Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Montréal (Québec)
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Do you have the "original" 520 with bar-end shifters and v-brakes, or is it a 520 that has been converted with STI shifters? And in the latter case, do you still have v-brakes with Travel Agents or do you have canti brakes?
If it's the original setup with v-brakes, I suggest you look at this page
for information on centering and tension.
Look at the photo that has "Tighten screw to pull away". In particular, you might ease the tension in the brake lever by loosening the screws on both sides.
Also check for issues like cable binding in the brake lever or cable housing. One way to suspect a problem: if the brakes don't open quickly when you release the brake lever, then you have cable friction somewhere.
Finally, I learned once that, when standing at intersections, it's very easy to sit on the brake cable. It then is very hard to pull...