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Madone bottom bracket update.

Madone Bottom Bracket Failure... here we go again.

I want to follow up on yesterday’s blog, and the ongoing issues with my Madone’s bottom bracket.

I called the bike shop yesterday morning, and was told that the Trek factory representative, who only comes to the shop every two weeks, would be there that day. I guess the timing of the re-emergence of the problem couldn’t be better, as I’d rather have someone from Trek look at the bike instead of just the shop mechanic.

Madone Bottom Bracket Failure... here we go again.

Madone Bottom Bracket Failure… here we go again.

I’d planned to do a light recovery ride yesterday morning, but I didn’t want to chance arriving at the shop after the Trek rep had already departed, so I decided to get the bike down there right away.

The shop mechanic called me late yesterday afternoon, and informed me that the problem is indeed what I’d first suspected back in January: the known Trek carbon Madone bottom bracket/BB90 issue.

Trek’s “solution” to this ongoing (full carbon Madones from 2008 through at least 2012 can be affected) manufacturing/design defect is to install a slightly over-sized version of the BB90 bearing assembly, which they call “V2”. Based on my research, I believe the “V2″ bearing assembly to be nothing more than a stock BB90 bearing with a .05” sleeve around it.

Will the “V2” bearing correct the problem? My research leads me to believe it probably won’t, at least not permanently.

If this new bearing fails, Trek will have to replace the frame under warranty. Obviously Trek is trying to avoid replacing these very expensive faulty carbon frames, and that’s why they always try the “V2” bearing before replacing the frame. Maybe the over-sized bearing is a permanent solution for riders who don’t put out much power and/or don’t ride very often, so from a business standpoint I can see why Trek tries that first…

But I’m a consumer–a consumer who paid a lot of money for a name-brand, high-end bike. My expensive bike has suffered two failures in less than six months/1,500 miles, and the problem I’ve experienced has been a common one with full-carbon Trek Madones for at least five years. That sucks, and that is 100% on Trek.

This Madone is my fourth, and in all likelihood, final Trek. Trek knows there’s a major design flaw with these frames, and they continue to sell them.

I have high hopes that Trek will do the right thing, which means replacing the frame or even the entire bike. I shouldn’t have to play this back and forth game, wondering if the next failure will be 50 miles into a ride. Trek should replace the faulty frame (or the bike) and give me the product I paid for.