We’ve built carbon frames in the US since 1987.
This experience paired with our in-house manufacturing and finishing, qualifies Calfee as the industry’s carbon repair expert. Since 2003, we’ve managed repairs for over 12000 riders, retailers and manufacturers. Calfee Carbon Repair; professional, tested, guaranteed.
We are proud to offer the benefit of our 20 years experience with composites to the owners of all carbon bike frames. Many major carbon frame companies refer riders to us for their frame repairs, and to help solve design issues. Hundreds of bike shops from across the U.S., Canada, Asia, and Europe have been able to provide their customers with an affordable alternative to Crash Replacements. Lennard Zinn recently reviewed our service here. Our molding process uses the best quality 3k carbon fiber weave to create forms that are shapely, lightweight, and extremely strong. From minor scratches to stuck seatposts to frames destroyed by the dreaded endo or that startling encounter with the garage door; we’ve repaired over 8,000 frames since 2003. Gone are the days that a small puncture or fracture in a multi-thousand dollar frame renders it trash. Calfee’s extensive experience with composite materials means we are able to repair nearly every frame, regardless of manufacturer. In addition to frames, shoes and carbon wheels can be repaired as long as the damage is not along the breaking surface of the rim. Calfee uses an unique molding and compression process of 3K carbon fiber weave to repair damaged areas.
The damaged portion is sanded away, plus an area about 1-1.5 inches around the crack. The sanding tapers from the original, full thickness carbon down to the removed damaged area. This removes any stress risers and prevents them from creating fractures again. Next, new carbon can be laid down. The laminate is rebuilt by reading the original fiber orientation to match with the new layers. After the area is built back up, it is sanded a final time to meet the same contours as the original frame. The top layer of carbon does not always match the same weave as original. This may alter the cosmetic appearance if the area is only clear coated or left unpainted.
After the new carbon layers are laid, the area is compressed with tape to set. For fractures around lug areas or with a unique shape, a custom mold is made to adequately and evenly apply pressure. In cases of severely damaged frames the area can be reinforced from the inside out with an insert; often made of foam or carbon depending on the nature of the damage. Sanding a long taper prevents stress risers, which can cause failure. This combined with well laid carbon layers means long lasting results. Though testing, it has been found that repaired areas meet the same degree of stiffness as the original tubing. With carbon this generally means they will also meet the same fatigue life. Many of the same technicians that have build Calfee frames during the last 25 years lend their expertise in the repair department. After so much time, it is now a honed craft. Once the repaired frame has been inspected, it goes through paint which is housed in the same building. Paint can range from a simple clear coat, to replicating the original design and details, to an entirely new paint scheme.
While we do inspect (and refinish) forks for symmetry, we do not evaluate for structural integrity. We have solved chronic speed wobble by replacing asymmetrical carbon forks. Click here to review our symmetry test protocol.