Dahon Cadenza Forks Snapped

mattkbath

New Member
I had an accident last summer going down a hill on my Dahon Cadenza, the forks broke clean off going over a speed bump at about 30 mph. I was wondering if anyone that has had a similar experience could help me.

The accident broke my finger, wrist (scaphoid) and elbow on my right arm, my wrist has since required surgery and is not right, it also knocked me unconscious for 10 minutes and I got some nasty road rash - I have not been able to work (I am a self employed IT Project Manager), we have three kids under 5 so not the best time for this to happen.

I wanted to find out if anyone has been successful in making a claim against a manufacturer or service company. My bike was 14 months old, I bought it originally from a small local retailer then I had it serviced by a mobile bike service company, on the service summary sheet it stated "forks bent, could be dangerous". Clearly there was something wrong with my forks so I took it to Evans who conducted a full strip down service (at a cost of £150), they told me there was no issue, I carried on riding it and subsequently the forks snapped off.

Any information relating to a similar case would be incredibly useful and help me approach this in the right way.

Thanks
 

raleighnut

Legendary Member
Location
On 3 Wheels
Sorry to hear of your accident, but I can't help feeling that you should have listened to the mobile mechanic and got him to fit a new set of forks for you. You may be able to claim from Evans for this as you asked them to check the forks but I know which mechanic I would trust in the future.
 

Globalti

Legendary Member
I would talk to a cyclists' solicitor, it sounds as if you may have a good case there for a negligence claim. It's not as if you are a typical British whingeing compo-seeker because you really have suffered thanks to somebody else's incompetence.

Have you got the Evans report in writing or do you know the name of the person who reported?
 

Shortmember

Bickerton Cyclocross Racing Team groupie
30mph down a hill with a speed bump on it, when you had been warned that the fork was defective? Unfortunately, that was an accident just waiting to happen.
 

shouldbeinbed

Rollin' along
Location
Manchester way
30mph down a hill with a speed bump on it, when you had been warned that the fork was defective? Unfortunately, that was an accident just waiting to happen.
A tad harsh if Evans had passed it fit, as a well known & big name in the industry it would not be unreasonable to take them at face value.

However @mattkbath I think you've shot yourself in the foot by going to Evans rather than Dahon at that point. If I were Dahon I would be seeking to limit my involvement or wash my hands completely of liability as you've clearly not wanted anything to do with them at the approriate time to involve them and ridden a bike with a potential manufacturing fault without any reference back to the manufacturer yourself. I suspect the small print of any warranty or liability will have something to say on that.

Wise after the event but with conflicting reports I'd definitely have got a casting vote from a LBS or such like or more likely just for my own peace of mind switched the forks for new ones, 26" forks can come in at less than the £150 evans charged for their review (IIRC the forks are not a folding element on the Cadenza).

My first port of call would be Evans as they've been pointed in the right direction of a potential fault and given you the all clear knowing what they were looking out for.

Dahon could claim mistreatment by you between purchase and diagnosis of fault - as could Evans but they still potentially missed a flagged failing.

I would definitely try to claim as you (assuming you've not mistreated the bike) have suffered from someone elses failings, but I think you've made things more difficult for yourself than they may have been if you'd gone straight to Dahon.

Hope you're well and working again soon
 
OP
M

mattkbath

New Member
Thanks for all the responses. My responses:

@Globalti - Have you got the Evans report in writing or do you know the name of the person who reported?

Yes I have the full report that was carried out with the mechanics name and signature on it and a supervisor's signature who checked it - see attached - I have redacted names for obvious reasons. It was the Gold top level strip down and rebuild service, this includes stripping the frame, check for issues and rebuild. Then strip, service and rebuild all components. I did think it odd that there were no comments but I was assured that was because the bike was in good condition and just needed servicing

@shouldbeinbed - My first port of call would be Evans as they've been pointed in the right direction of a potential fault and given you the all clear knowing what they were looking out for.

Agreed, the idea was to target the most recent error, as you say Dahon could wriggle out of it saying it was Evans' error.

@shouldbeinbed - Wise after the event but with conflicting reports I'd definitely have got a casting vote from a LBS or such like or more likely just for my own peace of mind switched the forks for new ones, 26" forks can come in at less than the £150 evans charged for their review (IIRC the forks are not a folding element on the Cadenza).

The reason I didn't just swap the forks was that the bike was 14 months old, I had used it to commute on 3 to 5 days a week usually covering 10 to 20 miles per day, in all weather throughout the year. It is a £1000 bike so it was worth maintaining properly and It seemed better to:
1. Give the bike the TLC it needed and
2. Get a full and thorough check to see if there was a fault with the forks or / and make sure there was no other issues at work.

Therefore I felt it worth spending the money on the Evans 'Gold' service (involving a full bike stip down and re-build) to get peace of mind - I also clearly articulated the issues and my concerns about the bike to make sure this was a focus. They assured me at the poi nt of dropping off the bike that I need not worry as this was the whole reason for the Gold service, i.e. to identify ALL issues. Makes me think none of what I said actually got passed on to the mechanic.

@vickster - What was the timescale & mileage covered between the Evans service and the incident?

The timescale was just over two months and the mileage in this period was probably about 200 miles, not a huge amount seeing as I had started a new job and wasn't commuting by bike as frequently. See the attached photo of the broken fork, it clearly shows an area of metal that has become dirty due to a crack long before the fresh metal around it.

Thanks again for all your input.

The top of the fork:
IMG_0415.JPG
.

IMG_0408.JPG


Evans Service sheet - strangely empty...
Evans Cycles - Dahon Bike Rebuild Service Reciept - Redacted.jpg" data-xf-init="lightbox" data-lb-single-image="1" data-lb-container-zoom="1" data-lb-trigger=".js-lbImage-attachment77653" data-lb-id="attachment77653">
2nd Service - Evans Cycles - Dahon Bike Rebuild Service Reciept - Redacted.jpg
 

Globalti

Legendary Member
Yikes. From looking at the pics I'd say that the same person who butchered the fork crown while trying to get the crown race off with a blunt instrument also succeeded in denting the softer alloy of the steerer, allowing water to penetrate, leaving that telltale brown stain of iron oxide penetration, which was the stress riser that was the straw that broke the camel's back.

That should have been picked up at the "gold standard" service so I would be writing to Evans with a request for compensation and costs.
 

raleighnut

Legendary Member
Location
On 3 Wheels
That steerer tube had been cracked for a while, I'm shocked it wasn't picked up by Evans during a 'strip down service' as even wiping it with a rag would have shown it up. You may be right when you say that your comments were not passed on to the guy who did the job but he should have found that, after all the mobile guy spotted it (probably by noticing that the fork would not adjust correctly) I'd be on to Evans ASAP. :cursing:
 
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