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  1. #1
    meaculpa
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    canti brakes issues

    This past November, my rear wheel's kool-stops (the red kind?) failed after apprx 9 months of daily commuting. I pulled into a shop nearby & they replaced them w/ Bontrager pads. The replacements not only failed fast, like barely 2 months, but then concaved my rims on both sides! Two wrenches I've talked to about this were not surprised, "you ride every day, dude...". But the koolstops lasted 5x as long, Feb'07-Nov'07. Okay, that was better weather than the Nov07-late Dec'07, granted. But still...

    Okay, so when that 2nd set wore out, the shop I went to nearby (not my usual lbs) recommended the Serfas cartridge brand, "They're the best quality for the price!" Well, I am not so impressed, there has been some slipping in the rain. They are not the performers, I think, that the kool-stops were, again...I think but I am not sure.

    Any opinions on the products mentioned? I don't want to get into upgrades to v-brakes or disc. That is something that I will discuss with my mechanic eventually if I continue to have these occasional brake mishaps (one is too many. Also, I just ordered a replacement rear wheel, a Deep V, my mechanic's recommendation, and, at $180, I want to preserve that rim for a long time!
    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Mmmmm potatoes idcruiserman's Avatar
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    Sounds like you do a lot of braking .
    Idaho

  3. #3
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    You got 9 months out of a pair of brake pads, and you're complaining?

    I wear through a pair of Kool Stops in under half that time. The generic pads that came stock on my bike lasted me all of 300 miles (about a month.)


    If you want those Deep V's to last you, clean your rims and pads every couple of days to keep the grit off of 'em. It's that road grit that really grinds down the rim surface.
    If you're going through pads (and rims) quickly, learn to build your own wheels. A truing stand and a few tools will be cheaper in the long run than continuing to buy new wheels.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
    - Mandi M.

  4. #4
    meaculpa
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    Clifton - I am not complaining about the Koolstops, just the opposite. I am probably going back to them soon. I am wondering about the quality of the other products vs the conditions/time I am putting on them. The cartridge brakes were touted by one shop and scorned by another.

    I wipe down the rims & check for glaze every other day. But due to my inexperience, I didn't spot the impending failure of the bontragers until I heard the grinding on the rim. Now I know better. There is a learning curve here & I am no where near wheel building, yet. I am always asking the lbs guys to let me watch them & participate in my own repairs...probably to their annoyance.

    IDCMan - yep! I ride the brakes, stop-go-slooooow-go-go-slow-stop. I push the pedals and squeeze the brakes alternately or together while navigating traffic. Its the only way I know to go.

  5. #5
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by meaculpa View Post
    Clifton - I am not complaining about the Koolstops, just the opposite. I am probably going back to them soon. I am wondering about the quality of the other products vs the conditions/time I am putting on them. The cartridge brakes were touted by one shop and scorned by another.
    If you want to stick with cartridge pads for easy replacement, Kool Stop makes cartridge pads. I'm getting ready to upgrade my bike from the stock Tektro Oryx cantis (fairly weak stopping power) to Cane Creek SCX-5 cantis with cartridge pads. The first thing that I checked with these was: Does Kool Stop make a pad to fit them? (Yes, they do.)
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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  6. #6
    meaculpa
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    If you want to stick with cartridge pads for easy replacement, Kool Stop makes cartridge pads. I'm getting ready to upgrade my bike from the stock Tektro Oryx cantis (fairly weak stopping power) to Cane Creek SCX-5 cantis with cartridge pads. The first thing that I checked with these was: Does Kool Stop make a pad to fit them? (Yes, they do.)

    Let us know how they hold up. I am going to run these Serfas pads for now & change to the Koolstops sometime in April so I am definately interested in your experience with the cartridges.
    Are you doing this anytime soon?

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    Sounds like ya ought to get some more kool stops! If I recall correctly, the kool-stops are better than most brakes about not letting stuff get embedded in the pads, which then act as a belt sander on your rims.

    I've run a pair of kool stops all winter and they're not even half worn, if I had to guess. And sanding the roads is the preferred method of winter treatment around here.

  8. #8
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by meaculpa View Post
    Let us know how they hold up. I am going to run these Serfas pads for now & change to the Koolstops sometime in April so I am definately interested in your experience with the cartridges.
    Are you doing this anytime soon?
    Within the next month. I've still got some life left in the pads I recently put on my Tektros, and it would be a shame to waste it. (Plus I've gotta pay rent from this check, which leaves little leftover for bike parts.)
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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  9. #9
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    I've tried a lot of different pads and the only thing that does as well as my beloved Koolstops has been some generic super cheap store branded pads that MEC up here in Canada brought in for about a year. Something changed and the new ones they have look the same but have a different compound that doesn't last and sounds like sandpaper.

    Granted I've got 3 bikes that share commuting duty but I've had my thinline salmon Koolstops on two of them and they've got two years on them and are just about now due for replacement and they are resonably kindly on the rims. The third bike has discs.

    I'm a Koolstop believer. There's cheaper ones at the till but the KS's last so much longer and seem to wear the rims so much less that they actually end up being far, far cheaper overall. At least that's my story and I'm sticking to it...
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    I'm getting ready to upgrade my bike from the stock Tektro Oryx cantis (fairly weak stopping power) to Cane Creek SCX-5 cantis with cartridge pads.
    Not to hijack the thread, but have other people had problems with Oryx cantis. I have them stock on a Surly cross-check with kool stop pads. I have never been happy with the stopping power they provide. I've tried adjusting them, and I still can't seem to get anywhere near the same stopping power my extremely old shimano canti's give me on my hardtail mountain bike. I've heard good things generally about the Oryx. Do others have problems as well?

  11. #11
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    If that was the service life for my brakes, I'd seriously consider a move to discs.
    David in fla
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  12. #12
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rohmen View Post
    Not to hijack the thread, but have other people had problems with Oryx cantis. I have them stock on a Surly cross-check with kool stop pads. I have never been happy with the stopping power they provide. I've tried adjusting them, and I still can't seem to get anywhere near the same stopping power my extremely old shimano canti's give me on my hardtail mountain bike. I've heard good things generally about the Oryx. Do others have problems as well?
    I have the same setup (same bike) and I find that the Tektros, even with the KS pads, are a bit on the weak side for me. I'm also 235 pounds and ride a lot of 8-10% grades where I need to either scrub speed to keep it under 45, or stop for an intersection in the middle of a hill... so I put some hurt on the brakes. I haven't had an outright failure with the Tektros, but I do find that I've got to really pull a fistful of lever to effectively stop myself.
    The Oryx is a low-end brake, and functions appropriately: It works, but it could be a lot better.
    One step up = Cane Creek SCX-5
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  13. #13
    GATC
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    Quote Originally Posted by rohmen View Post
    Not to hijack the thread, but have other people had problems with Oryx cantis. I have them stock on a Surly cross-check with kool stop pads. I have never been happy with the stopping power they provide. I've tried adjusting them, and I still can't seem to get anywhere near the same stopping power my extremely old shimano canti's give me on my hardtail mountain bike. I've heard good things generally about the Oryx. Do others have problems as well?
    I think there is an art to master, and I haven't got it yet.

  14. #14
    GATC
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    The Oryx is a low-end brake, and functions appropriately: It works, but it could be a lot better.
    One step up = Cane Creek SCX-5
    One more up = Paul Touring or Neo-Retro
    I don't understand how to meaningfully improve them, is the thing. The parts are all pretty basic. I gather you can have vibration at the point of attachment to the bosses, but that could have as much to do w/ boss stability as brake arm stability.

  15. #15
    Senior Member pluc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    You got 9 months out of a pair of brake pads, and you're complaining?
    Exactly my thought!

    Kool-Stops are pretty much unrivaled when it comes to rim brakes. Anything else you'll try will probably deceive you.

  16. #16
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HardyWeinberg View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    ......The Oryx is a low-end brake, and functions appropriately: It works, but it could be a lot better.
    One step up = Cane Creek SCX-5
    One more up = Paul Touring or Neo-Retro
    I don't understand how to meaningfully improve them, is the thing. The parts are all pretty basic. I gather you can have vibration at the point of attachment to the bosses, but that could have as much to do w/ boss stability as brake arm stability.
    I gather it's due to the leverage arm ratios and angles of the brakes. The Oryx designers just missed the magic point somehow and it won't matter what pads are used if the leverage arm ratios are not right to put the needed pressure on the pads.

    Squealling is a whole other issue altogether. An important one but different from braking power.

    I was going to go for the Oryx thinking they are the same as the other options but from a few reports like this it ain't the case. I'm considering Avid shorties or the CC SCX-5's now.
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

  17. #17
    meaculpa
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    Another funny thing is the vibration coming from my fork under certain conditions. I have a Surley fork that gets a heavy shuddering when I am braking on steeper grades. I guess that has nothing to do with the brake type and is to be expected when stopping with just the front brake.

  18. #18
    Luggite bsyptak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinkpowa View Post
    If that was the service life for my brakes, I'd seriously consider a move to discs.
    Yup.

  19. #19
    Gutter Bunny Jonahhobbes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pluc View Post
    Exactly my thought!

    Kool-Stops are pretty much unrivaled when it comes to rim brakes. Anything else you'll try will probably deceive you.

    Totally agree with this, I love Kool-Stops

  20. #20
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by meaculpa View Post
    Another funny thing is the vibration coming from my fork under certain conditions. I have a Surley fork that gets a heavy shuddering when I am braking on steeper grades. I guess that has nothing to do with the brake type and is to be expected when stopping with just the front brake.
    In a way yes it is. It's related to how the friction of the pads grabs and releases and how that interplays with the fork leg flexibility.

    There's this charactaristic called histerysis that the pads have where they do not add and release the friction is a truly linear manner. When they grab the fork leg flexes and tension builds. At some point that tension overcomes the pad's grip and the pad starts to slip more. When that happens the friction coefficient lowers and the wheel jumps ahead and some of the tension is released from the fork. Then the pad sees less movement and the friction coefficient rises again and the cycle repeats.

    It's extremley similar to the reed in a woodwind instrument vibrating in tune with the air column of the pipe. And the result is the fork shuddering or chattering rapidly back and forth and scaring us into venting out lunch in an unsightly manner into our underclothing.

    Pads with a more linear friction coefficient would avoid all this and it's largely what makes us buy one brand over another.

    Squealing is another form of this but it only involves the pad and the caliper instead of the fork leg.
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

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