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Old 09-19-12, 07:35 AM   #1
seajaye
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Cantilever Tension Problems

So, I have a set of Tektro Oryx cantilever brakes. They've been used (and abused) off and on for a couple of years now. I just took them off to replace the brake pads. But now, my front brake set doesn't "spring back" when I put the spring into the middle tension hole. I have to put them into the top-most tension hole to get any sort of spring-action. Now, my yoke angle is 'flatter' than in the rear, where I am using the middle tension setting.

Just by looking at the brake arms taken off the bike, the front and rear arms both look similar (as in, the spring doesn't look busted and everything seems to be where it should).

Any ideas, besides just getting a new brake?
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Old 09-19-12, 08:44 AM   #2
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I guess you already surmised that there is not generally a good reason to remove canti's from the bike just to do a pad change... To your specific question; Does the brand you use have a set of holes to choose from for the other end of the spring? Or is there just one hole but the spring nubbing isn't really in it properly (I have done that a few times and it results in the same sympthoms you describe as the nubbin on the back side of the spring is just going around the axis and is generally out of sight so it is easy to miss it being wrongly placed...).
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Old 09-19-12, 09:41 AM   #3
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New pads might be thicker so that the canti arm is not rotating as far for the pad to hit the rim. So less spring force at point of contact and the changed straddle cable angle. Can the pads be positioned closer to the arm? There's nothing wrong with using the extra spring hole in the post base. Also the spring cab be bach bent to increase it's tension, be carefull here though, a little is good a lot is bad. Straddle cables can be changed or lengthened to reaquire the angle that works best. I assume you cleaned the pivot and lubed them while the cantis were off the bike. How are the cables? Do they slide smoothly and without undo friction? One of the advantages of cantis is there wide range of adjustment, one of the dissadvantages is the same... Andy.
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Old 09-19-12, 10:54 AM   #4
seajaye
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kslsler: Well, I was going to clean off/relube the mounts and all, hence the taking off of the arms. I guess since they aren't 100% I might as well take it off and check for the spring on the other side, just hesitant to mess with them and come out with non-functioning brakes.

Andrew: The mounts and clean and lubed, cables are smooth. I backed off the pad-to-rim distance both front and rear to get better modulation at the levers, and as of right now, they both feel fine, it's just the differing yoke angle that gets at my symmetrical sensibilities. Would rather not get new straddle cables or bend back the spring, only because the brakes are cheap as is and I could probably just get a new brake and have less headaches.

If I use the highest tension setting on the rear brake, will it feel different in terms of grabbing the lever? I kind of implied this earlier, but as of right now, both front and rear feel similar, even though I'm using two different tension settings. Would changing the tension in the rear be advantageous?
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Old 09-19-12, 11:40 AM   #5
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If I use the highest tension setting on the rear brake, will it feel different in terms of grabbing the lever?
try it and see.. I doubt it's a 'the Princess , a pea , and a stack of mattresses', situation..

but you know your self..
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