I was out riding my carbon frame earlier this week and suddenly the back end felt like it was wobbling around, I put it down to having a different tyre on that was pumped right up but the feeling persisted. Eventually 7 and a half miles out, I got off and checked it out properly.
Carbon fibre broken?
Turns out there was a clear crack through the drive side dropout area that meant the chainstay was pretty much hanging loose and flexing every time I pedalled. With no option, I had to nurse it home by riding it back through the city trying to avoid all potholes and look for the smoothest part of the road. From behind apparently it was like my back wheel was wagging like a tail – each time I stopped pedalling I could hear and feel the wheel rubbing on the brakes, effectively keeping it upright. It turns out the dropout had split around the screw that attaches it to the frame, one of the few aluminium parts on the carbon frame!
With limited options, I’ve decided to epoxy the crack and then wrap carbon fibre tow around the whole area in an attempt to reconnect and brace the joint to the carbon frame.