Helpful Guide To Carbon Bicycle Frame Repair And Care

While a carbon fiber frame was once only seen in very costly road bikes, today it’s commonly used by many manufacturers for building quality cycles. Although previously thought to be more likely to suffer impact damage, modern advancements have mostly overcome this problem. It is advisable though, for owners of these bikes to be aware of the care they need and be familiar with carbon bicycle repair indications.

Carbon is durable, but over time it can fatigue due to softening of the epoxy resin. Naturally, the more the bike is used, the faster it will deteriorate. The specific structural design, tube thickness, type of riding it is used for, and the degree of care it receives can also affect how long the bike will last before showing signs of aging.

Since this material is inert or unreactive, it can withstand cleaning with most solutions and will not have an adverse chemical reaction or experience corrosion or salt damage. Yet the entire bike is not made from this material and it will also have metal components which may easily rust or get damaged, so it’s advisable refrain from using harsh solvents.

Like any type of bike, those made from carbon fiber may be subject to some minor manufacturing flaws, most often broken drink bottle cage lugs or bent dropouts, but these problems should be covered by the warranty most brands provide. Superficial scrapes are typically not worth worrying about other than for aesthetic reasons, but a visible crack in the carbon matrix must be addressed before worse damage results.

All it takes is one small weakened area in framework to put the bike at risk for further damage, which is why this needs prompt servicing. Without repair, it may progress to a frame break, bent rear derailleur hangers, or a crack in the seat or seat post. Used bikes may appear sound to the untrained eye, but in fact have internal framework damage, which is why it’s better to avoid them.

If a bike has been involved in a traumatic event but still seems salvageable, it is best to take it to a bike mechanic for evaluation. A skilled expert will scan the bike for structural frame damage the naked eye cannot pick up using special UV or ultrasound scanning equipment. It’s a wise choice to take the bicycle in for routine maintenance every six months or so and to always make note of any unusual sounds it may be making so they can be further investigated.

Fortunately, most damage can be repaired, but it is essential that bigger issues only be dealt with by those who specialize in carbon frame repairs. A simple fix on the bike’s exterior should be fine if done at any bike shop, but if the frame’s integrity has been compromised an expert’s knowledge will be necessary.

Sometimes it makes more sense to replace a damaged part rather than get it fixed. Repairing can take a long time and be rather costly in some instances, and it may actually be cheaper and faster to simply order and install a replacement part. It all depends on where the damage is located and how extensive it is.

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