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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Mar 2005
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    Perry, Ohio
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    Schwinn, Stella, Santana tandem, Trek 520
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    How to adjust Avid Cantilever brakes

    The right front brake pad on my Trek 520 which has Avid cantilever brakes is dragging on the rim. I'm not sure how to adjust. Any advice?

  2. #2
    Year-round cyclist
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    Apr 2002
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    Montréal (Québec)
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    If they really are cantis, check:
    this page from Park Tools,
    this page from Sheldon Brown.

    The latter page does more in explaining the advantages and drawbacks of various geometries, so if you feel your brakes never worked properly, Sheldon's page is the one to read.

    One factor I would add, especially if you ride year round, is to remove the brakes from their pivot point and to grease the pivots. I find it necessary to do it yearly on bikes I use a lot in Winter and in rain.
    Michel Gagnon
    Montréal (Québec, Canada)

  3. #3
    bike nerd
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    Dec 2005
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    there's probably a screw on one or both cantilever arms near where the arm mounts to the frame, perpendicular to the wheel. Adjusting one of these will pull both arms in the same direction in relation to the rim. Tightening it will pull both arms toward you. There is a limit to how far these can go, which is why it's nice to have them on both sides, though redundant. If there are no such screws, you have to move the brake pad(s) on the cantilever arms.

  4. #4
    Junior Member
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    Mar 2005
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    Perry, Ohio
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    Thanks for the help; those websites were both very useful. I've added them to my favorites list. I was also able to get the brakes adjusted by tightening the small screws made for that purpose!

  5. #5
    Junior Member
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    Mar 2005
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    Perry, Ohio
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    I'm all set. My brakes did have the adjusting screws which we were able to figure out. Thanks for your help!

  6. #6
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Beaufort, South Carolina, USA and surrounding islands.
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    Cannondale R500, Motobecane Messenger
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    Before you go adjusting screws, make sure the wheel is centered and true.
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

    If your bike has breaks, don't ride it.

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