Written on: 14/07/2009
Has something happened to Specialized's wheel makers? I used to have a 2000 Hardrock and used it for commuting around London for 7 years. The wheels just kept on turning - till the rims wore out simply from braking. That was OK - I'd got more than 10,000 miles out of them. My son also has an older Hardrock and hammers it round a mountain bike course every weekend, again without any problems.
Recently I got a new Hardrock - the 09 pro disk model with Alex Rims. Within four months the rear wheel has collapsed with three broken spokes. I have only used it for commuting in London. Looking at the spokes I can see why - they are much thinner and flimsier than the old ones.
What's more, this is the second Specialized bike I've had to have suffered a rear wheel collapse. The last one was a Rockhopper comp. I keep it for mountain biking but it too was less than a year old and had hardly been used. And I'd kept checking spoke tension.
I think Specialized have either skimped on the wheels or chosen a bad supplier. Either way it could be that you'd be risking a lot of hassle and cash if you go for the current Hardrock and Rockhopper models.