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  1. #1
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    Mystery ejection on my rigid SS

    So I was riding my rigid single speed down a fast windy trail at full speed. I'm a very competent rider although the rigid single speed is newer to me, but I have found that I am almost as fast on the downhills as my full suspension and blowing away my uphill times. In any event I've been pushing it. So I came around a fast corner leaning into it and the next thing I knew I heard a "crunk" sound and I was airborne, supermaning down the trail. Ended up with an AC seperation and thankfully nothing worse. I can't quite figure out what happened. My best guess as I was going into the turn fast my front tire came up, maybe while it was in the air I turned the wheel as I was banking into the turn, when it came down it was at such an angle that the wheel could not spin and instead stopped and ejected me. My first thought when it happened was that my carbon fork had cracked, but no signs of damage or clues. The stem is about 40 degrees out of alignment now, but that would make sense if the wheel stopped and I was pushing into the turn, or after the crash. Anyway interesting story, wonder if anyone else has ever experienced this and what can be learned other than very technical fast downhill runs aren't ideal for rigid forks....

  2. #2
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    Mystery ejection on my rigid SS

    Without any pictures or helmet cam video it's difficult to be able to comment really.

    If you crashed mid corner could you have grounded a pedal? That will throw you off very quickly without warning.

    It may have been catching the front wheel on a rock? Get the angle wrong and as it bounces off that will turn the bars enough that you lose the front end.

  3. #3
    human dehumidifier
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    There are roots and such just off the edge of the trails here that will grab a pedal and toss you even if the bike itself is still on the trail. It's like hitting a wall, bike stops dead, rider keeps going. Usually takes one time to teach riders to stay toward the center of the trail.
    I Just Wasn't Made For These Times

  4. #4
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    I'm voting pedal strike as well.

    I was riding yesterday on my HT and horribly timed a pedal stroke in a leaned turn. It hit a root dead on on the inside of the turn and picked the whole bike up and moved it a few inches to the outside.

    Powerful things, those pedal strikes!
    I live with fear and danger every day. And on the weekends she lets me go mountain biking.

  5. #5
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    This time wasn't a pedal strike, I've had 2 serious endo's from pedal strikes, both root outgrowths. The force on my foot was unmistakable both times. I agree that without video it's just speculation but I was just wondering if this is a common risk with rigids ie the front wheel stopping. Another possibility occurred to me, if I was going hard enough and my front tire hit a rock perhaps the crunk sound I heard was the stem twisting in position. Once the stem was at the wrong angle it would be impossible to avoid a crash. Either was im hoping a shock would save me from a crash like this again.

  6. #6
    No Stranger to danger....
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    sorry i read this as ''mystery erection on my SS'' i was going to say a 'traveller' can happen at any time..
    Dont ever let the truth get in the way of a funny story....

  7. #7
    Daniel the Dog
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    They say when on two wheels it is not if you will crash but when...and sometimes it happens in odd ways as you stated. Glad you are not seriously hurt.

  8. #8
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    Re: Mystery ejection on my rigid SS

    Quote Originally Posted by Tone's View Post
    sorry i read this as ''mystery erection on my SS'' i was going to say a 'traveller' can happen at any time..
    Oh, and I thought it was mystery ejaculation on my rigid SS.

  9. #9
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    And the front wheel looks ok? A stick in the wheel can result in a rather abrupt stop. I have had that happen in the rear wheel. Of course if you ride by yourself then the likelihood of kicking up a stick into your own front wheel is pretty small.

    I ride rigid and I think locking up your front wheel with your brake is much easier than with a suspension fork because your wheel is more likely to lose contact with the ground and the wheel can come to a complete stop. Sort of a an exaggerated case of the brake stutter that is common with rigids. However, as an experienced rider you'd know if you had done that.

  10. #10
    Afric Pepperbird
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    Quote Originally Posted by thickfog View Post
    Oh, and I thought it was mystery ejaculation on my rigid SS.
    And I read mystery erection is rigid.

    Jeesh, are we sick or what??

  11. #11
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    Stop feeding that bike viagra. Oh wait...he said "ejection". Umm, slow down?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dpca10 View Post
    This time wasn't a pedal strike, I've had 2 serious endo's from pedal strikes, both root outgrowths. The force on my foot was unmistakable both times. I agree that without video it's just speculation but I was just wondering if this is a common risk with rigids ie the front wheel stopping. Another possibility occurred to me, if I was going hard enough and my front tire hit a rock perhaps the crunk sound I heard was the stem twisting in position. Once the stem was at the wrong angle it would be impossible to avoid a crash. Either was im hoping a shock would save me from a crash like this again.
    What sort of terrain was the corner? Rocky? Woodland with roots? Wet or dry? Hitting the front wheel hard on an obstacle mid corner with the bike leant over could easily take you out regardless of whether you have suspension or not, particularly if it's wet.

    Front suspension might save you in some particular circumstances, such as if your front wheel were to hit a rock head on, as with suspension the wheel would be less likely to get hung up and roll over instead. It could also help you maintain control on repeated bumps where a full rigid bike would be bounced offline.

    A good example of that was when I was riding a full rigid bike in the mid 1990s. I was on a rocky descent in mid Wales, fast towards the top but then you ran across a section of exposed bedrock which formed sharp ridges. I hit the ridges full on at about 20mph, tried to ride it out but one of my feet was bounced out of the SPD bindings by the jarring. With my foot off the pedal I lost control, resulting in a massive crash, cartwheeling down the trail and concussion.

    There's no doubt in my mind that with suspension that crash would have been avoided completely. The same descent on a full suspension bike was much easier.

    If your stem being loose was the cause of the crash then there's not much you could have done. That falls into the mechanical issue category. You just have to put that type of crash down to experience and make sure to check your bike regularly, so that you don't repeat the mistake again in future.

  13. #13
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    Years ago I was riding behind someone that had a small root get snagged in his front wheel and he went over fast. Almost ran over him.

    Another possibility was the front tire hit a rock that flew out (making the noise) this twisted your front wheel enough to make you crash.

  14. #14
    Professional Crastinator
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    Lots of speculation...

    If all things are right with the world on a rigid downhill, you are pretty much glancing across the tops of all the bumps. You find a smooth spot to brake or turn, then you resume the glancing thing. I have seen (not that I ever did it ) where someone is banking on low traction on the exit of the corner and they suddenly have velcro traction. Their bike oversteers under them dramatically and ejects them unceremoniously with great force, as well as changing the path of the front wheel to hit some obstacle they intended to miss. The "crunk" probably was the stem twisting on the steerer, and I bet your inside leg got whacked with the handlebar while your body went over and through the opposite side of the handlebar.


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  15. #15
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    It's rigid. I swear each time I go over a bump.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  16. #16
    The White Jeff W
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    Ive had a small sapling get wedged between the crank arm & bashguard send me flying like that.
    No moss...

  17. #17
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    The terrain was hard pack littered with rocks fused in. The area I crashed was thankfully fairly smooth. In guessing I was going about 20 and came into the turn hot as I was really feeling it this day. The stem was tightened to spec, but my guess is that was not enough. More and more I think I came out of a left turn and hard into the right and probably drove the wheel somewhat off the berm as the wheel came down. Then the force I was applying to my inside arm (right) pushed the stem over, crunk sound, at this point a neutral handle bar position would have the wheel 30 degrees to the right and the resulting buck off the bike. I think the rigid fork transferred so much force up to the stem that the twist happened. It was so sudden I thought the fork had buckled and when I got back to my bike to find only the stem out of alignment I was shocked. I was also shocked I didn't have a bone sticking out of my skin. A quick thumbs up to the POC trabec race helmet which really did its job. They are even giving me a crash replacement discount.

  18. #18
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    I'm recovering from an OTB myself. You'll never know.

    If I wasn't attending a dh clinic, with students and instructors watching me ride, I would have never known that I oversteered around a bend and stuck my front into a ditch. Things happen fast and you're not really looking at where you're tire is, but where you're headed. I didn't even hear my tire burp.

    Just be careful, and realize that a full rigid is unforgiving. You can go just as fast, but you won't have as much control.

  19. #19
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    If you were pedaling hard into that turn it sounds like Pedal Jack which is basically a strike with alot of lift off...

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