Compatibility Dilemma...Advice Needed

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2012 6:06 am

by tarantulalv

Hello, new here and looking for informed opinions.

Here is the jist of it...

2009 Defy Advanced 2 with a 1 1/8 top tube tapers to a 1 1/4 bottom.

Frame was replaced under warranty and the carbon/alloy steerer no longer match the rest of the bike at all and is rather hideous IMO. Unfortunatey or fortunately depending on what side of the matter you rest, we are in the world of Giant OverDrive 2 where 1 1/4 tops taper to 1 1/2.

What would you do? Pros/Cons

Option one:
Replace fork with full carbon 1 1/8 straight fork- I have chosen the Ritchey Pro Carbon and find some solution for the gap at the bottom of the tube...which I am not sure of yet. Potential steering precision and stiffness compromise, not to mention who knows what else...

Option two:
Convert the headset, bottom and stem to the newer Giant Overdrive 2 system which is reverse compatible but expensive and I would have to purchase a 2012 Defy Advanced 2 full composite fork and all the needed hardware which would be pricey to say the least.

Both options would solve the appearance problem and give me a full composite fork and steerer. Option one is on the surface the most financially desirable but I am not sure how to proceed or what course of action would be best negating as many potential performance downsides as possible.

Option two seems it could carry the potential of real measurable performance improvement based on Giant's claims of 30% increased stiffness ect.

Your opinions and suggestions are greatly appreciated.

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by shotgun

Can your LBS also replace your fork as well or even just a discounted replacement policy? Option 1 (if you do get to figure things out) might negate warranties of the frame and fork, while option 2 is expensive indeed.

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by tarantulalv

Unfortunately, the only forks available are the newer ones from Giant and my LBS says option 2 would be how to proceed, but they are currently toying with the idea of how to make the 1 1/8 Ritchey work with my tapered tube at the bottom as there is significantly less replacement of parts and cost involved, that is of course if there is a option that is not too great a performance compromise. I am thinking of calling Cane Creek or Ritchey in the morning and asking opinions as well. I really want to get this stuff wrapped up.

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by billysan

What good is a warranty replacement frame if you are unable to use it? Why should you be expected to have to buy a new fork to enable you to ride the bike again?

I've been pretty impressed with Giant warranty claims in the past so am slightly suprised by this. Who ever sent out the frame might not have actually realised the problem.

I would go for option 2, but insist that the LBS push this back up to Giant as a continuation of the original claim.

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by BeeBee30

Giant should definitely sort you out with a fork but it is possible to convert a standard 1 1/8 fork to fit using a shim to enable fitment of the 1 1/4 crown race onto the 1 1/8 fork crown, I've done it with great results.
Ti or dye!

The Weenie formally known as CAADHEAD

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by ldamelio

Agree with poster who says that Giant should warranty frame/fork as a unit in this situation. if not, how about simple repaint of fork to cosmetically acceptable color ? - should be relatively inexpensive.

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by Camilo

I wouldn't do any of this fiddly stuff until I was absolutely sure that Giant wouldn't do the right thing and make you whole (which they aren't at this point). I'd be escalating from friendly negotiation to anger and treats, as needed, until I was satisfied.

One option I don't think I saw mentioned is to simply have the old fork painted to match the new frame. To me, if Giant paid for that, it would make you whole, and then you could decide if that's good enough for you or if you want to pay (yourself) for one of the make-do workarounds you've listed. I'd bet any autobody shop could make the old fork look very nice with the new frame especially if they had a photo of the correct matching color pattern. They can match the paint on the new frame using thier computerized optical analysis stuff.

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by tarantulalv

Thanks everyone for the replies and advice.

Apparently FSA has a very simple solution for less than $15 that they claim works flawlessly and will have no noticeable problems if installed properly. They spent a surprisingly long time explaining to me why this part was designed and that I most certainly am not the first serious recreational cyclist to make these modifications with positive results. To them it is not some random risky hack/ducktape modification.

Giant is saying they no longer stock forks that fit my bike and that the fork is not covered under warranty just because the frame happens to have been replaced. Despite this they would replace it simply on customer satisfaction, but have no fitting replacements in a compatible color scheme at this time.

Finally I really do want a full composite fork at this point (which is why simply painting the fork leaves me like... meh) and think I will try the FSA route as I also have a Ritchey Carbon stem and Carbon bar already installed so the fork does complement the overall color scheme of the bike and other components installed.

Unfortunately I am afraid it just took me too long to build up enough frustration and sense of entitlement to challenge the situation. Had I done this a year earlier, when they replaced the frame, I am sure it would have been simpler or there would have been a better chance.

Thanks for the feedback. Live and learn...

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by Mr.Gib

I think the LBS goofed originally.

I had a TCR Advance with a mere paint crack in the head tube that was replaced fork and all by Giant no questions asked. Giant does this routinely.

Frames and forks are a system, whether it be mechanical or aesthetic. They should always be replaced together.

Sorry for your hassle.
wheelsONfire wrote: When we ride disc brakes the whole deal of braking is just like a leaving a fart. It happens and then it's over. Nothing planned and nothing to get nervous for.

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