at the moment its not good enough and hasnt been for a good while.

Sorry is the best we have got for now , I am not happy as founder / owner , you the customer are not happy , we are trying , but it seems an uphill struggle .

You should have received or be receiving a message about your sarto forks any moment .


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 05, 2013 9:51 am 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 9:30 pm
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Location: nuneaton warks
I dont see why people are saying planetx have done a great job getting this sorted. The OP had to go public on a forum to get a response from them,if they had been that concerned they would have taken action before this had happened


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 05, 2013 10:10 am 
The Guv'nor
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I think credit to Planet X for tackling this head on and replying on the open forum. They have indicated their initial response wasn't up to scratch.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:40 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sat Jul 03, 2010 1:36 pm
Posts: 20
Location: SHEFFIELD
The lack of action previously was not due to us not being concerned at all . We simply had a 4 working day backlog on emails and the email hadnt been seen, what actually started the ball rolling here was the email that was sent to me personally and not the forum thread . I received the email Sunday night and had replied within 15 minutes and the actions started Monday morning .

Of course by starting the thread the OP was given my email so inadvertently that was what got the actions started .

This is of course not great and our backlog in email customer service was unacceptable and we usually try to operate to same day responses, 4 days is the worst we have had for a long time and we have are making big efforts to get back to same day .

However the instant we (I) knew of the issue we started to deal with it and that would have been the case whether a public forum , phone call , fax , letter or telegram .as we are fully aware of our obligations


.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:27 am 
rBoTM Winner
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Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2010 3:44 pm
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I look at this problem from a different optic than most people here inasmuch as I have worked on the manufacturing, distribution and retail side of this issue. Sarto has a very good reputation and they are generally a very serious partner for people like planet X and others. It is my guess that Sarto did not even produce the fork in question. I would guess that this was farmed out to some other supplier to Sarto (or perhaps Planet X bought the fork directly from a subcontractor themselves). Indeed nowadays, fork manufacture has become a relatively specialized pursuit.

I agree that the design of fork crown is not the best to ensure ease of construction or penetration of braze, but any skilled brazer would immediately recognize that proper penetration had not occurred because the colour of the heated crown would have shown a recognizably different colour. So the manufacturer of the fork, whether Sarto or a subcontractor, should have be aware of the issue and as such should take full responsibility. As far as the seeming belief that this is an isolated event that is not witnessed with other manufactures, I hate to have to burst a few bubbles but I have seen the same thing occur with other manufacturers too, both back in the 70's and 80's when I worked as a shop mechanic, as well as in the last decade. It is not frequent but it is something that virtually every manufacturer will eventually need to deal with. There are some brands that seem to suffer more frequent issues that other, but it is almost universal, so it is perhaps not fair to single out Sarto or PlanetX, especially after they have taken the issue seriously and are now attempting to seaarch out the possible source.

Unfortunately, I believe one of the most important things that has been missed here is the fact that Plannt X did not assemble the bike. This was either done by the OP or somebody in his stead. This is one of the consequences of moving away from traditional bricks and mortar shops and having more and more unskilled people assembling bikes. While I don't think that one can say categorically that the defect would have been noticed by a skilled mechanic, I do believe that a skilled mechanic would have been far more likely to spot it upon assembly than not a weekend mechanic. The OP writes that the separation occurred following a minor shunt and if this is true it is my belief that it should have been noticeable upon assembly. If the shunt was a full blown accident, the separation could at times even be considered to be beneficial as it quite likely avoided worse damage occurring to the frame/fork. Indeed because of the average customer's exasperated search for ever lighter frames, many frames are now coming close to the limits of the production tolerances.

Lastly, the OP must be applauded because he has not attempted to leverage the defect by claiming that it led to the crash, something that seems to be all too common nowadays.


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