As most people seem to know, yesterday, Cervelo announced a voluntary recall of Wolf SL forks that are used on some of their bikes. While this seems bad to some people, I think it shows what a good company Cervelo are. Why? Well, the Wolf SL forks pass the fork manufacturer’s test, BUT, they don’t pass Cervelo’s own tests. Supposedly the original fork manufacturer won’t warranty the forks, so Cervelo are taking care of the situation themselves. From their press release, it doesn’t sounds like the forks are going to break, but in a few cases forks have broken, but after they had been in a previous accident – What sub 300g fork wouldn’t! Press release below taken from the Cervelo E-news email:
Cervélo has identified a potential safety issue involving the Wolf SL fork. This fork is designed and manufactured by True Temper Sports of Memphis, Tennessee, using a blade shape supplied by Cervélo. All other aspects of the structural design, development and manufacture were done by True Temper Sports.
Under certain conditions, the fork steerer can crack and eventually break during normal use, which may cause the rider to lose control, fall and suffer potentially serious injuries. To date, there have been reports of injuries in the field resulting in minor abrasions and one broken wrist.
Though the fork passes US and international standards, this particular problem was not uncovered during those standard tests and the fork only showed this weakness in the field, typically after being damaged. After much work, we did develop a new test protocol that was able to replicate the same failure mode as seen in the field. If the fork steerer is damaged by impact (eg. by a crash, a fall from a roof rack, or another impact) then the damage may progress very quickly during use to complete separation.
We have seen that incidence of failure on this fork is higher than on other forks, and there is a potential for injury upon failure. True Temper Sports feels that the fork meets the industry standards and that the fork is therefore acceptable and no further action is required. Cervélo does not share this opinion and therefore, is proceeding with a recall of the True Temper designed and manufactured Wolf SL forks ourselves. True Temper Sports has declined to participate.
In order to conduct a recall one must be able to demonstrate that any replacement product does not display the same failure mode. We have demonstrated to the authorities that the forks we will use as a replacement – the 3T Funda Pro and the Easton EC90 SLX – pass all standard industry tests as well as the new Cervélo test that the True Temper Wolf SL fork fails.
We have obviously discontinued all use of the True Temper Wolf SL carbon bicycle fork. However, please note that this does not affect the Wolf CL and Wolf TT in any way, as both have a completely different structural design (and have passed the new Cervélo test protocol).
Although it is not usual for a third party to recall a product manufactured by another company, we feel it is a necessary step to take care of our customer, and we will proceed with the full recall at no cost to the dealer or consumer.
Anyway, out of a negative comes a positive. I’ll be rolling around on a 3T Funda fork and I’ve wanted one of those for the longest time!