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Crashed, question about seatstay(photos)

mentalvincementalvince Posts: 5
edited November 2019 in Workshop
Hi all! Long time reader first time poster.

I finished a project bike of mine at the beginning of October (Race red 1980s Kettler Alpha frame with a full modern 105 groupset). It was my first road bike but not my first build from scratch. After loving riding it around for about a week I was hit by a car that did not indicate into my lane, landing me in hospital and requiring spinal fusion surgery.

However, as important as my spine is, my bike sustained a bit of damage.. the cable adjuster arm of my rear caliper brake hit the car or the ground and is bent way out of commission, but also I think the impact of that bent the seatstay on two axes - pictures attached below.

My question is a fairly predictable one.. would you keep riding this, somehow have it repaired or replace the frame? (these are quite hard to find...)

P.S: The Kettler Alpha frame model has a curious rear triangle. There is a bolt attached at the top of the seatstay that allows you to remove the stay from the seat tube. As the chainstays appear to be collared and welded together I assume this is so the rear triangle may be replaced.. any ideas? Link to photos of frame(images 3 and 6 show what I am describing):

Thanks in advance and sorry for the lengthy story!


  • shortfallshortfall Posts: 3,288
    edited November 2019
    I wouldn't ride it let's put it that way, aluminium frame tubing isn't known for it's strength once it's been deformed. A repair might be possible but assuming you could find someone who could do it and then have the paint job restored I'm guessing it would be way more expensive than just replacing the frame (albeit you might not be able to get the same frame anymore). If you can claim off the driver then do that, if not just suck it up and replace the frame.
  • timothywtimothyw Posts: 2,482
    Yeah, that bike's a write off and really the responsible party ought be paying for a new bike.

    If you'd caused the damage yourself, or the driver has scarpered, that's a bit of a different question - it's probably rideable in the short term but I would plan to replace it as soon as possible.
  • redvisionredvision Posts: 2,877
    Sorry to hear about you're accident.

    We all love our bikes but, as I learned last year through my own crash, they can be replaced. Important thing is your health. Focus on that first and foremost and let the insurance companies deal with replacing the bike.

    Hope you're quickly on the mend
  • pilot_petepilot_pete Posts: 2,120
    Sad to say, but it’s a frame that is 30+ years old. It has no value and as such is uneconomical to repair. It would be a waste of money, and quite honestly I’d be surprised if you could find anyone who would be willing to repair it - replacing stays when the rest of the frame is so old...

  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    No - you can't ride that as is - and straightening the tube wouldn't be a good idea.

    However, what you may be able to do is remove/cut away the damaged section and get a competent welder to put new tube back in place - obviously this isn't ideal, but equally, if the frame is of significance to you (old, not many around) then it may be worth it.

    The cheapest is undoubtably to replace the frame, and that's what an insurance co would be offering - with such an old frame, probably beer money too.

    Crash damaged frames can often be repaired - but before you start, you do need to check the rest of the frame as that could've taken a beating you've not spotted yet
  • Thanks all for the insights and inputs. I went with a safer, cheaper option of tossing it in the local aluminium recycling.. it was a long shot - and also too short for me - but still a shame.
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