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Ever had to limp home because of mech mishap?

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Ever had to limp home because of mech mishap?

Old 09-17-19, 08:11 AM
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I had my MTB saddle assembly break apart while riding over a wooden bridge. Bolts and nuts fell in between the planks and into the river below. Twenty miles from home, I had to make the Call of Shame. No way I was pedaling standing for 20 miles!
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Old 09-17-19, 08:19 AM
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Limped back to my truck with an old MTB I once had. Came out of some unfamiliar woods and wrecked going down a hill. Sat for a while, recited my phone number, address, etc. back to myself (I fell hard!) When I decided I was OK to drive myself home, loaded the mtn.bike in the truck and drove home. The old bike had a quill stem, and when I fell, it twisted the handlebars around so they pointed in the same direction as the top tube. The truck was only around 50 yards away.
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Old 09-17-19, 08:54 AM
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I've had a few; normally I'll call for a ride for anything more than a couple miles or so. I had two tires blow out within a month last summer (2018) and ended up walking 4 and 6 miles to work -- wasn't worth shootin' for the rest of those two days. Rode a pedal shaft a couple miles home once, but called for a ride when another one disintegrated 25 miles from home.

You ride long enough and far enough, you'll have some problems. Better maintenance could have prevented 90% of my show-stoppers. Maybe this year I'll learn my lesson? Or perhaps I should say, maybe this autumn...
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Old 09-17-19, 09:12 AM
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1. Was descending Mt. Diablo one afternoon when BAM! The front hub flange had broken apart, taking a few spokes with it. The wheel was now so badly out of true that the tire was rubbing on both bork blades.

I had a spoke wrench with me, so I adjusted the other spokes enough to allow the tire to clear the fork blades, removed the front brake caliper, and continued the descent with just the rear brake. Descending Mt. Diablo with just a rear brake was a bit exciting.

2. Started up the steep part of Highway 9 by sprinting in the big ring, then shifting down to the small ring when CRUNCH! Chain suck on the front ring had pulled off the rear derailleur.

I had a chain tool with me, so I removed the rear derailleur and shortened the chain to turn the bike into a single speed. Turned the bike around and limped home slowly.
Ride, Rest, Repeat
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Old 09-17-19, 09:13 AM
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Popped half of my quick link off doing a bonehead shift starting up an incline. I spent 30 minutes walking around looking for it before I caved in and made the call of shame. Happy to report that many people, cars and other cyclists, stopped to see if I needed help.
I now carry a chain break tool and a spare quick link on every ride.
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Old 09-17-19, 09:19 AM
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Originally Posted by robnol View Post
I was out on a training ride.i was 15 miles from home.i went over some train tracks when my right cleat on my shoe broke off....I had to single leg pedal the 13 miles home...anyone else ever have to limp ur bike home
Ride long enough, and these things will happen. Mechanical objects fail.

PS: grammar isn't just a set of rules...it's a damn good idea.
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Old 09-17-19, 09:33 AM
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My chain snapped as I stood up to sprint on a green light in front of the Philly Art Museum. Walked the 3 miles home in road shoes with blood dripping down my left knee (where the chain ring got me in the crash) into my socks. I took a shower and then took a cab to the hospital to get stitches. Totally my fault with the chain, though. I had been messing with it the day before.
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Old 09-17-19, 09:40 AM
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Wind jacket came loose and wound in the rear wheel, trashing the RD (40'skid!).

Was able to shorten the chain, and single-speed the remaining 40 miles of the ride.

Another time got a stick in the RD 5 miles from pavement. Single speed again, but did not get the chain line right,

so the chain came loose under load- had to walk up the hills. Could have limped the hilly 10 paved miles but would have been late for a date, so made the call.

Third time stick in RD, bent hanger, but only lost a few gears, so completed the ride.

Even have pics:

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Old 09-17-19, 09:58 AM
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I was out on a long ride and noticed that my rear wheel went out of true. SO I slowed down quite a bit for the rest of the ride and took it really easy going up or down hills. Got home and took a really good look at the wheel and found this split in the rim.

I thought that was pretty bad. Then I took the tire off the wheel became like this.

Those long splits are on both sides of the rim. I'm surprised but glad I never punctured. It seems that only the tire pressure was keeping the wheel rideable. As soon as I took one side of the tire off at home here the wheel potato chipped and the splits came further away from the rim. Lady Luck was certainly with me that day because it'd have been a long walk home if the wheel had potato chipped like that on the ride.

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Old 09-17-19, 10:31 AM
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Had a rear derailleur rip itself off from a stick caught in the drivetrain. I shortened the chain and tried to run it as a singlespeed, but the chain kept trying to climb up the ramps into the larger cogs so it kept jamming.

I also once had a chain break and managed to put it back together (sort of) with a rock. That got me far enough to find someone working in their garage who I could ask to borrow some pliers to improve my repair, and that got me home by soft pedalling and not shifting.

I once had my frame break at the junction of chainstay and rear dropout at the turnaround point of a popular 50 km out-and-back route, and every time I tried to pedal the tire would rub up against the chainstay, so I got my ridding buddy to tow me with a piece of rope I found on the side of the road.
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Old 09-17-19, 11:44 AM
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Had a saddle and seatpost stolen, once. Walked.

Had a seatpost break, once. Walked, carrying the saddle.

Other than those to instances, I've been fairly lucky. I seem to recall one or two flats out in the wilds, back when I was very young, but that was solved once I began taking spare tubes, repair kits and tools with me.
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Old 09-17-19, 11:47 AM
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Worst was when top tube cracked. Decided it better to call for a ride. Some friends a mile away were home and picked me up.

RD cable broke. I jammed a stick in the parallelogram to get it in a decent gear and rode home in "stick shift" mode. Now I carry a spare inner cable

Broken spoke, opened up brakes, rode a few miles to a shop that was on the trail and open. They replaced it while I waited and trued the wheel.
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Old 09-17-19, 04:54 PM
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Last edited by Cyclist753; 01-11-20 at 10:53 AM.
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Old 09-17-19, 05:56 PM
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On two occasions I've had RD cables break going up some stoopid 10% grade, both times out in the country ~15 miles from home. In both cases, I ended up walking the hill and then having some extra fun sprinting rollers to get back home. I'm a bit more vigilant about keeping track of mileage on my cables now.

When I was first learning how to wrench, I had a left side crank arm come completely off. Fortunately, I was about a mile from home. I quickly learned about proper torque.

I've also had a couple of run-ins with vehicles. That resulted in literal limping, as I'm too cheap to pay for an ambulance if I'm able to walk.

The totally busted tire (before I learned how to boot tires) resulted in a ride home. From a stranger. Nice guy.
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Old 09-17-19, 06:05 PM
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"Limped home" once when the front brake caliper bolt came out leaving my front brakes dangling in the wind (or rattling off the spokes if you were not careful). I kind of carried it home in my left hand while riding carefully. Around 12 miles - could have been worse I guess.

I also once took off a cycling jacket and wrapped it around my waist. Not long after that one of the arms (or something) came loose and it got sucked by my rear wheel into the rear brake calipers. I was going downhill at maybe 30 mph at the time. It kind of shredded the tire and was so tightly stuck between the wheel and calipers that I could not get the wheel off (not that it would have helped without a spare tire). Had to flag a ride. The first guy that stopped was in a really small car with no room for the bike, so I hid the bike in some bushes and as quick as I could drove back to get it. I got lucky - it was still there.

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Old 09-17-19, 06:48 PM
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Many years ago, I was on a mountain bike ride that was more of a gravel grinder ride (before those bike were a glimmer in some marketing man’s eye). My wife had just biffed her head when she crashed at the bottom of a hill and had completely forgotten about 3 miles of the ride. Thankfully, someone was sagging so they took her back to the car. I was supposed to meet them shortly since we were only about 10 miles from the car and the road was pretty fast. At the bottom of the next hill, I went to downshift and the front derailer cable split lengthwise. That stuck me in low gear on the crank which was a 22 or even a 20 (I don’t recall which). I could pedal like mad for the first 100 feet or so of the downhill and then coast until I slowed enough to get the cadence down and then grind up the next hill. It was an endless series of hills and troughs about 1/2 mile from top to top. It took close to an hour and a half to cover the distance.

I missed a curb cut at about 35mph and folded a suspension fork in half while doing a perfect Greg Louganis dismount. I pivoted on my helmet and laid straight out on the grass. I was about a mile from work and had to carry the bike back up there (precell phone) because I couldn’t get anyone to give me a ride. Unlike my wife, I never lose any time when I smack my head. I remember all the details!
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Old 09-17-19, 06:56 PM
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1974, Del Mar California. I had ridden my PX10 on sewups for three years with no problems. Even went on two different week long tours. But I was always wary of those tires, sure I had replaced a couple that had flatted. That day I had mounted two new Clement DelMondo (real silk) tires and was feeling good and fast. About two blocks from my house I ran over something and front and back both were going around shew shew shew. I walked back to the house and threw my bike down in disgust. Those tires were $20 each! That was half my months rent, gone. When I went home on vacation I had Jacques build me a new pair of clincher wheels with Phil Wood hubs and Super Champion rims. Those wheels are still going strong.
(Note: dates in this story may have drifted in the 40+ years. But the emotion of two flats at once lives on)
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Old 09-17-19, 08:55 PM
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  1. Lost MissingLink in Central Park. I put a new cassette, and it rubbed on the dork disc. This caused the chain/RD oscillate while coasting downhill. The link opened and the chain fell. Picked the chain and took a subway ride of shame.
  2. Rear tire exploded on the C&O in Cumberland, 1/4 mile from the bike shop. I was very lucky that it did not happen further down the trail.
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Old 09-17-19, 09:13 PM
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I'm quite independent, and until recently was mostly car-free. Still do quite a bit of bike commuting. So, there have been moments of improvised repairs.

A couple of years ago, I blew the bead off of about 6" of tire/sidewall, at around mile 70 of a 150 mile ride.

I had a rag to stuff into the tire for a boot, and electrical tape. Then the next 20 miles to the nearest bike shop, I scanned the road shoulders for whatever looked like it would help.

At some point, I removed the rear brake pads and wrapped the string I had found around the tire.

I also wrapped the left chainstay with electrical tape to protect from rub. There was mighty low clearance on the bike.
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Old 09-17-19, 09:22 PM
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General comment: you all have made me add a chain tool to my road kit.

Originally Posted by Wilfred Laurier View Post
I once had my frame break at the junction of chainstay and rear dropout at the turnaround point of a popular 50 km out-and-back route, and every time I tried to pedal the tire would rub up against the chainstay, so I got my ridding buddy to tow me with a piece of rope I found on the side of the road.
I hope you found a long stick and dangled an energy bar in front of him.
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Old 09-17-19, 10:11 PM
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With the e-bikes i'ive had a snapped chain and snapped a pedal off. Both times i was able to get home on electric-alone. I had electric failure when a hall sensor failed on my first one, but i had low enough gearing to get home (With a child on the back).

Manual bikes have always been expendable. Chuck 'em in a bush, get a bus/taxi.
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Old 09-18-19, 06:51 AM
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I had a pedal that had been cross threaded into the crank arm once. About 2 miles from home it had worked it's way loose, tearing up the threads leaving no way to put the pedal back in. And when I stopped to check on that I found a tack nail sticking out of my tire.

It was a used bike I had just bought cheap. I was just giving it an initial ride to see what it needed. The ride started off great so I went further than I planned on. I didn't have any of my repair stuff packed onto it yet (tube, tools, etc)....pro tip...don't do that.

So there was no fixing it and nursing it home. I just had to walk.

$40 worth of parts and repairs later and the bike is running good as new though!
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Old 09-18-19, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by MikeyMK View Post
With the e-bikes i'ive had a snapped chain and snapped a pedal off. Both times i was able to get home on electric-alone. I had electric failure when a hall sensor failed on my first one, but i had low enough gearing to get home (With a child on the back).

Manual bikes have always been expendable. Chuck 'em in a bush, get a bus/taxi.
Is the British landscape littered with “chucked,” expendable manual bikes?

And here I thought that the throw-away mentality was a totally American thing.

Or maybe that’s that famous British humour at work.
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Old 09-18-19, 09:13 AM
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I was hit by a drunk driver; I had the right-away, and he was turning. I actually flew in the air for a brief moment. He didn't even stop the car until well after plowing into me. I was limping, but a kind person drove me home.
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Old 09-18-19, 09:20 AM
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Worst mechanical problem I had was on my old mountain bike. The left pedal was coming loose and unscrewing from the crank arm. Luckily I had a multitool with pliers with me, so I tightened it back up. Apparently I didn't do a good enough job because it started coming loose again. Tightened it up even tighter and managed to make the 6 miles back home where I put a wrench on it and tightened it properly. Luckily I no longer have that bike.
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