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  1. #1
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Front brake chatter

    Hey guys,

    I'm having trouble with front brake chatter on my CX machine. 1-1/8" Kinesis crosslight fork, tektro shortie cantilevers WTB ball bearing threadless headset. I've tried 3 different sets of brake pads, 2 different wheels (each with a different rim) and toeing the pads. Extreme brake pad toe in improves things, but the amount that I have to angle the pads is rediculous, and I loose a lot of power. Any ideas?

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    That's all the stuff I'd try. One more idea- think about how the pad hits the rim. Set up for reasonable toe- in, but also look at the angle of the working edge of the pad as it hits the rim. Try lowering the brake pads in the canti slots so the posts are angled up (and increasing the effective length of the pad post a bit). This way the pads strike the rim first along their lower edges, and the pads flatten out on the rim as more lever pressure is applied. Canti adjustment is alchemy sometimes- you could also play around with the straddle cable length. In theory it shouldn't matter, but sometimes it just takes a combination of things- experimentation wins over theory with cantis sometimes.

  3. #3
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Thanks for the input, I hadn't tried rotating the pads on that axis. Seems logical. I suspect the long steerer tube on the fork isn't helping-I hope I don't have to get another fork.

  4. #4
    Wil
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    Brake chatter on CX forks Wil's Avatar
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    Good luck! I have the exact same problem that you do. I 've tried all the same things that you have, and some more: Eliminated all play in the brake bosses. Different cantis (Avid 4s to new Shimanos). Brake Booster. New fork; Winwood Carbon (It helped, but the cat came back). New wheels.

    The best I've managed is squeal elimination... Chatter remains

    I believe the fork is having trouble coping with the power of the brakes, and is flexing, then reflects back, to cause the chatter. Perhaps dialing just the right amount of power, through pads and toeing, is key. Correct me if I'm wrong, please.

  5. #5
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Yeah, it is really starting to piss me off. There is no escaping the chatter-I don't even use my front brake except in emergencies now. I think I will just get my hands on a beefy steel fork with large diameter legs and be done with it.

  6. #6
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    I have varying amounts of chatter to squeal on my Lemond Poprad. Tried varations of toe in, pads, etc. cleaning pads, etc.

    I found that when I get more squeal I get less chatter and find this more annoying, but more safe. Chatter has been so bad that sudden stops have vibrated the front handlebars so much it nearly shook my hands off the bars, hence my preference for squeal.

    I guess its a design flaw with this type of brake.

    Al

  7. #7
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    I think it is a problem with fork stiffness as much as anything else. Aluminum and lightweight carbon forks just don't seem to have the torsional or bending stiffness to handle a cantilever style brake. My Kinesis fork uses roughly the same OD of a traditional rigid steel mountain fork, at less wieght, meaning it is likely less than 1/3 as stiff in torsion and bending.

    I'm thinking about trying a cromoly fork, but there don't seem to be too many out there that are reasonable in cost. The Kona project 2 looks good. Maybe the surly. Any others I'm missing?

  8. #8
    Senior Member nick burns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by darkmother
    I'm thinking about trying a cromoly fork, but there don't seem to be too many out there that are reasonable in cost. The Kona project 2 looks good. Maybe the surly. Any others I'm missing?
    Tange makes decent cromo forks. You can get 'em for about $45.00 US at bikeman.com

  9. #9
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    The fork on the Poprad is Alloy X which I believe is a ChoMo nickle alloy. It too has the chatter problem.

    The question I wonder is why do designers/manufacturers design these stock CX bikes that have such a chatter problem. Why hasn't there been any solutions/designs that address the problem? Do touring bikes that also use same type of brakes have this problem?

    Al

  10. #10
    Made in Norway Lectron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Dude
    Weight weenieness is a disease very often caused by the lack of good results. Just a few steps below doping in terms of desperation

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    I had the same problem until I started using a fork mounted cable stop. Works like a charm!
    "The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart."
    -Iris Murdoch, writer (1919-1999)

  12. #12
    Scooby Snax
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    Quote Originally Posted by namaste1978
    I had the same problem until I started using a fork mounted cable stop. Works like a charm!
    What kind of fork / cable stop are you using... I'm getting a little impatieint myself...

  13. #13
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scooby Snax
    What kind of fork / cable stop are you using... I'm getting a little impatieint myself...
    Yeah, what does a fork mounted one look like?

    Al

  14. #14
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Where did you find the fork mount cable stop? I haven't seen one in a long time.

  15. #15
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Are you saying a brake booster solves the chatter problem?

    I am not too familiar with a brake booster, how does it fit on a stock Lemond Poprad. How does it affect tire size options?

    Al

  16. #16
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam
    The fork on the Poprad is Alloy X which I believe is a ChoMo nickle alloy. It too has the chatter problem.
    Hmm interesting. I thought that was an aluminum fork. It is strange that the manufacturers don't resolve this issue, it could be addressed at the design stage for sure. The thing is, traditional, rigid fork MTB's rarely had this problem, using the same kinds of brakes, and the forks were essientially the same length. What is different here? Slightly steeper head angles, and higher boss location-but either of these seems an unlikely cause to me. The old MTB forks were quite a bit beefier though.

    Anyone have luck with brake boosters? Might help, but it seems like some have tried and had no luck.

  17. #17
    Made in Norway Lectron's Avatar
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    It will improve the quality, but not necessarily solve the problem completely.
    Iím using winwood muddy carbon fork together with Paulís Neo Retro Canties.
    The Paulís are not compatible with a brakebooster and it chatters like ∆ħáω, but a friend of mine really improved his braking quality with one. Looks ugly though.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Dude
    Weight weenieness is a disease very often caused by the lack of good results. Just a few steps below doping in terms of desperation

  18. #18
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam
    Are you saying a brake booster solves the chatter problem?

    I am not too familiar with a brake booster, how does it fit on a stock Lemond Poprad. How does it affect tire size options?

    Al
    The ones I have seen will not interfere with tires unless you are running something over 2" wide-they are made to bolt onto MTBS. They bolt on in front of the cantilever or v brake, using the bosses as an anchor. Should fit on any cross bike I would think, but it does look a little funny.

  19. #19
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    Darkmother,
    Here's a pic of what I used to run when I had canti's. Any bike shop should be able to order one for you from Seattle bike supply. That's one of the only wholesellers that carry it. The idea with the hanger is to get the cable end as close to the brakes as possible and reduce the amount of exposed cable. I didn't notice any change or loss of braking power. Just follow the suggestions on proper brake setup and you'll be good to go.

    Last edited by namaste1978; 03-29-05 at 03:24 PM.
    "The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart."
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  20. #20
    Wil
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    Brake chatter on CX forks Wil's Avatar
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    Um.. I used to have the Kona Project 2. It chattered... hard.

  21. #21
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by namaste1978
    Darkmother,
    Here's a pic of what I used to run when I had canti's. Any bike shop should be able to order one for you from Seattle bike supply. That's one of the only wholesellers that carry it. The idea with the hanger is to get the cable end as close to the brakes as possible and reduce the amount of exposed cable. I didn't notice any change or loss of braking power. Just follow the suggestions on proper brake setup and you'll be good to go.


    Thanks, I'm pretty sure I can find one of those somewhere. I may even have one lying around, not sure.

  22. #22
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wil
    Um.. I used to have the Kona Project 2. It chattered... hard.
    D'oh.

  23. #23
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Ok, so I finally got rid of my brake chatter over the weekend. I tried a bunch of different combinations. In summary:
    Tectro avid shortie clones + steer tube mounted cable stop = high amplitude low speed chatter

    Tectro cantis + fork mount cable stop = low amplitude, higher frequency chatter. Still too much.

    V brake + travel agent = no chatter. Don't really like the travel agent though, kind of like fixing something with duct tape.

    Diacompe 987 canti + steer tube cable hanger= high frequency low amplitude chatter.

    Diacompe 987 + fork cable hanger = smooth braking!

  24. #24
    Scooby Snax
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    Quote Originally Posted by darkmother
    Ok, so I finally got rid of my brake chatter over the weekend. I tried a bunch of different combinations. In summary:
    Tectro avid shortie clones + steer tube mounted cable stop = high amplitude low speed chatter

    Tectro cantis + fork mount cable stop = low amplitude, higher frequency chatter. Still too much.

    V brake + travel agent = no chatter. Don't really like the travel agent though, kind of like fixing something with duct tape.

    Diacompe 987 canti + steer tube cable hanger= high frequency low amplitude chatter.

    Diacompe 987 + fork cable hanger = smooth braking!
    Darkmother, where did you find that Cable hanger...? was it hangin round or did you buy it recently... Im Experienceing the same deal... Project two fork and Tektro canti's.

  25. #25
    Get the stick. darkmother's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scooby Snax
    Darkmother, where did you find that Cable hanger...? was it hangin round or did you buy it recently... Im Experienceing the same deal... Project two fork and Tektro canti's.
    Hi,

    I had it already. I bought it when I picked up my commuter frame a few years back, and forgot about it when I switched to V brakes- I think it was pretty cheap. I'm pretty sure the store I bought the frame from has more. If you can't find one locally, I can pick one up for you.

    The cable hanger alone didn't fix the problem for me. If you can find some high quality old school mtb cantis, they seem to be more solid.

    Oops, I didn't notice you are in toronto. I got it at Urbane Cycles, at Queen W and John st. You can also try Igor, at Queen street west, near ossington. His shop is on the south side of the street, and you will definately know it when you see it.

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