Author Topic: Handle bar issues??  (Read 2207 times)

Rolf

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Handle bar issues??
« on: October 24, 2022, 03:03:01 PM »
Hello

I am researching e bikes, spend many hours looking at video reviews  and written ,
I am leaning toward a folding bike not so much for the frame folding but mostly for
The ability to fold down the handle bar , this will give me a desirable bunk height in
My medium roof Ford Transit van and just to wheel the bike in with the handle bar
Folded down.
The Rad expand Five folding bike has got some really good reviews and I really like
This bike, but I stumbled on some issues I read about and there is even a video that
Explains this in detail, the stem part below the fold part only has 1 screw that tightens
This to the fork steering tube? I looked at the close up pics on Rad website and it does
Indeed look very suspect , the part looks to made out of plastic and the threading
Is machined in to the part.
So the issue is the handle bar wont stay tight even when tighten to proper spec and in
Some cases be dangerous and some people have had crashes ??
One screw to torg down the stem to steering tube , should be two ? And also steel or aluminum
Stem part. This is just info from the great wide web so I dont know for sure?? Be nice to see a
Bike in person but I dont live close by any dealers , maybe some Rad Exspand Five owners on
Here can help shed some lite on this.

Thanks.

JedidiahStolzfus

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Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2022, 05:10:42 PM »
Here's my RR2 in a full size high roof Ford Transit.  I think any regular bike would also fit in a standard size transit.

Rolf

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Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2022, 09:15:02 PM »
Further reading on this, l see the discontinued Rad Mini has two screws
For stem steer tube collar ? The rad exspand only has one, seems like
Quality went down and price went up

Rolf

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Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2022, 08:04:54 AM »
Hello hello ? anyone??

Rolf

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Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2022, 09:46:37 AM »
Anyone else with this Issue??

https://youtu.be/Hc2FLCRAKn8

JimL

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Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2022, 02:11:19 PM »
I pulled the bolt from my wifes new Expand 5 and found it is only 10.9 hardness rating, and only 22 mm long.  The bolt head is 10.83 mm diameter.  These are 1.25mm thread pitch, which is right for aluminum (coarse thread into soft metal, fine thread into hard metal).

I took a 12.9 rating Allen bolt, 30 mm long, and found the bolt head was over 12mm diameter.  I turned the head down to 11.70 mm diameter (in my metal lathe) and found the stronger bolt fits perfect and actually engages threads all the way though the aluminum casting.  These bolts are hard enough to break an Allen wrench before they "deform" like the original Chinese bolts.

I have, over time, replaced various bolts on my RAD bikes due to the heads deforming.  Now I have to make up a couple bolts for my son and daughter-in-laws Expand 5s.  Where strength is the real issue, I am not a big fan of stainless bolts.  Good old "hardened steel" has worked for longer than any of us have been alive.

handlebar

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Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2022, 06:57:17 PM »
...
I have, over time, replaced various bolts on my RAD bikes due to the heads deforming.  Now I have to make up a couple bolts for my son and daughter-in-laws Expand 5s.  Where strength is the real issue, I am not a big fan of stainless bolts.  Good old "hardened steel" has worked for longer than any of us have been alive.

Removing the back wheel of my Radrunner 1 entailed removing the chain tensioner. It was held by an aluminum screw for a 5mm allen wrench. Aluminum?The guard,  held by two more screws, interfered. I preferred using an allen bit on a long shaft. Once when I used the allen wrench from the kit, it was slightly misaligned and stripped the screw head. It had a head an inch or so in diameter and a special shoulder, so I couldn't replace it locally. I ordered one from Radpower, along with an upgraded tensioner. The new tensioner didn't use that kind of screw. They didn't include the screw but billed me anyway.

JimL

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Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #7 on: November 01, 2022, 06:41:58 PM »
 I tested my longer 12.9 grade bolts, with heads machined to fit the casting.  The longer thread and stronger bolt is easily torqued to 20 lb-ft.  The owner's manual calls for up to 17 ft-lb, with a max of about 19 lb-ft.

The 20 lb-ft pull felt like a good "set", based on my lifetime of mechanic work (over 66 years of experience in that employment.)  I set a long 8mm nut in my shop vise and tried to break one of my machined bolts.  At 25 lb-ft the nut was deforming, but the bolt was in perfect condition when I pulled it out.

I'm satisfied with my fix.  My local NAPA store charges $2.50 for each of these bolts.  It sure seems like a lot of money for one bolt, but Fastenal was even higher.  It takes about 20 minutes on the lathe to get the head sized just right.  The hardened grade has to be cut really slow, to keep from breaking my carbide bits. 

My lathe is an old Logan (1951) that still has tags on it that say, "Mack Truck Corp, Pump Room Lathe No.4".  This is one of the old ones that uses the wide, flat, leather belt drive!

coldweather

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Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2023, 08:12:20 AM »
Hey, just joining this discussion from last year:
Has anyone with a RadExpand 5 had a real issue with the steering tube working loose, screws stripping or breaking, crashes?  If so, what was Rad Power Bike's response?

Thanks.

Rad Power Bikes Owners Forum

Re: Handle bar issues??
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2023, 08:12:20 AM »