James Annan has sent BikeBiz.com a short MPEG of a rider crashing at low speed, on the flat, thanks to a front wheel pop-out. He doesn't link it directly to his 'disk brake/QR/wheel ejection' design flaw theory but it demonstrates, he says, the severity of injuries likely from crashes that fork designers could prevent.

Helmet-cam vid shows dangers of surprise face-plants

To make sense of this ongoing story, type ‘Annan’ in the search engine on the upper left of this page. You’ll get the eleven articles BikeBiz.com has done on this emotive subject since May. The three links below are just part of the picture.

The 3MB MPEG can be downloaded from:


It shows a group of riders cruising along tarmac at low-speeds. A rider towards the front of the group lifts his front wheel to clear a kerb. His front wheel ejects and he lands, head-first, on the tarmac. Dazed and confused, but not massively injured, the rider walked away from the incident.

Annan said:

"I believe the separation was due to a stripped thread on the QR, and the wheel literally fell out as the rider lifted the front wheel over a kerb so it looks superficially unrelated to the disc brake, but of course it is disk brake riders who routinely overtighten their skewers (and yes, the rider does have disk brakes). Perhaps a useful warning to those who say ‘just do up the skewer tighter’?"

"Regardless of the cause, it is I think worthwhile as an illustration of the severity of these crashes. Even though he was rolling on flat ground at a gentle pace, he hits the ground directly head first, sustaining facial injuries and a smashed helmet, without even getting his hands off the bars to cushion the fall."

Annan, via his digitally well-thunmbed website, is now sent anecdotes of disc-brake related incidents from around the world.

"Someone recently had a skewer unscrew on a bike they’d just hired from [a Scottish MTB rental centre]. The rider spotted it in time and didn’t actually lose the wheel. The skewers had been carefully checked immediately prior to hiring which makes me wonder whether it has happened a few times before. I’d have thought that this sort of thing should make those in the trade rather nervous!"

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