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  1. #1
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    What's up with failing cartridges in Lefty's ??

    My Lefty DLR2 has started leaking oil
    and when I went to my LBS , they gave me the "not another one " reply .
    Apparently the Lefty cartridge ( which is made by Manitou ) has been failing on a more then occassional pace .
    The cartridge they designed and manufactured are just not up the job
    I was quoted $100 (Can) for the replacement cartridge and who knows how much for labour .
    It's like I have to pay $ for their shortcomings
    Why should that be ??
    I was then told about a new bike blowing it's cartridge after only 2 hours of riding
    After replacing it , the replacement one failed as well

    Anyone else have any simular issues with their Lefty's ??

  2. #2
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    i have a 2000 Steel DLR and a 2003 Ti DLR... been solid... my 2003 may need a rebuild but i have a million miles on it.

  3. #3
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    I bought a brand new 2005 scalpel leftover this spring and blew the cartridge in 2 weeks. the replacement lasted 2 days. The original wouldnt hold air and leaked oil,.the second wouldnt hold air. Fork was shipped to C-dale for rebuild 2 weeks ago, still waiting. The owner of the LBS gave me his sons lefty to use while mine is at C-dale.After an 8 hour endurance race and 2 short rides, this one is holding up.

    They told me that the shock tube(leg) is machined and is part of the cylinder that holds air.They think there is a leak in this tube.

  4. #4
    LWK
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    I have a 2005 Prophet and the Lefty also blew up after about a month of riding (according to the email I recieved from Cannondale "the seals were replaced. Also, the telescope was rebuilt and the needle bearings were replaced"). The rebound knob also stopped working (hard to turn) recently and when I was in the shop, one fellow mentioned along the lines of "....yeah, they are not terribly reliable, we usually have a box of them in the back needing some sort of repairs". That is certainly an anecdotal comment so take it or leave it.... I now seem to have to adjust for bearing migration every 2-3 rides - or substantially more often than indicated in the owner's manual so I hope that does not indicate another problem brewing.

    My general sense is that when working, the Lefty works very well, it certainly is a stiff and strong "fork". However, from my experience and browsing this forum, they do seem problem prone and require a fair bit of maintenance.

  5. #5
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    mines leaking

    got my rush 2 carbon last week and the carbon fork is leaking around the rebound knob and the lock out handle wont stay it keep moveing toward the lock out pos, my lbs shop said he need it for a couple of days

  6. #6
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    The Lefty's affected here are the ones that Manitou made the internals for 2005(?) and up so old (2000) DLR's are not in the same boat .
    Heck , I thrashed the crap out of my 2001 DLR/ELO and it held up just fine .

    I guess newer is not always better

    I predict C'Dale is going to drop Manitou (if they haven't already done so) like a lead
    balloon , real soon .

  7. #7
    mad aussie
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    Not sure about the manitou making the internals stuff, I will have to ask our Cdale rep when he comes in.
    Yes, unfortunately I have to agree with you that Cannondale need to get on top of their QC, particularly with the SL. I havent had a Lefty cartridge leak, my old DLR was great, but my new SL has given me problems with an air piston that suddenly broke when I landed on a small jump and caused the fork to compress very quickly. My team mate is now on his third fork, first one had the cartridge detonate and then the clamps cracked (despite being torqued to spec), the second one had a persistant air leak that no change in o-rings, piston or valve would fix. His third has been great so far.
    We were talking during a long ride this weekend, that if the Lefty SL wasnt such a spectacular for when its working great................... Still after a prolonged high speed descent on narrow twisting singletrack littered with embedded rocks with a drop on one side I really find myself loving the plushness and precision of my Lefty SL. (and crossing my fingers that I now have a good one!)

    Kevin

  8. #8
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    I am looking at picking up an 07 Rush 3 with the DLR2.......

    I am seeing a lot of fork problems on here.... should I be worried about the fork?

  9. #9
    mad aussie
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    We havent had any problems with the alloy DLR forks at the shop, the issues seem to be mainly with earlier models of the SL fork in particular. The alloy on my Rush 600 took a pounding for a year without missing a beat, and we havent seen a single alloy DLR come back in for warranty work.

    Kevin

  10. #10
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    UPDATE : O.K . , after a phoned conversation with a tech guy at Cannondale I have new and correct information about my leak situation .
    The internals of my DLR2 is not made by Manitou (thanks for the bogus info LBS ) and the repair should be doable by a LBS (not mine ) .
    The tech put my mind at ease by informing me that I can't hurt the Lefty as it is
    and at worst , I will eventually lose all dampening if the oil pursists in leaking out .
    This will leave me with a straight pogo action (worst case scenerio ) .

    The tech went out of his way and returned my phone call AFTER his quitting time and
    spent a good 15 minutes talking to me .
    He also emailed me a schematic for disassembling the unit myself (if I choose to do so) .
    If not , he informed me that if I choose to send the Lefty to them , I have the option of paying for express turn around time that would get the unit fixed and back to me sooner .

    I now have some decissions to make

  11. #11
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    FWIW, I'm going through this for a 3rd time. 1st time was a brand new '06 terralogic lefty that would leak air, I had to carry a shock pump and add air to the fork every 1/2 hour. Sent it back to C-dale and they paid for express shipping. Had the fork back in 4 days. Second time was for the same fork, about 4 rides later it poured all the oil out the bottom and onto my brake. Again C-dale paid for express shipping and I had it back in about a week. Now for the 3rd time, it is an alloy DLR2 on my Caffiene. From the start it took like 50psi under the recommended air pressure, but rode pretty well for about 5 rides. The last ride it started to lock out all the time, then would intermittently either lock, or bottom out! Kinda scary that way. C-dale sure makes a great bike, sure wish they would get their stuff together on these forks though.

  12. #12
    USED2COULD
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccaddy
    My Lefty DLR2 has started leaking oil
    and when I went to my LBS , they gave me the "not another one " reply .
    Apparently the Lefty cartridge ( which is made by Manitou ) has been failing on a more then occassional pace .
    The cartridge they designed and manufactured are just not up the job
    I was quoted $100 (Can) for the replacement cartridge and who knows how much for labour .
    It's like I have to pay $ for their shortcomings
    Why should that be ??
    I was then told about a new bike blowing it's cartridge after only 2 hours of riding
    After replacing it , the replacement one failed as well

    Anyone else have any simular issues with their Lefty's ??
    I was quoted $200 CDN!!!
    2x10
    '12 Niner Jet RDO 22.9 lb
    1x1
    '09 Cannondale F29er 1 20.1 lb
    '10 Sanderson Soloist 23.8 lb
    '09 Hammer 29'er 20.5 lb

  13. #13
    USED2COULD
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccaddy
    UPDATE : O.K . , after a phoned conversation with a tech guy at Cannondale I have new and correct information about my leak situation .
    The internals of my DLR2 is not made by Manitou (thanks for the bogus info LBS ) and the repair should be doable by a LBS (not mine ) .
    The tech put my mind at ease by informing me that I can't hurt the Lefty as it is
    and at worst , I will eventually lose all dampening if the oil pursists in leaking out .
    This will leave me with a straight pogo action (worst case scenerio ) .

    The tech went out of his way and returned my phone call AFTER his quitting time and
    spent a good 15 minutes talking to me .
    He also emailed me a schematic for disassembling the unit myself (if I choose to do so) .
    If not , he informed me that if I choose to send the Lefty to them , I have the option of paying for express turn around time that would get the unit fixed and back to me sooner .

    I now have some decissions to make
    Is there any way you can make that schematic avialable to the rest of us Lefty users?

    My Carbon DLR2 (2006) is leaking oil from the damper. My diagnosis was the same, that at worst, I'd loose all damping, but it is completely separate from the air spring cartridge.

    I haven't picked up a shimano bb tool yet, so I haven't opened her up. But if I had a schematic, I'd go ahead and investigate a little myself.

    Cheers!
    2x10
    '12 Niner Jet RDO 22.9 lb
    1x1
    '09 Cannondale F29er 1 20.1 lb
    '10 Sanderson Soloist 23.8 lb
    '09 Hammer 29'er 20.5 lb

  14. #14
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    http://randompic.compare-loan-rates.com/DamperInstructionsDLR2.pdf

    Info here .............

  15. #15
    USED2COULD
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccaddy
    Info here .............
    Thank you!
    2x10
    '12 Niner Jet RDO 22.9 lb
    1x1
    '09 Cannondale F29er 1 20.1 lb
    '10 Sanderson Soloist 23.8 lb
    '09 Hammer 29'er 20.5 lb

  16. #16
    italian globetrotter
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    Caution;  Merge;  Workers Ahead! terralogic?

    @caddy

    hi, thanks for the document..

    do you have the terralogic version?
    thanks

  17. #17
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    I too am having lefty air leaking troubles with my 07 Taurine after less than 2 weeks of riding smooth single track. I got on the bike after work on Friday and there was no air left and caught the train home. Took it into the LBS and the tech replaced the french valve, which had broken rubber seals, but it's still leaking.

    From what has been mentioned above it seems best to just send it back to C'dale because the LBS probably won't be able to fix it. It was great ride while it lasted and I was going to sell my NRS and Anthem, but will hold off.

  18. #18
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    michelefiorentin - Terralogic ??
    Nope , not in a DLR2 .

    vang - what the heck is a "french valve" ?
    Never heard of that part before . Perhaps you are refering to the shrader valve
    in the stem for adding air ?

  19. #19
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    You're right it was the inside of the schrader valve that was preplaced. I thought french valve was another name for presta valve?

  20. #20
    italian globetrotter
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    lefty terralogic workshop manual

    [QUOTE=ccaddy]michelefiorentin - Terralogic ??
    Nope , not in a DLR2 .
    QUOTE]

    so nobody has the manual for lefty terralogic?? I know that differs in the internals compared to the DLR2 ...

    bye

  21. #21
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    Just call Cannondale and ask to speak to a tech person .
    I'm sure he'll just send you the info .

    That's what they did for me .

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