As a service to our viewers, we are offering this link to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission web site for additional information on product recalls.
For a list of recalls previously documented, visit our tech document pages.
All Cannondale bicycles are shipped with a general Owner's Manual. Most models are also shipped with one or more owners manual supplements that cover features unique to that bike, for example Headshok forks, disc brakes, or some of the special information that tandem riders need. It is important to your safety and to maximize the performance of your Cannondale that you read all of the documents that were shipped with your bicycle.
Some cynical lawyers would suggest we tell you that you need to read and understand all these materials. We believe you are intelligent enough, care enough about your well being and the use of your time that you will read with the goal of understanding. The owners manual supplements may be even more important to your safety than the general owners manual.
We care enough about this that we have placed the following notice in our retailer agreement: "Retailers must deliver ALL literature and instructions supplied by Cannondale with a given bicycle to the retail customer of that bicycle, and urge that it be read before use." If you suspect that you do not have all of the instructional materials that should accompany your bike, double check with your retailer and call Cannodale at 1-800-BIKEUSA (245-3872). You may also find these instructional materials in our Tech Center.
Warning: Catalog and web site product descriptions are not instructions. You must read and follow written instructions that accompany any products.
INSPECTION AND SERVICE: It is important for your safety that your bicycle is regularly inspected and serviced. Both you and your retailer must be involved in inspection and service. Follow this link to Tech Notes published by Cannondale. In all cases these communications, or very similar communications on the same topic, have been mailed to Authorized Cannondale bicycle retailers. We also urge you to follow this link to Section D of the Owners Manual, entitled Inspection for Safety.
To learn more about the importance of wearing a helmet and to keep up with current head protection technology, please visit the Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute.
Please note: Despite our nagging, members of the Liquigas/Cannondale pro road racing team and other professional sponsored teams may appear or race without helmets. We don't think it's a good idea, but they are experienced, professional cyclists and they know the risks. They are also adults, so we respect the right to choose. Despite the intransigence of the Liquigas/Cannondale pro racing team (and virtually every other pro team in the peloton), we strongly advocate the use of helmets on every ride. Wearing a helmet is perhaps your single best defense against a major medical catastrophe while riding, so buckle up!
Cannondale has long urged the use of helmets. As riskier, extreme downhill and freeriding became part of the sport we communicated frankly about the risks in our freeride warning. We have recently become aware of neck braces, designed for mountain biking and motocross riding, fitted between the rider and helmet, that can decrease the risk of paralysis, spinal cord and neck injuries. As the manufacturer clearly states, these braces cannot prevent all injuries. We urge riders, particularly riders into challenging and risky riding, to investigate and consider neck braces. One of these might save your life or keep you out of a wheelchair.
Warning: Reflectors are not a substitute for proper lights. It is your responsibility to equip your bicycle with all state and locally mandated lights. Riding at dawn, at dusk, at night or at other times of poor visibility without a bicycle lighting system which meets local and state laws and without reflectors is dangerous and may result in serious injury or death.
Warning: If you ride your bike before dawn or after dusk, your bicycle must be equipped with lights so that you can see the road and avoid road hazards, and so that others can see you. Traffic laws treat bicycles like any other vehicle. That means you must have a white front and a red rear light operating if you are riding after dusk. Your bike dealer can recommend a battery or generator powered lighting system appropriate to your needs.
Warning: The two previous warnings urge you to use lights. Cannondale also strongly urges you to use a flashing light or strobe. All of us at Cannondale who ride at night or in conditions of lower visibility use flashers. They can save your life. (Yeah, we know there may be legal issues with flashers in some areas. They can save your life. Enough said.)
Freeriding, hucking, dirt jumping, mountaincross, downhill, slalom. It seems that everywhere you look, from Mountain Dew® commercials to the X-Games, riders are grabbing big air and sticking sick drops. And it sure looks fun.
But what the videos and bike magazines and ads don't always tell you is that extreme riding takes an amazing amount of skill. Some of the riders you see are well-paid pros who have gradually built up their skills through endless hours of practice, and who have also had their share of stitches, concussions and busted bones (and bikes). Others are daredevils who have chosen to accept or ignore the risks. Would you allow a lawyer to say that you are so weak in the head, and have such poor judgement that you copy those you see in the media without thought of the serious risks?
The stakes are high if you screw up. Realize too late that you aren't up to the challenge, and you run the risk of major injury or even - say it with me - death, paralysis. In short, extreme riding carries a high degree of fundamental risk, and you bear the ultimate responsibility for how you ride and what you attempt to pull off.
Do you want to avoid these significant risks? Then do not ride this way.
Problems of pilot error aside, hard-core riding also beats the heck out of your equipment. Although we build and test our bikes to make them tough, there's no way that we can guarantee they'll survive your umpteenth six-foot drop. For starters, there is no industry "jumping" standard. The many circumstances of takeoff, landing, speed, rider technique, etc. are unique. The judgement, lack of judgement or insanity of a rider that may ride a Cannondale bicycle cannot be completely predicted, so it's flat-out impossible to predict how anyone's equipment is going to hold up.
Let's get another thing straight. Buying a Freeride bike does not make you any better. Do not confuse the built-in capabilities of equipment with your own capabilities, which must be learned.
Keeping your bike and all its components in good working order is critical, and it's up to you to maintain and inspect it. Even so, your sweet rig isn't going to last forever. Nothing does, particularly bikes and parts that are built to minimize weight and then subjected to abuse. Our frames carry a lifetime warranty, but that's to cover issues with workmanship and/or materials. See the Cannondale Warranties section of the Owner's Manual. It doesn't mean that they're going to last forever. They're not. It certainly doesn't mean that the bicycle will last forever or can in any way protect you from injury.
Cannondale has long urged the use of helmets. As riskier, extreme downhill and freeriding became part of the sport we communicated frankly about the risks in this freeride warning. We have recently become aware of neck braces, designed for mountain biking and motocross riding, fitted between the rider and helmet, that can decrease the risk of paralysis, spinal cord and neck injuries. As the manufacturer clearly states, these braces cannot prevent all injuries. We urge riders, particularly riders into challenging and risky riding, to investigate and consider neck braces. One of these might save your life or keep you out of a wheelchair.
If you're going hard-core, be smart about it, eh? Always wear a full face helmet,state of the art neck brace, full body armor including spine protector, arm and leg pads, full-finger gloves and protective clothing. Choose a bike that's right for you, your riding and terrain, and check it often for signs of fatigue or other trouble. (Your dealer can help you on both fronts.) Read the Mountain Bike Riding section of the Cannondale Owner's Manual. And most importantly, know your limitations. Practice. Stay in control, and carefully, gradually expand your limits - but ride within them.
Warning: Cannondale bicycles are intended to be sold only in a completely assembled and adjusted condition, by authorized Cannondale retailers at authorized locations. We have generally prohibited the sale of Cannondale bicycles through the Internet or mail order. The sole exception is a US retailer specifically authorized by Cannondale to sell only triathlon specific bicycles directly to customers in the US. If you have any suspicion or concerns re the authenticity of a seller, please call us at 1-800-BIKE-USA.
We do this for your safety. Taking the professional retailer out of the process increases the chance of assembly errors that could lead to an accident or injury. Proper assembly and adjustment are key aspects of maximizing safety, and Cannondale requires the retailer to completely assemble and adjust every Cannondale bicycle prior to its sale. This is particularly important with the unique and innovative features specific to many Cannondale bicycles. We also require that the retailer orient you to the particular bicycle, and to review safety equipment. Please note that your initial 30 day service visit is also very important. Beyond safety, your fit, comfort and satisfaction with the performance of the bicycle are best assured by hands-on professional service.
Finally, as authorized Cannondale retailers are not permitted to sell our bikes via the Internet or mail order, those bikes that are offered through these channels are often second hand, or compromised in some way. In addition to the risks mentioned above, purchasing a Cannondale bicycle via the internet voids all product warranties. Save yourself a headache and support your authorized Cannondale bicycle retailer!