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  1. #1
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    Cracked frame at base of seat tube

    I completely stripped down my bike for a complete overhaul. I hand sanded and polished the rear triangle to bring back some luster. I replaced all the bearings, cleaned all my drivetrain parts, and rebuilt my fork. Finally I went to put everything back together and I noticed a hairline crack on the base of the seat tube/ weld interface. I'm super bummed that I cant ride it after putting in a ton of work on it. I'm sure this frame isn't under any sort of warranty as I've had it for 6 years. Just wondering if anyone has replaced just the front triangle, and what it cost? I'm going to call in Monday, but just wondering if anyone else has been down this road. I also don't know if it's possible or worthwhile to repair. Ill try and get a pic up

  2. #2
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    since it's out of warranty, you can most likely buy another to work or Gibson can fix it to be as good as new, for a reasonable price. i've had him rebuild eight yearold frontends that came back beautiful.
    breezy shade

  3. #3
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    I went thru the same thing...

    Yep, contact them Monday. I broke my El Ciclón twice in the same place as you, most recently in December. Mine’s about the same age as yours, so pretty far out of warranty. The first time, 2 years ago, I found a small crack while cleaning the bike after a trip. When I called Teresa to explore my options she had a returned front triangle hanging in the shop that they couldn’t sell for new, so I bought it on the cheap. Last December I actually broke that triangle right in two, trashing it pretty good in the process. It failed first at the seat tube/bottom bracket weld, and then pulled apart wishbone style at the head tube. This time I bought a brand new front triangle. Since they were getting ready to roll out the new frame upgrades, they were blowing out any old stock at very reasonable prices (I think Teresa may have said $300 ish for the front triangle IIRC). You may want to get your triangle repaired, or just decide to get a brand new one for not too much money if they have any left. BTW, I sent my old frame - broken bits and all to them in January to do the same spa treatment you did yourself. New bearings, new hardware, new front triangle, and then Sherwood powder coated the whole thing - front and rear and re-stickered the frame. It looks great! Now I have essentially a new El Ciclón for just a few hundred dollar investment. I attached some pictures of the original El Ciclón and the recently refurbished one, taken against the same wall in my dining room, only several years apart.

    Good luck with your repair!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Cracked frame at base of seat tube-refurbed-cyclon-far.jpg  

    Cracked frame at base of seat tube-refurbed-cyclon-close.jpg  

    Cracked frame at base of seat tube-original-cyclon.jpg  

    'Bones

  4. #4
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    Cool Bones, thanks for all the info. I certainly wouldn't have gone through all the trouble of rebuilding this bike if I didn't absolutely love my Ventana. I'm leaning towards a new front tri as I know the properties of aluminum. It also looks like the new salty has a couple improvements on the head tube gusset. Hopefully it won't put me out too much as we're expecting our first baby in a month.

  5. #5
    Wzl
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    I broke my Salty after about 5 or 6 years right at the seat-tube bottom-bracket weld. They offered to replace just the front triangle for $700ish but I know the abuse I put this frame through so I opted for an El Chucho as a replacement. The cost wasn't cheap but it was close to $1000 off retail so figured what the heck. No regrets. I think this is a great policy and I know I can always trade-up, for a fee, when the frames finally go.
    Ride hard. Ride often.

  6. #6
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    I called in today, and like usual Theresa was helpful and patient with my questions. It seems like the new front triangle is the way to go although the repair sounds pretty solid ( the whole seat tube is cut out and replaced).

    I did find myself asking the question, "Don't all the big name companies ( that I hate ) offer lifetime warranties on all their frames?" I absolutely love Ventanas, but I keep wondering if I am satisfied with 5-6 year frame life.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bunnyhiphopper
    did find myself asking the question, "Don't all the big name companies ( that I hate ) offer lifetime warranties on all their frames?" I absolutely love Ventanas, but I keep wondering if I am satisfied with 5-6 year frame life.
    Well sure on paper, but there was a thread recently on the DH forum where if you jumped a Specy, SX or something, one of their 6+" travel bikes, the Warrranty was invalidated.

    The two year warranty is comparable to other Boutique's.
    -Aaron G.

    "Before D.W., "anti-squat" was referred to as pedal feedback."

  8. #8
    change is good
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    but I keep wondering if I am satisfied with 5-6 year frame life
    .

    If you ride a lot, 5-6 years is an excellent amount of time before failure. I get 2-3 years if I ride one frame exclusively. Less than a year on the Tall Boy. I really don't see too many older big name frames on the trails.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrDon
    .

    If you ride a lot, 5-6 years is an excellent amount of time before failure. I get 2-3 years if I ride one frame exclusively. Less than a year on the Tall Boy. I really don't see too many older big name frames on the trails.
    +1

    I'd be really happy to see 3+ years out of a frame!!!

  10. #10
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    Hmm.. I've had a lot of bikes and I ride a lot and I never break anything. Maybe its because Im 150lb. I had a specialized m2 hardtail that I rode since I graduated high school. Rode it for 5 years.. then turned it into a dirt jumper and sessioned jumps and drops for a good year.. then turned it into a singlespeed and rode the crap out of it for a few more. Never cracked and eventually gave it away. My DH bike has been to hell and back. I don't know how you guys can go thru frames like that.

  11. #11
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    If you're not breakin' 'em, you're not trying hard enough! It's either bikes or bones in my case. Congrats on the new FT, you'll be happy you went that way.
    'Bones

  12. #12
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    Specialized has some shady warranty language (some of which is cited above), and when my husband wrecked his front triangle of his Trek Fuel, they replaced it with one the wrong size.

    I think Ventana's CS is wonderful, even if your bike is out of warranty, they'll work with you to get you back up and riding.
    MTB4Her.com: mountain bike site for women, by women

  13. #13
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    Yeah, I talked to some folks and it seems like I've been pretty lucky given how fast I descend and the terrain here in Colorado. I can't wrap my head around the disposable bike thing, so I may end up with a Ti front triangle here before too long.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by bunnyhiphopper
    Yeah, I talked to some folks and it seems like I've been pretty lucky given how fast I descend and the terrain here in Colorado. I can't wrap my head around the disposable bike thing, so I may end up with a Ti front triangle here before too long.

    does that mean you're getting ahold of Moots to build you a triangle to fit the rear? i believe they use Ventana's rears.
    breezy shade

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bunnyhiphopper
    wrap my head around the disposable bike thing, so I may end up with a Ti front triangle here before too long.
    Metal fatigue. Look at the recent Southwest airplane issue. Aluminum as well. It happens. Plenty to research on the subject, if you're interested. Happens also to the bigger bike companies, they just have the added cash cush to cover frames (or not cover them, as they happen to see fit).

    You could talk with Ventana about getting a front triangle made out of steel. They use steel for the S&S bikes, so they have experience with the material. Steel, aluminum, titanium, each has compromises and only the most overbuilt bike could be considered failure-proof.

  16. #16
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    Not exactly.. aluminum does not have a fatigue limit whereas steel and Ti do have a fatigue limit. As long a you don't stress the frame above this limit, a steel or Ti frame will remain just as strong as the day you bought it. Aluminum will continue to fatigue even under infinitely small loads.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by nhodge
    does that mean you're getting ahold of Moots to build you a triangle to fit the rear? i believe they use Ventana's rears.
    I would build my own. I work in a machine shop and have the welding and framebuilding experience to do it correctly.

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