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Dear Learned Friends,

Any sage advice welcome to help solve an annoying issue...

On and off, for about two years, I have found myself pulling my back wheel out of the dropouts when climbing out of the saddle. I'm getting very fed up having to stop and reset my wheel on hills.

Wheel pulls out of drive side dropout and wedges on non drive seatstay
Frame and dropouts are titanium
Wheels are Prolite Bracciano

I've tried a few things, but nothing seems to work consistently:

Changed stock open cam skewers to closed cam levers.
Added serrated washer to drive side
Experimented with monster clamping force and different lever positions

Any ideas how to stop this? Would roughing up the dropout surfaces help? If so what with and by how much?

37 comments

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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Pass.

(Other than saying get thee to a frame builder so they can check alignment of the frame/dropouts and hub width)

Do you have legs that make Rob Forstermann look like Charles Hawtrey?

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jason.timothy.jones [294 posts] 2 years ago
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can you take a photo of the drive side dropout and post here?

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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Have you replicated the problem with a different wheel?

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jason.timothy.jones [294 posts] 2 years ago
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looks deep enough, but it is a bit rounded to the front, but I cant imagine that would be the problem if the QR is tight enough

im stumped

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Jack Osbourne snr [572 posts] 2 years ago
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Let's imagine that I can lay down the power, if not for long! I'm more Jan Ulrich than Marco Pantani when it comes to climbing style...but only style.

I haven't tried another wheel, no. That would have been the obvious thing to do  40

Not the best of pics...

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Flying Scot [921 posts] 2 years ago
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This sounds like a classic case of the axle not being centred in the hub - which means that the quick release is binding down hard on the end of the axle rather than on the drop out. Count the number of axle threads protruding from the drop out - they should be equal.

...Only thing is, these aren't cup and cone hubs are they?

So can you actually re-centre the axle, IIRC, the non drive side just taps in with a fixed cone and you adjust the drive side.

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Jack Osbourne snr [572 posts] 2 years ago
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Flying Scot wrote:

This sounds like a classic case of the axle not being centred in the hub - which means that the quick release is binding down hard on the end of the axle rather than on the drop out. Count the number of axle threads protruding from the drop out - they should be equal.

...Only thing is, these aren't cup and cone hubs are they?

So can you actually re-centre the axle, IIRC, the non drive side just taps in with a fixed cone and you adjust the drive side.

If only it was. I ruled this out at the roadside the first time this happened.

This isn't the issue as there is about 2mm between the outside edge of the axle and the outside of the dropout with the QR out. Both sides appear equal and the gap drops equally under compression from the QR. At no point is the end of the axle any closer than 1mm to the
Inside faces of the QR.

Prolite Bracciano wheels have cartridge bearing hubs, so no adjustment as with cup n cone.

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Flying Scot [921 posts] 2 years ago
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I thought that might be the case, but thought I would post this in case someone with cup and cone hubs found it useful for the same issue.

The inside of the QR and the hub outer nut faces should have serrations in them to allow a 'bite' make sure these and the drop outs are clean and free of paint or grease. - Though I imagine you've already done this!

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Jack Osbourne snr [572 posts] 2 years ago
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All suggestions welcome. Someone else with a similar issue might get a eureka moment even if it doesn't solve my own issue. Look after the next generation etc etc...

My feeling is that the dropout being titanium and therefore preventing much of the 'bite' of the QR is the root of the problem. how would I get round that? Does anyone do skewers with titanium friction surfaces?

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Flying Scot [921 posts] 2 years ago
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Okay, spoke to 'my' wheel builder.

Some skewers don't bite the Ti hard enough, he says most dura ace or campag ones will bite, you need to look for some that have good serrations.
There are apparently some boutique ones made for the job, but they are expensive.

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dave atkinson [6262 posts] 2 years ago
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Have you tried using an anti-slip compound on the dropouts? Would help the qrs to bite.

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Jack Osbourne snr [572 posts] 2 years ago
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Flying Scot wrote:

Some skewers don't bite the Ti hard enough, he says most dura ace or campag ones will bite, you need to look for some that have good serrations.

Another very valid possibility.

I had assumed it was the clamping power bonus with the closed cam design of DA and Campagnolo more than the serrations.

I'm a Campag guy, so I happened to have one lying around from an old wheelset and tried this about a year ago. This seems to be the most successful recommendation elsewhere on t'internet.

Guess what... It didnae work for me  20

Dave - what is this magical anti slip compound of which you speak? Tell me more

(I did at one point consider super-gluing the QR nut to the drive side dropout)

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Fringe [1047 posts] 2 years ago
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Have you tired bolt on skewers?
These work well, can get them to 8nm.

http://store.halo-usa.com/c/skewers_bolt-on?pkey=3e15699d0187b52489eb5e8...

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Flying Scot [921 posts] 2 years ago
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Apparently you need either very hard or very soft QR faces, so that they either bite or deform.

A wee bit of wet and dry wouldn't go amiss where it mates.

Are there serrations on the inside (hub side)?

I've got Record and 105 hubs here, both are.

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Jack Osbourne snr [572 posts] 2 years ago
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The hub ends do have serrations and after a bit of cleaning round the dropout last night, I was able to feel where that face had bitten into the inside of the dropout.

Thinking about it, this suggests that the clamping strength is actually okay and the issue is friction/biting-in related on the QR side? Serrations may indeed be the answer.

So.... Scuff up the dropout faces a bit?

Would anti-vibration washers be any better than the inside faces of the QR?

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Jack Osbourne snr [572 posts] 2 years ago
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BTW Flying Scot... I'm guessing "your" wheel builder is a tall gentleman who works out of Clachan of Campsie?

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Gareth W-R [40 posts] 2 years ago
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Try carbon paste, its a bit gritty and gives more grip.... May work.

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drfabulous0 [409 posts] 2 years ago
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Basic mechanical design, the material removed from the dropout with the cutouts probably isn't helping and the opening seems to be a little wider than normal, being Ti as well and given you have tried everything else my guess is it's the dropout itself that's the problem. the first thing I would do is get it to a top mechanic and have the alignment checked and corrected if possible. Failing that I would consider having a frame builder replace both dropouts with a more functional set, even if they aren't so pretty.

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dave atkinson [6262 posts] 2 years ago
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Jack Osbourne snr wrote:

Dave - what is this magical anti slip compound of which you speak? Tell me more

this kind of thing:

http://www.wiggle.co.uk/finish-line-fiber-grip-carbon-fibre-assembly-gel...

there's different variants but basically they contain particles to give a better grip between surfaces. designed for carbon components that you don't want to overtighten, but might be of use in your case too

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dave atkinson [6262 posts] 2 years ago
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or this'n is a bit cheaper and less specifically for carbon

http://www.wiggle.co.uk/ritchey-liquid-torque/

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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It's a bodge but el cheapo bikes have a tabbed washer that goes underneath the wheel axle nut and the tab goes into a slot in the dropout. Brompton from wheels too I think. Could you do something similar - a nice meaty QR skewer and some tabbed washers. Perhaps some local engineering place could make summat up. An MTB skewer may be suitable as it's a bit longer as mtb hub spacing is wider. (?)

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Jack Osbourne snr [572 posts] 2 years ago
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Thanks to all for your suggestions.

I've pretty much ruled out the realignment option until the final, last, ultimate, nothing left in the bag moment due to the likely difficulty in fixing anything because it's all Ti.

So here's my plan of attack over the next few weeks (this is my Sunday fun bike as the daily commute requires something more tank-like, so it'll take a while to test).

1. Clinical clean of dropout, axle and QR mating surfaces (again)
2. As above plus light scuffing of dropout with summat rough
3. As above plus liquid torque or similar
4. As above but buy new QR with sharp serrations
5. Bite bullet and ride bike to mechanical wizard for alignment check
6. ...

Basically, least-most cost in order of attack. In the interests of info for all I'll report back after each stage.

One other thing I might try in the last resort region is a flat drilled bracket bolted to the mudguard eye which would hold the skewer in place...or Allez neg's tabbed washer suggestion.

If anyone has any other ideas, please post them here.

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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Actually, I know the problem and it's solution.

Its fucked. Buy a new bike.

 4

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Shep73 [211 posts] 2 years ago
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Check your jockey wheels are not jamming up or worn out, also check your jockey wheel cage and look for witness marks of the chain catching it.

Based on past experience.

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lookmanohands [119 posts] 2 years ago
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Does the wheel sit snuggly in the dropout? From the picture the dropout looks very open, more than the axle diameter 10mm?

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matthewn5 [842 posts] 2 years ago
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Listen to your eyes, not your bum: get a Bianchi

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Pauldmorgan [228 posts] 2 years ago
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I had this happen to me once with a Ti frame and Pro-Lite skewers. I figured I hadn't properly tightened it and it didn't happen again.

Sheldon Brown has a lot to say about skewers: he says that internal cam ones are better for clamping force and security than the more modern "weight saving" external cam types. Likewise steel axles are better (less stretchy) than aluminium or titanium.

Maybe try a traditional Shimano or Campag skewer and see if that helps.

Good luck.

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glynr36 [637 posts] 2 years ago
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Any gripping/friction paste won't do a think in that situation.
It's the QR isn't clamping hard enough, on Ti frames thats down to the use of 6/4 grade ti. Can either experiment with QRs to solve it or could see a serrated washer on the QR between the ends and dropout, dressing the face out the dropout with a centre punch too (though good look finding one that'll do 6/4 ti easily) to give the washer a bit more to bit onto.

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tyceman [4 posts] 2 years ago
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Hi Alez,

Did you ever solve your problem? I'm being plagued by the very same thing on my titanium bike. I've tried one other skewer, and also tried rough up the drop out surface but to no avail.

Any advice you can give would be much appreciated!

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Jack Osbourne snr [572 posts] 2 years ago
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I may have solved it, but due to a crash in March (on another bike), I've not tested it as much as I would like.

Basically, I did three very simple things:

1. Clinical clean of all dropout/ hub and QR surfaces - I used isopropyl alcohol
2. Light lube of QR cam
3. Insertion of small "washer" of sandpaper between dropout and QR faces - with the grit contacting the dropout faces.

I've covered the spot that usually triggered it a few times with no issue, so I may have nailed it at the first (fortieth) attempt, but I've not been riding as hard as normally. I'm not 100% convinced yet.

The crash minced my memory, so apologies for not posting progress as promised... Oh... And yes, I was wearing a helmet.

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