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  1. #1
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    New question here. Is the rear triangle on a Argon FR, suppose to be asimetrical...!?

    I got the frame since new (but it came from Spain so I don't know if is cover under warranty) in any case the drop outs read 135mm and are perfectly align, except I need to dish the rim about 3mm to the left since new.
    Is the rear triangle on a Argon FR, suppose to be asimetrical...!?-nicolai-argon-fr-1-xl-m.jpg

    I just feel like I'm riding a Pugley and make wheel changes a pain it the butt, other than that I love the frame..


    Thanks in advance..

  2. #2
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    Do I contact NIcolai US or do I contact Nicolai headquarters..!?

  3. #3
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    The rear triangle may be slightly asymmetrical. Usually, Nicolai correct the wheels alignment by using a special rear dropout on the right (RADO). A number is milled into these that indicates by how many millimeter the rear hub is moved up or down. The advantage is that the frames do not be bent as extremely after welding (plus, the frames are so stiff that realigning them by force is quite - laborious). My Argon's rear triangle looks asymmetrical as well, but the trail is perfectly true.

    I do not know if this is done for Rohloff compatible frames, like yours, as well though.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Midgetman View Post
    The rear triangle may be slightly asymmetrical. Usually, Nicolai correct the wheels alignment by using a special rear dropout on the right (RADO). A number is milled into these that indicates by how many millimeter the rear hub is moved up or down. The advantage is that the frames do not be bent as extremely after welding (plus, the frames are so stiff that realigning them by force is quite - laborious). My Argon's rear triangle looks asymmetrical as well, but the trail is perfectly true.

    I do not know if this is done for Rohloff compatible frames, like yours, as well though.
    Thanks for the response, it makes me feel a lot better, one thing do you mean "up or down" like in side to side...!?

    I look for the "rado" number in a minute..

    And yes trying to "bend" this frame will be impossible plus for sure will crack

  5. #5
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    Found the Rado number, it looks more like a ONE but it will make more sense if it was a Four, does Nicolai have a chart for this Rado numbers somewhere..??
    Is the rear triangle on a Argon FR, suppose to be asimetrical...!?-img_5455-m.jpg

  6. #6
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    I think this illustrates how the RADO works:

    http://www.nicolai.net/100-0-Rado.html

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Midgetman View Post
    I think this illustrates how the RADO works:

    http://www.nicolai.net/100-0-Rado.html
    Thanks, I even translated but still does not explain why my wheel needs to be dish to the none drive side by about 3mm

  8. #8
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    Hi, if the wheel is inclined to one direction, it will be closer to one of the chain stays. However, the rear triangle might actually be asymmetrical. Nicolai aim to make the trail true, an equal distance of all four rear stays to the tire/rim does not seem to be a major objective of the alignment process. At least that is what I understood from a similar discussion in the German Nicolai forum.

    I would contact Nicolai and describe your observation. They will be able to tell you how to check if the frame is true or if there really is a problem.

  9. #9
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    What is going one with Nicolai USA...??

    I have send them two emails and so far no response, do I need to contact the Mothership or how does this work..!?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Midgetman View Post
    Hi, if the wheel is inclined to one direction, it will be closer to one of the chain stays. However, the rear triangle might actually be asymmetrical. Nicolai aim to make the trail true, an equal distance of all four rear stays to the tire/rim does not seem to be a major objective of the alignment process. At least that is what I understood from a similar discussion in the German Nicolai forum.

    I would contact Nicolai and describe your observation. They will be able to tell you how to check if the frame is true or if there really is a problem.
    I used to laugh about Cannondales in the old days for been always twisted but I never spec that from a Nicolai..

    No my wheel is vertically parallel to the frame so the bike does track straight, the problem is that the rim needs to be "Move" to one side like if I was riding a Pugley.

  11. #11
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    My experience with mailing to Nicolai isn't also that good. I stopped mailing them and now I give them a call if I have a question. Much quicker! Friendly people over there.

  12. #12
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    Ok - so if the frame was sourced from Spain your first point of reference should be the shop that supplied it, then the spanish distributor (listed on http://www.nicolai.net/83-1-Worldwid...+Contacts.html).

    For the frame to ride 'true' the rear wheel needs to be aligned with the front wheel and that's how Nicolai set the frames. This sometimes means the wheel will appear to be slightly misaligned in the rear triangle. Think about it - if the head tube was off by 45 degrees it wouldn't matter a jot if the rear wheel was aligned perfectly to the rear triangle - the bike wouldn't be ridable.

    There's enough tyre clearance on the frames that this shouldn't make use of wide tyres (within spec) a problem and you should true/dish your wheel as standard.
    Simon Still
    Momentum Distribution
    www.nicolai-uk.com

  13. #13
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    Take a piece of string and run it from one rear dropout around the headtube and back to the other dropout. Then measure the distance from the string to the seat tube on both sides. This will tell you if the rear triangle is asymmetrical.

    Slightly asymmetrical shape can be corrected by compensating with wheel dish - as you have done. You will not be able to feel it when riding - not even on a Pugsley or Moonlander (28 mm offset). Certainly not if it's just 3 mm. If you think you feel something, it's 100% placebo. Knowledge of not actually being able to feel it should help you with the perceived problem.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saul Lumikko View Post
    Take a piece of string and run it from one rear dropout around the headtube and back to the other dropout. Then measure the distance from the string to the seat tube on both sides. This will tell you if the rear triangle is asymmetrical.
    Saul I do you one better, I used a park alignment gauge and the frame is asymmetrical by 3.2mm, I'm still waiting for a email from Nicolai to see if this is by design or a manufacturing mistake..
    Slightly asymmetrical shape can be corrected by compensating with wheel dish - as you have done. You will not be able to feel it when riding - not even on a Pugsley or Moonlander (28 mm offset). Certainly not if it's just 3 mm. If you think you feel something, it's 100% placebo. Knowledge of not actually being able to feel it should help you with the perceived problem.
    Oh I never say I feel anything, the bike tracks just fine, but if I did not dish the wheel will be impossible to ride..

  15. #15
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    I trust your measurement and wouldn't want to dish every wheel I use to fit one frame only. Let's hope yours gets sorted, perhaps the various dropouts have enough selection range to take care of this?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saul Lumikko View Post
    I trust your measurement and wouldn't want to dish every wheel I use to fit one frame only. Let's hope yours gets sorted, perhaps the various dropouts have enough selection range to take care of this?
    Exactly my point is just a pain in the butt to swap wheels from bike to bike (something I do often), hopefully Nicolai will have a sound response to this issue..

  17. #17
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    Since NicolaiUS never respond to my emails, I wrote to Nicolai Germany and I got a email next morning..

    In any case they ask me for pictures of the frame, here are some of them.


    I have own at least 55bikes, (currently 31) and I never saw a 3mm discrepancy on any of them, No I don't "date" early cannondales, plus I work on shops from many years and never saw such a difference unless it was intentional (early 80' for chainline issues)




  18. #18
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    At the moment I'm a little disappointed with Nicolai to say the least..

    This is the response I got from them..

    "hi Ricky, judging from your pictures i donīt see the problem,if you want to have the frame allignment checked you can send it in anytime."

    "I don't see the problem", come on is clear as day light.

    Coldsetting a aluminum frame, is that even possible..!?

    I guess I just deal with it locally or at least here in the states since sending the frame to Germany will prove to be far to expensive.

  19. #19
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    I would try to measure directly at the dropouts (the black andozided parts) and not outside at the chainstay and measure if the dropouts are same thickness... actually you would want to measure on the inside of the dropouts where the hub is "clamped" to get a really precise measurement.

    have you measured the gap between rim (perfectly dished +/- 0) and yoke on either side?

    specialized demo one had a 6mm dish offset by design...

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by raschaa View Post
    I would try to measure directly at the dropouts (the black andozided parts) and not outside at the chainstay and measure if the dropouts are same thickness... actually you would want to measure on the inside of the dropouts where the hub is "clamped" to get a really precise measurement.
    Kind of hard to measure with the tools I have access too, I did measure the dropouts and they are exactly the same thickness..


    have you measured the gap between rim (perfectly dished +/- 0) and yoke on either side?
    Good suggestion, that I did not do.
    specialized demo one had a 6mm dish offset by design...
    That is why I ask from the start, if the frame was design that way since I refuse to believe Nicolai will sell a crooked frame.

    Ps: Doug Bradbury made the original Manitou frames with a asymmetrical rear end, very clever fellow..

  21. #21
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    Actually, I wouldn't be to worried about the offset. Cosmectically certainly not perfect but far beyond anything you would notice while riding...

    I would be more interested in checking that the front and rear align well and that is what they do at N as far as I know. If I really wanted to check that, I would:

    - install well dished wheels F+R with no tires, take 2 straightedges and put one on each side of front wheel and see how they align with the rear, alternatively rig something up with a laser....

    - fit a extra long piece of pipe as "steerertube" that goes down about to the hight of the dropouts (or as long as a2c of the recommended fork) and then measure from there to dropouts.

    as Midgetman pointed out in post #8 Nicolai concentrates primarily on wheel alignment. I have seen some frames that optically looked akward but the relevant parameters were spot on. Sometimes frames that are way off and look strange after truing are sold "internally" (employees/dealers...), they are not intended for normal aftermarket but might make their way there as secondhand bikes... friend of mine bought one of those frames used and it really looked bent, but everything lined up as it should, it just looked really wrong...
    Last edited by raschaa; 06-30-2014 at 04:37 AM.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by raschaa View Post
    Actually, I wouldn't be to worried about the offset. Cosmectically certainly not perfect but far beyond anything you would notice while riding...
    I got the frame about 3 years ago and sincerely it did not bother me much so I just dish the wheel to make it fit, but lately I have grown tired of how harsh the riding is (and I have been riding aluminum frames for 20something years), so I decide to sale it since I don't really ride it anymore, here is where the problem start since I'm sure the buyer will not be to happy about a bend frame..

    I would be more interested in checking that the front and rear align well and that is what they do at N as far as I know. If I really wanted to check that, I would:
    Funny how we used to laugh about old Cannondales and their bend frames and now I have one that is even worst that any I have seeing..

    - install well dished wheels F+R with no tires, take 2 straightedges and put one on each side of front wheel and see how they align with the rear, alternatively rig something up with a laser....
    Kind of did this (by my self) and the discrepancy was the 3mm I find at the drop out, the rear wheel tracks straight not on a angle


    - fit a extra long piece of pipe as "steerertube" that goes down about to the hight of the dropouts (or as long as a2c of the recommended fork) and then measure from there to dropouts.
    Done, vertically the frame is perfect

    as Midgetman pointed out in post #8 Nicolai concentrates primarily on wheel alignment. I have seen some frames that optically looked akward but the relevant parameters were spot on.
    To me bend frames are unacceptable even on cheap chinese frames, much less in such a high value item. (I work for years on fancy shops and even check many frames on "Alignment tables")

    Sometimes frames that are way off and look strange after truing are sold "internally" (employees/dealers...), they are not intended for normal aftermarket but might make their way there as secondhand bikes... friend of mine bought one of those frames used and it really looked bent, but everything lined up as it should, it just looked really wrong...

    As you can see by the pictures I got the frame brand new, never even ensemble, but you are right maybe it was a defective unit since I got it from Ebay in Spain (when I was living there)




    Finally Is there a special serial number or something to tell is a blemish frame..!?

  23. #23
    yet another stupid german
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    Team frames sometimes don't have a serial number, but I don't know if "b-frames" are marked otherwise...

    are you the first owner? do you have a sales reciept? N gives 5 years warranty no matter if you're the first or 10th owner as long as you can supply the original proof of purchase.... the same happened to my friend, his was an ex team frame that had gone through 2 further owners and he had no proof of purchase because obviously there never was one because the frame was never intended to wind up being sold on the aftermarket...

    if you buy a used (or new for that matter) N second hand, as long as you get the original buyers proof of purchase you're all good for the 5 years after selling date. without a proof of purchase you're F'ed...

    then again, my friend sent his "akward" frame to N and they made him a very nice offer to replace the main frame (Ion20). the price must have been around their production cost....

    Give them a call, maybe you can get something worked out...

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by raschaa View Post
    Team frames sometimes don't have a serial number, but I don't know if "b-frames" are marked otherwise...

    are you the first owner? do you have a sales reciept? N gives 5 years warranty no matter if you're the first or 10th owner as long as you can supply the original proof of purchase.... the same happened to my friend, his was an ex team frame that had gone through 2 further owners and he had no proof of purchase because obviously there never was one because the frame was never intended to wind up being sold on the aftermarket...

    if you buy a used (or new for that matter) N second hand, as long as you get the original buyers proof of purchase you're all good for the 5 years after selling date. without a proof of purchase you're F'ed...

    then again, my friend sent his "akward" frame to N and they made him a very nice offer to replace the main frame (Ion20). the price must have been around their production cost....

    Give them a call, maybe you can get something worked out...
    No sadly I don't have any paper work since it was a ebay sale, I was sure they can just tell the build date by the serial number..

    I'm more disappointed by the "No, is nothing wrong with it" so I will deal with it locally and get it sold for cheap, no more Nicolai's for Ricky..

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