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  1. #1
    Stoked
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    I'm not trying to start a flame-war if both are quality products and have a following.

    We're taking the tandem on a tour from Grand Canyon to Mexico in a few weeks and I feel like I've got one chance to get this right.

    I recently put a XT V-brake on the rear of my Trek T2000 to get away from the kludge of a cable stop that Trek installed. The Avid Shorty 6 that came on the bike seem okay, but I couldn't think of a better idea than Trek for a cable stop and final cable routing. Hence my move to v-brakes.

    My problem is that I'm not (at all) impressed by the XT brakes I installed. I'm running a travel-agent and they stop the bike quite well, but they don't return to center very well. I have adjusted the tensioning screws and set the brakes up with high and low spring tension. If I remove the XT brake and move it through it's range of motion I find that the motion is tight and jumpy on both sides, not at all ideal so I'm looking for an alternative.

    So, has anybody used both (Paul's Motolite and Avid Arch Rivials) or been very happy with a certain set of v-brakes.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by turtlendog; 09-04-05 at 10:04 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    I've recently put an Avid Single Digit SL on our tandem. The Shimano that it was supplied with had worn and was flexing around all the pivot points too much. Taking a look at the Avids they seem to be a much better thought out construction, and the braking is certainly a lot smoother with them. I can't comment on long term usage of the Avids at the moment.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Santos Dual Travel touring tandem, MSC Zion MTB-tandem, Santos SCC03 MTB, Santos STR01 trekking bike, Cannondale F500 MTB, Kalkhoff E-bike, Centurion Cross 4000 cyclocross bike (converted to road bike)
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    Quote Originally Posted by turtlendog
    If I remove the XT brake and move it through it's range of motion I find that the motion is tight and jumpy on both sides, not at all ideal so I'm looking for an alternative.
    Just a thought: isn't there something wrong with your particular set of XTs? Perhaps you could try out another set at your LBS to find out if this "tight and jumpy" motion is normal?
    Regards, Marten / www.tandemclub.nl
    '03 Santos Dual Travel | '13 MSC Zion Tandem

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    I went to Avid Single Digit 7's. I really like them. Unfortunately, most tandem brakes are kludged in some way to accomodate using incompatible levers etc. I use the Travel Agent solution as well. It works, but its a lame solution.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    I went to Avid Single Digit 7's. I really like them. Unfortunately, most tandem brakes are kludged in some way to accomodate using incompatible levers etc. I use the Travel Agent solution as well. It works, but its a lame solution.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Lost Coyote's Avatar
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    Paulís Motolites!!! I am a huge fan of Paulís. They are easily and infinitely adjustable.

    There are several threads where Iíve discussed upgrading our T2000 brake system including:


    Mushy rear brakes

    Enough already

    While on the subject of braking

    IMHO rear brake improvement goes in this order:

    1) Paul's Motolite
    2) Sleeve the cable to eliminate stretch
    3) Compressionless cable housing
    Gravity kills.

  7. #7
    Stoked
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    Quote Originally Posted by dubbelop
    Just a thought: isn't there something wrong with your particular set of XTs? Perhaps you could try out another set at your LBS to find out if this "tight and jumpy" motion is normal?
    I agree but would expect that if it was a defect it would likely only effect one side, not both. I checked out a few v-brake bikes at the LBS the other day and none were as bad as mine, but none were XT and only one was Shimano (XTR). This leads me to wonder if the brakes can be damaged by over-tightening the mounts or something.

  8. #8
    Stoked
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    Thank you all for your replies!

    Perhaps I should back up a bit. I was surprised that my XT v-brakes didn't come with brake bosses since there clearly needs to be a good working relationship between the brake and the boss. In fact I find that there is a lot of slop between the brake and boss, which is only eliminated by cranking down the mounting bolt pretty tight.

    I did the unthinkable this morning. I removed the brakes and lubricated the brake bushings with -- cover your children's ears -- WD40 After that, they moved pretty smoothly until I mounted them back on the bike.

    So, maybe I'll head to the LBS tomorrow and see what kind of variation I can detect in brake bosses.

    Are brake bosses shipped with either the Avid or Paul's products?

  9. #9
    Senior Member Lost Coyote's Avatar
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    Brakes bosses don't normally come with brakes, they only come with the bushings that go between the brake and the boss. You obviously have the wrong bushings for your bosses. The fit between the boss & bush should be one with no slop. Cranking down on mounting bolt is only putting the whole thing in a bind.

    Also WD40 doesn't have enough lubricating capability to do what you are trying to do. A very thin coating of a light grease between the boss and the bushing would be more appropriate. But then again if you have the brake bound up, neither is going to fix your problem.
    Gravity kills.

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