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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 09-13-12, 09:45 AM   #1
gpolly1
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New to Bike Mechanics - brake pads

I've been commuting to work for about 6 months and most of the time I've taken my bike to a local bike shop for repairs/maintenance, but lately I've done my own. I've replaced tires, tubes, but now I have to replace my brake pads. My bike is from the 1980's and the pads look different than the ones I see in stores. Are they compatible? Can I still use them?

Thanks!
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Old 09-13-12, 09:48 AM   #2
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What make and type of brakes do you have? Pictures or an accurate description of the current ones will help with replacement recommendations.
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Old 09-13-12, 09:53 AM   #3
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There are two options.

1- if you have metal shoes with slide in pads, there may be pads that fit, and that's the least expensive option.

2- you can replace the entire shoe as long as the mounting hardware matches the brake. If you have a road bike with caliper brakes, a 6mm slot was pretty much standard back then, (and still is, though less so) so just about any shoe with 6mm hardware (may be marked for Shimano) will fit. You have a choice between one piece molded shoes, or metal holders with replaceable pads, which cost more now, but you can save later (not a smart decision if you plan to wait another 30 years).

Kool Stop and JagWire, both offer top quality replacement brake shoes.
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Old 09-13-12, 08:57 PM   #4
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I'm gonna go out on a limb and guess you have cantilever brakes in which case you will likely need threadless post pads like such



But to echo what has been said above, if we had pictures we could determine what you need with a simple glance. Or just take the bike to your shop and ask them what you need.
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Old 09-13-12, 09:08 PM   #5
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Take your bike into the shop and let them show you what pads you need and they could even offer pointers if you need them.
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