Velocity Dyad says oooowww!

I guess I learned that there is no such thing as a “bombproof” wheel today. Whereas everywhere else in the Northeast seemed to get either a ton of snow the week before last, or a ton of snow and a ton of rain, Providence got basically four days of torrential rain, which combined with the normal freeze/thaw cycles of late winter washed out every crack of sand supporting fractured pavement in the entire city.

Worse than just the resulting giant potholes are the pavement seams that can be just as deep but almost invisible until you’re right on them. In this case, I was going downhill at about 25 mph and changing lanes, so I was looking back over my shoulder leaning back with all my weight on the rear wheel. I turned around just in time to see my front wheel drop into a three inch wide and four inch deep seam between the lanes. My unloaded front wheel skipped lightly but violently (if that makes any sense) off the front edge of the hole. With my entire weight, the rear hit the front edge of the seam like a sack of potatoes, the 35mm Paselas more getting out of the way than anything else. Worse still, the rim didn’t hit squarely but rather it only hit on the left side, perhaps as I was crossing towards that side.

Amazingly, I did not crash or even flat, and the rim stayed perfectly true within the pads, if you excuse the fold in the braking surface. It was about 1/2″ closer to the hub, however. The force was great enough to partially pull spokes two spokes away through the wall of the rim as the rim tried to expand over there to make up for its collapsing at the point of impact.

Perhaps on a lighter rim I would have crashed.

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