Insane Bicycle Mechanic
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: other Vancouver
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 111 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Kazarad
I’m completely stuck my back brakes are not clamping together but one side is being pulled to the wheel and then not springing back to its original position. anyone know what’s going on with it because iv taken that thing apart twice now and put it back together and still cant figure it out.
This is a very common problem with the old single-pivot sidepull brakes. It's inherent to the design- whenever you tighten the center bolt to keep the brake in place, the spring is pulled off-center. To quote from this Park Tools page:
"If the brake is a double nut type, and has no centering flat, it may accept the OBW-3 spanner. Use the OBW-3 to grab the spring and move the pivot. It may also be necessary to loosen mounting bolt and move brake to center, hold it by hand and re-secure mounting nut."
If you don't want to invest in the Park centering tool, it's possible to tighten the brake down and then center the caliper by banging on the spring with a hammer and punch. This takes a little finesse, but it works.
Also, since you're in Portland, see if you can haul your bike to Citybikes on Ankeny. They have lots of experience with old Varsities. Or, if you're out & about, I'll be doing the Tour De Lab
on Saturday and riding to the PDX Cycle Swap
on Sunday. I'm easy to spot- I'm 6-foot-4, gray haired, and I ride a polished aluminum Easy Racer recumbent.
Comcast nuked my web page. It will return soon..
Last edited by Jeff Wills; 09-10-10 at 10:15 PM.