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Skreeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Old 08-14-15, 10:06 PM
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Beth W
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Skreeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

I installed salmon kool stops on my 10-speed earlier this summer, because the black pads it came with (installed new at the shop when I bought it) weren't gripping enough for my liking. The kool stops definitely grip a lot better, but they make a godawful racket every time I brake (my husband said they sound like a "deranged, horny goose" -- today when I came to a stop by City Hall, a crow cawed in response). I've already tried toeing them in, roughing them up, cleaning the rims... it hasn't gotten any better. Any other suggestions? I feel self-conscious about them in the city because pedestrians hear the screech and assume that my brakes aren't going to work. Also it's annoying.
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Old 08-15-15, 12:16 AM
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Use the noise to your advantage. Pedestrians will stay away from you when they hear the noise. Its better than a bell
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Old 08-15-15, 02:49 AM
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How thoroughly did you clean the rims ? Hot soapy water + degreaser + a tough scourer + elbow grease works best.

Cleaning the pads the same way can help too.

If they are still screeching. Try letting the pads bed in.
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Old 08-15-15, 02:54 AM
  #4  
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I put some salmon Kool Stops on my MTB commuter with V-brakes awhile ago. I don't really notice better stopping compared to the Jagwires that were due for replacement, but the Kool Stops do squeal at random times. I have them toed in enough; actually enough that I don't like the feel of the brakes because they're too soft/squishy.
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Old 08-15-15, 03:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Beth W View Post
I installed salmon kool stops ... but they make a godawful racket every time I brake ...
Had that on my commuter, for awhile. Required better adjustment of the pads. Am assuming you've got some play in the angle of the pad in the brake arm, with the brakes you have. In my case, it changed the "screeeeeeee!" sound to something barely audible even under hard braking.


In my case, it's with the Avid SD V-brakes. Replaced the factory pads with the Kool Stop salmon pads. Fiddled with the right combination of the washers and tension, to get the right pressure. Had to adjust the angle of attack that the pads had against the rim. Ensure it's all clean, ensure the angle's right, ensure the pressure's right, ensure you're everything's torqued down tightly enough to not move from where you set it ... and it should be fine. The trick is, getting the angle right. But that's simple enough.
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Old 08-15-15, 05:30 AM
  #6  
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I haven't found that Kool Stop pads are worse for screeching than other pads, except I've had a little trouble with the Mountain Pads. I think maybe because they're so long and perhaps more apt to vibration.

I have found that the "plow tip" at the trailing end can defeat my attempts at properly toe-in the pads. I usually end up shaving it off level with the rest of the pad, and it's easier to get the right amount of toe-in and eliminating any squeal. It doesn't seem to have much of a function anyway.
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Old 08-15-15, 08:29 AM
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It gets more attention than a couple Pings with your Bell, People Move!
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Old 08-15-15, 09:08 AM
  #8  
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Make sure the caliper is bolted tightly to the fork/frame.
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Old 08-17-15, 05:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Clyde1820 View Post
Had that on my commuter, for awhile. Required better adjustment of the pads. Am assuming you've got some play in the angle of the pad in the brake arm, with the brakes you have. In my case, it changed the "screeeeeeee!" sound to something barely audible even under hard braking.


In my case, it's with the Avid SD V-brakes. Replaced the factory pads with the Kool Stop salmon pads. Fiddled with the right combination of the washers and tension, to get the right pressure. Had to adjust the angle of attack that the pads had against the rim. Ensure it's all clean, ensure the angle's right, ensure the pressure's right, ensure you're everything's torqued down tightly enough to not move from where you set it ... and it should be fine. The trick is, getting the angle right. But that's simple enough.
Was it just through trial and error that you managed to figure out what the correct angle etc. is? I tried various toe-in angles to very limited success, but have it angled enough that I don't want to create much of a sharper angle, and am not sure how to create more of an angle (as opposed to just more distance) with washers.
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Old 08-17-15, 06:53 PM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by Spld cyclist View Post
I have found that the "plow tip" at the trailing end can defeat my attempts at properly toe-in the pads. I usually end up shaving it off level with the rest of the pad,
I love the plow! It's what makes those pads so easy. Slap the pads on. Hold them against the rim. Tighten the bolts. Job done. I bank on the plow to set the toe-in for me. Maybe I'm lucky with rims, but I get good results from letting the plow drive the toe-in.
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Old 08-18-15, 07:56 AM
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Originally Posted by JonathanGennick View Post
I love the plow! It's what makes those pads so easy. Slap the pads on. Hold them against the rim. Tighten the bolts. Job done. I bank on the plow to set the toe-in for me. Maybe I'm lucky with rims, but I get good results from letting the plow drive the toe-in.
It should work that way in theory, but it doesn't always for me. I think the problem comes when the situation calls for quite a bit of toe-in. Of course you can use a spacer under the plow tip to create more toe in, but I think I end up with a bit less toe-in than I want because the plow tip is a little compressible. Part of the issue may be my technique. When installing pads, I get them in place (with spacer under the heel as desired), apply the brake lever fairly hard, and then tighten up the bolt initially while holding the lever. That's probably enough to compress the plow tip, or maybe the pad is flexing a bit. (Once the angle of the pad is set I tighten up to final torque without holding the brake lever).

Then there is the fact that if you set toe-in using just the plow tip, the plow tip ends up striking the rim simultaneously with the leading edge, which can cause squeal if the bike/rim/brake combo happens to be susceptible to squeal.

So if using the plow tip works in a given situation, that's great. But if squeal persists, IMO it might help to remove it.
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Old 08-18-15, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Beth W View Post
Was it just through trial and error that you managed to figure out what the correct angle etc. is? I tried various toe-in angles to very limited success, but have it angled enough that I don't want to create much of a sharper angle, and am not sure how to create more of an angle (as opposed to just more distance) with washers.
Yes, basically.

Jonathan's method, above, seems to work reasonably well, too. I've got the Kool Stop salmon pads. They're a bit longer, with a bit of a plow on one end. I've fiddled with positioning, including ditching of a washer or two. But mostly it's the basic angle at which thing cinch down. There seems to be a bit of play in the angle, when I'm adjusting. Have also tried pressing the pads flat to the rim, while tightening. No perfect method, but either way seems to get mostly there. Still have an occasional squeal on the front brakes, but adjustment gets rid of that for a time.
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Old 08-18-15, 10:49 AM
  #13  
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I take two business cards, fold them in half, and place one between the rear of the pads and the rim.

Squeeze brakes hard and tighten fixing bolt; works perfectly every time...
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Old 08-19-15, 07:13 AM
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Let me caveat this by saying I use the Kool Stop v-type pad inserts in Shimano XT / Avid Rim Wrangler II pad holders, not the one-piece (is that the right term?) Kool Stop pads like the Thinlines, Supras, etc., or even other shapes of Kool Stop inserts, so YMMV and all that.

I haven't found toe-in to help with the squeal. What works for me, as JonathanGennick said above, is setting the brake pad square to the rim and then making sure the washers stay in a line as you tighten down the bolt. I will also make sure the rims and pads are clean (i.e. not greasy) by cleaning them with alcohol.

That said, I also sometimes deliberately let my brakes squeal. Gets people's attention like nothing else does.
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Old 08-19-15, 03:19 PM
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Agree with what rmfnla said, and similarly, would add:

When I was being trained at bicycle mechanics school - yes, there is such a thing - the trick we were taught for proper toe-in was:

Get a short zip tie, feed the end into a loop so that the loop is maybe 3/4" wide. Feed said loop through the back part of your brake pad, press the brake pad to the rim and use that as your angle when you cinch the bolt. It'll always toe out the back of the brake pad by the width of the zip tie, thereby toeing in the front. You can experiment with different width zip ties depending on your needs. Simple, easy and effective. I always have a few loops on my workstand for this reason.
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Old 08-30-15, 04:57 PM
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OK - I finally had a chance to work on the bike. I used dimes to toe in the front brakes (the ones making the noise) and the noise is gone. Now my question is: what are the odds the dimes will fall out at some random time, and how dangerous is that?
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Old 08-30-15, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by JonathanGennick View Post
I love the plow! It's what makes those pads so easy. Slap the pads on. Hold them against the rim. Tighten the bolts. Job done. I bank on the plow to set the toe-in for me. Maybe I'm lucky with rims, but I get good results from letting the plow drive the toe-in.
This is what I do, and it seems to work fine for me!
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Old 08-30-15, 08:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Beth W View Post
OK - I finally had a chance to work on the bike. I used dimes to toe in the front brakes (the ones making the noise) and the noise is gone. Now my question is: what are the odds the dimes will fall out at some random time, and how dangerous is that?
huh ?
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Old 08-31-15, 03:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Beth W View Post
OK - I finally had a chance to work on the bike. I used dimes to toe in the front brakes (the ones making the noise) and the noise is gone. Now my question is: what are the odds the dimes will fall out at some random time, and how dangerous is that?
When you release the brake lever the dimes should fall out by themselves. So you are doing something wrong if they are not. They are not meant to stay held in the brake pads.
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Old 08-31-15, 06:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Beth W View Post
today when I came to a stop by City Hall, a crow cawed in response
Does this remind anyone else of an Otto Preminger or Alfred Hitchcock movie?
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Old 08-31-15, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by trailflow1 View Post
When you release the brake lever the dimes should fall out by themselves. So you are doing something wrong if they are not. They are not meant to stay held in the brake pads.
The dimes are situated between the back of the brake shoes and the bracket that the brakes attach to. Many of the instructions I read (which, let's face it, don't ever seem to go beyond "use dimes or washers as spacers") suggested this is where they'd go. If someone can send me a link to actual step-by-step instructions, I'd appreciate it.
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Old 08-31-15, 08:45 AM
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You place it between the brake pad contact surface and the rim. Loosen the brake shoe holder bolt, place the spacer (dime or similar) at the rear area of the brake pads and pull the brake lever and re-tighten the shoe holder bolts.

Here's a tutorial video by Art's cyclery
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0bELYXNI88
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Old 08-31-15, 09:38 AM
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need no horn.
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Old 08-31-15, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by trailflow1 View Post
You place it between the brake pad contact surface and the rim. Loosen the brake shoe holder bolt, place the spacer (dime or similar) at the rear area of the brake pads and pull the brake lever and re-tighten the shoe holder bolts.

Here's a tutorial video by Art's cyclery
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0bELYXNI88
Thanks -- but what keeps the brake in toe-in position, then?
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Old 08-31-15, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Beth W View Post
Thanks -- but what keeps the brake in toe-in position, then?
The bolt holding the brake pad holder to the brake arms. If the bolts are tightened correctly there shouldn't be any movment. The pads will stay in that position.
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