73 Schwinn Continental brakes
i found a beat up conti in my landlord's garage and after not having a bike for 10 years decided to try and make this one mine. i just need to get to the grocery store and library and such, and i dont like to drive... anyway, i put a 700c wheelset and need to put a front brake on. do i try to rework the original brakes, in pretty poor condition (need new pads, cables, levers for sure) or is there a way to find the right set-up to fit this combo? any advice and/or suggestions are greatly appreciated.
Pads, cables (and replace the cable housings) are pretty inexpensive. You could probably find a set of levers for under 20.00. The work isn't hard to do if you're mechanically inclined and have basic tools. That being said, it is the brakes, and you don't want to find out you did it wrong when you're going down hill. Try taking it to a good bike store, and ask them about getting the parts. One near me will cut the cable housing to length, keeping you from having to buy another tool.
DRF aka Thrifty Bill
Do the stock original brakes have a long enough reach to properly handle the smaller rims?
Cables can be found cheap at Walmart, they sell a complete cable kit (two brake cables and two shifter cables) for less than $5.
Do a search and you will find a lot of info on brakes, cables and more.
the problem is that i think the brakes will rub on the rubber, the arms dont seem to reach the rim. otherwise i will just replace the parts...
You'll have to find brakes that have a longer reach, the Continental/Varsity was originally equipped with 27" wheels.
any suggestions on how to find the correct sizing without trying them on? (ie to purchase from somewhere on the net?)
thanks again for the help.
While I've had good luck adjusting the Weinmann centerpulls on my bike (originally equipped with 27" wheels) for 700c wheels, the pads are very near the lower limit in the adjustment slot.
Longer reach 750 caliper brakes would probably provide the additional reach you need for the pads to reach the rims.
Broom Wagon Fodder
I had to scrounge up some longer-reach side-pulls for my Varsity when I put 700c wheels on it. The braking surface is 4mm further out.
ManaKarma, where are you? If you're close enough to someone reading this post I'm sure some brakes could be scrounged up cheap. You can buy them off the Internet but you might find them much cheaper at your local bicycle junk store. There are a couple here in Minneapolis.