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The Final Straw – Breaking an Axle


I have had my fair share of issues with the cheap road bike I bought for commuting.  My wife had gotten sick of me coming home from work and saying, “I need to go work on my bike” and she had been wanting me to get a different bike for some time. I hesitated, not wanting to spend the money right now, but  the final straw in the push to get a new commuting bike was when I broke the rear axle.

Broken Axle

Looking closely at the breaking point, it appears that I sheared it off, and that it didn’t snap from an impact. I guess I should take that as a compliment that my legs are strong.  I’ll go with that.

I don’t actually know when it broke either – I didn’t hear it break and the bike didn’t feel much different.  The quick release skewer kept everything together, but when I pedalled hard the rear tire would shift over and rub the frame near the bottom bracket.

That bike was cheap. I mean, I bought it on, if that says anything.  I know the components weren’t that great, and I also realize that I put more miles on that bike in the past four months than most people would in the lifetime of the bike.  I didn’t expect to have as many issues as I did, though.

Now that I’ve got my new bike, I plan on turning the old one into my rainy day commuter.  I’ve got some fenders that I need to install, and I obviously still need to replace the rear axle.  But, it will be nice to have a bike that I’m not worried about riding in the rain.

And hopefully, since I’m not riding it every day, it will hold up a little better.


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