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Front wheel goes off kilter

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Front wheel goes off kilter

Old 06-19-21, 12:41 AM
  #1  
KermitBlix
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Front wheel goes off kilter

Hello Bike Forum folks!

I just purchased a new-to-me 2018 Blix Komfort Prima ebike. I have only ridden the bike a few miles yesterday and today, but both days the front wheel started centered in the fork and then went off-kilter. The first day the wheel got completely loose before I noticed what was going on. Today, I kept checking the wheel and stopped once I saw it was no longer centered in the fork.

Things I have tried so far: tightening the quick release and checking that both centering springs are on the skewer and oriented with the smaller sides facing one another.

For context, I am nervous about going too fast, but live in a hilly area so I end up riding the hydraulic disc brakes a lot. I purchased the bike online and had it packed up by an LBS and shipped to me via FedEx. The front wheel was removed for that journey from CA to WA.

Thanks in advance for helping me to diagnose this problem. I live in the boondocks so it would be great if I could get this sorted out without having to trek to the big city.

Kermit
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Old 06-19-21, 03:12 AM
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How do you tighten the quick release?

Is it a standard quick release with thumb nut on one end thin spindle, and a lever on the other end?

The lever tightens/loosens the QR. Flip the lever to "OPEN", tighten till you can flip the lever about halfway with minimal tension, then flip it into closed/lock position. I like to tighten mine to about as tight as I can get it, but perhaps am over-tensioning a bit.

Generally people put the lever on the left side for both front and rear, although I like to have my rear on the right because I tow trailers a lot.

When you lock the lever, find a "safe place" for it. A few different methods. May people like the lever to come out just behind the fork, or in the middle of the rear triangle. Or straight back so it can't snag anything.
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Old 06-19-21, 05:11 AM
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Also check the faces of the quick-release and thumb nut where it comes against the fork, there should be some serrations to help "lock" it in place, if worn, replace the quick release assembly
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Old 06-19-21, 07:19 AM
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What type of quick release? The open cam type is much less effective than the closed type cam
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Old 06-19-21, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
How do you tighten the quick release?

Is it a standard quick release with thumb nut on one end thin spindle, and a lever on the other end?

The lever tightens/loosens the QR. Flip the lever to "OPEN", tighten till you can flip the lever about halfway with minimal tension, then flip it into closed/lock position. I like to tighten mine to about as tight as I can get it, but perhaps am over-tensioning a bit.

Generally people put the lever on the left side for both front and rear, although I like to have my rear on the right because I tow trailers a lot.

When you lock the lever, find a "safe place" for it. A few different methods. May people like the lever to come out just behind the fork, or in the middle of the rear triangle. Or straight back so it can't snag anything.
I like to set the lever tension so it makes a mark on my palm when I push it home. It should take quite a bit of effort to open it up again. https://www.alsbicycles.com/articles...ctly-pg314.htm The last picture in the linked article shows the less-desirable "open" type of QR mechanism, the others show the more-effective closed type. Both need lubrication for maximum effectiveness.
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Old 06-19-21, 11:31 AM
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Most new bikes have some kind of a provision to help prevent the front wheel from falling off. But, in general it is not a good idea to ride with a loose front wheel.

If you lose the wheel on a bump while going fast, then you could do significant damage to your bike, as well as risking personal injury.

Last edited by CliffordK; 06-19-21 at 11:38 AM.
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Old 06-19-21, 01:17 PM
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I wonder if the brake's reaction is causing the left side axle end to migrate down in the drop out slot. If so then the rim/tire will gradually move closer to the left side's fork blade. I also suspect that the OEM Q/R is the cheap and low clamping force "open cam" type and that replacing the QR with a all metal "enclosed cam" type will make some difference. I also suspect that the drop out slots are configured like most bikes have been for decades. The slot opens toward the ground and not forwards, which is the better direction for a disk brake bike. Andy
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Old 06-19-21, 02:41 PM
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Many thanks

Thanks all for all the good information and suggestions.

The QR brand is Quando - would that make it open or closed cam?

I checked the serrations on both ends and they look to still have plenty of "teeth" on them.

I was also careful to follow the guidance regarding how to correctly tighten and close the QR correctly.

I would include photos but can't do that until I have made 10 posts on the forums (two down...)

I definitely don't want this to be a recurring issue given the 500 ft altitude drop between my house and the grocery store. Any specific brand recommendations for replacement QRs?

Thanks again for everyone's help,
Kermit
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Old 06-19-21, 02:54 PM
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The single search for "quando quick release" shows only open cam skewers. Shimano uses only enclosed cam skewers, as example.

Are you near a LBS? most shops have a used QR skewer box. We see so few customers who want a new skewer that we don't stock much unused ones and instead sell many used for a bunch less. Andy
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Old 06-19-21, 03:14 PM
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@KermitBlix's Album:
https://www.bikeforums.net/g/user/541186
https://www.bikeforums.net/g/album/21708464



LEFT


RIGHT
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Old 06-19-21, 03:34 PM
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The photos look like the dropouts aren't bent from the looks of the wear at least. As mentioned I would suspect the skewer needs to be replaced with a higher quality piece such as Shimano's or others.
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Old 06-19-21, 03:35 PM
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1000 words

Clifford - thanks for posting my photos (I had no idea they went into an album!)

The first picture is similar to the Quando QR on the Blix. I have read up some more on QR design and now understand that this indeed an open cam QR. I'll call around to the nearest LBS to see if they might have a replacement QR with the right length and diameter. Anything else I should request?

Is it an issue that the left dropout would appear to be barely on the hub axle (please do correct me if I'm using the wrong terms)? Does this confirm Andrew's theory?

Thanks again for keeping me safe! I had a bad bike wreck many years ago on a faulty rental bike. I am hoping to rebuild my confidence so I can manage the hills all around.

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Old 06-19-21, 03:42 PM
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I don't see anything too out of place. Steel dropouts should be good.

I see the disc on the left, as well as a bit more wear on that side.

Both the locknut on the hub as well as the quick release skewer should be knurled.

First of all... open the quick release, and make sure the wheel sits properly in both dropouts when the bike is sitting on the floor, or even upside-down. I never fully install a front wheel in the air. It is always with the bike on the floor.

I wonder if @Andrew R Stewart; is onto something with respect to the disc brakes (one of the reasons that a lot of disc brake bikes have gone to through axles.

What I probably would do is to go to a local bike shop or bike coop and try to find a Shimano or similar quick release.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/224478799340



Make sure you get it good and tight.



One issue I had with the rear QR on one bicycle was that the the QR spindle is smaller than the interior dimension of the axle (as it should be).
The wheel would pull forward that 1/32" or so which was just enough to cause me problems with chainstay clearance.

My solution was to pull the QR on the DS side back slightly as I was tightening it.

In the case of the OP, he could pull the brake side of the QR nut up (or in parallel to the brake disc) as it is being locked down.
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Old 06-19-21, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by KermitBlix View Post
Is it an issue that the left dropout would appear to be barely on the hub axle (please do correct me if I'm using the wrong terms)? Does this confirm Andrew's theory?
Ideally the axle should extend about halfway through the dropout.

Yours do look a little short.

The Over Locknut Dimension (OLD) of most modern front quick release hubs and forks is 100mm, with a few exceptions of folding bicycles.

I think 106mm is not uncommon for axle lengths. If threaded on the ends, you can recenter the axle (often requiring adjusting the axle cones). That gives you about 3mm of axle sticking out.

Wheels Manufacturing sells a replacement front axle that is 110mm long.

That gives you about 5mm of axle sticking out (hopefully shorter than your dropouts).

However, you don't need a lot of axle sticking out, and I'm not convinced that is your problem.
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Old 06-19-21, 05:36 PM
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When you say the wheel is off kilter, is it because the axle and QR have moved in the drop outs? Or is there something else going on and the QR is just a red herring?
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Old 06-19-21, 05:48 PM
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Through axles with disk brakes have a few reasons to be. One is the inferred trapping of the axle, and no migration due to reaction forces. Another is repeatable reinstalling the wheel and maintaining the pad/rotor clearances. Well designed through axles control the axle seating into the drop out consistently. Last is with suspension forks there's less flex with a through axle's stiffer axle and larger axle/dropout surface contact area. Andy
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Old 06-19-21, 05:56 PM
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And looking at the op's pics of the fork ends just now, the axle doesn't seem to extend out of the bearing cone or spacer. It should extend out far enough so the fork end can securely rest on it.
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