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Folding Bikes Discuss the unique features and issues of folding bikes. Also a great place to learn what folding bike will work best for your needs.

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Old 07-17-14, 11:44 AM   #1
tiras25
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Folding bike brakes issues

Hi guys,

I wonder if you help to point me to the right direction. I'm new to the folding bikes. Just got a used Captain Stag (any info on it). All good, the only issue are brakes. I have to start braking a mile prior to stop

The front brakes are too flimsy - bad design. They aren't connected to the fork and bends when braking. Not sure how to fix that.

The rear drums are better but very squeaky. Any way to fix that?

Any advice or point to specialized bicycle forum appreciated.

Thanks!
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Old 07-17-14, 12:01 PM   #2
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I have no clue about your specific brakes .. generic brake service new cables and housing

and fresh brake pads and get it all properly adjusted.

too flimsy ? buy new calipers .. you have any bike shops to show your problem to ?

Bay area should be festooned with many . .... given I cant see a thing.

you may pay more for help than the cheap bike cost... get over that.
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Old 07-17-14, 01:05 PM   #3
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pictures would help
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Old 07-17-14, 05:13 PM   #4
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pictures would help
Yes plz,pics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tiras25 View Post
The front brakes are too flimsy - bad design. They aren't connected to the fork and bends when braking. Not sure how to fix that.
Sounds like low-end sidepulls. But we really do need to see pics.
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Old 07-18-14, 02:14 PM   #5
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You're right they are a low-end. Here are the pics. Please see if helps here.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg back1.1.jpg (96.3 KB, 35 views)
File Type: jpg front1.1.jpg (98.5 KB, 41 views)
File Type: jpg front2.1.jpg (95.9 KB, 40 views)
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Old 07-18-14, 02:53 PM   #6
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First try the things that don't cost anything: adjusting the pad position, cable pull, etc.
Sheldon Brown-Bicycle Technical Information
Park Tool Co. サ ParkTool Blog

If that doesn't help; decide if it's worth upgrading the brake(s).
Or maybe just get another used bike that has better components.










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Old 07-18-14, 03:05 PM   #7
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It's just the bad front side-pull design. Its only one bolt holding it and no connection to the fork so its flimsy. Someone told me you can buy an add-on hydraulic brakes. But not sure if I want to do it for the front brakes. Another idea is to change the whole fork for the better one.

On the rear one. It works but too squeaky. But that probably easy to fix. Maybe even put a grease oil.

PS, does anyone know anything about the bike itself? Captain Stag. How old is it approximately and how good? Seems I can't find any info on it.

Thanks!!

Last edited by tiras25; 07-18-14 at 03:06 PM. Reason: More info
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Old 07-18-14, 03:29 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by tiras25 View Post
Hi guys,

I wonder if you help to point me to the right direction. I'm new to the folding bikes. Just got a used Captain Stag (any info on it). All good, the only issue are brakes. I have to start braking a mile prior to stop

The front brakes are too flimsy - bad design. They aren't connected to the fork and bends when braking. Not sure how to fix that.

The rear drums are better but very squeaky. Any way to fix that?

Any advice or point to specialized bicycle forum appreciated.

Thanks!
Never heard of them.

The Right Bike Store: 16" speed Imported Used Folding Bicycle from Japan: Captain Stag
自転車用品|CAPTAIN STAG−キャプテンスタッグ−

You have super long reach caliper brakes. The arms -- or something -- are probably bending when you apply a lot of force. You can try to change the pads but I suspect that braking is always going to suck. I suppose you could check that the brakes are mounted correctly to the fork. But if there was play there you'd almost certainly realize it.

Personally, I would not put a lot of money into the bike. I'd just be careful and apply the brakes early.
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Old 07-18-14, 03:53 PM   #9
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Correct. This is what I do. Applying brakes early.

As for >>I suppose you could check that the brakes are mounted correctly to the fork>> They are not mounted to the fork at all. Only one central screw holding it. Nothing else. Bad design.

Thanks anyway!!
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Old 07-18-14, 04:48 PM   #10
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Yeah,those are low-end sidepulls. Take it to a shop and swap on a better dual-pivot,plus maybe a better lever. All caliper/road style brakes mount on a single bolt in the middle of the fork,it's not an issue with a quality caliper. Calipers like yours are really designed for kids bikes;I had one of those $99 website special SS bikes come into my clinic once. I could sit on the bike,apply the brake,and rock it back and forth and watch the caliper arms flex. An average set of Tektros won't even do that.
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Old 07-18-14, 06:21 PM   #11
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Thanks guys. I'll try to re-design by welding those to the fork to have a better support. I'll let you know how it works and post pics when done.
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Old 07-19-14, 12:22 AM   #12
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No its not a bad design*, Execution of the design is to make it cheaply.
(parts choice was likely to make the selling price low enough for your budget)
a Dual pivot brake would bolt on.

but practically.. just go buy a better bike ..
YGWYPF.. and you didn't pay Much.


at least get better brake pads .

* there have been famous racers winning using single pivot brakes ,
just none made that cheaply..

Last edited by fietsbob; 07-19-14 at 12:29 AM.
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Old 07-19-14, 05:04 AM   #13
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I suggest you get some koolstop pads and just try these. If you are still unhappy consider dual calipers or another bike. Teflon coated inners make a difference on long cable runs on folders. But bit of a hassle and may not be an upgrade to take to your next bike.
If you do get a new bike you have upgraded pads available
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Old 07-19-14, 06:51 AM   #14
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Upgrade to a dual pivot side pull like this Tektro R559 55 - 73mm Reach Brake Caliper. Recessed Mount - Harris Cyclery bicycle shop - West Newton, Massachusetts and you will get more leverage. It is a much better design and it works with your brake levers.
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Old 07-19-14, 03:03 PM   #15
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I suggest you get some koolstop pads and just try these.
That's not going to help. I've had these cheap brakes come into my clinic. They're only suitable for kids bikes.
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Old 07-20-14, 04:05 PM   #16
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I bought these. Lets see if helps. If not, I will do a complete re-design with a 'traditional' cantilever brake.

Tektro 985A Caliper Racing Old School Side Pull BMX MTB Bike Front | eBay
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Old 07-21-14, 08:36 AM   #17
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They are not mounted to the fork at all. Only one central screw holding it. Nothing else. Bad design.
As an aside, I think the fork crown is generally considered part of the fork. Your fork lacks cantilever mounts on the fork blades.
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Old 07-21-14, 09:25 AM   #18
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Pivot bolts I will have to weld or completely replace a fork. I will report later with photos.
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Old 07-21-14, 09:52 AM   #19
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Cantilever/V brake bosses are Bicycle specific braze on pieces , they are a bushing sleeve,
half the brake spring anchor, hole, and the threaded tube takes a 6x1 bolt.

the brake caliper you show has a center bolt to fit thru the hole in the fork crown.
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Old 07-21-14, 11:40 AM   #20
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anything you spend is really like throwing money away ...
however ... new brakes in the front is the way to go
welding on a substandard fork ? NOT ..it will break

that rear band brake or whatever it is can be made smooth ...
albeit never strong enough to skid the rear tire

first u need to clean the rims and the braking surfavce on the rear brake... roughen up the brake pad material as well ... than the brake needs a new "breaking in process "

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Old 07-21-14, 12:40 PM   #21
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anything you spend is really like throwing money away ...
however ... new brakes in the front is the way to go
welding on a substandard fork ? NOT ..it will break
I don't know enough about the fork -- or engineering -- to say it will break, but unless this is just a fun project I agree with Thor that it's a waste of time and energy. If it's just for fun, good luck tira25.
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Old 07-28-14, 02:21 PM   #22
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Works better now. Thanks for all the suggestions. The Tektro I got from eBay more sturdier and brakes better. The rear drum I just washed with car brake fluid. The squeaking seems gone for now. We'll see what happens.


Thanks again!!
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Old 07-28-14, 02:55 PM   #23
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Said too soon. The rear drum start squeaking again. Very loud
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Old 07-28-14, 03:27 PM   #24
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Said too soon. The rear drum start squeaking again. Very loud
isn't it a band brake? the band is probably worn out. confirm that it looks like this and is 80-90mm, then order a new one. 6 bucks. band brakes are cool and work well. or maybe order a new complete kit. check with a local bike shop that isn't a trek/bontrager/cannondale dealer and doesn't play loud techno and doesn't have "sales associates". an old school bike shop may have some of them on hand.


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Old 07-28-14, 03:51 PM   #25
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Oh maybe. It does look something like this. Can't remember the length though. I will look again and confirm later.

Thank you!!
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