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  1. #1
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    Flash 29er: Horrible Drivetrain Issues!!!

    I picked up my "2011 Flash Carbon 29er 3" two months ago and have had MAJOR drivetrain issues.

    The first big issue: during a short, steep climb the chain "fell off" and got SERIOUSLY jammed between the cassette and spokes. In my mind, this was the shop's fault for letting it go out the door poorly adjusted (no, I didn't shift late under a load).

    Current issue (multiple rides): While pedaling up fireroads, with a very mellow incline, I donwshift my 2x10 front derailleur (39/27) and the chain wraps around and back through the front derailleur cage. On top of that, the chain gets SERIOUSLY jammed between the chainring and chainstay...OUCH!!! Again, I am NOT shifting under a load.

    I have never had these issues on any of my bikes before. I know how to ride a bike (when to shift and not shift). But, that was always Shimano XT stuff.

    My Flash has a FSA Afterburner crank, SRAM X.7 shifters and front derailleur, X.9 rear derailleur, KMC chain, Shimano SLX cassette.

    My LBS has no idea how to fix this. I am not mechanical. DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS???

  2. #2
    Ridin' dirty!
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    Quote Originally Posted by historeeteacher
    My LBS has no idea how to fix this. I am not mechanical. DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS???
    Find yourself a different bike shop!
    Seriously, it sounds like an adjustment issue....I run a KMC chain, Sram casette and sram derailleurs front and back and everything shifts buttery smooth....
    "Common sense isn't always that common!"
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by historeeteacher

    Current issue (multiple rides): While pedaling up fireroads, with a very mellow incline, I donwshift my 2x10 front derailleur (39/27) and the chain wraps around and back through the front derailleur cage.
    How old is the 27t chainring? This problem is typical of a worn chainring and the smaller the ring, the easier it wears. I would try another chainring if possible to see if the problem persists. The first issue was most probably an adjustment issue. Good luck!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by madog99
    How old is the 27t chainring? This problem is typical of a worn chainring and the smaller the ring, the easier it wears. I would try another chainring if possible to see if the problem persists. The first issue was most probably an adjustment issue. Good luck!
    The bike is a 2011, so at oldest a few months.

    Another thing is that that bike has the Afterburner 386 BB30, so there are only a few chainrings that will work.

    The things I would check is the chainring, making sure that there are no bent teeth, not as much for wear. I would also check the front der. height. It should only be a few millimeters above the teeth on the outer ring.

    OP: How many miles are on the bike?

    The first issue is the limit screws, when dialed properly the will prevent the der from going too far either way; into the spokes or the frame.

  5. #5
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    Poor mechanics will always result in poor bike impressions. I can make a $250 Target bicycle shift better than a $6000 poorly built bike, any day!

    Bicycles are delicate little machines, sensitive to minor changes. When treated properly the desired outcome can be achieved.

  6. #6
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    I here a lot off problems with the FSA rings in the Netherlands(chainsuck). Maybe your shop can change the crankset, perhaps something like X9 BB30?

  7. #7
    PNF Ax Man.
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    historeeteacher,

    Before you tear your bike to shreads, my advice is to post this in your regional area and ask for reputable shops if you don't feel comfortable doing the adjustments yourself.

    Dash

  8. #8
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    1. I'm not tearing my bike to shreds...I'm posting a problem I am having (don't talk down to me).

    2. I only have 2 shops in town...both owned by the same guy (there's the answer to your soap box reply).

  9. #9
    A guy on a bike Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by historeeteacher
    1. I'm not tearing my bike to shreds...I'm posting a problem I am having (don't talk down to me).
    2. I only have 2 shops in town...both owned by the same guy (there's the answer to your soap box reply).
    Easy, he's offering some good advice. Sounds like your bike just needs a little adjusting.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by historeeteacher
    1. I'm not tearing my bike to shreds...I'm posting a problem I am having (don't talk down to me).

    2. I only have 2 shops in town...both owned by the same guy (there's the answer to your soap box reply).
    Historee....I really think Dash was trying to be helpful....

    Anyway, I know from my experience that occasionally a new chain's factory applied wax can be quite sticky and be the reason the chain won't let go of the teeth. Couple the factory wax with some dirt, sand, and mud, then it gets worse.

    Before you go adjusting, clean your chain with a good degreaser and make sure it's clean. Then apply a bicycle specific chain lubricant. Also, make sure you clean the chainring teeth as they probably still have some wax in there.

  11. #11
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    Spray your entire drive train (Rear D., Front D., Cassette, Cranks) with Simple Green and rinse it off with some warm water...don't use a pressure washer!
    Once everything is clean it'll be easier to pinpoint the issue.
    Put your bike in a work stand or upside down and slooooowly crank the pedals in one gear.........if you can tell that every 4-5 revolutions the chain wants to jump off and/or skip it might be a stiff chain link.
    To loosen it up take a screwdriver between that particular chain link and twist it back and forth with some force.
    Repeat if necessary.
    I had skipping and chainsuck issues on one of my bikes before and it was because of a sram chain that had a bunch of stiff chain links...
    "Common sense isn't always that common!"
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  12. #12
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    [QUOTE=amillmtb]
    The things I would check is the chainring, making sure that there are no bent teeth, not as much for wear. I would also check the front der. height. It should only be a few millimeters above the teeth on the outer ring.

    /QUOTE]
    amillmtb, the front der is now bolted to the frame so iguess it makes it not ajustable in height
    08 Rush 4 - 650B
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  13. #13
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    Thanks for the feedback. The problem has continued even though the LBS has inspected every part of the drivetrain, and replaced the chain (after I demanded it). The problem has continued with the new chain. It might be the chainrings. DOES ANYONE KNOW WHAT I SHOULD LOOK FOR ON THE CHAINRINGS?...they are basically brand new.

    Could it be something with the crankset?...chain line?

    P.S. I have contacted the Cannondale rep.

  14. #14
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    What kind of rear hub do you have?
    It's not a ringle dirty flea...is it?
    "Common sense isn't always that common!"
    Custom Prophet and Custom Delta V

  15. #15
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    SRAM X.9 rear hub...

    Does it have anything to do with the fact that every aftermarket 2X10 crankset is a 39/26 instead of the 39/27 (FSA) that came on my bike? I cannot find a 39/27 replacement (I COULD BE WRONG).

    I was shopping for a front derail. replacement (my bike has a direct mount) and I cannot find one that states it can be used with a 39/27 crankset. So far, the closest thing I can find is one that states it works with a 39/26 crankset.

    Could the problem be that Cannondale spec'd a 39/27 crankset with a front derail. that might only work with a 39/26 set-up? It seems that the rest of the industry is working with a 39/26 set-up (based on what I've seen shopping so far...I COULD BE WRONG). Is the 27 tooth chainring causing the problem?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by surf418
    amillmtb, the front der is now bolted to the frame so iguess it makes it not ajustable in height
    You still get a few mm of adjustment out of it. The direct mount Shimano der's are basically e-type, so the holes for the bolts are ovals, so there is about 3-4mm of adjustment vertically.

    Quote Originally Posted by Historeeteacher
    Could the problem be that Cannondale spec'd a 39/27 crankset with a front derail. that might only work with a 39/26 set-up? It seems that the rest of the industry is working with a 39/26 set-up (based on what I've seen shopping so far...I COULD BE WRONG). Is the 27 tooth chainring causing the problem?
    Nope, all of the FSA cranks are either 39/27, 40/27 or 42/27, which is only a 1 tooth difference on the small ring, therefore the der's would work.

    You are right though, most everyone else goes with a 39/26, FSA just does the 27.

    I also dunno if you need a new front der. Without seeing it, I would say that its an adjustment that will sort out the issue before buying a new one.

  17. #17
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    I had the same problems with a Cannondale crank. Turned out to be front derailleur adjustment.

    Make sure the FD is, like mentioned before, just milimeters above the big chainring. Also make sure that the FD's limit screw is set so that it almost rubs slightly when you're in your smallest cog. That eliminated my problems completely.
    I'm Confused . . . Wait a Minute, No I'm Not . . .

  18. #18
    PNF Ax Man.
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    historeeteacher,

    My apologies if I came across as talking down. I was genuinely trying to help out. Anyways, I still would ask around in your region to see which shop gets reccommended consistently. Good luck, hope you get it worked out.

    Dash

  19. #19
    FIRENZE rulez !!
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    Give to chainring teeth some minutes of sand paper

    From back to forward and esternal to internal direction both

    My tip

  20. #20
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    Caution;  Merge;  Workers Ahead!

    Quote Originally Posted by eliflap
    Give to chainring teeth some minutes of sand paper

    From back to forward and esternal to internal direction both

    My tip
    I'm thinking Eliflap may have something here. My first hour or so on my 2011 Flash was also filled with drops and jam ups at the crank. I attribute it to two things, the "run in" that Eliflap is accelerating by sanding, and a front derailleur that has kick it launches the chain so hard when selecting the low ring. My whole bike rings with a big "klaangg" when I click the downshift button, lotta spring tension getting released.
    Emory Kalahari Kruiser

  21. #21
    FIRENZE rulez !!
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    Now i am with my IPad - Lefty
    Tomorrow with my pc i post picture saved there.
    A friend solved in this way some chainsuck issues on a Niner

  22. #22
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    I will pass along the sanding tip, but can someone re-explain what he was saying?

    I will also pass along the tiny bit of movement possible on the direct mount derailleurs. I wonder if the front derail. or the mounting area was tweaked during the first round of bad shifts? It took a lot for me to get the chain "unstuck" the first time this happened.

    My bike will go into the shop for further inspection (all of our "regional" shops have the same reputation of mediocrity...I would have to drive 1 hour to find another shop). My LBS said the rep is going to visit in February (a pro level mechanic).

    I heard the rep is talking "rider error"...this is troubling to me. I am a very experienced rider, and have never had this issue before (even on lower level parts).

    ANY OTHER TIPS TO PASS ON BEFORE I TAKE IT DO TO THE SHOP???

  23. #23
    YB1
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    Issues with 2X10 chain drop?

    ...is another thread about 2x10 chain drop issues
    Emory Kalahari Kruiser

  24. #24
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    I do own the very same bike but i've never rode it since there is too much snow around.
    I putted it on the work stand and tryied doing bad shifts and it goes smooth all the time but this does not reflect real life use.

    Any other Flash's carbon rider who experience this?
    Last edited by surf418; 01-09-2011 at 04:42 PM.
    08 Rush 4 - 650B
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  25. #25
    YB1
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    A bunch of my bad shifts (where the chain ended up dropping and then wrapping around the bb shell and such) were parking lot, walking pace "test" type shifts. When I put it in the stand after putting an hour on the drivetrain and being able to do the prelim der adjustment/checks it shifted fine with a slick tire and no funky mid-shift pedal stall or any other nonsense. Also I'm running Extralite 44/30 rings right now on a 122mm spindle with a 3x10 X.O fd, so not exactly a typical setup. I'm hoping the problems are over because when mine did drop it also jammed down between the derailleur mount bolt head (it's pretty close to the side of the small ring) and the bb shell and took a LOT of force to pull back out, to the point I was worried I would damage the chain.
    Emory Kalahari Kruiser

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