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  1. #1
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    Centering side-pull brakes

    Iíve done this many times, but I still canít seem to get it right (perfect) Ė i.e., centering brakes with any side pull caliper that does not have a secondary mechanical centering device.

    Case in point: I just upped the spoke tension on a rear wheel (to obviate an annoying creak), and after re-truing the rim, I can only effect about a 1 micron gap between the left brake shoe and the rim, with about 7/32Ē gap to rim at the right side.

    - Iíd like to even this up, but after using my 3rd hand tool and resetting the caliper at the brake bridge , I just get the same result, at least once I squeeze the brake lever. - Ditto for trying to budge the caliper spring over.

    Is there some special trick to centering these things? The caliper at hand is a Weinmann 605, but Iíve had the same issue with other side pull brakes as well.
    - Auchen

  2. #2
    Insane Bicycle Mechanic Jeff Wills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by auchencrow View Post

    Is there some special trick to centering these things? The caliper at hand is a Weinmann 605, but I’ve had the same issue with other side pull brakes as well.
    First things first: make sure the brake cable and housing is the correct length, i.e. it doesn't apply any rotation to the caliper.

    With those particular calipers: http://velobase.com/velobase.com/Vie...1-ad1bd9de6a06 , there's a special wrench that grabs the exposed hex-shaped portion of the center bolt to make for easier centering. Since I bet you don't have that wrench, try loosening the caliper, pulling the left shoe all the way over, then tightening the caliper again. Squeeze the brake lever a couple times and see where the caliper centers itself. Repeat until you're satisfied or insane, whichever comes first.

    With very cheap calipers, we used to get them snug and then use a punch on the spring close to the center bolt. This is a rough method of rotating the center bolt, and it tends to bend the spring. However, sometimes it's the only method that works.
    Jeff Wills

    All my bikes.

  3. #3
    Senior Member auchencrow's Avatar
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    Thank you Jeff - I thought the center hex thing might do something, but you are right - I did not know what, and I have no such tool.

    I have tried loosening the caliper and pulling the left shoe all the way over. It never seems to slake off any of that extreme bias after squeezing the brake lever. I've had other calipers do this, but this particular caliper seems even more difficult. - I think my only other option may be to bend the spring a little, but this is a little touchy I'm sure.
    - Auchen

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