When I changed out my handlebar to a road bar and 105 STI levers, I knew that brake pull would be an issue. The shop installed Travel Agent boosters which allow the brakes to function, just not very well. The rear especially winds up with almost no stopping power even with barely adequate clearance. The curved metal sleeve from the end of the cable housing to brake itself had to be modified slightly to clear the seat post mounted bracket for my rear rack. When I picked up the bike after the work the shop told me the rear might be a little challenge but that they would redo/try alternatives at no labor charge until the brakes were satisfactory. They are good about that, and I know they will do what it takes. However, I thought I would throw this out to the many years of experience out there to see if anyone has addressed this issue or has some suggestions.
The current brakes seem to be low end Tektro facsimiles of Shimano V-brakes. The frame has what appear to be mounts for caliper brakes. However, I have fenders (this is a workhorse commuting bike; the fenders stay) so it doesn't look like calipers (presumably the ideal solution) are an option. Now, I might consider some judicious use of metal shears to make a couple of cutouts in the fenders to provide clearance for calipers.
I would welcome any suggestions I could take to the shop. My preference would be to go ahead and install 105 calipers since that would seem to be the ultimate solution. Do you think making a couple of cutouts in the fenders would allow this?
Thanks as always,
I use old style 105 calipers (57mm of drop) with 28mm (and even 32) tyres and fenders. No problems and plenty of stopping power.
My fenders are stainless steel, so they can be bent to accomodate the brakes.
STI work better with convenional cantelevers than with V brakes, but in my experience, calipers are better.