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  1. #1
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    want a better caliper (shimano BR600)

    Hi all,

    My brakes are poor in the rain. I don't weigh much and nor does my bike, I also run Kool Stop Salmon pads and have cleaned my braking surfaces, so I'm guessing maybe my calipers are rubbish.

    Are Shimano BR600 calipers any good? If not, are the 105 calipers noticeably better, are there other calipers I should consider?

    Thanks

    Daven

  2. #2
    Senior Member Simonius's Avatar
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    Shimano BR600 is a long-reach (47-57mm) caliper so has less leverage than a short reach one.

    It is designed for modern (cable under bar tape) road brake levers.
    Old style high wire levers pull about 15% weaker.
    Some MTB levers are a lot weaker than that.

    Chromed steel rims are terribly slippy in the rain. To counter this, Araya invented Satalyte matt nickel plating. Dunno if they stopped any better but they look a lot like aluminium so at least you can look as if you can stop.

    Detergent is safe for cleaning. Hot water helps esp. for grease.

  3. #3
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    Switch pads to KoolStop salmon.

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    Daven, Most of Shimano's dual pivot brakes are standard reach and all perform about the same (very well). The BR-600/650 are long reach dual pivots. You'll need to determine which you need so go to Sheldon Brown's archive to learn how to measure the reach.

    Brad

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    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I wouldn't call older cable out the top weaker, the MA is less ,
    more cable pulled for lever actuation amount.

    your hand feels stronger without more effort,
    because Aero type levers pull less cable length, for lever actuation ,

    Higher MA [ lever's fulcrum is closer to work being done]

    With the Old Campag style single pivot brakes and the period lever,
    just HTFU, and squeeze harder.

  6. #6
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    My brakes are poor in the rain.
    are there other calipers I should consider?
    Yea, a bike with disc brakes.. Avid BB7 are popular ..

  7. #7
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Looks like Kool Stop salmon pads are already in use.

    Reach of caliper is actually irrelevant. It's the distance between the brake-pivots to the pads that matter. You can use a long-reach caliper at the top of the brake-pad slot or a short-reach caliper at the bottom of the slot, doesn't matter, leverage will be the same due to same lever-length.

    What needs to be inspected next is the rim's braking-surface. What kind of rims are on this bike? 've had good results in the rain by using 320-grit sandpaper on an aluminium block to rough up the braking-surface of the alloy rims. Aluminium block is used to keep sanding-surface flat. Rub in circular motion to randomize the surface prep and get even roughness all around.

    Also, tyre-grip is the ultimate limit of braking and wet tarmac will yield only 1/2 the friction. So count on stopping distances that's twice as long under optimum conditions.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Simonius's Avatar
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    Thanks for elaborating on "weaker", fietsbob.

    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
    Reach of caliper is actually irrelevant. It's the distance between the brake-pivots to the pads that matter.
    Indeed.
    That suggests to me that a dropper bolt would be ideal, if it does not get in the way of a mudguard.

    Are dropper bolts still available? Dia-Compe 1986 catalog lists them in 5, 8 and 10 mm drop.
    I suspect old BMX guys may have some in their junk box, gaily coloured.

    John Allen's site and I think I think SheldonBrown show home made extenders which allow a brake to be installed as-is with the bolt passing below the fork crown or brake bridge, but that is a big drop of at least 12-14mm on the front.

  9. #9
    Senior Member himespau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sadpandaface View Post
    Hahahahaha cheers to that
    Dude, enough already. What are you trying to do.
    Punctuation is important. It's the difference between "I helped my uncle, Jack, off a horse" and "I helped my uncle Jack off a horse"


  10. #10
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simonius View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
    Reach of caliper is actually irrelevant. It's the distance between the brake-pivots to the pads that matter.
    Indeed.
    That suggests to me that a dropper bolt would be ideal, if it does not get in the way of a mudguard.

    Are dropper bolts still available? Dia-Compe 1986 catalog lists them in 5, 8 and 10 mm drop.
    I suspect old BMX guys may have some in their junk box, gaily coloured.
    I've seen Dia-compe style drop-bolts somewhere, but they were insanely expensive, U$D 150 or some such!

    I've actually used Sheldon Brown's homemade drop-bolt technique on a few bikes and they do work well. The shorter ones can be very discreet, unlike this:

    http://sheldonbrown.com/images/dropbolt-r20.jpg

  11. #11
    Senior Member Simonius's Avatar
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    Hah, that would aid safety by scaring the cars out of the way!

    Given that dry braking is OK and any dual pivot brake is fairly strong I reckon this is either a brake lever not designed for a road brake, or pad/rim contamination. Running over boxes of fast food chucked out of cars might cause this.

  12. #12
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    Try the shimano DA pads.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidad View Post
    Try the shimano DA pads.
    They are fine but no better than the Kool Stop Salmons the OP has now.

  14. #14
    Constant tinkerer FastJake's Avatar
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    How does it stop dry? If you can't lift the rear wheel with the front brake, something is wrong. Shimano BR-600 is an excellent caliper and while it is a bit longer reach than the current "standard" it should still work plenty well. Realize though that (in my experience) caliper brakes take more hand effort to stop when wet than V-brakes or discs.

    +1 what kind of rims are you using? Machined sidewall rims seem to work best when wet, compared to some of the "hard anodized" rims from the 80s with a more smooth surface.
    Why "derailer" is the correct way to spell the gear-change mechanism: sheldonbrown.com/derailer.html

  15. #15
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    stopping dry is fine. guess I just need to brake harder! the rims are machined too.

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