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  1. #1
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    how often does your stuff break?

    and what breaks most often?
    the reason i ask is I've snapped 3 sram chains on my Specialized HardRock 29er since June, replaced the shifter cables and a cassette, my chainring shifter is being replaced under warranty; I just broke the SRAM X-3 derailleur on the bike yesterday, it turned itself into a pretzel on a 10' single track uphill climb. I've had also trouble keeping both derailleurs adjusted. I'm also on my 3rd set of pedals, I'd destroyed two sets of the crappy, plastic stock ones within the first 3 weeks of ownership. is this normal, or has the componentry on entry-level bikes degraded that much in the past 10 years that I've been away from bikes? I've never had these many issues, not even on big Box crap.

    Granted,I'm a pretty big guy, but I've hardly thrashed my bike, I've just ridden it, a lot. approx 1000 miles over all since early June, mostly road and paved/gravel trails, maybe 10-15% on flowy XC singletrack, with zero drops or jumps.

  2. #2
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    I have never broken anything...you don't have good luck.

    Just kidding, I break a lot more expensive things than plastic pedals and X3 RD's.

  3. #3
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    I have found that at 240lbs my bike parts wear out and break quicker then the bike parts of some of the smaller guys I ride with. Over my mountain biking career I have broken a frame, bent another, broken saddle rails, had a stem failure (that was the scariest one) and ridden many drive trains (chain rings, chain, and cassette) into the dirt. I have also bent or broken several derailures, mostly from sticks catching them. In the early days before disc brakes, I have had rim brake rims wear completely through from the grit and mud of riding year round in the Northwest. My rear hubs, rims and free wheel mechanisms have also taken a beating

    It has gotten better with a little technique but in general I wear stuff out faster then a lighter rider on the same trails. I have gotten about 1300 miles out of my current chain, cassette and chain rings and am feeling pretty good about that but I know they are more then ready to be replaced.

    I still have not answered the question about weather or not more expensive parts last longer or are stronger. I know they are lighter and sometimes it seems like they work better out of the box but once they're in the mud and dirt I can't tell the difference. It is cheaper for me to loose 5 or 6 pounds then to buy lighter more expensive parts. Currently I have X9 front and rear derailuers on my bike.

    I know the plastic test ride pedals that come on Specialized bikes are crap and I left mine at the bike shop. The Clydesdale forum here has been very valuable for me, in choosing replacement parts that work for heavier riders. I learned long ago not to blindly trust the opinions of bike shop employees about parts and how they will stand up to heavy riders.

  4. #4
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    From my experience, unfortunately entry level stuff is not meant in any way for someone who's reading the clydesdale section. But what I've also discovered is that while buying higher end stuff helps eliminate the frequent breakdowns, they keep happening. I built up a Niner WFO with really good components back in December and I had really good luck with it for 8 months. First went the bottom bracket and crank arm. Two weeks later and my 34 Talas went in for warranty issues. And now, after only 3 rides on the new fork, my shock is now at Fox getting fixed. It's a bummer when my bikes are always in the shop. But, you can definitely find stuff that will last, like I've had my Stan's Flows laced to CK hubs for over a year now and not even a broken spoke. My X0 derailleurs are all good. And I used to bend teeth on my rear cassette a lot and all good still 10 months and few hundred miles. And like BigE said, come on this website and do your research on what works for big guys. Locals shops, at least where I live, don't know jack about what will work for big riders. I learned that the hard way after they suckered me into buying a bike that wasn't meant for someone my size.

  5. #5
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    You are not the only one my friend.

    I bought what I thought was a good bike for 700 dollars back in april. It was a Rocky Mtn Soul 29 with alvio/ deore group, cheap wheels and a crappy suntour fork. The first day I had it a smoked the freehub body, went back to the lbs he fixed it then went otb and taco'd the front rim. I put about 400 miles on this bike before I killed it a month ago when the frame cracked. During that time I went through 4 hubs 3 chains 3 saddles 2 posts (BUY THOMSON) a cassette and numerous rim truing. I upgraded my fork and wheelset and thats when I started snapping chains. 2 weeks ago I decided that mtbing was something I am not gonna get tired of and bought myself a Rocky Alttitude 970 which has fox suspension and full xt drivetrain. I only have 50 miles on it so far but the higher spec parts function night and day and shift like a dream. My advice first and foremost is buy another bike. I got a rode bike that I could ride when my mtb is in the shop. If you dont want a road bike have 2 mountain bikes. If you are heavy you will always brake you bike stuff its not made for us its made for people like this So If you have two bikes the chances of you having one to ride are better. If you have ridden 1000 miles since june you are doing pretty good and weight should be flying off( I have gone from 310 to 275) this season.

  6. #6
    turtles make me hot
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    I used to break spoke nipples (alloy ones) and freehubs like it was my job.
    I lost 30 pounds, learned to build wheels and only use brass nipples and upped the quality of the hub I run.
    I like turtles

  7. #7
    Suckin wind like a boss
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    lets see... since april ive replaced a derailleur hanger, seatpost, 4 saddles, 3 sets of pedals, 2 non-drive-side crankarms, 5 powerlinks, a half-dozen or so tubes (mind you thats after several patches on each, from pinch flats), a rear skewer, a rear wheel (blew the freehub apart, was gifted an ancient mavic 223 with deore hub that still rolls great), and just got a new (to me) xtr rear derailleur to replace my beat and bent to hell deore. thats about 450 bucks into a bike i bought new for 550 this spring (Motobecane 700HT).

    i have a set of mavic 819s laced to deore xt hubs with dt swiss double butted spokes that i just bought from the guy i got the xtr rear der from that i will be setting up tubeless this week (add another 425-odd bucks), and i am going to be putting a new bb/crankset/cassette/chain on the bike probably next week when time permits (200 more).

    i started at 267 this spring and am holding fast at 235 now. im tall, im heavy, and i ride hard. sh!t is gonna break. my tektro brakes, surprisingly, are grabby as hell and i have had no issues with them at all. im actually surprised i am still on the original pads. the levers are another matter entirely lol, enough crashes and otb's will do in even the best levers. the deore shifters i have are meh, but they work. handlebars are bent but still serviceable, but i want some eastons.

    ive been wanting an fs bike, but the more i think about it i might just get a surly. could have gotten a well-appointed pugsley for all ive got wrapped up in my moto this year haha. (...but a krampus would really piss off the pope at the club rides..muahaha)
    If you arent bleeding, you arent riding hard enough.
    http://about.me/bigterry

    Quote Originally Posted by Hutch3637 View Post
    I don't need sex. My life fvcks me daily.

  8. #8
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    I've broken a lot of chains. I'm currently on a very expensive Campy chain that has lasted twice as long as anything else. Broke a saddle. Beat up a pair of rims pretty good. Cut a few tires.

    You're wasting your time with cheep pedals. Get a $40 pair of SPDs.

    X3 might be a little bit under spec. Seems like you're getting better quality and durability up till about X9. XO and XX seem like they're sacrafacing durrability for lighter weight (Just MHO).

    You may want to invest in a der hanger adjuster. That may solve a lot of your shifting problems. A lot of people think that's a specialty tool But I've found that regular use will do more to help keep shifting on track than anything else.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by freighttrain48 View Post
    If you have ridden 1000 miles since june you are doing pretty good and weight should be flying off( I have gone from 310 to 275) this season.

    Oddly, I've only lost 15 pounds, but I suspect I may have gained as much in muscle mass. My legs have gotten really toned, but I'm still waiting for the belly fat to burn off... I'm currently 263 at 6'8", down from 278, with a 24% bmi (measured by a doc).

    I'm relieved that it's not just me. I think part of it is the crappy, part-plastic SRAM X3 shifters, my LBS is replacing it with x4's which have more metal. I'm surprised, make that astonished that I haven't done any damage to my wheels. They've been durable as all get out. I got a set of shimano Shimano PD-M324 pedals that have been great. Since I've transistioned to mostly trail, I think a set of Crank Brothers egg beaters will be next. The frame has been excellent, it's the first bike that I've had as an adult that actually fits!

    Now, the question is, do I invest in a fork and a build kit and consider it a $600 frame or should I start from scratch for my next purchase?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    Oddly, I've only lost 15 pounds, but I suspect I may have gained as much in muscle mass. My legs have gotten really toned, but I'm still waiting for the belly fat to burn off... I'm currently 263 at 6'8", down from 278, with a 24% bmi (measured by a doc).

    I'm relieved that it's not just me. I think part of it is the crappy, part-plastic SRAM X3 shifters, my LBS is replacing it with x4's which have more metal. I'm surprised, make that astonished that I haven't done any damage to my wheels. They've been durable as all get out. I got a set of shimano Shimano PD-M324 pedals that have been great. Since I've transistioned to mostly trail, I think a set of Crank Brothers egg beaters will be next. The frame has been excellent, it's the first bike that I've had as an adult that actually fits!

    Now, the question is, do I invest in a fork and a build kit and consider it a $600 frame or should I start from scratch for my next purchase?
    1. Dont get upset about a number 15lbs is better than no lbs. Also your 6,8 your probally not far from you ideal weight, I am 510 so when you 310 and you should weigh 190 its a lot easier to drop 35 lbs plus I dont know what you have been eating but salad and yogurt has been my staple food the last month and a half.

    2. I would stick with the spd cleates my buddy has had issues with egg beaters and he is a featherweight.

    3. Should you build of Start from Scratch? Well I will use myself as an example because I did both this season.
    Rocky mtn sould 29 $700 at lbs
    Salsa Semi wheel set with CK hubs $800ish
    Thomson seat post $100
    Mid Level Marzocchi tst2 44 fork $370
    that right there is $2k and I had about $200 in small parts and replacements for stuff. So I spent $2200 making a entry level mtn bike a ok mid spec bike, but alas the frame broke so I got a new frame and I also decided to take advantage of end of season savings.Rocky Mountain Altitude 970 Bike - 2012 | Backcountry.com I didnt buy from Backcountry but I bought this same bike Rocky and my Lbs got together and did me a real solid and ended up being almost the same money I had in my old bike. The difference is I have F/S full xt drivetrain and fox suspension.

  11. #11
    The Sentinel
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    Saddles and seatbolts here...

    241# here...I use WTB Pure V Pro saddles on all of my mountain bikes, and love the way they feel, but I've now bent the nicro rails on two of them. Part of the problem, I believe, isn't related to the saddle, but to the seatbolt. I have a Giant Reign X1, and used a Giant rigid post, then the new Giant dropper post. They both use the same clamp, and I can't keep that damn thing tight. It loosens, the saddle slides, and everything gets bent! Gonna have to go back to rigid Thomson posts, I guess.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    and what breaks most often?
    Sworn to avenge, condemned to hell

  12. #12
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    I bent the crap out of some saddle rails a while back.

    Yesterday I had the top of my seatpost snap off, and tore that crap out of some Fox shorts while narrowly avoiding impaling myself on the remains of the post. No fun.

  13. #13
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    Definitely stick with SPDs. I killed a pair of egg beaters the first time I hit them with a rock. My SPDs have been pounded dozens of times.

    The Build or Buy-Complete question boils down to 2 sub-questions. 1) How many high quality parts do you have to move on to the new frame? 2) How much upgrading would you have to do to prospective pre-built bikes would you have to do to get it into the condition you want?

    Bottom line, big companies like Treck, Specl, etc get GREAT deals on on the parts they build up bikes with. Far cheaper than you can touch. So If you go buy a frame and build a bike with the same spec as they one they are offering they will beat your price every time quite handily. But if you've got an old frame with a bunch of nice parts hanging on to it, buying a high-q frame and moving the parts over can see you on a really nice bike for really cheep. Of course at that time you've destroyed one bike to create another.

    If you're in a hurry to get on a better ride, I'd just go buy a pre-built bike. If you're willing to spend some time hunting deals on great parts doing some selective upgrades with parts that will be consistent with the bike you want to have eventually...then maybe you'll be better off building yoru own.

    For instance. Chainlove has had some deals on cranks this last week. Nice 2x XT hollowtech for about $160, and a carbon arm'd XO 2x unit for about $190. Those would be a nice upgrade to a Hardrock along with a 2x der and shifter that would be all be right at home on a nice frame someday.


    Quote Originally Posted by freighttrain48 View Post
    1. Dont get upset about a number 15lbs is better than no lbs. Also your 6,8 your probally not far from you ideal weight, I am 510 so when you 310 and you should weigh 190 its a lot easier to drop 35 lbs plus I dont know what you have been eating but salad and yogurt has been my staple food the last month and a half.

    2. I would stick with the spd cleates my buddy has had issues with egg beaters and he is a featherweight.

    3. Should you build of Start from Scratch? Well I will use myself as an example because I did both this season.
    Rocky mtn sould 29 $700 at lbs
    Salsa Semi wheel set with CK hubs $800ish
    Thomson seat post $100
    Mid Level Marzocchi tst2 44 fork $370
    that right there is $2k and I had about $200 in small parts and replacements for stuff. So I spent $2200 making a entry level mtn bike a ok mid spec bike, but alas the frame broke so I got a new frame and I also decided to take advantage of end of season savings.Rocky Mountain Altitude 970 Bike - 2012 | I didnt buy from but I bought this same bike Rocky and my Lbs got together and did me a real solid and ended up being almost the same money I had in my old bike. The difference is I have F/S full xt drivetrain and fox suspension.

  14. #14
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    I haven't broken anything on my current bike (2010 Kona Unit rigid single speed). I think it's because I can't exactly resort to sitting down when riding since my elbows and knees are my suspensions. I think my hubs were in somewhat bad shape though, but I upgraded the wheel couple months ago (Flows with CK hubs) before the old wheels actually gave up.
    Ghisallo Wheels

    I'm really good looking.

  15. #15
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    Aaaaaaand it broke again... Friday I picked up my bike from the LBS after having my shifters and rear derailleur replaced with a SRAM X4 and went out to his some singletrack, a 12 mile loop with just a few climbs and nothing too brutal, just a nice selection of swoopy, curvy trails. 3 miles into the ride, my chain started skipping on the cassette (which had been replaced, with the chain, 2 rides prior). by the time I started the first climb, the chain would stick on the smallest chainring and lock up intermittently. 1.5 miles from the trailhead, the chain snapped, the broken link more or less exploded. This was only the 3rd ride on the chain; the first ride pretzeled the derailleur, the 2nd ride was uneventful- the same loop as the last, more or less, with a mostly plastic SRAM X3 that my lbs gave me as a temporary loaner. on that ride, everything worked as expected.
    I am beyond frustrated. My LBS is doing a complete examination of my drive train, although there doesn't appear to be anything wrong with it at first glance. The chainrings seem straight, as does the hanger & derailleur. I'm at my wit's end trying to figure out why I got less than 40 miles out of this last chain: I plan my shifts in advance; I avoid x-chaining. I spent most of this past ride on the #1-2 chainrings, in gears 2-5 (out of 7 available). I only used the 3rd chain ring and higher gears on longer downhill sections, well after, I might add, the chain began exhibiting sketchy behavior.

    It's gotten to the point where I'm hesitant to ride this bike anymore. I can't afford to replace it at the moment, nor do I want to throw good money after bad trying to fix it. Frankly, I'm more than a little pissed that I've had to spend money beyond tubes and tires. I've never had this level of wear and tear, even with a big-box bike.

  16. #16
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    Shifting is not just a matter of twitching a finger. You need to take into account the gradient and how much tension is on the chain. For example, when shifting uphill, you need to give the chain a chance to shift while not under tension. Do a few big pedals to get some speed up, then back off the power (basically just keeping the cranks turning) and then shift.

  17. #17
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    that's just it- I almost never shift under load!

  18. #18
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    I'm not sure where your problem lies then. Perhaps your dropout/frame is out of true and needs straightening.

    If your stuff is breaking this regularly, there is a definite problem.

    FWIW, I refuse to buy in to the "low-end = bad" school of thought. I'm 125kg riding on Alivio gear and it still performs like new after 2000km (on and off road).

  19. #19
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    blew shock up
    on my 3rd cassette this year (and chain)
    broke a tooth off on the big ring
    4 or 5 spokes on rear and one on front(now have mavics with no problems so far)
    all kinds of creaks that cant be figured out
    brakes have been bled 5 times and in shop for the 6th!
    AND the fork is on its way to Fox something broke in it this past weekend!

  20. #20
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    Add a bent #2 chainring to the list of broken bits. The solution? Replacing the entire crank. FML. I am becoming thoroughly disgusted with my purchase. To quote the manager at my LBS: "you could have gotten a (Specialized) Carve for what you've invested in repairs on your HardRock."

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    Add a bent #2 chainring to the list of broken bits. The solution? Replacing the entire crank. FML. I am becoming thoroughly disgusted with my purchase. To quote the manager at my LBS: "you could have gotten a (Specialized) Carve for what you've invested in repairs on your HardRock."
    and I am sure him saying that has made you feel great what a jacka$$

  22. #22
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    not so much. It's a long running joke in the shop... whenever I walk in, the greeting is "What broke this time?" His comment was as accurate of a statement of my frustration as I could have made myself.

  23. #23
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    I havent broken too much.

    Broke one chain on my SS but it was old as hell and moved around between a few different singlespeeds. Never broken a geared bike chain - shift smoothly.

    Bent a seatpost on my old MTB - had too much extended post - switched to a Thomson and never another problem

    Bent saddle rails (WTB Devo w/ NiCro rails) - replaced with a Pure V with chromo rails and put the WTB on my DJ bike since it's symettrically bent and not too far off.

    I have to true wheels every now and again but have had great luck with parts, maybe because I ride light on the bike for my 270lbs and make sure to have good hardware.

  24. #24
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    [QUOTE=Gigantic;9793914]not so much. It's a long running joke in the shop... whenever I walk in, the greeting is "What broke this time?" His comment was as accurate of a statement of my frustration as I could have made myself.[/QU

    i hear the same thing every time i walk in my LBS

  25. #25
    Toro
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    In the last three years I went from 290+ pounds to 215 today. It was a long road. In the first two years, I was breaking everything. EVERYTHING. Rear derailleurs, chains, cassettes, hubs, rings, shocks, frames, saddles, posts... name it and I broke it.

    The drivetrain issues had to be the most frustrating. We suspected shifting under load as being the problem at first. So, I made the effort to not shift under load, great! No more broken chains right? No, still sucked the chain and caused it to explode. I went with cheaper chains, more expensive chains, etc. Nothing helped. Then, I started to get into racing and I learned that if one is able to develop the cardio capacity to spin fast instead of mashing gears that it could result in faster overall speeds without so much muscular fatigue. I tried it and became good at it. Less muscular fatigue and no broken parts!

    I'm not saying that this is your problem or that this is a solution for you. I'm just giving you my experience. Perhaps it helps. I finished the whole 2012 race season on one drivetrain with no issues. I did maintain it well and I checked for chain stretch regularly. I have replaced three chains in one year. I stretch them out frequently. This also depends on the terrain I'm encountering. Smooth, low elevation singletrack doesn't cause too much stretch. Pisgah monster climbing does. So, sometimes I go 500 miles on one chain. Other times I can do just over 200 and need one.

    As for derailleur adjustments, well, these have become less frequent. I credit this to a more focused maintenance plan than I had when I started. I clean my bikes regularly to check for frame damage. Once in a while I lube the cables, re-grease the bb bearings, hub, etc. I have almost no issues anymore. Again, I'm not saying this is you. Just sharing experience.
    Ricardo aka "El Toro"
    Team Raging Toro
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