I'am new to disc brakes, ive been having those age old rim brakes for too long and I'am upgrading my bike. Only I have an issue! as I'am diving right into it disc brakes I have purchased the Hayes HFX-9 Carbon F & R and I can't get the idea behind the super tight brake pads I cant fit the disc rotor so it sits in nicely or when I manage to prise them open and I get the wheel moving round mounted on the fork and pull on the brake lever they jam tightly and the wheels stops whats goin on? are they supposed to be so tight? or is there something in the manual that I didnt get with them that states I have to adjust something please help!!
Salsa mtb * 3, Intense mtb * 1, Abeni SS rd * 1, Salsa road/touring * 2, Trek Damn one * 1, Vintage/projects * many
ha - in the workshop there is a scoreboard on the wall.
"Bikes with Hayes brakes - good or bad to work on?"
As of yesterday, there are zero marks in the "good" column.
Although as you've observed, you have to prise the pads apart. Take the pads out and use a plastic tyre lever to push the pistons back. They are self-adjusting pistons so the idea is, you push them all the way back, then squeeze the lever (while the brake is mounted on the rotor), and they retract just the right amount. If they're not retracting far enough, you may not be pushing them back far enough in the first place.
I'm sure an expert will turn up soon enough, I'm just procrastinating here really...
To get your clearances right try this. Remove pads, push pistons back as far as possible (use the box end of a 10mm wrench, avoiding the center post on the piston) reinstall pads. Remount the wheel. Insert a feeler gauge between rotor & pads on each side of rotor .015" x2. Or .016" & .014" If you dont have a feeler gauge a stip of thick paper ie: business card works well. Squeeze the lever several times, remove feeler gauges squeeze lever again check clearance. Should be ok.
Oh I forgot, loosen mounting bolts enough for caliper to move after remounting wheel then tighten them while squeezing brake lever with feeler gauges in place.
This may sound more complicated than it actually is, in my experience Hayes brakes are not too dificult work on.