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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 10-12-11, 11:18 AM   #1
IcySmooth52
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New brake recommendations

I just got my Felt F75X last week, and she preforms beautifully! Just not her brakes
They don't have much stopping power, and I even feel my road brakes stop better! She came with Tektro 720s on the front and back (pictured below). I don't need that much mud clearance, just more torque to stop faster.
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Old 10-12-11, 12:03 PM   #2
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Lets see a picture of how you have the saddle cable setup. A shorter saddle cable will always provide more mechanical advantage (at the expense of available pad-to-rim clearance).

Lots of good canti setup advice over in the FAQ:
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...lver-Brake-FAQ

I use KORE wide angle cantis. While their stopping power only ever feels mediocre on the road when everything is clean, I find that during actual CX race conditions thier braking impoves and gets plenty strong as the rims get coated with mud/sand/grit.
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Old 10-12-11, 12:12 PM   #3
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TRP EuroX, in Aluminum, Magnesium and Carbon-fiber

http://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...81&category=34

or go for more leverage with Pauls Neo Retro or Touring, cantilever.
pair of each , a common choice.

Last edited by fietsbob; 10-12-11 at 02:04 PM.
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Old 10-12-11, 12:56 PM   #4
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Lets see a picture of how you have the saddle cable setup. A shorter saddle cable will always provide more mechanical advantage (at the expense of available pad-to-rim clearance).
Trust me, there's less than 2mm of clearance on each side of the rims. Front & back.
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Old 10-12-11, 01:04 PM   #5
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Trust me, there's less than 2mm of clearance on each side of the rims. Front & back.
That doesn't answer the question. I have the same brakes and if you are not able to get a cantilever with arms as long as the 720's to stop you, then you have substandard pads or inadequate setup.

I can vouch for the fact that the 720s come with absolutely craptastic pads. Put on some Kool stops or other premium shoes before ditching the brakes, if you haven't already
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Old 10-12-11, 01:20 PM   #6
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2mm of rim clearance will be a problem, on a course with sticky mud.

look at better brake pads, perhaps these :
http://www.universalcycles.com/shopp...65&category=34
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Old 10-12-11, 01:53 PM   #7
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Such is the joy of cantilever brakes. At this point you have several options:

1) Deep dive into the mathematics of cantilever geometry and spend hours tweaking your setup to get it just the way you want it.

2) Get V-brakes with a travel adapter or mini-V brakes.

3) Try several other cantilever options and either stumble upon the correct setup or go back to one of the two previous options.

I don't doubt that there are some brakes that stop better than others because of stiffer materials or whatnot, but I think the difference is small compared to the difference between good and bad setup. And, of course, the "good" and "bad" here are relative, because there are trade-offs between braking power, mud clearance and brake feel so different people will prefer different setups.
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Old 10-12-11, 08:22 PM   #8
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I read somewhere that brakes where the pull is above the pad tend to be stronger. This includes "low profile" cantis too. The new Shimanos, Avid Shorty series, Tetro Oryx and the Cane Creek SCX-5 are all examples of these. The clearance is less than the standard cantis, but figuring out which is more important is up to you.

I had the Kore Race + on my SS Masi and they were dogs imho. They never really stopped well. Even putting Kool-stop salmons on them only helped marginally. Try one of the low profile brakes and let us know.
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Old 10-13-11, 09:28 PM   #9
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Does anyone have any feedback on FSA's cantilevers? I'm eyeing the new Energy ones.
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Old 10-13-11, 09:46 PM   #10
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If set up the same way as you 720's they will perform identically. The issue is in your pads and your set up not the brake caliper that you have. I've had several sets of 720's and they work very well just get new pads.
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Old 10-14-11, 09:52 AM   #11
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If set up the same way as you 720's they will perform identically. The issue is in your pads and your set up not the brake caliper that you have. I've had several sets of 720's and they work very well just get new pads.
As far as geometry and such goes, that's probably true. I haven't had good experience with many of Tektro brakes though. I'll probably be getting the FSA Energy or the Avid Shortys. It's just a tough choice.
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Old 10-14-11, 09:53 AM   #12
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Icysmooth,

Do you have interrupter levers on your bike? Once I removed mine my braking performance increased considerably (I have the same bike, same brakes)

If you're gonna get shortys, get the ultimates. It'll make your upgrade from Tektros worth while.
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Old 10-14-11, 10:03 AM   #13
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I don't race cross, but after converting my commuter from canti's to semi-mini v-brakes, I'll never go back.

Write-up here.
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Old 10-14-11, 10:09 AM   #14
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Do you have interrupter levers on your bike? Once I removed mine my braking performance increased considerably (I have the same bike, same brakes)
That means the levers were installed incorrectly.
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Old 10-14-11, 10:14 AM   #15
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Icysmooth,

Do you have interrupter levers on your bike? Once I removed mine my braking performance increased considerably (I have the same bike, same brakes)

If you're gonna get shortys, get the ultimates. It'll make your upgrade from Tektros worth while.
I don't have the budget for ultimates or K-force, so no. But new SL-Ks or Shortys won't cost me too much.

What about Avid Single Digit brakes?
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Old 10-14-11, 10:16 AM   #16
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Icysmooth,

Do you have interrupter levers on your bike? Once I removed mine my braking performance increased considerably (I have the same bike, same brakes)

If you're gonna get shortys, get the ultimates. It'll make your upgrade from Tektros worth while.
My bike is very different from yours. Haven't you noticed the re-design?
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Old 10-14-11, 11:03 AM   #17
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If you feel the need to go with shorties then at least get the 6's. The 4's suck.
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Old 10-14-11, 11:57 AM   #18
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My bike is very different from yours. Haven't you noticed the re-design?
I know quite well, but you never mentioned what year your bike was.
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Old 10-14-11, 01:36 PM   #19
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What about Avid Single Digit brakes?
I've got an Avid SD7 with Travel Agent on the front of my Cross Check. It's an excellent setup for non-racing purposes.
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Old 10-14-11, 01:47 PM   #20
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I run 520s which are essentially identical to the 720s and I just love them like crazy.

I don't think there's any need to replace such excellent brakes, look at setup or pads.
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Old 10-14-11, 08:06 PM   #21
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tektro 720s, koolstop salmon pads, 3 fingers between the tire and the apex of the straddle cable and everything has been fine on both my bikes. Its a cheap to try and may give you good results.

Actually its a bit more than 2 fingers, depending on the tire!
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Old 10-16-11, 12:56 PM   #22
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I'll be getting new brakes, definitely. Partally due to aesthetics, partally due to my lack of trust with Tektro, mostly from my experience with the 720s. I've tried many different setups, and they can stop my bike. But it can't stop it fast. Do Shorty's have more mechanical power? If not I'll probably be going with FSA Energy or SL-Ks.
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Old 10-16-11, 09:41 PM   #23
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Cantilever brakes have such a range of setups that virtually any brake can be setup with as much mechanical advantage as any other. In fact, nearly any brake can be setup with too much mechanical advantage. I don't think Shorty's have any more or less potential mechanical advantage than the 720's. Being lower profile they do have a smaller range within which they can be setup for high mechanical advantage.

Check out this link for a visual representation of what I'm saying:

http://www.circleacycles.com/cantilevers/
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