Bicycle Mechanics - Plastic "tape" on road bike brakes?
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05-23-11, 06:27 PM
I was replacing a set of brakes on my road bike and I noticed the originals have a postage stamp sized piece of tape on one of the caliper arms. Kind of where the other caliper arm crosses it.
Then I noticed my new brake had the same thing as well.
It's about half off on one of my brakes. Is this just for shipping or what? What happens if it falls off. Is that a problem?
Here's where the "tape" is (it's more like a piece of plastic that is glued lightly on the back caliper arm -- immediately behind the front caliper arm.)
It is probably there to prevent scratches.
05-23-11, 06:34 PM
Cosmetic protection prior to install
05-23-11, 06:38 PM
it is from shipping and part of the packaging materials
05-23-11, 06:46 PM
That's what I figured, but I see so many bikes with that tape still installed. And my bike, was 5 years old when I got it and it still had the tape.
I really like to remove that packing stuff -- and not leave the thin plastic on the small lcd screens and covering the TV remote and such. It's the first thing I remove. But I was a bit worried that removing the much thicker and color coordinated tape from the brake caliper arm.
Thanks for the info.
It could be a nylon (white or transluscent) pad to let the two arms slide smoothly against each other when braking forces are applied and the arms bend a little (instead of metal to metal contact), specially at the front brake. Older single pivot sidepull brakes had those too but they were more like round buttons inserted into one of the caliper arms where they cross the other, instead of retangular pads. I'm thinking it's a slider pad as you noted that it's not really like tape but a piece of plastic.
05-23-11, 06:51 PM
Well, the two arms don't touch there -- there is about 1/8th of an inch of space between the two arms at that spot. It's fairly thick "tape" and like I said, more like plastic that is glued in place than tape.
It doesn't show on the parts list for the brakes at Shimano's website. So, I'm going with packing protection.
I don't own any of those brakes but I would also guess that it's a piece of UHMW polyethylene to prevent friction if the arms rubbed under braking/flexing.
I can't imagine packing materials would be glued to the product, why not just slide in a piece of cardboard that is easily removed?
Yeah, they are packing materials. I have bought two new Shimano brakesets, 105 and Ultegra that came with them. Just take them off and clean the left over adhesive with GooGone.
05-23-11, 08:55 PM
I bought a 105 front caliper once. It had the sticker, the two arms would touch but only when the brake wasn't installed (lack of tension from the cable). Making the sticker useless once installed. It was a black brake and the sticker was ugly, cloudy, and matte. I took it off, but it left a bunch of nasty residue in a pretty impossible to reach place.
I think it is just there for shipping and Shimano uses adhesive that is too strong.
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