Cracked Airborne Lancaster frame – am I the first?
At the weekend I decided to try and track down the noise that been coming from the back of my Airborne Lancaster.
Has anyone else broken an Airborne / Van Nicholas frame like this?
I've pinged an email to customer support at Van Nicholas with photos of the crack and am eagerly awaiting their response. I'm not the original owner though so am not overly confident and there's also a whole wodge of text about needing to ship the bike back to Holland.
Anyone else been in this situation?Posted 8 years ago
What's the scrap value for titanium?
If anyone cares:
From Van Nicholas:
I am sorry to hear about your frame failure. As you might know Airborne
went out of business 3 years now and this means also they cannot give
any support for Airborne product anymore as they do not exist anymore.
Having said this we will try to help you if we can to see if we can
claim your frame with the factory as we use the same factory as Airborne
did. What we need from you is:
– Proof of purchase (so original invoice)Posted 8 years ago
– Frame Serial number.
We will then send this to the factory and see if they can warranty your
Please note we cannot guarantee anything because we are not Airborne. We
are Van Nicholas and so it is not our duty to warranty products from
another brand. But again we will do our best to help you where we can so
if you can provide this information to us we will let you know the
I rode about 10,000 off-road miles on my Airborne Lancaster before this happened at the top tube seat tube interface. Before anyone accuses me of having too short a seatpost it was plenty long enough, well below the bottom of the top-tube/ seat-tube intersection. However the seatpost insert/ sleeve (the bit the frame manufacturers install to get added strength around said junction) ended exactly where the crack is.
Posted 8 years agoGruenermoenchMember
There are quite a few cases over on mtbr.com of titanium products from the XACD and Hi Light factories (where your Airborne was made) breaking.
I personally would keep well away from anything that they make out of titanium. These repeated failures are caused because the frames are under designed, not built with enough care and attention and because the titanium they use is of inferior quality to what a boutique builder like Seven, Indy Fab or Moots would use.Posted 8 years ago
and because the titanium they use is of inferior quality to what a boutique builder like Seven, Indy Fab or Moots would use.
I think you will find thats bollocks spouted by Americans, in an attempt to foster protectionism attitudes.
Under designed may'be, but to blame the material is pure anti Chinese/Taiwanese bullshitPosted 8 years ago
Yeah – I'm going off Ti and I'm going off VN.
This is from the Van Nicholas website and it contrasts completely with their email. Humph!
Will my Airborne guarantee still be valid?
Yes, the normal conditions still apply (include link to general policy and material warranty details), if your Airborne frame is shown to have a fault, it will be replaced by a new Van Nicholas model of equivalent specification to the original model purchased. Of course if your requirements have changed, you can always take the opportunity to upgrade to a different model if required. In any event, our aim at Van Nicholas is to get you back riding as soon as possible with a new mount, so we will work closely with our authorised dealers to rectify the situation.Posted 8 years agoGruenermoenchMember
Under designed may'be, but to blame the material is pure anti Chinese/Taiwanese bullshit
Most of the worlds titanium is mined in Russia and China, however it is the mills that turn it into tubing. The US mills produce a higher grade of titanium. I've seen examples of both US and Chinese tubes first hand and just by peering inside the Chinese tube you can see weird wavy shit going on, which I was told was caused by inconsistencies in the milling process.
How many Moots have you seen breaking like this?
Was the junction between the top tube and seat tube properly mitred, aligned tacked and realigned before welding?
Is the tube wall of adequate thickness to be able to cope with the forces at this junction?
Was the tube of even thickness at this point?
These are just some of the factors that could account for such a failure.Posted 8 years agoDickBartonMember
Are we 'talking' about the OP's crack or something else? If so, please re-read as it's down at his disc on the rear drop out…not sure what thickness is being discussed but it looks pretty solid material in that crack so I'm not sure if there would be varying thickness issues…if it is something else (I've just skim read this), then sorry.Posted 8 years agoThe SliderMember
I seem to remember that the titanium was supposed to come from Russian Migs ?? Either way, mate of mine had one and that cracked too – I think it was the same place as yours Stirling. Don't know if he's still got it – lost contact with him about 3 years ago – but he did say that of ALL the bikes he'd had (hardtails and full sussers) he would choose that one. Can't remember if that was BEFORE it cracked though…Posted 8 years ago
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