Some of you may recall that while I was on vacation in March, my rear Zipp 404 Firecrest carbon clincher experienced a cracked flange (photograph).
That is Zipp’s “V7” 188 hub that cracked on me. Zipp 188 hubs V7 and lower have a radial lacing design, which is widely regarded as a really Bad Idea (I’m not a wheel builder, so that information comes from others much more knowledgeable than I am).
Zipp acknowledged this design flaw with a recall on many of their rear wheels. Despite clearly being affected by the flawed design, for some unknown reason my rear 404 wheel was not included in the recall. In addition to the recall, Zipp also completely redesigned their 188 hub with a “virtual 3 cross” lacing pattern on both sides of rear wheel.
My wheel was model year 2012, and out of warranty. I figured I was screwed, but my buddy Christopher offered to run things through his bike shop, which has a great relationship with Zipp/SRAM.
Even though the wheel was out of warranty, I was hoping that Zipp would repair it for me due to the design flaw. Fixing the faulty wheel was the right thing to do, but I wasn’t getting my hopes up.
I about fell over when a got a text message from Chris last week: Zipp did much, much more than repair the wheel: they sent me a BRAND NEW, factory fresh 2015 Zipp 404 Firecrest rear wheel, which uses the all-new and greatly improved V9 hub (and the new lacing pattern, of course). They didn’t just send the wheel, they sent the whole package: wheel, rim strip, tube, wrenches, skewer, brake pads, spacer for 10 speed hubs (the new hub is 11 and 10 speed compatible) and a valve extender.
First of all, THANK YOU CHRIS!!! You’re awesome. Pizza and beer is on me the next time we ride. 🙂
Also, thanks to Zipp for standing behind their products. This is amazing, I was expecting a repair (at best), but Zipp sent me a brand new wheel package that sells for $1,500 all day.
I have not put the wheel on my bike. Why? I might be selling it, and I want to sell it in 100% new condition. If I do sell it, I’ll also be selling my front Zipp. The reason I may sell the wheels has to do with the potential new JSF Sponsor I mentioned last week. More on that to come…
Here are a few pictures of the stunning new wheel (click any image to enlarge):