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  1. #1
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    Tallboy suspension bolt sheared

    I have a suspension bolt that sheared with what appears to be a threaded portion stuck in the rear triangle. I'll take it to the LBS tomorrow but was wondering if anyone had any idea what kind of work this will take to fix? Any information would be appreciated, thanks!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Tallboy suspension bolt sheared-photo.jpg  

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  2. #2
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    yup, this happened to me and seems to be pretty common with these bolts for some reason. My shop had no trouble drilling the old remains out. Give SC a call and they'll mail you some replacements.
    definite malingerer

  3. #3
    Ninja Master Powers
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    Yep, common problem on my Nomad. I think it's a combination of a problems. Wrong material for the bolt size and required torque. I haven't done it yet but I plan to switch that bolt to stainless or something stronger.

    Either that or every time you loosen that bolt replace it with a new one might help.

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    Thanks for the replies I'll post what happens!

  5. #5
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    How'd you manage to shear it off, tightening it or loosening it? Bolts are made to spec for the torque required, sometimes there's manufacturing defects or miss calculations on the bolts specs for intended use, but I'm guessing this bolt is made to take the torque SC has established and if you over torque it you will shear it. Did any of you use a torque wrench when tightening these bolts?
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    I sheared it off by riding. I was on the pavement for the start of the ride and didn't notice anything until I hit a rocky path, nothing serious at all. However, I primarily use the bike in AZ for rocky XC. My shock needed a new bushing put in which was done a couple of months ago at the LBS that handles Santa Cruz. Do they have to remove that bolt to install a new bushing? Then maybe a torque issue. Otherwise the frame is almost two years old and that bolt has not been touched. Whatever the case, I am not disappointed with its durability, the bike has held up great and I have put thousands of hard miles on it here in AZ and in CO. The failure happened at a good spot and I was close to a trailhead with a ride home. It could have been MUCH MUCH worse.

  7. #7
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    And I thought it was just me...Happend to me last summer after about 6 months of riding and developed some play in the bushings. Thought I would check it out and clean it before a ride one time and snapped it on the reinstall (with a torque wrench). Luckily I had the replacement bolts kit or else I would be without my ride for two weeks.
    Help, I'm a rock!

  8. #8
    Ninja Master Powers
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    How'd you manage to shear it off, tightening it or loosening it? Bolts are made to spec for the torque required, sometimes there's manufacturing defects or miss calculations on the bolts specs for intended use, but I'm guessing this bolt is made to take the torque SC has established and if you over torque it you will shear it. Did any of you use a torque wrench when tightening these bolts?
    I always use a torque wrench. I torqued it exactly to spec (100 inch lbs IIRCC). The first torque is ok but feels a bit "iffy" for the bolt size/material. If you loosen it and re-torque it snaps very easily.

    My guess is wrong spec bolt for the application. Like I said I'm going to try a SS bolt, if that fails I'll simply use a new bolt whenever I take this one loose for whatever reason.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Did any of you use a torque wrench when tightening these bolts?
    yessir I did.
    definite malingerer

  10. #10
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    Happened to me too. Bolt broke just as LBS wrench started to remove the bolt to replace worn out bushings. They just drilled it out. Went with some of those cool needle bearing kits instead of traditional bushings. Haven't really hammered on them yet but they feel pretty buttery so far! FYI: on the ride before I noticed the slight play in my rear end, I heard a strange and loud creek from what seemed like my seatpost region. Didn't think too much of it/was in the middle of a steep climb (and WOW don't these Tallboy's climb like nobody's business!). Only discovered the guilty bolt when I took it to my wrench.

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    LBS easily removed the broken piece and we are awaiting the replacement from Santa Cruz. It is looking like I should have my bike back no problem for race on Saturday! Should I keep a set of spare bolts around or maybe get my entire suspension overhauled at this point?

  12. #12
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    Good question. I'm not actually sure the replacements I got were the same material, but they're prob cheap to have a spare set on hand.
    definite malingerer

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    OK, seems maybe there's an issue, just know that in areas like that where too much torque being applied can cause other, more damaging issues, they're often made right to tolerance, so maybe that's what SC did. Anyone call SC and ask a question about this, what was their answer? I snapped one of the hollow bolts on my old Trance before I'd been at it long enough with bikes to know not to ring the crap out of it and replaced with a solid steel bolt and it's worked fine since, but very careful not to over tighten it.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    OK, seems maybe there's an issue, just know that in areas like that where too much torque being applied can cause other, more damaging issues, they're often made right to tolerance, so maybe that's what SC did. Anyone call SC and ask a question about this, what was their answer? I snapped one of the hollow bolts on my old Trance before I'd been at it long enough with bikes to know not to ring the crap out of it and replaced with a solid steel bolt and it's worked fine since, but very careful not to over tighten it.
    You're a little behind my friend. This is a well-known issue, and yes many people have called SC on this. There are multiple threads on it now.

    I've not had it happen to me, so I don't know what SC has to say on the subject, but my guess is probably not much. The bolt breaks, they ask for your address and send you a new one. No big deal. They either got a bad batch of bolts or didn't use a correctly spec'd bolt for that point in the linkage in the first place. Either way, I've NOT read of any frame damage resulting from this issue and I've not heard of anyone having an issue with SC correcting it.
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    I had my pivot axle bolt break just last week as I was torquing it to the specified torque when it snapped. I was taking a trip to Cali so needless to say I was pretty bummed I didnt listen to any of the threads.SC CS came through as always and they shipped me a replacement pivot axle to replace on my trip and although they didnt need to the just sent me bearings too. SC customer service is awesome! Make sure when you torque te bolts you go down by about 10 in/lbs

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    SC was able to get me axle and bearing kits covered under warranty and I got my bike back in time for my race Saturday. I am thinking that when LBS replace my shock bushing a few months ago they loosened that bolt and then must have tightened it up too much. Whatever the cause, SC came through with the parts even though they were moving their warehouse!

  17. #17
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    Sometimes I see torque specs on parts for the bolts being used and I just know there's no way in hell they'd take that sort of torque. A post I own lists the torque for the M6 bolts as 12Nm/110 inch pounds, and I know there's no way in hell they'd take that without snapping or busting the clamp, so I don't torque them to that - FYI Thomson posts only torque to max 60in lbs for their 5mm bolts and my post has an almost identical design, just uses M6 bolts.

    Quote Originally Posted by cman8 View Post
    I had my pivot axle bolt break just last week as I was torquing it to the specified torque when it snapped. I was taking a trip to Cali so needless to say I was pretty bummed I didnt listen to any of the threads.SC CS came through as always and they shipped me a replacement pivot axle to replace on my trip and although they didnt need to the just sent me bearings too. SC customer service is awesome! Make sure when you torque te bolts you go down by about 10 in/lbs
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  18. #18
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    Yep, when it happened to me I called SC and I didn't even finish the sentence and the guy I talked to was asking for my address.

    They obviously know its a problem; what I don't understand is why they don't re-pec the bolt or the torque. A harder material might fix it (harder material/larger bolt would be better) or just a slightly lighter torque value might save some head ache for people.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by DWill View Post
    Yep, when it happened to me I called SC and I didn't even finish the sentence and the guy I talked to was asking for my address.

    They obviously know its a problem; what I don't understand is why they don't re-pec the bolt or the torque. A harder material might fix it (harder material/larger bolt would be better) or just a slightly lighter torque value might save some head ache for people.
    Bingo! Happened to me the first time at routine maintenance using torque wrench. I back off 10 lbs now, but sometimes I stop before the click as it just feels too damn tight. With carbon I can understand if SC didnt want steel bolts and the risk of over-tightening. Because of the design and use of lock tight, max torque seems unnecessary, IMHO, and 10 lbs lowwer sufficient, but maybe I'm missing something.
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  20. #20
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    Fellas, some of you are confusing the bolt that broke with the allen headed bolt visible on the exterior. SC's system utilizes a pivot axle (the bolt that broke in the OP's photo) in addition to a wedge spacer and locking bolt that holds the whole assembly together. The pivot axle is used to preload the bearings and while torque spec on the pivot axle varies, SC recommends somewhere in the neighborhood of 35 in/lbs. 110 in/lbs is for the locking bolt. FWIW, I never use a torque wrench for any of this stuff, tightening it by hand is usually sufficient.

    The preload axle is specific to SC bikes - you won't find a replacement anywhere else. And replacing the shock bushing does not require removal of this bolt.

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  21. #21
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    You are correct. The bolt that snapped on mine was the locking bolt visible from the exterior. I didn't put two and two together in the OPs photos that it was the inner collet axle that must have failed. I too only tighten the collet axle by hand just to the point of no play.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Berkley View Post
    Fellas, some of you are confusing the bolt that broke with the allen headed bolt visible on the exterior. SC's system utilizes a pivot axle (the bolt that broke in the OP's photo) in addition to a wedge spacer and locking bolt that holds the whole assembly together. The pivot axle is used to preload the bearings and while torque spec on the pivot axle varies, SC recommends somewhere in the neighborhood of 35 in/lbs. 110 in/lbs is for the locking bolt. FWIW, I never use a torque wrench for any of this stuff, tightening it by hand is usually sufficient.

    The preload axle is specific to SC bikes - you won't find a replacement anywhere else. And replacing the shock bushing does not require removal of this bolt.
    ^^^^^^^^^^^ THIS ^^^^^^^^^^^^

    Can't believe how many missed it.

    The pivot axle is proprietary to SC but the collet locking screw can be bought at any fastener store. SC just happens to use titanium for them to stop them from rusting and to save some weight.
    SC Tallboy C : SC Nomad 3 : Giant TCX SLR : Giant Propel Adv SL

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by DWill View Post
    I always use a torque wrench. I torqued it exactly to spec (100 inch lbs IIRCC). The first torque is ok but feels a bit "iffy" for the bolt size/material. If you loosen it and re-torque it snaps very easily.

    My guess is wrong spec bolt for the application. Like I said I'm going to try a SS bolt, if that fails I'll simply use a new bolt whenever I take this one loose for whatever reason.

    Make sure you are tightening the correct piece to the correct load.

    Based on the original pic from the OP, what appears to have broken was the pivot axle its self. The proper torque on these is just enough to remove any play or looseness - like a headset. SC says this roughly equates to 35in/lbs. The 100in/lb figure is for the smaller bolt that threads into the axle its self. This bolt locks the axle in place after you remove the play from that pivot with the 35in/lb torque spec.

    So, if you are applying 100in/lbs to the axle its self, thats almost 3x what it is supposed to be, and you are likley to have issues.

  24. #24
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    I just snapped my M4 lower axle locking bolt on my TB2C and when I was torquing it up to 90lbs, it was just spinning and i knew it was going to go don't know why i didn't stop.

    Managed to get axle out but has a bit of damage to axle only so have ordered replacement axle kit from Santa Cruz. While I was on the phone I asked about what could have caused the problem and the tech guy said it had happened to him and the cause is greasing the wedge and recommended not to grease it as in the SC videos as it need to grip to the out axle to stop turning.

    Going to try this when I fit the new this weekend

  25. #25
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    Tallboy suspension bolt sheared

    Quote Originally Posted by IntenseMack10 View Post
    Make sure you are tightening the correct piece to the correct load.

    Based on the original pic from the OP, what appears to have broken was the pivot axle its self. The proper torque on these is just enough to remove any play or looseness - like a headset. SC says this roughly equates to 35in/lbs. The 100in/lb figure is for the smaller bolt that threads into the axle its self. This bolt locks the axle in place after you remove the play from that pivot with the 35in/lb torque spec.

    So, if you are applying 100in/lbs to the axle its self, thats almost 3x what it is supposed to be, and you are likley to have issues.
    If you torque the pivot axles to 100 in/lbs I'm sure you would destroy the bearings. Who knows whatever issues...


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