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  1. #1
    tkm
    tkm is offline
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    Cantis to V-Brakes???

    I have a cyclocross bike that I use mainly for bike trails, city, gravel, dire trails, etc. I haven't raced with it and I'm not sure that I will.

    It currently has Avid Shorty 4 cantis on it. To put it simply, I cannot stand those brakes. They don't stop worth a crap and they are a pain to adjust. As with most cantis, there is a give/take when it comes to having a hard feeling brake but yet being able to take the front tire off without the use of tools.

    I was looking at putting a set of Shimano XTR mountain bike V-Brakes on the bike. I haven't seen anyone do this, but I see no reason why it wouldn't work. It should allow good braking and much easier wheel removal. Only thing I'd be giving up would be mud clearance, but again--I do not race with the bike at this moment.

    Brake levers are SRAM Rival.

    Anyone see any issues with this setup? Am I crazy or just being practical? BTW--I can get the XTR's cheap from a friend.

  2. #2
    Surf Bum
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    The problem is that road levers and mountain levers pull different amount of cable. So to use regular mountain v-brakes like those xtrs and have good feel with the road levers, you'll have to use a travel agent adapter. Either that, or get "mini-v" brakes specifically designed to work better with road levers.

    Lots of past threads on this will provide all the details.

    If you decide to just keep cantis, change out the front one for a tektro cr-720 and I think you'll like it. I did.

  3. #3
    tkm
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    Thanks. And yeah, I figured it wouldn't be that easy. From your description, looks like I'd need something like this:

    http://www.jensonusa.com/store/produ...vel+Agent.aspx

    So...other than the CR-720 you suggested, are any other cantis better at being "user-friendly" when it comes to taking off the front wheel, yet maintaining a decent feel in brake pull?

    Local shop has some TRP Euros that look pretty sweet, but I don't want to be in the same boat I'm in now. Although anything has *got* to be better than the shortys 4's.

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    Go with Mini-v's Tektros 926al minis as they have the shortest arms at 80mm so work quite well with road levers without a travel agent and they stop scary good. I actually toed my pads in a bit in the front to take some power away. The way I have my v's set up with the brakes engaging almost to when the lever reaches the bar I have a surprising amount of pad clearance however if I travel and race in mud I'll probably throw the canti's back on.

  5. #5
    Senior Member meanwhile's Avatar
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    "As with most cantis, there is a give/take when it comes to having a hard feeling brake but yet being able to take the front tire off without the use of tools."

    Correctly adjusted cantis feel spongey, not hard - because correctly adjusted cantis are so powerful you should feel the pads squashing. Lots of people get satisfactory braking power from Avid Shorties. And adjusting them is easy once you know what you are doing.

    If your fork is metal (or mixed carbon/metal, with carbon "legs" and a metal crown):

    - Add a fork mounted canti hanger (the Kona one is good, and fork mounted hangers really improve cantis)

    - Buy a copy of Zinn On Road Bikes and follow his instructions; tuning cantis his way is a no-brainer. You'll need after market straddle cables and straddle bridges. And you need a copy of Zinn anyway if you have a crosser - it seems to be the only repair book to cover them properly.

    But if your fork is all carbon, then switch to mini vees or use travel agents and regular vees.

    Whichever route you take I'd always swap stock pads for pink Koolstops. Or maybe green Swiss Stops - my first pair is one the way now; they're said to be excellent.

  6. #6
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    If you use a travel agent, does that replace the noodle? Would anyone be kind enough to post a pic of their brake setup with the travel agent in place? Please.

  7. #7
    Fat Guy on a Little Bike KonAaron Snake's Avatar
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    Just so you know, those Avid 4s are TERRIBLE...it's not just you and there are other cantis out there that won't make you angry at the world. The older Shimano LX/XT cantis are terrific...the Dia Compe 982s are the best canti I've ever experienced (but good luck finding a set) and the Tektros work quite well at a reasonable price.

  8. #8
    Team Water Andy_K's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Watchdog View Post
    If you use a travel agent, does that replace the noodle? Would anyone be kind enough to post a pic of their brake setup with the travel agent in place? Please.
    Yes, it replaces the noodle.

    There are some good pictures of what it looks like on the Rivendell site:

    http://www.rivbike.com/products/show...l-agent/15-144

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    for what its worth I left the shorty 4s on the back of my bike but switched to koolstop salmon pads and aftermarket cable hangers and they work pretty good. On the front I have Tektro cr720s with koolstops and they are great.

  10. #10
    Surf Bum
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    That's pretty much what I did on my Bianchi Axis when I had it. Left the stock cane creek low profile brake in the back, but switched to koolstop salmons and the cr720 up front. It worked really well for me, too. On the Ritchey 'cross bike i have now, run mini-v brakes front and back with koolstop double-compound pads. Works great and no fear of fork chatter even with the light wcs fork.
    Want to buy: 56mm-58mm Ritchey road frame

  11. #11
    Senior Member telebianchi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scrub View Post
    for what its worth I left the shorty 4s on the back of my bike but switched to koolstop salmon pads and aftermarket cable hangers and they work pretty good. On the front I have Tektro cr720s with koolstops and they are great.
    Quote Originally Posted by pacificaslim View Post
    That's pretty much what I did on my Bianchi Axis when I had it. Left the stock cane creek low profile brake in the back, but switched to koolstop salmons and the cr720 up front. It worked really well for me, too. On the Ritchey 'cross bike i have now, run mini-v brakes front and back with koolstop double-compound pads. Works great and no fear of fork chatter even with the light wcs fork.
    This sounds good. I have a single set of CR720's waiting to picked up at the LBS tonight. My '03 Fuji Cross started with Shorty 4s. I then went to Tektro short arm v-brakes; regular noodle in the front but a travel agent in the back. Last fall (the night before my first-ever CX race) the front brake's spring broke. So I put the Shorty 4 back on the front and koolstop salmons all around. In comparison, I am now liking the canti on the front better (except for the squeek & squeel when squeezed hard). Which is leading to the CR720 to go on the front and the Shorty 4 going back on the rear.

    Nice to hear that other people are happy with that same setup.

    Wish I could try a fork-mounted hanger, but I have a dedicated CX fork with know brake mounting hole to attach it. Oh well.
    May your tires or beer never be flat.

  12. #12
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    low profile canti vs the traditional high /wide profile .. Higher leverage = less motion,
    of pad towards rim on the brake , and cable pull from the lever

    so Aero Brifters and Low profile cantilevers combine to need a slim clearance to the wheel..
    almost like V brakes do..

    Mud needs clearance , then The High profile cantilever is a better choice.

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