Neighbours child has forks on backwards - do I say something

Uncle Grumpy

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Re: Re:

MartinYorkshire":2azv77z4 said:
CassidyAce":2azv77z4 said:
Do these people not see other bikes and notice that the forks look somewhat different? Or that helmets are directional and look, er, 'unusual', the wrong way around?

All of it sounds ridiculous, even to me, but then again I never expected to see safety labels on laundry tablets that say "do not eat", either.

Like how breakfast cereals have helplines you can call.

I had the same situation once, up the park riding with my kids and a kid had his forks on backwards. I spoke to his Dad and said "Mate, I don't want to be "that guy" but your sons forks are on backwards which is actually dangerous because..." and went on to explain the geometry, steering and dropout angle etc.

I went on to say "I can't ignore it, because if he does come a cropper and I could have prevented it, I'm a bit of a twat."

The Dad thought he was doing the right thing because the V brake on the front would be forced away from the fork by the rotation of the wheel.

I'm thinking the uber carbon 27.5" dually I was on may have lent an air of credibility to my case. Anyway, I had tools on me so fixed it then and there and now if the kid loses his frigging teeth, it won't be because of a poorly assembled front end.

I'd say something. The crime you walk past is the crime you accept. Or something.

Grumps
 

CassidyAce

Senior Retro Guru
Re: Re:

MartinYorkshire":2nk8zlg0 said:
CassidyAce":2nk8zlg0 said:
Do these people not see other bikes and notice that the forks look somewhat different? Or that helmets are directional and look, er, 'unusual', the wrong way around?

Anyway, to the OP, it scarcely seems to matter if the neighbours never speak to you again, because they don't speak much anyway. The kid's safety is more of a concern and, admittedly, it's tricky if the parents/grandparents might dig their heels in if the mistake is pointed out. Perhaps consider telling them that the child is more likely to go over the bars with the fork that way around. :?:

I always thought the risk with having forks backwards was that the dropouts were wrongly oriented, meaning if the axle was loose or QR poorly fastenened, the wheel could free itself of the dropout under certain conditions, or is that what you mean as in, wheel gone, forks hit ground, ouch?

Having the fork backwards shortens the wheelbase and reduces the stability in general. A reversed fork tends to tuck the wheel under the down tube to a greater degree and, if the rider's weight shifts over the handlebars, the tipping point is reached more quickly. If the rider brakes sharply for an emergency stop, they're more likely to go over the bars.

How much worse it is will depend on the fork rake or offset. A longer fork rake increases the wheel base when the fork is the right way around but, when it's turned around the wrong way, it will shorten the wheelbase more than would be the case with less fork rake. (I'm presuming that the BSO has some fork rake, that it came in a box with the fork around the wrong way to save space, and some bright spark assumed that was how it was supposed to be.) To be honest, I have no idea whether this is the greatest risk - the wheel freeing itself might well be a greater risk - but going over the bars is a dramatic sounding point that might make an impression on the parents. Anyway, good luck with this.
 

Peachy!

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What you don’t know is....

The reverse forks are because the Dad’s training the lad up for motorcycle paced track racing! :LOL: :LOL: :LOL:
 

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kingoffootball

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Re: Re:

MartinYorkshire":a5cs88hd said:
CassidyAce":a5cs88hd said:
Do these people not see other bikes and notice that the forks look somewhat different? Or that helmets are directional and look, er, 'unusual', the wrong way around?

Anyway, to the OP, it scarcely seems to matter if the neighbours never speak to you again, because they don't speak much anyway. The kid's safety is more of a concern and, admittedly, it's tricky if the parents/grandparents might dig their heels in if the mistake is pointed out. Perhaps consider telling them that the child is more likely to go over the bars with the fork that way around. :?:

He's a good kid. He is polite, talkative and courteous. He's made a specific effort to make my (younger) son included in an older group. Any parent would know how important and appreciated that is.

I'll work it out, I just wanted to mash it all through first, with fellow forum members who'd likely experienced similar situations before.

The lad in question has been more into his scooter lately, allowing me some breathing space.

All of it sounds ridiculous, even to me, but then again I never expected to see safety labels on laundry tablets that say "do not eat", either.

I think if possible I would approach it by going round and beginning by saying what you've said about the child - tht you appreciate him including your son and you think he's a good influence or something like that. People have a tendency to decide whether a conversation is positive or negative very quickly, so if you lead with something like that and then follow with mentioning noticing the forks and not wanting him to get hurt because he seems like a nice kid hopefully that makes them more receptive to the advice.
 

prezza

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Call me black and white and northern but I’d just say... ‘ hi mate. Saw your lado on his bike other day. Bye he’s getting good on that. Mind you, I couldn’t help notice that the forks have been fitted the wrong way round. I’ll happily spin them round for you but whichever bike shop you go to, go somewhere else from now. Only saying as I wouldn’t want the lad injuring himself or damaging his pride and joy’.

Spin the forks but If asked to do owt else just say that you’d love to but are up to your tits.

Job done ...
 

Sir Neil d'Menture

Devout Dirtbag
Tell him you'll do the job as a favour. That you are not a professional. Tell him if he wants it done by a "proper" bike mechanic to take it to a shop - and pay. Tell him you will do it, but he must accept that you are not a qualified tradesman. Tell him you have no insurance cover!

There are ways of saying all that without coming across as an officious, bumptious sort.

If he isn't interested then just walk away with a clear conscience. No need for a drama.
 

FluffyChicken

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I always wondered why the helmets I buy have a direction arrow or front/back signs in the, now I know why.

Don't worry about the wheel falling out, they have safety tabs or hooks, assuming they are fitted correctly, which coming from a shop they will do, they have safety standards for sale...
 
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