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  1. #1
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    Seriously Dented 29er Rim

    I was out for a ride on my new (1 month old) Giant Fathom 29er HT, riding some blue and black trails. I was running 27 psi in the front and 33 in the rear on tubeless tires.

    About halfway into my ride, I can hear and feel that the tube is leaking air during every rotation, and the side of the rim is completely bashed in such that the bead wont sit/seal in the rim. I was able to bend the rim back out when I got home, but it doesn't look great. It does seal but I'm not sure it will hold up to any real abuse again.

    This is my only bike (for now), and I have a few trips planned in the next few months. So, could anyone recommend to me a sturdier rim that would be less prone to getting dented? Or was my tire pressure to low? I've never had these problems on my older FS before I sold it.

  2. #2
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    Uhh, stop riding when leaking air? Rider weight and rim width? Take some type of pliers or channel locks with padding and gently bend the rim back.

  3. #3
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    Leeboh, I did stop riding within 100 feet once I noticed the problem. I weigh 170 lbs as well. I did bend the rim back, but even then, I can't get it perfect. If this is normal damage, I'd be curious to know. If not, any recommendations for stronger rims?

  4. #4
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    if you bash an alum rim, it can bend sure

    sometimes it just gets scrapes

    sometimes nothing happens

    fact is, it was not the rim that caused a problem, it was you bashing something
    beyond the air pressure ability to keep rim from getting corked


    a new rim won't help smashing things. those bone stock giant rims are probably tougher than most since they are a bit heavier and sturdier. higher cost rims are gonna be lighter and tougher overall in general when built, but tougher in that they tend to stay true...not tougher in that the rim can eat a rock (this varies though, there are super tough high end rims out there, but really no rim is designed to eat a rock, ever)

    they will take rocks hits the same as that giant rim. not so well if the tire is low or if the rock exceeds tire pressure

    for the rim itself, bend it back as best you can and ride it
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by 127.0.0.1 View Post

    fact is, it was not the rim that caused a problem, it was you bashing something
    beyond the air pressure ability to keep rim from getting corked
    That's good to know. I've never had tubeless before, so maybe I'll have to experiment with higher pressure, especially on the rear tire. It's a bummer, since I felt that 33 psi was giving me good traction and a smoother ride. Oh well!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by admc7777 View Post
    I was out for a ride on my new (1 month old) Giant Fathom 29er HT...the side of the rim is completely bashed in...I've never had these problems on my older FS before I sold it.
    You probably know you need to ride a HT differently than a FS. Suspension reduces the bump forces on the bike and rider, and oppositely and equally, reduces the bump forces on the wheel.
    Do the math.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by admc7777 View Post
    That's good to know. I've never had tubeless before, so maybe I'll have to experiment with higher pressure, especially on the rear tire. It's a bummer, since I felt that 33 psi was giving me good traction and a smoother ride. Oh well!
    Bad luck can strike anyone at any time. At 30+ psi killing the rim in one hit is just pure bad luck.

    Replace the rim with another one the same, or if you're up for spending the money any Mavic/Alex/DT Swiss rim that fits to your intended width and budget, but that will probably require new spokes as well.

  8. #8
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    33 in rear is high for me. I run 28 in rear at 235lbs. I have never hit the rim hard enough to do any damage. That sucks. If they where factory rims they're probably a bit soft. Like another poster said you may want to consider stronger hoops.
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  9. #9
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    Giant's website says they're xc wheels. You should probably get something trail rated if you're going to do harder trails. Something like Stans Arch mk3 or DT Swiss xm481 would be a good place to start.

  10. #10
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    All this talk of air pressure is pointless unless you tell us the size of your tire.

    At 170lbs geared up, my rear 2.4" tire is at 22psi, hardtail. I've never had a rim strike on that tire, and all I ride is rocks!

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    You don't need better equipment. You need to learn to be a better rider. I could never understand how some people break so much stuff, until I rode with them...

    Higher pressure isn't going to protect the rim from smashing it into stuff. You can't just blatantly smash your rims into stuff. Pick a better line. Go OVER features, and not INTO them. That means you, the rider, have to do more than pedal the bike. I know that sounds harsh but after seeing people damage rims like you describe, I can only come to the conclusion that you are the type of rider who thinks the bike is going to do all the work.

    That can work, it's just going to be incredibly hard on the equipment. If you want a rim you can get away with smashing more often, you need a good carbon rim. Sometimes you can be unlucky. I'm 6'4 and 225. I have never dented a rim.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by GTR-33 View Post
    I can only come to the conclusion that you are the type of rider who thinks the bike is going to do all the work.
    That's a pretty harsh assumption...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by admc7777 View Post
    That's a pretty harsh assumption...
    He didn't pull any punches, true. On the other hand, if you ignore the tone and make a real effort to be light on the bike and learn the best lines, it'll pay dividends in both speed and less damaged parts.

    As for the wheel, if you don't know how to evaluate it yourself, post a pic or 3 and you'll get a much more reliable response. You don't wanna ride a rim that's structurally compromised as it's an obvious safety issue.

  14. #14
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    I was able to get bend it back to almost a normal shape. The wheel is true and I've ridden almost 200 miles on the bike since with no issues. I took it to my LBS and they recommended that I keep riding it until I have any more issues.

    The point about being light on the bike is very true. This happened to me on a rock garden that I needed speed through in order to get through, so I didn't have too many options there.

  15. #15
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    If only there was some kind of gadget that would hold air in the tyre even if the rim was less than perfect.

    Some sort of rubber bladder thing maybe?

  16. #16
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    I didn't make it extremely clear in my original post, but I was/am running tubeless. Of course I threw a tube in it to get home, but that isn't a long term solution.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by admc7777 View Post
    Of course I threw a tube in it to get home, but that isn't a long term solution.
    It was for decades? I still use tubes. I've thought about the pros and cons of tubeless and I'll take the slight performance hit for the simplicity of tubes.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    It was for decades? I still use tubes. I've thought about the pros and cons of tubeless and I'll take the slight performance hit for the simplicity of tubes.
    A solution for you. Congrats on feeling the need to let me know haha

    I asked for help on a TUBLESS setup, implying I had no desire to switch back to tubes. This thread can stop now since the problem has been fixed!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by admc7777 View Post
    I was able to get bend it back to almost a normal shape. The wheel is true and I've ridden almost 200 miles on the bike since with no issues. I took it to my LBS and they recommended that I keep riding it until I have any more issues.

    The point about being light on the bike is very true. This happened to me on a rock garden that I needed speed through in order to get through, so I didn't have too many options there.
    Glad to hear it's working again.

    Most of us have bashed a rim or 3 until we learned better (though some never do). If I can't clear a section without breaking something, I walk it. No shame in that. If I'm feeling particularly energetic I'll stop and take a look and session it until I can do it clean...or run out of patience and feel like moving on. There are no real rules stating we HAVE to make it through first time, every time. Unless you're made of money and just don't care, then feel free to bomb through all the things (and then walk when stuff breaks).

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by admc7777 View Post
    A solution for you. Congrats on feeling the need to let me know haha

    I asked for help on a TUBLESS setup, implying I had no desire to switch back to tubes. This thread can stop now since the problem has been fixed!
    Tube actually ARE the solution to a number of tubeless problems.
    Given that you're running high pressure anyway, no reason not to just keep the tube in there unless your riding where there are a bunch of thorny plants or broken glass, etc.
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