I read with interest how four German companies have joined forces to provide test and repair services on carbon fiber frames and components. Through the website www.carbon-bike-check.com they target bike makers, bike shops as well as cyclists. Their approach is very high tech and I imagine more of these types of services will be required in the future. It's good to know that an expensive carbon frame is repairable and that the repair has been carried out correctly.
Three test labs and one repair shop started to cooperate to form carbon-bike-check.com. Each of the three test labs has its own specialty. T-ZfP Carl IR Messtechnik has 11 years experience with thermographic non-destructive testing (see www.t-zfp.de). Velotech has 19 years experience with testing and certification of bicycles (see www.velotech.de) while TPW ROWO Material Testing GmbH has been active for over 40 in material testing (see www.tpw-rowo.de). The repair facility for carbon frames is PolyTube Cycles which has 5 years experience in carbon fiber repair (see www.polytube-cycles.de).
The following photo from bike-check.com shows a frame that was damaged in an accident. The damage is not visible to the naked eye but the carbon layers have suffered delamination. The damage will increase if the bike is ridden any further and depending upon load this can lead to a frame failure.
At www.carbon-bike-check.com the four companies describe all the services they provide including a price list for tests and repairs. For example, a Pulse Thermography test for frame & fork starts at 50 euro each while frame repairs start at 200 euro (clients outside of Germany should ask for a quote first).
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