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Old 01-22-02, 07:59 PM   #1
RainmanP
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Gimme a Brake (with no squeal)

I am beginning to think Yorick is haunted. About a year ago I rode him in the rain for the first time. He developed a squawk on the front brake. Over the intervening year EVERYTHING on the front end has been replaced (none because of the squawk) - wheel, fork, brake mechanism, brake pads, even the brake levers. The squawk NEVER changed. I have tried every remedy I could find.
1. Scrub rims vigorously with Simple Green solution.
2. Sand brake pads to deglaze them.
3. Wipe rims vigorously with alcohol.
4. Adjust toe-in, repeatedly.

Today I scrubbed the rims bright with ScotchBrite (suggested by LBS), wiped them down with alcohol, then put on new Kool Stop brake pads. Imagine my disappointment when the squawk actually appeared to be WORSE than with the old pads. Though the brakes did stop better. I'm at a loss. Any suggestions?

Wanting to run silent,
Raymond
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Old 01-22-02, 10:29 PM   #2
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I can't find the picture of your bike. What type of brakes are they? (Don't tell me they're Shimano 'parallel-push' V-brakes!)
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Old 01-23-02, 02:04 AM   #3
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Sounds like you've tried everything. maybe harder compound pads might work

If not, earplugs!
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Old 01-23-02, 02:13 AM   #4
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Try some hairspray to clean the rims and pads, strange but true. Spray some on a rag and "go to town".

On some brakes the only way to stop squeal is to TWIST the caliper arms to get enough "toe In". If the caliper arms are not of the hardest alloy you may need a surprising amount of toe in, 2 or 3 mm.

You might double check the play between the arms in the pivot/mounting bolt.

Ride in the quiet
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Last edited by pat5319; 01-23-02 at 02:19 AM.
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Old 01-23-02, 03:43 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by pat5319
Try some hairspray to clean the rims and pads, strange but true. Spray some on a rag and "go to town".

Ride in the quiet
Pat
Now I know what to do with the rest of the can of hairspray I bought for replacing a pair of grips

Richard
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Old 01-23-02, 04:06 AM   #6
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Sounds like the calipers have too much play, and can vibrate against each other. Can you tighten them up ? Usually you need 2 small spanners.
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Old 01-23-02, 07:47 AM   #7
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Use a credit card! Not for buying new brakes, for adjusting the toe-in.

Here's what I do. I loosen the brake pad and then place a credit card on the rim so the back 1/4" of the brake pad will hit it! Squeeze the brakes slightly enough to hold the credit card in place. You can also use a rubber band around the lever. Then snug-up the nut (or bolt) on the brake pad. This will provide a sufficient amount of toe-in for the pads. Once the pad is snug, grab the lever and squeeze it tightly (not so tight however that you move the brake pad) and finish tightening the nut/bolt.

If this doesn't work, make sure that the bolts/nuts holding the calipers together (side-pulls) or to the frame (canti's/vee) are snug. You make get squeks or chatter if these are loose.

Hope this helps!

L8R
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Old 01-23-02, 09:11 AM   #8
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Hair spray? Really?

This is a 'cross type frame with Surly Crosscheck fork. The brakes are Avid Shorty center pull V-brakes which were installed to work better with STI levers than standard V-brakes. However when the problem started the bike had standard V-brakes.

OK, I'll try more toe in and scrub with with hair spray.
Thanks,
Raymond
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Old 01-23-02, 10:27 PM   #9
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Rainman, I had the same prob with my Avid brakes. The LBS guy just shrugged and said "Yeah, They will do that" Last time I ever went to that shop. I too had cleaned, sanded, and toed. All to no avail. So I just rode and tried not to be too embarrassed when I had to slow down. But in time the squeeling went away. Only thing I can figure is the pads have contoured themselves with the rims.
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Old 01-24-02, 01:50 AM   #10
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Yep! Hair Spray, it does work, I learned the trick from a guy who worked with Albert Eisentraut and who was scared almost to death by the driving of Ernesto Colnago when he might of had a little too much wine.

Ride without squeal
Pat
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Old 01-24-02, 02:51 AM   #11
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Ray , I too have those Avid shorty's on one of my bikes , and also sqealed like a pig in heat .....so I switched to Koolstop dual compound pads ...still sqealed but not as bad , no matter how much I adjusted, nothing could really stop the racket ! , but quite quickly over a period of maybe 3 weeks of use , the noise went away !!!!
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Old 01-24-02, 07:19 AM   #12
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Buddy and Pat,
I guess I am using regular Kool Stops (second set now), plain black. Next change I will try to get dual compound. Meanwhile I guess it's hairspray.
Thanks,
Raymond
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Old 01-24-02, 07:52 AM   #13
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I've never had any squealers that wasn't corrected by increasing toe-in; sometimes radically, double the amoumt recommended. Didn't seem to affect stopping power at all.
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Old 01-24-02, 09:33 AM   #14
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Two of the rare desperation fixes is reverse toe, the second is extreme toe.

I have yet to figure out why reverse toe works. The extreme toe works when the tolerences of the brake bushing is too large for the brake stud.
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Old 01-24-02, 01:41 PM   #15
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Hair spray application question. I sprayed some ScotchBrite, scrubbed the rim lightly, then wiped off the excess. Does this sound OK? Or should I leave the excess on.

Also, will this leave my rims more manageable for that big date?
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Old 01-25-02, 12:44 AM   #16
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Rainman,
I would rub of the excess with a clean cloth.

Ride Quietly
Pat
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