Yup, This was todays "lunchtime" ride. This is one of the hazards of riding this time of year: Things are constantly falling out of the trees. Branches up to two inches in diameter can easily be concealed by a deep covering of freshly dropped deciduous leaves. It's on of these that I found today. Some of the trails that I ride in the weir hill/half-mile hill/osgood hill conservation areas in north andover don't get alot of use, and so are sometimes heavily covered. This damage was the result of a one-inch twig that twisted up inside the chain circle, caught one of the spokes, then spun the derailleur up and around the seat stay. The reason I didn't rip off the dropout is that it's Titanium. To quote an advertisement from Merlin several years ago, (talking about their dropouts) "No one hes ever broken one of our dropouts. Not one. Ever." I know, I'm not riding a Merlin, I'm riding an Independent Fabrication, but IF is what Merlin was before they were spirited away by Litespeed, and anyone who has any knowledge of the bicycle industry in Boston will tell you that any IF is as good as - if not better than - any Merlin in the same category.
I'm not too disappointed though. This setup has served me quite well for 6 years now (Sram 9.0 ESP). Trust me, that isn't because I don't' ride this thing like a ten dollar prostitute. My philosophy is, if you didn't crash, you aren't riding hard enough. For example, check out the dent in the chainstay. Remember, this is titanium, not the most delicate material on the planet. Also look here.
I may actually have a spare crappy derailleur I can use that I bought for parts and never used. I seem to remember buying a lightly used one at a bike swap that I snagged the jokey wheels off of. If I'm lucky, it will be the 1:1 actuation ratio typ that I need.
In any case, I already ordered a new ('07, actually) Sram X.9. It will be here monday.