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  1. #1
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    Which brakes do you prefer/suggest for cyclocross bike?

    For my earlier topic about the rear derailleur-casette compatibility, you guys have been very helpful thanks for that.Now i got an LX derailleur- sram 11-34 pg950 casette and handles the train like its nothing But because i'm a beginner , i have more questions to ask.
    I got a Scott Cx Comp 2011, and my brakes are Tektro CX with cartridge pads.And i must say i didn't like the braking power of it.But that might be because i just used them for 2 weeks and i used to ride a mtb with disc brakes so that might be the difference between those systems. But if it's not , i want to change these brakes with better ones.
    First i want to know what my options are,because as i heard v-brakes are not compatible with cyclocross, so what about Shimano Ultegra BR-6500,Shimano 105 BR-5600,Shimano Ultegra BR-6600, are these compatible for the Cyclo cross bike i use,or what do u guys suggest i should buy...











    These are the pictures of my current bike's brakes
    Last edited by Ozan Guner; 04-24-13 at 12:50 PM.

  2. #2
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    What's the model number on your brakes? Could you post a photo of one of them?

    You'll never be fully satisfied if you are comparing with hydraulic disc brakes. But there a couple tweaks that might improve performance: 1) shorten straddle cable (as much as possible without hitting tire) 2) get new pads (Koolstop).

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    I wasnt a hydrolic disc user , it was mechanic disc and picture is on the way hold up

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    These are the pictures of my current bike's brakes

  5. #5
    Senior Member GrayJay's Avatar
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    Saddle cable is much too long, cable hangar is too high in the pictures (particularly the front). You will get much higher braking force from those tektros if they are set-up correctly.

  6. #6
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Racing is about going fast , not stopping .. the ones you have are fine, try Kool stop Pad inserts.

    you just have to squeeze the lever harder. HTFU , as they say..

    Read the Sheldon stuff Jay missed that . Low Profile .. Short is suggested , those
    are not the low Profile type , they're fine.

    just have to perhaps try KS salmon or Dual Compound pads

    keep the grit out of the pads, that eats the aluminum. clean them occasionally..

    My CX bike went from the Modolos I got new 20+ years ago, to Spooky,
    a modern replacement for Mafac, by a small NL company.. (think they folded recently ).
    had Empellas , Tektro EuroX is a direct copy.. old frame, they didn't work on the front-fork.

    My Mafacs are a mix of Short and long arm , on my Light touring bike ..

    my heavy touring bike has Scott Pedersen SE on it.

    My favorite V brake is Magura's HS33.. hydraulic, Rim.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-27-13 at 11:59 AM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by GrayJay View Post
    Saddle cable is much too long, cable hangar is too high in the pictures (particularly the front). You will get much higher braking force from those tektros if they are set-up correctly.
    So i should pull the hangar closer to the tires then ? that way saddle cable will be shorter and hangar will be lower ?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Racing is about going fast , not stopping .. the ones you have are fine, try Kool stop Pad inserts.

    you just have to squeeze the lever harder. HTFU , as they say..
    I'm not gonna use this bike for race, infact im not even gonna use it for cross, i wanted a bike that is not as delicate as a road bike [because i'm not attentive enough to use one,and our country doesnt have the needed substructure]and a bike that can enter to terrains almost as good as a mountain bike,still do good in the flat roads.. Kind a like road & mtb put together
    Last edited by Ozan Guner; 04-24-13 at 02:20 PM.

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    I would shorten the straddle cable as much as possible while still giving you sufficient tire clearance. You'll need new brake cables but that's no biggie. You should notice an increase in braking leverage.

  10. #10
    Team Beer Cynikal's Avatar
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    You should look at the TRP 8.4cx's They are mini V-brakes and they are awesome.
    I'm not one for fawning over bicycles, but I do believe that our bikes communicate with us, and what this bike is saying is, "You're an idiot." BikeSnobNYC

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    Quote Originally Posted by flargle View Post
    I would shorten the straddle cable as much as possible while still giving you sufficient tire clearance. You'll need new brake cables but that's no biggie. You should notice an increase in braking leverage.
    Allright i appreciate all the help but if you can speak a little more non term since my main language is not english i m having a little bit of trouble understanding the whole thing. And if you can give an example of new brake cables that i should buy it would be awesome...

  12. #12
    Senior Member Commodus's Avatar
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    Those are my favourite brakes. Sometimes Tektro brakes come with poor quality pads though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cynikal View Post
    You should look at the TRP 8.4cx's They are mini V-brakes and they are awesome.
    Wow that seems good and also compatible with a cyclocross bike because of the connection spots.Definitely considered !

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    As i have said before i know nothing about brake systems and setup maybe wrong allthough i didnt install it but cyclocross is not common in here and most of the bicycle mechanics never seen a cantilever in their lives so...

  15. #15
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    This might be a bit much but Sheldon Brown is a great resource for explaining how things work. In this case canti brakes so there are:

    http://sheldonbrown.com/canti-trad.html

    And for how they work:

    http://sheldonbrown.com/cantilever-geometry.html

    I am no expert so I don't want to give how to fix it but I hope this helps.

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    What about these brakes ? Shimano Ultegra BR-6500,Shimano 105 BR-5600,Shimano Ultegra BR-6600, are these compatible ?

  17. #17
    Team Water Andy_K's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozan Guner View Post
    What about these brakes ? Shimano Ultegra BR-6500,Shimano 105 BR-5600,Shimano Ultegra BR-6600, are these compatible ?
    No, you won't be able to use any of those. Your options are limited to cantilever brakes and mini-V brakes.

    The TRP mini-V's mentioned earlier are, by all accounts, great and easy to set up. If you have newer Shimano levers (105 5700 or Ultegra 6700) you'll want the 9.0 version instead.

    I have Shimano BR-CX70's on my cross bike, and they're very nice and have set-up instructions that don't require you to understand the ins and outs of cantilever brake mechanics.

    With a little effort though you should be able to get good braking out of the brakes you have. They're set up for mud clearance right now, but you probably don't need that. The Sheldon Brown links are good, but I like this link better: http://www.circleacycles.com/cantilevers/ There's also a sticky thread on this forum that might be helpful. Or you could just take them in to the LBS and tell them you want more stopping power. The LBS should know how to do it.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
    No, you won't be able to use any of those. Your options are limited to cantilever brakes and mini-V brakes.

    The TRP mini-V's mentioned earlier are, by all accounts, great and easy to set up. If you have newer Shimano levers (105 5700 or Ultegra 6700) you'll want the 9.0 version instead.

    I have Shimano BR-CX70's on my cross bike, and they're very nice and have set-up instructions that don't require you to understand the ins and outs of cantilever brake mechanics.

    With a little effort though you should be able to get good braking out of the brakes you have. They're set up for mud clearance right now, but you probably don't need that. The Sheldon Brown links are good, but I like this link better: http://www.circleacycles.com/cantilevers/ There's also a sticky thread on this forum that might be helpful. Or you could just take them in to the LBS and tell them you want more stopping power. The LBS should know how to do it.
    U have ultegra br-cx 70 ? those are discounted right now was planning to buy them, would there be distinctive difference from the brakes i have ?

  19. #19
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    would there be distinctive difference from the brakes i have ?
    Need help shopping ? ill help you spend money, at least.
    Get these .http://www.trpbrakes.com/category.ph...d=185&subcat=0
    [the clever bits have been added to fine tune spring balance side-to-side,
    and the pad clearance to the rim with the adjuster on the transverse cable.

    The Pros actually use them.. though maybe in the Carbon Fibre version.
    [NL Rabobank got them made up with team logo and colors.]
    and the Adjust, toe, In-place brake pad assemblies..

    still might shop for KS triple compound inserts .. its a Shimano road type.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-26-13 at 10:51 AM.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Spld cyclist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozan Guner View Post
    So i should pull the hangar closer to the tires then ? that way saddle cable will be shorter and hangar will be lower ?
    Yes, that's what you need to do.

    I have the same brake on the front of a cross bike and it works well for me. I have Kool Stop pads (the salmon-colored ones) on four bikes. They're excellent and make a big difference in braking power.

  21. #21
    Senior Member GrayJay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Read the Sheldon stuff Jay missed that . Low Profile .. Short is suggested , those
    are not the low Profile type , they're fine...
    For Ozan- look at the pictures of different cantilever setups at the following site, pictures might help with any language barrier. http://www.blackmtncycles.com/2013/0...nit-brake.html

    Bob- wide profile (MAFAC geometry) brakes are only insensitive to different saddle cable hangar height if the ends of the saddle cable are located on same horizontal line as the frame boss/pivot. THis makes for a setup that gives very linear mechanical advantage as the brakes are pulled, though the mechanical advantage is a bit less than can be achieved by medium or narrow angle cantilevers.
    The tektros as setup in Ozan's photos have the saddle cable ends located well above the frame boss, somewhere between a typical medium angle and wide angle setup. THese would function more like medium angle brakes and the mechanical advantage would benefit from having the saddle cable hangar lowered. The maitoy online cantilever visual calculator demonstrates this well. (I cannot seem to get the calculator working today but that might just be my browser?) http://www.circleacycles.com/cantilevers/

    These same brakes probably could be setup as wide angle if thicker pads were used or if spacers were added betweeen the pad and the cantilever arm, so that the ends of the saddle cable are a bit lower.

  22. #22
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    Any time I see Tektro I know brakes don't work well. They are the most inexpensive brand name out there. Switch to something better including pads and the difference is huge
    You're just trying to start an argument to show how smart you are.

  23. #23
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    As others have said, shorten the straddle cable, looks like you'll need a new brake cable to make it short enough to set up well. The link someone posted to Sheldon Brown's website is a good one. Also, look into getting some better brake pads, I like the KoolStop salmon or dual-compound.

  24. #24
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    They are the most inexpensive brand name out there.
    you lead a sheltered life, if that is your conclusion .. TRP is a premium division
    of Tektro, their racing products
    rather than the consumer and OEM supply division..

    $300 http://www.trpbrakes.com/category.ph...1183&catid=185
    http://www.trpbrakes.com/category.ph...1037&catid=185

    the Magnesium version is More.

    and that's just Taiwan ..
    there is a Campagnolo Brand Cross brake too. Shiny and Polished.


    believe me there are even more Craptastic Brakes made than Tektro..
    Last edited by fietsbob; 04-25-13 at 03:43 PM.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Spld cyclist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StanSeven View Post
    Any time I see Tektro I know brakes don't work well. They are the most inexpensive brand name out there. Switch to something better including pads and the difference is huge
    Just not true. Like many manufacturers, they offer a range of products at different price points. Not everything they make is great, but this particular model is very good. It's also an excellent value. As I noted above, I would replace the pads with Kool Stop. Even adding in the price of Kool Stop pads, the brake is still an excellent value.


    What do you consider to be better?

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