Tuesday, August 24, 2010

New wheel coming right up

The shop wasn't able to help. They called me back and said that I was missing a part! Missing a part??? I'm pretty particular about mostly everything, especially car and trike parts. I worked on the floor so that nothing could drop and kept an eye on everything as I was working and even took working photos.

The cup that Will said I was missing would have been covered with grease so if it did fall, it would not have rolled away from my working area. Despite knowing that, I checked everywhere and couldn't find anything.

Still frustrated, I was having a hard time admitting that I lost something. There's absolutely no way.

I looked into the wheel hub further and suspected that I did not lose the cup where the ball bearings sit and that the cup had fallen through the hub shell to the other side. It looks flush in the photo, but looking closer I could see the rough edges in the diameter.

If I was wrong and was actually looking at the back of the bearing cup on the other side, this piece would be convex. Here we clearly see that it's concave. It must be the bearing cup from the top side that had fallen through.

The dark line at about 2/3 down the photo to the right is where II suspect the bearing cup sheared off. I inspected this portion with a flashlight and confirmed that this location of the hub shell is also rough. This is where the bearing cup used to sit before it broke.

Reaching down the hub shell with a pick, I was able to wedge the bearing cup out. I was right!!!! It did shear off! Good news is that I know what happened and know a ton more about the internal mechanics of a hub and how it works. But bad news is that it cannot be repaired.

I tried placing it back in its original location but w/o luck. Besides, normal expected vibrations from using the trike would move it out of alignment. If the cup isn't completely 100% level, it will cause play between the axle and the hub/wheel.

Just checked my email a moment ago and Dave from KMX is sending me a new wheel. Thank God b/c I wouldn't know what else to do other than replace the entire wheel. I like the mag wheel that matches the front two, so I'm happy for the time being. The trike will still be out of commission until the new wheel arrives.

Glad the guys at KMX are cool and are following through with these warranty issues. I am surprised that the quality of parts is so poor though. Hubs shouldn't fail like this. The integrity of the KMX staff is excellent, but I'm a bit concerned about the integrity of the parts for my ALC trip. Is the KMX brand up for 80-100 miles per day for 7 days straight? How about all the training miles up until then?

Only time will tell.

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