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  1. #1
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    Really squeaky, squealing cantilever brakes. Need help!!!

    My rear brakes squeal really loud. I have read everything I could about how to fix the issue from toe-in, toe-out, and cleaning rims. Cleaning rims seemed to fix the issue a little bit, but the squealing comes back after some time.

    Everything is brand new so I know it's not due to old parts. I have kool-stop pads, and I can't believe these nice pads would be the cause of the noise.

    The brakes themselves function well, but I would really, really appreciate it if I can make them run quiet because right now I am announcing my arrival at least 5 miles in advance.

    Do you think that it could just be that I need to wear my brake pads out a little bit more?

  2. #2
    Senior Member 009jim's Avatar
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    Once when I replaced my pads, they squealed in the wet. I changed back to the original brand. There's a lot of brake pads for sale. I don't know how much quality testing some of them get.

  3. #3
    Kid A TurbineBlade's Avatar
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    Do they stop the bike well?

    I've had sets of cantis that were quite load, but I decided I didn't care because they worked really well. I have kool stop salmons on my 2 main bikes w/cantis now and they're mostly quiet....unless it's wet outside.
    Cyclist, angler and aquarist

  4. #4
    AEO
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    hmm, interesting... usually it's the front that does this.
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
    http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by TurbineBlade View Post
    Do they stop the bike well?

    I've had sets of cantis that were quite load, but I decided I didn't care because they worked really well. I have kool stop salmons on my 2 main bikes w/cantis now and they're mostly quiet....unless it's wet outside.
    They definitely stop the bike so it works which is the most important thing, but I would really, really appreciate it if it also stopped squealing. Can you imagine how others would feel during a long group ride?

  6. #6
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by d.vader123 View Post
    They definitely stop the bike so it works which is the most important thing, but I would really, really appreciate it if it also stopped squealing. Can you imagine how others would feel during a long group ride?
    I found that Koolstop Dual Compound MTB pads stopped Avid Shorty 4 from squealing for a while. The soft front compound seems to cut down on the chatter.
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  7. #7
    AEO
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    by the way, how is the cable attached to the frame? Is there a cable stop on the frame itself, or does it use a cable hanger coming off of the seat post collar?
    Is there any slack in the cable? Is the cable housing too short or too long? Is there any binding in the cable?
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
    http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm

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    Are the pads the right way around? Double check.

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    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    What has worked for me on occasion was cleaning the brake track thoroughly with a Scotch-brite pad (green kitchen pad) and also scuffing up the surface of the brake pads.

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    I use scotch brite with car paint scratch remover to clean the rim braking surface, and sand of the glazing from the brake pads. It seems to work very well for me. I have used kools top brake pads for wet conditions, but found that the compound was too soft and wore down very quickly in wet gritty conditions. Furthermore in my estimation the breaking efficiency under wet conditions was only slightly better than the Shimano pads that wear considerably less under the same conditions.

    YannisG

  11. #11
    AEO
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    Quote Originally Posted by yannisg View Post
    I use scotch brite with car paint scratch remover to clean the rim braking surface, and sand of the glazing from the brake pads. It seems to work very well for me. I have used kools top brake pads for wet conditions, but found that the compound was too soft and wore down very quickly in wet gritty conditions. Furthermore in my estimation the breaking efficiency under wet conditions was only slightly better than the Shimano pads that wear considerably less under the same conditions.

    YannisG
    as a trade off, your rims wear out faster with harder pad compounds.
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
    http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm

  12. #12
    Senior Member Spld cyclist's Avatar
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    I know you've already done some research, but check out this thread if you haven't already: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...lver-Brake-FAQ

    I like Kool Stop pads, but recently I had a cantilever that I couldn't quiet down. Toeing them in didn't seem to be helping as much as it should have, and the plow tip on the trailing edge seemed to be complicating my attempt to toe them in more. I ended up using a sharp chisel to shave the plow tip off level with the rest of the pad, and I also cut a little bevel at the same end. The squealing is almost completely gone now (I get a little with really hard braking).

  13. #13
    Senior Member bikeman715's Avatar
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    lightly sanding the rims might help also sand the pads .
    bikeman715

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    Quote Originally Posted by AEO View Post
    by the way, how is the cable attached to the frame? Is there a cable stop on the frame itself, or does it use a cable hanger coming off of the seat post collar?
    Is there any slack in the cable? Is the cable housing too short or too long? Is there any binding in the cable?
    The frame uses a cable hanger coming off the seat post collar. There is a healthy amount of slack (I believe) and everything about the cable looks good. I didn't put the bike myself, but it appears fine to me.

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    I use shimano xtr pads and don't have the problem unless I get oil or grease on the rim and pads.

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    Quote Originally Posted by krome View Post
    Are the pads the right way around? Double check.
    Yes definitely. I went on another ride today and right now, I have been able to regulate the amount of noise from the rear brake. I do this simply by not holding down the rear brake so hard and so quickly. I put most of the pressure on the front brake while using the rear brake to assist with the stop. However, if I hear the squealing then I loosen up on the rear brake or if I need to stop quickly, then I press down on it even harder.

    Strangely enough, the squealing occurs when I put a medium amount of pressure on the rear brake. A little pressure or a strong hard amount minimizes the squeal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidad View Post
    I use shimano xtr pads and don't have the problem unless I get oil or grease on the rim and pads.
    Interestingly enough, a lbs recommended that I use a degreaser. I tried cleaning the rim with alcohol, but it did not help too much. I wanted to get the degreaser, but I didn't want to buy it unless I knew it would work. Can people vouch whether a degreaser would really do the trick?

  18. #18
    AEO
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    Quote Originally Posted by d.vader123 View Post
    Interestingly enough, a lbs recommended that I use a degreaser. I tried cleaning the rim with alcohol, but it did not help too much. I wanted to get the degreaser, but I didn't want to buy it unless I knew it would work. Can people vouch whether a degreaser would really do the trick?
    some acetone (nail polish remover) would work too.
    Quote Originally Posted by d.vader123 View Post
    The frame uses a cable hanger coming off the seat post collar. There is a healthy amount of slack (I believe) and everything about the cable looks good. I didn't put the bike myself, but it appears fine to me.
    you might want it more on the taught side rather than the slack side. Just to experiment if it works better that way.
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
    http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm

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    Quote Originally Posted by AEO View Post
    some acetone (nail polish remover) would work too.
    Wow...I can't imagine putting that on there =) It just sounds too weird. I'm not saying it won't work, but I think I would just get the degreaser then.

    Quote Originally Posted by AEO View Post
    you might want it more on the taught side rather than the slack side. Just to experiment if it works better that way.
    Sorry I miswrote then. The cable is taut. What I meant was that there weren't any sharp bends from the brake lever to the brake arms themselves. It follows along the frame nicely without any hard angle bending.

    Anyway, I will probably try the degreaser. I also plan to get new koolstop pads. I have a choice of the following:
    1. http://www.koolstop.com/english/crosspad.html
    2. http://www.koolstop.com/english/dura2.html

    The first contains the pad with its cartridge piece. I already own the cartridge piece on my current brakes. I'd hate to buy new cartridges with its pads and throw out the perfectly nice, ones in my current setup.

    That is why I think I would just get the brake pads (without cartridge) called the Dura 2 shown in second link. The only problem I have with it would be figuring out how to install them. Does anyone have experience with it? I see a hex key inserted into the pads. Looks like I have to remove that and then remove the old pad before inserting the new pad.

    Does that make sense? Thanks.

  20. #20
    Senior Member rydabent's Avatar
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    You mentioned that you have tried toe in and out. The pads need to be set so that they are toed out where the rim enters the pad. I usually set this by having the pad loose on their mounts, and put a thin washer or a dime under the back of the pad where the rim enters. Then setting the height, I tighten up the pads. Also on old rims make sure the brake contact area is clean by buffing with a greenie or very very fine sand paper. Buff the pads also.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    Nail polish remover often has oil in it, and it's more often ethyl acetate than it is acetone. If you're going to use something like this to clean your rims/pads, go with regular acetone from the pharmacy or hardware store, not nail polish remover.

  22. #22
    AEO
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
    You mentioned that you have tried toe in and out. The pads need to be set so that they are toed out where the rim enters the pad. I usually set this by having the pad loose on their mounts, and put a thin washer or a dime under the back of the pad where the rim enters. Then setting the height, I tighten up the pads. Also on old rims make sure the brake contact area is clean by buffing with a greenie or very very fine sand paper. Buff the pads also.
    Your toes face forward, so "toe in" means the front will point at each other.
    For "toe out", the front will point away from each other.
    Alternatively, it's called "heel in", but this is usually never done with bike brakes.
    Food for thought: if you aren't dead by 2050, you and your entire family will be within a few years from starvation. Now that is a cruel gift to leave for your offspring. ;)
    http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/arti...ger-photos.htm

  23. #23
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    Velo-Orange has "squeal-free" brake pads that actually work. Some people on BF will tell you they are too soft, collect aluminum bits or whatever. I have been using them on a Cross Check with Tektro CR-720 cantilevers and Mavic CXP-21 rims. I have not seen any problem with unusual pad wear or abrasion on the rims.

  24. #24
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Everything brand new ? have you talked to the mechanics at the shop you got the bike from, First?

  25. #25
    Senior Member IthaDan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by d.vader123 View Post
    Interestingly enough, a lbs recommended that I use a degreaser. I tried cleaning the rim with alcohol, but it did not help too much. I wanted to get the degreaser, but I didn't want to buy it unless I knew it would work. Can people vouch whether a degreaser would really do the trick?
    I've always used Simple Green. Nice and inexpensive.

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