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I was reading another non bike forum and a mtb thread was posted. In one post someone mentioned they had a Cannondale and the next post was this:

"Cannondale = Crack and Fail. Cannondale grinds every weld, and gusset.
At the shop, we see more of thier cracked, and broken frames than any other bike."

and he went on to say this:

"Okay man, I'm not telling you from my personal experiance with one bike. I'm telling you that in a commercial business, and over the last 5 years my head mechanic has seen more defects and broken frames from Cannondale than any other bicycle manufactuer. And sure, I've seen broken Treks, Giants, Fishers, and Norcos, but because Cannondale grinds thier welds, it weakens the structual integrity."


I'm not a hard core racer or anything, just an avid rider, I've had three Cannondales 2 mtb and 1 roadie. I do ride my mountain bike on some regular singletrack, roots rocks etc. I"m 6ft, 220lbs and have never had any issue with frame cracking or anything of the sort. I don't do any boulder jumping or stuff that you might expect to push a bike to the limit. But then again the bike has to hold my fat ass over some rough stuff and hasn't let me down yet.

Anyway, of those of you who have ridden more different brands and kinds of bikes and maybe are more hard core, or know some of the actual numbers on frame or other breakage, do you see any truth to this guy's statements?

Personally I have always loved my Cannondales and never had a problem, would buy one again in a heartbeat. My first impression is that this guy is a dweeb and is just biased to his own brand or takes his "head mechanic's" words too seriously. But you never know....... My other impression is that even if there is some truth to it I probably don't thrash my bike hard enough to break a frame anyway. Maybe this "shop" is near a lot of crazy kiddo downhillers that trash any bike they get and just have daddy buy a new one..................


thoughts?
 

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LA CHÈVRE
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Here we go again... :rolleyes:
Perhaps the shop in question just sell more Cannondales than other brands...

In my experience, Cannondales are strong, as much as any other manufacturer. With all the testing they do, we can trust the bikes. Of course, you don't ride a Scalpel or a F-series bike like a Gemini or a Chase, common sense (something some consumers lack).

My personal experience tells me Cannondale frames are much stronger than Treks and Fishers. Every Fuel owners I have met have had to use their warranty and that's frightning. These frames crack like BBQ chips under an elephant! But that could also be due to a large number of Fuels in existence.
 

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I don't beleive Cannondale grinds their welds. Also Cannondale testing is insane. I'll see if I can't provide some links but I found some showing their test equipment, some test equipment was designed in house. The links were not from Cannondale but from a group representing the bike industry. t believe the post you refer to is not based on fact. I've seen posts on other boards saying Cannondale bikes really aren't made in the USA. Tell that to the workers in the Bedford plant.

"Tom Otis - Special Education Teacher

Persistence paid off for Pleasantville native Terry Crawford. He'd been working a construction job for a few years after he graduated from Chestnut Ridge High School in 1982, but when he decided that wasn't the career for him, he set his sights on a new career in manufacturing. "Back then (in the mid-1980s) there weren't a lot of alternatives, so I applied at Cannondale. I must have gone back every week for more than two months before they gave in and hired me," he said. He started as an entry-level finish weld sander, sanding the welds smooth on bicycle frames. Within three months he was tack welding - tacking the frame pieces in place; within six months he was a finish welder. Today he is a fabrication supervisor, overseeing the welding operation in the plant. As a supervisor he still does some welding, but much of his time is spent training new welders, scheduling the 35 welders who work in his department and monitoring the work flow for efficiency and quality.

The exceptional quality of the welding is a hallmark of Cannondale's bicycles, and Terry said that's a direct reflection on the unusually high skills and dedication of the Bedford workforce. "We've come a long way since I started in our welding skills," Terry said. "When I first started as a weld sander, we really did need to sand the welds to smooth the frames. Now our welds are so precise that we really don't need to sand - the welds are almost invisible even without sanding, more like they're molded than welded." He said that skill has been developed even though the aluminum and composite materials used in the hi-tech Cannondale bikes are more difficult to weld than steel. "I'd put our welding staff up against anyone in the world, we're that good," he said.

For young people thinking about a career in welding, he advises them to go through the Bedford County Technical Center program to learn metal working. "We sent one of our old welders to the Tech Center so the students could have experience welding aluminum," Terry said. "If they've gone through a program they can start out here or any other plant and begin welding right away. It's a big plus if they have that basic training already." In addition, Terry said a prospective welder should like working with his or her hands and like making a product. On a typical day 400 to 500 bikes are produced at the Cannondale plant, which means welders need to be both precise and productive to keep up with the work flow. "They should like the challenge of being part of a team to make that production happen," Terry said."

http://www.bcda.org/opportunities/04/tom_otis.php
 

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Apparently his shop doesn't sell Ellsworth. I have never meet an Ellsworth owner that has NOT cracked a frame. One close friend is on his 4th frame in 3yrs. To make matters worse after he sent the last one back they "revised" their warranty to define Lifetime as the product life cycle of the frame. So after they stop making a frame model your warranty is up.

As for Cannondale the welds are all sanded not ground. And it's a very light sanding, the welds are much smoother before sanding then anything you will see on other aluminum frames. If you saw a painted frame without sanded welds you wouldn't be able to notice a difference from more then 5 feet away.
 

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Hybrid Leftys aren't real
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Guy sounds like he has an axe to grind. In the several shops have worked in over the years, I have seen an equal number of frames break, more or less. Most often the frequent breakers are related to an individual, smae guy, multiple warranty situations. Ride the crap out of your Cannondale, it'll be fine=:)
 

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I don't own a Cannondale, but those bikes are some of the nicest out there. The local dealer explained the welding process to me, and I can't remember his words exactly, but I was under the impression that no grinding takes place.

Gorgeous frames, whether it's an entry-level Rush or a high-end System Six...
 

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Cannondale does indeed grind & sand the welds by hand.
Then they heat treat the entire frame so it's one contiguous piece of very hard aluminum.
Moot point, not even an issue. The uninformed ...well they're just that... the uninformed.:rolleyes:
 

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Upstairs at the shop I work part time for, we have a jeckel that was on a roof rack when someone went under a parking garage. It was destroyed pretty badly, the downtube broke in two as did other tubes, the crank was bent all over the place, and almost every component was destroyed. Not a single weld failure on it though. I've been riding for many years and still have a F4000 with alot of miles on it as well as newer stuff (1 Rush, 3 Scalpels, a cyclocross bike and a road bike) and I have never come close to ruining a frame. I have seen Cannondale give replacement frames and Lefty's to people for the most rediculously small defects. So if somebody thinks Cannondale is not taking care of the customers, they either have a bad local rep or a bad LBS. As for weld quality, the only time I have ever heard bad things about their welds is from employees of shops who are trying to sell other brands.
 

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I drove my F2000 on top of my Honda Passport roof rack right into my garage.
No damage whatsoever to the frame or headshock.
Wish I could say the same about Answer Hyperlite handlebar and the $1400 in damage to the roof of the Honda!
 
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