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Broken Spokes

lockstock666lockstock666 Posts: 131
edited February 2012 in Commuting general
My bike is 3 months old.

My first spoke broke at the end of January, the bike shop where I bought it fixed it with my first service and charged me £12 for the spoke. "Spokes are not covered by warranty, you must of gone over a pot hole" I did not ride over a pot hole and one night I arrived home with no problems, the next day when i set off for work it was broken.

2.5 weeks later another spoke went as I was riding it, no pot hole, just road. Shop charged me £13 for the spoke.

4 days later (last night), I am sitting eating dinner when I hear a loud metallic ping in the kitchen, oh yes of course, another spoke went wasn't even riding it! Let alone abusing it with a phantom pothole.

Now I think this is a duff wheel or something and I haven't gone back to my LBS yet about the third spoke. What do you suggest I do? Aside from the small expense each time each spoke goes it is a huge inconvenience as I rely on my bike for work. and getting it too and from the shop isn't easy either.

Is three times in a month cause for some kind of replacement wheel? Or a free spoke replacement at the very least?


  • davisdavis Posts: 2,505
    It's probably a badly built wheel, and the tensions are out of balance.

    As for duff... I doubt it, and if it gets trued and the tensions re-done it'll probably be ok. I think the LBS should offer a different wheel or to re-do the spoke tensions on that one. I'd be a bit unhappy if they tried to charge me.

    If you don't get it done you're likely to continue popping spokes. You're not a giant of a man riding around on super-lightweight racing wheels, are you?
    Sometimes parts break. Sometimes you crash. Sometimes it’s your fault.
  • I am 6ft 2, weigh 82kg. (What a nice blend of imperial and metric)

    I don't think they are super lightweight, they are racing wheels though. Alloy 28h with double wall rim?

    Thing is the spokes have been fixed and the wheel trued by the bike shop twice now, the latest fix lasting 24 miles of riding over three days.

    Is truing the wheel different to re-tensioning the whole wheel? I guess it is?

    I think I will just take the wheel in this time rather than the whole bike.

    Edit:all the spokes are popping on the real wheel on the same side as the cassete - from what I have read that is where they are most likely to go.
  • To have three spokes let go in such a short time on one wheel is absolutely unacceptable and extremely far from normal.

    I would create stink and demand a replacement wheel, that they have not trued or built (as they seem incapable of it!), or at the very least they should have the work done to the original (reducing the tensions and building it evenly) free of charge.

    I don't weigh much less than you (a few pounds) and I certainly have never experienced a broken spoke on a wheel so new, let alone 3!
  • I bought a Specialized Sirrus about 10 years ago and had a few spokes go over the first 500 miles. The LBS from which I bought it replaced each with no fuss and no charge and, after the third one failed, contacted Specialized who provided the LBS with two new rims and sets of spokes with which to rebuild the wheels. Have had not problem since until the braking surface wore out on one.

    IM<HO, you shouldn't have had to pay for the spokes - what rubbish to say that they aren't covered by the warranty - and you should now be looking at a new wheel (and a refund for the two spokes) from the manufacturer.

  • Thanks all, as I suspected, this isn't acceptable. I will take to the shop tomorrow and see how helpful they are.

    This is the kind of thing that my dad used to deal with and get sorted for me!
  • As the others have said, a replacement wheel seems to be in order. Sometimes a wheel seems jinxed, something wrong with that particular wheel.
  • It depends if they simply replaced the spoke in isolation, or did the job right & retentioned the whole wheel. For £12 sounds like a botch job. All that does is shift uneven load to another point & another one will go. And so on forever until someone takes the time (and a bit more of your cash) to even the load & stop them pinging individually. I think its more bad LBS than duff kit
  • The bike shop was helpful on Saturday. Luckily I was served by the manager who agreed straight away that this wasn't right. He said he would contact Claude Butler to explain and see how they wanted to proceed: either a wheel replacement or a complete rebuild paid for by the warranty.

    So, I am still borrowing a bike for a few days waiting to hear the fate of the wheel.
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