Sunday, August 17, 2008

Cervélo: Ha but yes, is no pro-blem....

Cervélo SA Recalls Bicycle Forks Due to Fall Hazard
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.
Name of Product: Wolf SL Carbon Fiber Bicycle Forks
Units: About 5,800
Importer: Cervélo SA, of Switzerland
Manufacturer: True Temper Composite Material Products Co. Ltd, of Guangzhou, China
Hazard: The forks steerer can break during normal use, causing the rider to lose control, fall and suffer serious injuries.
Incidents/Injuries: Cervelo has received 12 reports of forks cracking or breaking, resulting in one consumer suffering a broken wrist and another suffering minor abrasions.
Description: The recalled forks have a clear coating over black painted carbon fiber, with the words “Wolf Superlite” and related logo just below the crown on each fork leg, and the letters “SL” on each leg above the fork blade dropouts. There is a True Temper CRT™ logo on the inside of both fork legs. The recalled forks could have been included on the following bicycle models: R3, R3 SL, Soloist Carbon, Soloist Carbon SL, and certain P3 Carbon framesets and complete bicycles.
Sold by: Independent bicycle retailers nationwide from November 2005 through July 2007 for about $475.
Manufactured in: China
Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop using bicycles equipped with the recalled forks and contact their authorized Cervélo dealer to have a free replacement fork installed.
Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Cervélo toll-free at (866) 296-3137 between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm’s Web site at
Media Contact: Peter Donato at Special Assignment Inc. at (416) 964-6118.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Here is a direct quote from Gerard - Cervelo's pres.


I can understand you are upset, but if I may:

1) The structural fork design and the manufacturing is done by TrueTemper Sports, not by us.
2) We flagged the issue, they did not consider it a problem.
3) We disagreed, and went to work to do something about it as soon as possible. Unfortunately, within CPSC rules, that's not very fast. And ignoring the CPSC rules is just not an option, it won't get anything accomplished in the end either.
4) To recall a product, you have to show the CPSC that the replacement doesn't have the same issue. With the manufacturer True Temper saying the current fork has no issue, this is a big problem. So Cervelo was forced to figure out what the problem was on a fork we did not design, and we did not even get the lay-up schedules as True Temper considered them proprietary. Then we had to replicate that failure in the lab, then proof a replacement fork would not have the same problem.
5) This is a tall order if you are the fork designer and maker, it becomes doubly difficult if you are not, and if you don't get support from the fork maker because they don't see a problem.
6) We did this as fast as we could, as our priority was to get this recall started, but unfortunately the laws in the US are such that you have to jump through these hoops first before you can do anything, and you also can't really do a recall elsewhere before that.
7) Once there is a problem, the CPSC rules kick in. If you don't like the fact that something takes a long time, or that a company (Cervelo) is not allowed to say anything about a product (a True Temper fork) from another manufacturer, I fully understand that. This upsets me to no end as well, but those are the laws. My wife, my brother and I (on one of my two bikes) still ride on a Wolf SL fork to this day as well, so I know how people feel. Those are the rules, I honestly suggest you contact your lawmakers and get these rules changed.

Finally, just like you I am disappointed. I am mostly disappointed about two things. First, that things can't go faster under the rules, and second that after we specifically chose a US company for these forks because we thought they would have the same views as us, we found that they could not be convinced to see a problem where we felt there was one. But I am also proud of two things. First of all of our engineers who were able to replicate this issue in the lab so we could finally commence the recall, as this was like finding a needle in a hay stack. So for them to figure out under what circumstances exactly this occurs (not straightforward at all) was amazing. And I am proud that we are doing a multi-million dollar recall on something that is really firstly somebody else's responsiblity. I'm proud that Phil agreed immediately without blinking when I suggested that if TrueTemper didn't want to do the recall, we should.

That's just my 2 cents,
Cervélo SA