Velo-Orange Stands by Their Man

Image from V-O website

The Circle A sports some V-O cranks. During the first day of the Stampede, in the midst of all my drive train problems, I broke a tooth off of my large chainring.

On the first day of the stampede, I originally blamed my routine chain dropping to this broken tooth, but the real issue was a chain with kinks in it. Despite having 800+ miles on the Circle A so far, I felt the V-O chainring shouldn’t have a broken tooth. After all, the Le Tour had the same Shimano Biopace chainrings for 15+ years and never suffered a broken tooth.

So, when I got home I researched getting a new chain ring. Come to find out, V-O doesn’t sell just the chain rings and finding a matching 48T ring with a BCD of 110mm wasn’t as easy as I hoped (without spending a fortune). And I was second guessing my crank purchase because of the latest Bicycle Quarterly review (Vol 9 No 3) of the V-O Grand Cru 50.4 BCD cranks where they found the material (same as my V-O cranks) is susceptible to corrosion and subsequent stress cracking.

So, I shot off an email to V-O just wanting to get information about how to acquire a matching chain ring. I thought it may be my poor shifting habits that broke the tooth and alluded to that in the email to V-O. Here is the response I got back…

It’s pretty much impossible to break off a tooth from shifting or bad chain alignment, and in the experience of the VO mechanics it only rarely happens when the crank gets hit on something like a curb. As long as the tooth is completely broken off (not just drastically bent) it really won’t change the functionality of the crank. Basically it’s an extra shifting gate. This really isn’t a warranty issue, but if you want I’ll send you a replacement ring.

While I agree there shouldn’t be any major performance issues, I disagree I hit my chain ring while going over a curb because I try to avoid going over curbs and the broken tooth is almost aligned with the crank arm. But, I didn’t argue with him. I said thanks, and here is my address. The chain ring showed up 2 days later.

So, thumbs up to V-O for standing behind their products. They kept me as a loyal customer.

Old (broken tooth shown) and new Chain ring side-by-side

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