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Yo no fui.
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I need some advice on the safety and propriety of continuing to use the steel fork on my Bianchi Pista after a crash. I, of course, plan on going to the local bike shop for its diagnosis, but I’d like to arm myself with all your second and third (and so on) opinions. Thanks for the help.

It’s a long and self-deprecatingly hilarious story that I won’t fully recount, but here’s the gist. While coming home from the grocery store at night, I was riding on the sidewalk because the street it accompanies has no bike lane. This sidewalk is over-designed with trees and small, 12” high brick flower boxes sprinkled throughout. I’ll use the excuse of bad nighttime vision, but the long and short of it is I hit the flower box perfectly square at a slow cruising speed of about 15 mph.

After recovering (unscathed) from the best non-mountain bike endo ever and walking my still true but now flat wheel home, I later realized that my fork is bent at the steer tube. The wheel sits as perfectly straight as before inside the fork and the fork was in no way twisted. The only problem is that the fork is slightly bent backwards at the point where the steer tube is connected to the blades. In short, it looks like the fork has a much shorter rake. The bike is still rideable despite the bend at the steer tube because I hit the flower box square and, amazingly enough, the headset was not damaged.

My question is whether (in your opinion based on this information, sorry, I don't have a digital camera) I should continue to ride the bike or if I need to buy a new fork. I don’t want to go on riding a death trap, but I’d rather not spend the money for a new fork and track forks are in short supply on e-bay. I also know that steel is pretty malleable, but I’m not sure if this property should be applied to something vital like a fork.

Thanks for your help.
 

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Ive always thought those forks should have less rake, but I never would have considered such a hardcore adjustment. Nicely done brother! Now you have a pista absolutely perfect for the velodrome! Race it. The circle. The lights. The women. They all await you.

Oh yah, could you post some pics so we can admire the handiwork?
 

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Pablo said:
My question is whether I should continue to ride the bike or if I need to buy a new fork. I also know that steel is pretty malleable, but I’m not sure if this property should be applied to something vital like a fork.

You can probably "cold set" the fork back to its approximate original shape, but then you will have bent the steel twice. Yes, it's fairly ductile stuff, but at some point it will be weakened by bending. The question is, at what point? I think the key here is your use of the term "vital." As in "vital organs," which are the things you have to think about should the fork decide to fail the next time you do a little nighttime gardening. If it was me, I'd be down at the shop tomorrow placing an order for a new fork.
 

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Pablo
I've got a three year old Pista - the dark grey version - and the front fork has alloy / aluminium (however you lot spell it!!!) fork blades.

If yours has alloy blades, suggest you get rid of it and get another fork - any damage to alloy precedes a sudden breakage. It's the material's failure mode, and there ain't no way out of it.

Otherwise, you've stressed the joint where the two elements of the fork - blades and steerer - come together.

Imagine the consequences of the two parting company as you're booling down the road...

A faceplant can ruin your day (and your good looks ;) ).

While a good framebuilder might be able to tell you if its safe to ride, or perhaps repair it, you have to find one first.

I'd toss the fork and get another real soon

Regards

Dereck
 

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Yo no fui.
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Anyone with advice on finding a 1" track fork?

Dereck said:
Pablo
A faceplant can ruin your day (and your good looks ;) ).
Thanks for all the help. However, there seems to be a serious lack of 1" threadless track forks in the world, or, at least, a lack of any for sale independent of an accompanying frame. I've searched the internet high and low looking for a replacement with no avail.

I'd prefer one not drilled for a brake hole, and one with a similar pista rake (about 28mm, I think), but it appears like I have few, if any options. Any advice?
 

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You could always order a new one from Bianchi, shouldn't cost too much, no more than a new fork anywhere else.
 
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