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  1. #1
    Maglia Ciclamino gcasillo's Avatar
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    Avid Shorty brakes: Squeeeeeliamstoppingsqueeeel!

    Okay, if you read the thread title, you probably know what I'm talking about. I've got a set of Shorty 6 cantilever brakes on my Volpe. I noticed the other day that my rear rim's braking surface was considerably darker, more worn than my front rim. I know well enough to apply the front brake primarily, so this made me conscientious about checking how I'm braking when I'm out on my Volpe.

    Sure enough, I'm apply the rear brake much more than I realized. Why? Because when I use the front brake as I should, the brake pads announce my intent to stop with AUTHORITY. SQUEEEEEEEL! Almost louder than metro buses.

    How can I alleviate this ghastly noise? The pads are lightly to moderately worn. I would not otherwise be in a hurry to chuck them.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Matt Gaunt's Avatar
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    You can't really do a lot other than toe the shoes in a bit more. I use XT Parallel V's and they are supposed to squeal like mad too. I think you're lucky if like me, you get hardly any squeal.

    Canti's don't normally make that much noise though, do they?

    Also, have you cleaned the braking surface with Muc-Off or something similar? That can help to reduce the noise too.
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  3. #3
    semifreddo amartuerer 'nother's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcasillo
    Okay, if you read the thread title, you probably know what I'm talking about. I've got a set of Shorty 6 cantilever brakes on my Volpe. I noticed the other day that my rear rim's braking surface was considerably darker, more worn than my front rim. I know well enough to apply the front brake primarily, so this made me conscientious about checking how I'm braking when I'm out on my Volpe.

    Sure enough, I'm apply the rear brake much more than I realized. Why? Because when I use the front brake as I should, the brake pads announce my intent to stop with AUTHORITY. SQUEEEEEEEL! Almost louder than metro buses.

    How can I alleviate this ghastly noise? The pads are lightly to moderately worn. I would not otherwise be in a hurry to chuck them.
    Cantis, Avids in particular seem to be very susceptible to squeal. Before you do anything, take a big dose of patience. Toeing-in the pads might help some, but don't go too far otherwise you lose braking power. Sheldon Brown has a piece on adjusting centerpull cantis at http://www.sheldonbrown.com/canti-trad.html which may help.

    Different pads might help, especially if the ones you have are already worn without having been toed-in. I've actually had the most success with Avid's own RimWrangler pads, but some people swear by KoolStop salmon-colored ones. I'm currently toying around with Jagwire Switchback Tri-zones; they're okay but not noticeably better than Avids; despite a fancy "squeal-free zone", they still squeal a bit.

    Edit: also, cleaning the rims and pads frequently may help. I sand my pads occasionally because they get a kind of "glaze" on them which seems to make squealing worse. Sanding that down (just lightly) definitely helps, at least temporarily.
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  4. #4
    cs1
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    Senior Member cs1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 'nother
    Cantis, Avids in particular seem to be very susceptible to squeal. Before you do anything, take a big dose of patience. Toeing-in the pads might help some, but don't go too far otherwise you lose braking power. Sheldon Brown has a piece on adjusting centerpull cantis at http://www.sheldonbrown.com/canti-trad.html which may help.

    Different pads might help, especially if the ones you have are already worn without having been toed-in. I've actually had the most success with Avid's own RimWrangler pads, but some people swear by KoolStop salmon-colored ones. I'm currently toying around with Jagwire Switchback Tri-zones; they're okay but not noticeably better than Avids; despite a fancy "squeal-free zone", they still squeal a bit.

    Edit: also, cleaning the rims and pads frequently may help. I sand my pads occasionally because they get a kind of "glaze" on them which seems to make squealing worse. Sanding that down (just lightly) definitely helps, at least temporarily.
    I would clean the rims first then sand the pads. If your rims are greasy or dirty freshly cleane pads will just glaze up again.

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  5. #5
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    Been there, done all that. Avids like to squeal, lose them.
    Get some Shimanos, new or used. There are many other good brakes out there. it's just that your LBS prob has some used Shimanos
    in his parts bin you could have cheap.

  6. #6
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcasillo
    Okay, if you read the thread title, you probably know what I'm talking about. I've got a set of Shorty 6 cantilever brakes on my Volpe. I noticed the other day that my rear rim's braking surface was considerably darker, more worn than my front rim. I know well enough to apply the front brake primarily, so this made me conscientious about checking how I'm braking when I'm out on my Volpe.

    Sure enough, I'm apply the rear brake much more than I realized. Why? Because when I use the front brake as I should, the brake pads announce my intent to stop with AUTHORITY. SQUEEEEEEEL! Almost louder than metro buses.

    How can I alleviate this ghastly noise? The pads are lightly to moderately worn. I would not otherwise be in a hurry to chuck them.
    I recently changed my pads from cartridge to a solid pad on my Avids. The squeal went away for now but I don't know about the long run. The pads I changed to were Koolstop Eagle Claws. I think the thin cartridge pads may not have enough "beef" to keep from chattering.
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