Tuesday, March 27, 2012

New UCI Regulations

In the midst of all the new UCI regulations the one that is catching most attention is the lawyer tabs. These are the groves molded into almost front fork on a bicycle to prevent a wheel from coming off the bike should the skewer come loose. Professional teams file these off to make wheel changes during races quicker to save precious seconds. As far as safety there has never been an incident where a wheel has come loose and caused a crash.
The ironic thing is that the technically of the rule actually prohibits modification of equipment. Manufacturers could make factory forks without the tabs and the bike will then be legal because it hasn't been modified. I think this rule is a bit wacky. It doesn't appear to be here for the rider’s safety, because if it was then they would require the tabs. It's another bureaucracy and example of how far the UCI officials have removed themselves from the love and care of the sport.
Now for safety reasons should the tabs be required? Well from what history shows it seems it hasn't been an issue or caused unsafe riding conditions.
For consumer use I recommend leaving these tabs intact. I'd hate to hear of someone happening to have a crash in the theoretical possibility of a skewer coming loose. Filing the tabs off also voids your warranty so that's another good incentive.

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