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Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

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Old 09-11-11, 10:18 AM   #1
robo
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Canti link wire 'boss' not centered?

Have a pair of new Avid Shorty 4 cantis, and I've set them up correctly as far as I can remember from the last time I dealt with cantis, back in 1996 or so

The front wheel is aligned OK, the brakes are an even distance from the rim, but the boss on the link wire is off to one side. Is this normal? Since it's a link wire, there's not much I can do to adjust it, but it just looks like something isn't right...

Is this normal?

The best picture I could snap with the phone and poor lighting, but you can see that it's a good 5-8mm off to the right, going by the center hole on the fork:

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Old 09-11-11, 10:31 AM   #2
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Hard to tell, but it looks like the arms are not at the same angle - the left arm (right of picture) looks to be angled out further than the right one. A possible reason for this is that the canti posts are not spaced exactly the same on the fork legs, which I have seen on many bikes (primarily lower cost ones).

Luckily, if the pads are roughly equidistant from the rim and the braked function perfectly then there is nothing to worry about. This will have exactly zero affect on function or safety.
If it bugs you, why not purchase a separate straddle cable and yoke (instead of the one-piece link wire), because then you can set the yoke wherever you like to keep it centred, and you will also have set-up options to improve the feel and/or power of the brakes.
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Old 09-11-11, 11:22 AM   #3
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Thanks - after squinting at it some more and flipping the wheel back and forth to make sure it isn't a dish issue, I think you might be right - something about the fork is slightly asymmetrical. Noticed also that the angle of the spring receptacles on the posts are not aligned (one is rotated several degrees around the post from the other).

I guess that's what you get on a no-name carbon fork on a mail-order bike

I can adjust the spring tension so that the yoke is centered, but then one brake pad is touching the rim when the brake isn't even applied. Again, not a dish or axle-in-dropout issue.
I've removed one thin washer on the brake pad threaded post on one side, and will see if that does the trick.
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Old 09-11-11, 11:43 AM   #4
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+1 on the straddle wire and yoke; I like the Problem Solvers Wide Cable Carrier http://problemsolversbike.com/produc..._cable_carrier and the regular straddle wires myself.
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Old 09-11-11, 02:59 PM   #5
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You might also want to consider a fender, reflector holder, or similar object mounted to the fork and extending out between the tire and the straddle yoke, so that if the front brake cable breaks, the straddle wire doesn't flop over and catch on your tire tread. I know mountain bikes with cantis started including those, but I don't know if "real bikers" really use them, or if they're like kickstands.
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Old 09-11-11, 06:58 PM   #6
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Fenders are the best because they prevent the accident and, as a bonus, you get fenders.
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Old 09-11-11, 07:45 PM   #7
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This is a bikes direct bike, yes? They have quality issues, especially with forks. If you follow the SS/FG forum there were several members who reported a 700x23 tire not clearing the fork on their Kilo (?) track bikes.

If you think this a serious enough issue consider e-mailing BD and asking for a replacement fork. They gave out new forks to the users who complained before. Otherwise if the brake functions fine I wouldn't worry about it.
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Old 09-12-11, 02:54 AM   #8
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To me it just looks like you have a little more spring tension on the left brake arm (right on picture). It's hard to tell though.

I wouldn't do anything -- it looks just as close as any to me. I doubt you'd notice any difference by changing things.
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Old 09-12-11, 06:26 AM   #9
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My cyclocross bike has the same brakes and they do the same thing. Braking is not affected; they work perfectly with no centering problems, so I leave it alone.
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