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Consumer advice needed - broken bike, sad face

daddy0daddy0 Posts: 686
edited November 2017 in Road buying advice
Hey everybody, I need some advice.

Last year, making use of my friends staff discount I pushed the boat out and bought myself an expensive bicycle from a well known retailer. I'm not naming any names, yet!

Less than a year later, having only covered 2000kms, there was "an incident" where the rear derailleur ended up going into the rear wheel. The frame is broken at the rear dropout and the hanger failed at the point of this break too. The frame, RD and rear wheel are all broken. There was no impact, I was just pedalling along, went over a small bump which appears to have caused the break. I stayed upright, so there are no scratches to any part of the bike.

This was my Sunday best bike so only ridden in good weather, kept indoors and well looked after.

The retailer said that the hanger has failed, which it is designed to, so is not covered by warranty. I argued and they sent back to manufacturer who said that they don't think the frame has failed so wont cover the warranty. Both retailer and manufacturer offered me a crash replacement frame, but at a cost of £1500 and wouldn't replace the wheel or RD.

TBH I don't want another frame, I have no trust in this make/model. I could've easily been killed - I was going at 45kmh downhill at the time and ended up veering off to the right, luckily there was no oncoming traffic. Very hard to trust something after that.

I asked my credit card company to refund me under section 75 of the consumer act, and asked me to provide a third party assessment. I provided this, which said that in their opinion that it looks like the frame has failed, but cannot say with any certainty. Credit card company then spoke to the retailer and then said that I had no case as no proof the frame has failed and its most likely the hanger.

I've had rear hangers bend on me before, but not actually break. So I know this can happen, and the effect of this. But this hanger wasn't bent before the incident, the gears had been shifting perfectly all ride.

I am so angry. The bike has failed whilst being used for its intended purpose and has been well looked after. What should I do about this? I feel like I should be able to take this to court or something like that? Or is all I can do start an online campaign to name and shame?

Thanks for reading!

Posts

  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    Or, put another way, the rear mech ended up in the spokes and snapped the hanger.

    Doesn't sound like a manufacturing fault, possibly adjustment.
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  • daddy0daddy0 Posts: 686
    I was in the 16t, very unlikely that the RD jumped into the rear wheel IMHO. Even if this was the case, this shouldn't happen and I wouldn't expect it to happen on a high quality bicycle. As I said, the gears (Di2) were perfectly adjusted.
  • noodlemannoodleman Posts: 852
    That's bad luck. You'll have your work cut out trying to convince them the frame broke, causing the incident rather than the mech shifting into the spokes. Not doubting your side of the story btw but the crash replacement frame is probably your best option.
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  • trek_dantrek_dan Posts: 1,366
    Is the frame actually broken?
  • Would your bike insurance policy not cover this sort of event?
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  • norvernrobnorvernrob Posts: 1,437
    One of the carbon repair specialists should be able to sort it, no idea on cost but I'd imagine a couple of hundred quid? It sucks, but given the circumstances the manufacturer is never going to pay out because they probably see mechs in rear wheels destroying frames on a regular basis, and it's got nothing to do with the frame failing.
  • mamba80mamba80 Posts: 5,032
    section 75 makes the CC company jointly liable.... not that they act on your behalf to get the money out of the supplier, tell them you want them to refund you based on that in all probability (the report you had done) the frame failed... if they want to pursue the LBS for the money after they pay you, thats up to them.
  • Daddy0 wrote:

    Last year, making use of my friends staff discount

    Doesn't this invalidate any warranty?

    Maybe use some of the money you saved and repair the frame
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Maybe something bounced up into the mech ? They don't break for no reason.

    I think you have to move on and live with it. Repair and it's as good as new.
  • janwaljanwal Posts: 486
    Don’t know what make your bike is.However a friend of mine had a similar thing with his Trek Domane a couple of years ago.He was going slowly up a short rise and derailleur broke into the rear wheel and snapped the chainstay. Luckily the LBS got In touch with Trek and in the end they replaced the frame FOC.It took some time as they had to send to the USA for it as none in this country.Also it was not the nice orange but Matt black but he was just thankful he got it sorted.
  • slowmartslowmart Posts: 4,184
    @ OP, who bought the bike your friend or you? Warranties are not usually transferable.

    Rear derailleurs don't end up in the rear wheel inadvertently , there has to be a cause and there also has to be a degree of liability on you the rider to check that your bike is road worthy before you set off.

    Simply laying the blame at the manufacturers door should be avoided if your hopeful of a remedy as I don't see any legal liability to cover your situation, I can see where a manufacturer/importer may opt to support a customer even one who bought at trade.
    “Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime. Teach a man to cycle and he will realize fishing is stupid and boring”

    Desmond Tutu
  • ZMC888ZMC888 Posts: 292
    Slowmart wrote:
    @ OP, who bought the bike your friend or you? Warranties are not usually transferable.

    Rear derailleurs don't end up in the rear wheel inadvertently , there has to be a cause and there also has to be a degree of liability on you the rider to check that your bike is road worthy before you set off.

    Simply laying the blame at the manufacturers door should be avoided if your hopeful of a remedy as I don't see any legal liability to cover your situation, I can see where a manufacturer/importer may opt to support a customer even one who bought at trade.
    Bollocks, he was in 16T using Di2. There's no way that this is from poor maintenance or user error.
    The frame clearly snapped around the hanger area from manufacturing flaw or poor design or the hanger is a poor design and broke. Sometimes the bolts holding the hanger to the frame are under engineered too.
  • ZMC888ZMC888 Posts: 292
    If I understand your version of events clearly.
    -In 16T.
    -Di2.
    -Already done 2000 kms without an issue.

    Bike should be continue to shift perfectly unless the entire drivetrain got covered in censored , and I just don't buy that someone with a 2000 kms bike would ever let that happen. I'd remove all the parts and send the frame to an carbon fibre expert for an opinion and save for a frame from another manufacturer. An offer of 1500 pounds for a new frame is an insult, that's likely the retail cost!
  • Probably a stone or some other object got thrown up and got lodged in the chain. The chain then jams in the RD and gets pulled out of line and into the spokes.
    Unlucky.
  • slowmartslowmart Posts: 4,184
    ZMC888 wrote:
    If I understand your version of events clearly.
    -In 16T.
    -Di2.
    -Already done 2000 kms without an issue.

    Bike should be continue to shift perfectly unless the entire drivetrain got covered in censored , and I just don't buy that someone with a 2000 kms bike would ever let that happen. I'd remove all the parts and send the frame to an carbon fibre expert for an opinion and save for a frame from another manufacturer. An offer of 1500 pounds for a new frame is an insult, that's likely the retail cost!

    I doubt an expert will be able to determine the cause of the failure as there are too many unknowns/variables and then at what cost and who would you use? Decisions are easy to make when you don't have to make or pay for them.

    As for the offer of £1500 for a replacement frame it depends what the original cost of the frame was. The OP alludes to an expensive bike which is also subjective as that can cover a bike for £500 to £10k plus
    “Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime. Teach a man to cycle and he will realize fishing is stupid and boring”

    Desmond Tutu
  • navrig2navrig2 Posts: 1,712
    I have had the rear derailleur/spoke interface twice. Both times resulted in the RD and the hanger being replaced and on one of them fairly significant spoke damage. Both happened as I started to climb, was out of the saddle and changed to a lower gear.

    The problem for the OP is he cannot prove he was in the 16T and it is easy for the manufacturer to say it wasn't a frame failure. It's a stand off and no-one can win.
  • svettysvetty Posts: 1,904
    It's always possible that some - previously un-noticed - impact had cracked/weakened the frame or hanger. When you hit a bump at speed the shock was enough to cause it to fail. Impossible to prove...

    Assuming you have a 53 tooth big ring and were in the 16 at 45kph you were 'just pedalling along' at 110 rpm.......
    FFS! Harden up and grow a pair :D
  • JRA....
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • Svetty wrote:
    It's always possible that some - previously un-noticed - impact had cracked/weakened the frame or hanger. When you hit a bump at speed the shock was enough to cause it to fail. Impossible to prove...

    Assuming you have a 53 tooth big ring and were in the 16 at 45kph you were 'just pedalling along' at 110 rpm.......
    Downhill so either just about to drop down to the 15 or some exaggeration going on.
  • 964cup964cup Posts: 1,362
    I broke my R5Ca similarly. What actually happened was a failed shift from large to small ring at the foot of a hill. The chain (Red 22) bent, the bent link caught the RD, the RD came round, instead of the hanger failing the dropout snapped, the RD went into the wheel. 9070 RD and cosmospandronic carbon oversize pulley cage trashed, 8 spokes bent, dropout snapped, seatstay fractured, chainstay punctured.

    Frame repaired by CBR, RD replaced with 9150, spokes in rear wheel replaced and wheel retrued, new hanger, new chain, all good. Expensive afternoon, though (not helped by buying myself a consolation S3 while it was being fixed). Rides fine.

    Motto (and TL;DR) - cool story, bro. Sh*t happens. Suck it up, get it fixed, ride on.

    ps. why are CX-Rays so effing expensive, and *why* do Enve use internal nipples? Having to tear off the tub to replace some spokes and true the wheel is ridiculous - it took longer to remove and refit the tub than to fix the damn wheel.

    pps. Yes, Red 22 chain. Why? 'Cos I use Sram cassettes on what's otherwise a Shimano Di2 drivetrain (well, with Extralite chainrings). Why? The cassettes are lighter, the original 9000 cassettes were sh*t, and I have a bizarre prejudice that it shifts better. No evidence for this at all, and Record chains appear to shift just as well when used with Sram cassettes. Red 22 chains are made of cheese (this was the second time this has happened; the first time I caught it before it ate the RD). Yet I persist in using them. Feh.

    ppps. Edited for stupid American swear-filter. "Shoot" indeed. I am not a f*cking cowboy. Dangit.
  • daddy0daddy0 Posts: 686
    Thanks for all the replies people.

    Just checked the stats and I had been travelling at 45kph and went down to 37 as there was a runner in the road, pedalling at 100rpm, 242watts. In the moment that this happened I went over a smooth hump in the road, one that throws you up out of your saddle a bit, which stopped me pedalling - think when I started pedalling again is when everything failed.

    Very little to no chance there was a stone that caused this, road was very smooth and clear. I tend to avoid stones and gravel patches when I can, so always on the lookout.

    Bike cost £4k (down from £5600), I paid for it with a credit card in my name. Its not a Trek.

    I don't have insurance on my bike, might see if house insurance covers this, probably not.

    The frame has failed on the rear dropout, would be surprised if repairable. Probably need a new RD and rear wheel needs re lacing.
    mamba80 wrote:
    section 75 makes the CC company jointly liable.... not that they act on your behalf to get the money out of the supplier, tell them you want them to refund you based on that in all probability (the report you had done) the frame failed... if they want to pursue the LBS for the money after they pay you, thats up to them.

    This is the sort of advice I am after. I will see what they say, thanks.
  • shiznit76shiznit76 Posts: 640
    section 75 would only apply if the frame/bike was at fault and not the user, could be a hard one to prove
  • gsk82gsk82 Posts: 3,153
    Isn't the hanger designed to "fail" to avoid damage to the frame?
    "Unfortunately these days a lot of people don’t understand the real quality of a bike" Ernesto Colnago
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    That's the point of the hanger. They break and not the frame.

    Sounds like you hit a stick or something that wedged and caused the damage. You probably didn't see it as you were looking at the runner.

    I always try to avoid gravel etc but every ride you do miss some things.

    Have you checked out the cost of the repair ?
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