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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've just joined the Niner nation by buying a Jet 9 RDO, after riding a Tallboy 1 for 3 years and have been really impressed with the bike's handling manners and especially the CVA pedalling platform compared to the TB. Unfortunately, after about 3 rides, I noticed some crack lines starting to appear around the curving of where the seat tube becomes the top tube. I was on a road trip, and continued to ride it (somewhat nervously), and watched the cracks slowly spread. I've read a lot about lower seat tube cracks around the rear shock, but I'm wondering if any other riders have been experiencing this type of frame failure. I have lots of seatpost in the seat tube, so it's not a rider error. Am I unlucky with a "bad" frame, or is this another issue appearing on the Jet 9 RDO?

I have heard about Niner's quick customer service in this forum, but so far I haven't been impressed...no one answering the phone or returning calls. I've experienced warranty claims from the bigger companies, and they have certainly been quicker and more responsive in their customer service.

Any feedback or input would be appreciated.
Thanks
 

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I developed a crack on my
Medium size frame in that same spot. Also a crack around the top of the head tube. Niner did offer to make it right, but I changed brands.


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Unfortunately, after about 3 rides, I noticed some crack lines starting to appear around the curving of where the seat tube becomes the top tube


I had the same thing happen in the same place. Took it to my bike shop and they looked at it and was only cracks in the clear coat. They are very faint and you have to look to see them. Nothing like the cracks that are causing frame replacements.
Shop told me all was fine and I have been riding it like I stole it for almost a year since with no issues.
Now if people are saying I might be able to get a replacement RDO for my current carbon then maybe I should revisit the issue.
 

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Where did you buy the frame? Ninner works like most bigger companies now and you need to go through the dealer for warranty.

What generation is your frame? If you take out the seat tube and press on the area can you feel any movement at all?

Post a picture.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I bought my frame from an authorized retailer. I have the new 2013 Jet RDO with the 142 mm axle and the new cable routing. I haven't pulled the seat tube out yet to check, the crack site is down in the bottom of the curve so away from the seat tube, and the frame itself feels solid while I push on it. I will get a picture and post it. The way I see it is that even if it is cracks in the clearcoat, something is under stress and moving too much to cause cracking that is continuing to spread, so there is a frame flaw/weakness.
 

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Carbon & Ti rule
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I bought my frame from an authorized retailer. I have the new 2013 Jet RDO with the 142 mm axle and the new cable routing. I haven't pulled the seat tube out yet to check, the crack site is down in the bottom of the curve so away from the seat tube, and the frame itself feels solid while I push on it. I will get a picture and post it. The way I see it is that even if it is cracks in the clearcoat, something is under stress and moving too much to cause cracking that is continuing to spread, so there is a frame flaw/weakness.
That would be my take on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I sent in a warranty claim through a LBS, and Niner is warrantying the frame, another frame is on the way, so they are looking after me. I'm wondering if this is going to be a recurring problem for me, or did I get unlucky with my frame? Is the RIP 9 RDO a stronger frame, or will I potentially see the same problems with it? It looks like from the numbers, that a Jet 9 RDO with a 120 mm fork is very close to a RIP RDO with a 120 fork, other than more travel in the rear. I really like the Jet 9 RDO in it's handling, more natural than the TB with 120 mm, it's a big sluggish to get up speed, but it hauls, after 3-4 accelerating pedal strokes. But, I don't want to be without a frame again over the summer, so should I stay with Jet 9 RDO, or look to something else?
 

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How much do you weigh? How much seat tube do you have showing? Some really big guys are just not built for these bikes. The jet has its limits, but the latest rev frames seem pretty stout to me.

The RIP RDO is a much more beefy frame (considerably more material). The jet is designed for XC racing, while the RIP RDO is a carbon trail bike built to take more trail abuse.

I don't have the rip RDO myself, but my riding buddy does and he has taken his off some major stuff (bike park style riding, big drops to flat....). The fame is fine, but he has destroyed the shock and fork. That gives you an idea of how sturdy the fame is. But since since it is carbon, it still has some nasty scratches and chips from banging into rocks on the trail. That is just the nature of carbon on a bike that really gets ridden to the limits in rocky conditions.

Bottom line, it depends a lot on the rider and where and how you ride. Even though the Jet can be ridden as a trail bike, it is very much near its limits on many trails. I think many people push it much harder than they would a typical 100mm bike because the suspension is that good.
 

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...I'm wondering if this is going to be a recurring problem for me, or did I get unlucky with my frame?
My shop has warrantied a truckload of carbon Jet 9 frames with some version of a seat tube crack, from all sizes and styles of riders. I'm guessing it's something that Niner is getting straightened out with their manufacturing people.
 

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My shop has warrantied a truckload of carbon Jet 9 frames with some version of a seat tube crack, from all sizes and styles of riders. I'm guessing it's something that Niner is getting straightened out with their manufacturing people.
Really, cracks at the upper seat tube? Granted, the lower problem on the first few gens was common, but I did not think upper seat tube cracks were common at all.

I personally had two failures on the early gen frame, but both times I was back on the trail within 7 days with great customer service from niner. I now have the latest rev and it is much thicker (and unfortunately heavier) in several key areas.

BTW, I'm not a big carbon fan. When people ask me for my opinion on what bike to get I always suggest they avoid carbon unless they have the luxury of having multiple bikes... It is great to ride, but there are just too many potential issues for them in rough conditions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I'm an near Clydes rider with a quite a bit of seatpost out (36" inseam), but I run a 400 mm post, so I still have more than enough in the seat tube. I like to race and ride technical XC, and I love to descend. I bought this bike with stage racing in mind, but now a little concerned with the long term durability of it.

In terms of carbon frames, I have had good luck until now (a hardtail frame, and a Tallboy frame, along with multiple road bikes), and this is my first warranty issue. I heard of TB riders having multiple frame breakages, but fortunately I did not have to deal with this. It sounds like this high seat tube crack is still a work in progress for Niner?
 
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