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Old 08-02-05, 06:43 AM   #1
peripatetic
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tightening cables on old-school centerpulls

I tried doing it on a friend's bike the other night, and found it kind of difficult. How does one measure the correct, tight length? I ended up measuring it a little loose, then tightening up on the adjuster ferrules, but then it seemed like there wasn't much room for further tightening.
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Old 08-02-05, 06:46 AM   #2
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Use a third hand tool to hold the calipers together, then set the cable tension with the adjusting barrel a little more than halfway out. Release the the third hand and use the barrel to loosen the calipers just enough to clear the wheel.
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Old 08-02-05, 06:54 AM   #3
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Hmm. Think I wasn't clear in my question. I kept setting the cable tension a little too tight, and the transverse cable holder wouldn't reach the transverse cable. I'm wondering what the trick is for measuring the correct point on the cable to tighten down the cable holder's fastening bolt. D'you just guess by sight?
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Old 08-02-05, 01:29 PM   #4
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I'm assuming you want to reset the cable position back to the so-called zero setting. If so, do the following.

1. Wheel should be installed in correct position.
2. Cable tension adjuster screws set back to the minimum position.
3. Center pull brake is installed AND a "third hand" or similar devise is installed to hold pads against the rim.
4. Cable (and housing) is assembled but bolt on traverse cable holder is loose. NOTE: Cable holder is installed on the transverse cable before the next step.
5. Pull the cable tight by hand so the cable holder is snug against the transverse cable.
6. Firmly tighten the bolt to hold the brake cable in place and to prevent cable slippage when braking.
7. Remove "third hand".
8. Test brake vigorously to make sure cable won't slip.

Usually this method results in the brakes opening slightly giving minimal clearance between the pads and the rim. If the pad clearance needs to be reduced slightly, just use the cable adjuster screw to reduce pad clearance.
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Old 08-02-05, 10:22 PM   #5
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Thanks, Daveag, no. 4 and 5 were what I was looking for.
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