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Carbon Damage - Structural or just Clear Coat?

iLukeKendalliLukeKendall Posts: 160
edited June 2018 in MTB workshop & tech
Hi all,

So to summarise the back-story, a rock-flicked up and took a chunk out of my carbon hardtail's downtube. The manufacturer kindly offered me a replacement frame at a discounted 'crash-replacement' price, which I took them up on.

I collected the frame and removed all of the foam packaging, to discover some chips around the headtube of the frame (photos below). Upon closer inspection, there appears to be a scuff mark, as well as some vertical lines spreading from one of the chips on the headtube.

In your opinion, would you suggest this is just clear coat damage and not structural, or something I should be concerned about and return the frame? The issue is, apparently it's the last frame they have in stock, so I'd be back to the drawing board.

Thanks in advance for your input.

3_FBF32_F6_7791_45_FF_BD4_F_685_E545_C852_D.jpg
Whyte 29-CS • Canyon Ultimate • #CCWMTB • Strava Profile

Posts

  • JGTRJGTR Posts: 1,404
    Hard to tell but I wouldn’t be happy riding that.

    I think it would be a reasonably easy fix for a specialist so may be an opportunity to do a deal?

    Or get your old frame fixed? Downtube repair should be pretty straight forward.
  • 02GF7402GF74 Posts: 1,294
    Is it meant to be a new frame? If new, it definitely should no be like that.

    It hard to tell how deep it is without removing material.
    Send it back.
  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    Were the marks there before you installed the fork and headset? I'm inclined to think it is just the top coat, but as above - contact them.
  • iLukeKendalliLukeKendall Posts: 160
    JGTR wrote:
    Hard to tell but I wouldn’t be happy riding that.
    I think it would be a reasonably easy fix for a specialist so may be an opportunity to do a deal?
    Or get your old frame fixed? Downtube repair should be pretty straight forward.

    It's a brand new frame so I'm not too enamoured about going down the repair route with this one. The old frame is being dealt with by insurance - I'm still waiting to hear whether they intend to repair or replace but they're dragging their heels so the replacement frame was intended to get me back on the trails sooner, and then sell off the repaired frame if required at a later date.
    02GF74 wrote:
    Is it meant to be a new frame? If new, it definitely should no be like that.
    It hard to tell how deep it is without removing material.
    Send it back.

    It was sold to me as a warranty frame as a 'crash replacement deal'. So I'd interpret that as new, as I wasn't advised of any damage/imperfections?
    supersonic wrote:
    Were the marks there before you installed the fork and headset? I'm inclined to think it is just the top coat, but as above - contact them.

    Yeah, the marks were present as soon as I unwrapped the frame. I installed the forks dismissing the chips as lacquer defects, but then I got the torch on it and discovered the splinter-style lines and scuff mark which would hint there's been some impact in transit at some point.
    Whyte 29-CS • Canyon Ultimate • #CCWMTB • Strava Profile
  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    Both my Zaskar and old OnOne carbon frame have very similar looking marks. The Zaskar was returned, but it was just the lacquer (and I am still riding it 8 years later), as was the OnOne (I sanded the lacquer back).
  • 02GF7402GF74 Posts: 1,294
    supersonic wrote:
    Both my Zaskar and old OnOne carbon frame have very similar looking marks


    I've had a multitude of carbon frames, a couple of them new, none have had that type of marks anywhere.

    The chances are it is cosmetic but I would not want to chance it if it is meant to be a new frame.
  • FishFishFishFish Posts: 2,152
    I spoke with someone who repaired carbon components. Now he did not do this professionally.

    He said that mixing baking soda with epoxy resin and applying and sanding down and doing the same allowed pits and small cracks to be repaired.

    The physics of what he says makes sense but not sure on the chemistry. Has anyone tried this trick?
    ...take your pickelf on your holibobs.... :D

    jeez :roll:
  • 02GF7402GF74 Posts: 1,294
    Not sure if I would call that a repair as it isn't adding strength to the component just a cosmetic finish.


    The logic is fine, baking soda is a filler. I've done similar with epoxy and carbon powder, which is a very good colour match with carbon fibre, on a carbon frame and carbon chainset.

    The carbon powder I make by crushing carbon pellets used in tropical fish aquarium filters.
    If you need a teaspoon or so then send me sae and I can post, but check out your local fish shop, friends ebay etc as it may not be that expensive.
  • steve_sordysteve_sordy Posts: 2,128
    Get a good quality magnifying glass with at least 5x power and examine the damage. Under a good light you should be able to see whether the chip is restricted to the clear coat or goes deeper. Similarly the cracks should reveal themselves as being in the clear coat or not. If in doubt use a stronger light source.

    It won't harm your future case to report the damage with photographic evidence, just in case. :?
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