Kaabo Wolf E-Scooter Accidents: Should I be Concerned?

Kaabo Wolf E-Scooter Accidents: Should I be Concerned?

by freshlycharged

There have been some recent accidents with the Kaabo Wolf King and Kaabo Wolf Warrior electric scooters that have come to our attention and we want to share with you what we have learned.

From what we have observed from these recent accidents, the breaking point has been the front forks of the escooters. Both accidents involved the scooters breaking directly above the front axle nuts.

How could this happen to such a new and expensive electric scooter? We spent hours researching and reaching out to riders, distributors, and manufacturers to learn as much as we could and we will continue to update this article as more information comes forward.

Before we get into possible reasons for the failure of the Kaabo Wolf electric scooters, let’s learn about one of the accidents.

What we know about the Accident with the Wolf Warrior 11+

I had the opportunity to speak with Austin extensively about what happened with his Wolf Warrior 11+ accident. Austin never rides off road and he is an experienced rider who has owned four electric scooters.

Broken Wolf Warrior Austin Quon
This is the damage with a full face helmet. I would hate to imagine what he would look like with no helmet.

Austin started riding kick scooters as a child. In 2006, Austin purchased a Schwinn scooter with a lead acid battery. After the Schwinn, Austin purchased a Xaomi M365.

After many upgrades to the M365, Austin purchased a Kaabo Skywalker followed by the Kaabo Wolf Warrior 11+ in January 2021.

Austins Xiaomi M365

Austin is meticulous about checking his bolts the day before he rides and topping off the battery. The electric scooter was used for street riding and he had 465 miles on the scooter at the time of the accident.

Austin was riding down the road in a group ride, accelerating to 40 mph when he hit a small bump in the road. Plenty of other scooters had gone over this bump with no problems, but as soon as the Wolf Warrior 11+ hit the bump, the front end broke off on the scooter and Austin and his broken scooter crumpled to the asphalt.

Austins Wolf and Skywalker

I have seen a lot of victim shaming accusing Austin of mishandling his scooter on social media. After speaking with Austin and watching all the video footage, I feel Austin was not riding erratically or doing anything to cause the scooter to fail at the time of the accident.

Austin was wearing a full face helmet, elbow pads, knee/shin guards, and gloves during this ride. Had he not, the injuries could have been much worse.

What we know about the Kaabo Wolf King Accident?

A broken Kaabo Wolf King picture appeared on social media with a similar point of failure but much less is known of this accident. We have reached out to the rider for comment and will update this section once we have more information.

Broken Wolf King

Looking for Reasons why these Kaabo Electric Scooters are Breaking

From what we have learned, the common breaking point with these two cases is in the front fork. We also know that the is made of cast metal and not forged metal. Some are speculating that this could be a problem.

Casting is weaker than forging when producing metal products.

Forging and casting are two of the main manufacturing ways to make a metal product. Forging presses or hammers metal into the desired shape while casting pours molten metal into a mold to make the product.

While casting a metal part is less expensive, it also results in a weaker product that has less tensile and fatigue strength. According to a study by the University of Toledo:

The ultimate strength and yield strength of the ductile cast iron material were
66% and 80% of the forged steel, respectively.

University of Toledo MECHANICAL, INDUSTRIAL & MANUFACTURING ENGINEERING DEPARTMENT

The current design being used in the Kaabo Wolf line is not new so why is this issue coming up now? Did Kaabo recently change manufacturing processes? Have they changed where they source parts and materials?

Of course, potential causes for failure could also be from the escooter rider. Was misuse and abuse of the electric scooter involved? Could over torquing of the axle wheel nuts be causing the issue?

Broken Kaabo Wolf

On all high end bicycles, they let you know the torque setting for all bolts. I have yet to find an electric scooter that has torque settings for the bolts. Over torquing axle nuts could cause stress at the end of the forks.

With these recent accidents, I am not saying that over torquing of bolts caused the problem. However, I would love to see scooter companies letting us know the correct torque for all the bolts.

So is the problem due to lower cost cast metal parts that have higher rates of failure or could the problem be due to misuse of the product?

Has the Power of Electric Scooter Outgrown the Electric Scooter Body Design?

Electric scooters have evolved rapidly over the recent years. Newer scooters are much more powerful, yet the design and body parts are still the same as in the past. Have the motor strength and power of these new scooters outgrown the parts used to make the scooter body?

For example, to simplify this as much as I can, is putting 60 mph worth of power and torque into a scooter body designed to handle 40 or 50 mph a recipe for disaster?

We have owned two Kaabo Wolf Warrior 11+ and a Kaabo Wolf King electric scooters with zero issues. But these recent accidents appearing in social media are changing the way we practice when it comes to electric scooters.

In addition to always visually inspecting the potential points of failure on our electric scooters, we are always wearing our safety gear when we ride. We are being extra cautious and extra vigilant about our pre-ride inspections and we encourage you to do so as well.

What has happened since the Kaabo Wolf Accidents?

In response to the Kaabo Wolf accident, an online electric scooter group advised everyone to “Make sure and tighten your bolts.” Unfortunately, tightening your bolts will have zero impact preventing this potential defect and over torquing those bolts could result in increased stress and fatigue on an already suspect part on the Kaabo Wolf.

There has been an x-ray video released by Kaabo stating they have yet to find any defects. The video shares no details on what is going on and the viewer is left to assume that they are investigating for potential points of failure.

However, many questions still remain:

  • Did Kaabo study a large enough sample size to confidently say that there is no large scale problem with that particular part on their electric scooters?
  • Will Kaabo be investigating the batch of scooters made around the time that Austin’s scooter was made?
  • Am I safe to continue riding my Kaabo Wolf electric scooters?

In speaking with Austin after his electric scooter accident, Austin states that Kaabo never asked for serial numbers or purchase dates, vital information to find out production times and batch dates that could help in such an investigation.

Austin was wearing full safety gear and we fear the next person who has an accident won’t be as prepared.

We are lucky that Austin was not more seriously injured. But we can’t let our guards down. Consumers deserve a complete investigation to determine whether there is a real problem that needs to be addressed or if the accidents are just isolated and random occurrences.

We must be diligent before each ride to see if there is any indication of fatigue such as hairline cracks in the front forks. Unfortunately, in addition to being weaker, cast metal parts do not show as much signs of damage and fatigue prior to complete failure when compared to forged parts.

Preride Safety Inspection

Safety is our number one concern here at gotscooter.com and while much of the following may seem like common sense, the most important thing is to get in the habit of doing a preride inspection.

If you see any cracks or other signs of fatigue, do not ride your scooter and please make sure to contact your distributor. Do these 4 things before each ride:

  1. Check for body damage or any signs of fatigue such as cracking or warping, especially on the front forks.
  2. Check tires and inflate to the correct PSI.
  3. Make sure all bolts are tight and possibly use Loctite.
  4. Wear safety gear and consider wearing a full face helmet.
IMG 8523

A few accidents out of 20,000 Electric Scooters

When we reached out to Kaabo for comment, we were told that they are still looking into the issue. They also stated that there are 20,000 such electric scooters being ridden without problem.

Could these recent electric scooter accidents just be from bad luck? All mechanical devices can fail and maybe with 20,000 electric scooters out there, we were bound to see such a failure.

Time will tell if the broken front fork is a widespread problem or if the accidents were due to random chance.

There are lots of Wolf Warriors and Wolf Kings around the world without any issues. However, it is always important to check for any signs of damage. A casual scooter ride could be disastrous if you crash while not wearing safety gear.

As said earlier, we have had no problems with our Wolf Warrior or Wolf King but we just want the public to be aware of the situation. The more educated we can be, the safer we can ride.

If you have had issues with your Kaabo Wolf Warrior or Wolf King, share it with us at the Electric Scooter Board so we can see if this is a growing problem.

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