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caliper brake crooked

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Old 10-09-18, 10:03 AM
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caliper brake crooked

Is there someone I can do, like bending the arms (alloy)? Or shimming? Or is it normal for cheap brake to be slightly crooked?

When I squeeze hard enough...the caliper will deform to align perfectly with the rim. I'am sure this is inefficient.

The crooked brake performed adequatedly...but it could definitely be better.


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Old 10-09-18, 10:09 AM
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what is the chance that the brake mount hole on the frame and fork is drilled crooked?

This is Bikesdirect.

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Old 10-09-18, 10:13 AM
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perhaps you need some lessons in general mechanical problem solving
locally, in person.. ?

you do lean towards cheaper bikes.. *


have you gained experience yet..
in the dividing line between bending and breaking various materials yet?
* considering that it won't be a great loss if it breaks.. while you are learning..

it is a hand feel not an internet opinion..




...

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Old 10-09-18, 10:16 AM
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Crescent wrench alignment tool is the answer.
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Old 10-09-18, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by trailangel View Post
Crescent wrench alignment tool is the answer.
So, it is okay to bend alloy aluminum? I was afraid it would snap off. I didn't know if aluminum alloy can be bend or not.
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Old 10-09-18, 11:01 AM
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Best to get brake pads with conical washers to that they can self-adjust to be aligned correctly when installing them.
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Old 10-09-18, 12:38 PM
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What way is it crooked?
Forward /back direction or left /right direction.
This may simply be an adjustment problem.
What sort of a brake is it?
​​​​​​​What is bending when you pull the brakes.
By the way you say it can be more efficient which may not be true.
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Old 10-09-18, 12:47 PM
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I like ThermionScott's idea of a conical washer.
I don't like bending aluminum because it induces fatigue in a material that is not fatigue resistant. The result could sudden and complete failure during use.
How much fatigue would be induced by bending the slotted foundations is difficult to quantify, but I would not take the chance.
Best,
Jason
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Old 10-09-18, 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by blamester View Post
What way is it crooked?
Forward /back direction or left /right direction.
This may simply be an adjustment problem.
What sort of a brake is it?
What is bending when you pull the brakes.
By the way you say it can be more efficient which may not be true.
It is a caliper brake with single pivot. Looks like the whole unit is crooked to the left. My guess is the holes in the fork and in the brake bridge were drilled off axis.

I notice this crookedness on my other cheap cruiser bikes. But this bike has a much nicer brake (no name brand)...so I was surpriced it is even more crooked.

I guess I should buy some nice Shimano single pivot brake.

But these cheap brakes seems adequate though. And, I get to exercise my hand to get stronger grip strength.

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Old 10-09-18, 01:31 PM
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I also notice the brake is too large for the rim width. It's possible, this bike has the wrong size brake caliper.

The rim is for 25c narrow tires. The brake caliper seems to be for much wider rims for gravel tires.
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Old 10-09-18, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Jason Curtiss View Post
I like ThermionScott's idea of a conical washer.
I don't like bending aluminum because it induces fatigue in a material that is not fatigue resistant. The result could sudden and complete failure during use.
How much fatigue would be induced by bending the slotted foundations is difficult to quantify, but I would not take the chance.
Best,
Jason
Do they make conical washer for road brake? I never seen them.
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Old 10-09-18, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
But this bike has a much nicer brake (no name brand)
There's no such thing as a nice no-name-brand single-pivot caliper brake.

Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I also notice the brake is too large for the rim width. It's possible, this bike has the wrong size brake caliper.

The rim is for 25c narrow tires. The brake caliper seems to be for much wider rims for gravel tires.
Most brakes can clear considerably larger tires than they're used with.

Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
Do they make conical washer for road brake? I never seen them.
Yes, conical washers are the standard method for adjusting brake pad angle on slot-mounted pad holders. Good brake pad holders are designed to use them.

https://www.amazon.com/Kool-Stop-Bic.../dp/B0014BRW6E
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Old 10-09-18, 01:46 PM
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A very common (for crooked ft brakes) reason that ft brake calipers are crooked is a bent center bolt. When the bars/ft wheel swing way past 90* and the caliper cable adjuster arm hits the down tube's side the center bolt can become bent. I've seen this many times, even some with today's dual pivot calipers (although less often). For this the solution is a simple bending the bolt back, easiest done with the bolt out of the caliper and held min a bench vice.

As to breaking the caliper with an adjustable wrench placed on the arm's pad slot portion, sure but most brakes accept this bending if done with care and attention. I have cracked a Campy arm (still it was used for many miles more with no effects) when the wrench wasn't overlapping both the front and rear vertical portions of the pad slot. I have broken off completely a couple of other caliper arms, including a Universal brand (should have known better on that one). But given the hundreds of arms I've realigned (that term sounds better) having a less then 1% failure rate (and a failure that shows right away) isn't a bad risk.

Of course using pads with built in angle adjusting washers is the first choice.

As to the caliper's being made for a wider tire- Generally longer reach calipers also have more tire clearance. Kind of chicken and egg. As the photo shows the pads pretty close to the slot's center points I say the calipers are the right ones for the frame, regardless of the tire width choice made by the rider. Andy
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Old 10-09-18, 03:24 PM
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So...if I want to upgrade the brakes to decent entry-level dual-pivot...what brand do you guys recommend?

Is Origin8 Classic Road decent ($26 each)?

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Old 10-09-18, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
So...if I want to upgrade the brakes to decent entry-level dual-pivot...what brand do you guys recommend?
Is Tektro decent?
Tektro is just fine. I'd like to see a pic of this brake misalignment.

Origin 8 is fine too.
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Old 10-09-18, 05:02 PM
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Take a rod that barely fits the hole. If the hole is off this will tell you. Then it's either rework the hole or buy a good caliper. If the bridge has a flat welded on it may be off, grab a square and check it.

What's so hard? Did you attend college and forget common sense?
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Old 10-09-18, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by ClammyChamois View Post
Take a rod that barely fits the hole. If the hole is off this will tell you. Then it's either rework the hole or buy a good caliper. If the bridge has a flat welded on it may be off, grab a square and check it.

What's so hard? Did you attend college and forget common sense?
What's hard for many is to figure out mechanical relationships and their interfacing shapes. This isn't what's taught, not what's important in most schools for quite a while. Well rounded educations give way to wanting better scores on tests that have less to do with real life then meeting some easily arranged bar/level (and then these scores are used for political causes). Andy
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Old 10-09-18, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
So, it is okay to bend alloy aluminum? I was afraid it would snap off. I didn't know if aluminum alloy can be bend or not.
Forged aluminum calipers can be bent; cast ones shouldn't. The vast majority of modern brake calipers are forged. BITD, "Universal" calipers were cast and did break if bent.
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Old 10-09-18, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
Do they make conical washer for road brake? I never seen them.
BITD, Mathauser/Scott brake pads came with spherical washers to set toe-in. Nowadays, Yokozuna markets a copy of the old Mathauser pads including the spherical washers:


Yokozuna Premium Cables, Housing and Brake Pads
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Old 10-10-18, 08:45 AM
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I cannot find good replacement brake calipers w/o recessed mounting. Help!
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Old 10-10-18, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by JohnDThompson View Post
Forged aluminum calipers can be bent; cast ones shouldn't. The vast majority of modern brake calipers are forged. BITD, "Universal" calipers were cast and did break if bent.
Is this forged or cast?

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Old 10-10-18, 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I cannot find good replacement brake calipers w/o recessed mounting. Help!
Tektro has some calipers with nice finishes available with either standard nutting or recessed nutting. Do you know the brake reach yet? Andy
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Old 10-10-18, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
Tektro has some calipers with nice finishes available with either standard nutting or recessed nutting. Do you know the brake reach yet? Andy
Wow they are not cheap...like $40 each for R539. .

I'm guessing I need mid-reach calipers...judging by the large clearance between tire and fork crown.

I think I'm going to try to bend these cheapo no-name caliper first...if it snaps...then I buy the R539.

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Old 10-10-18, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I cannot find good replacement brake calipers w/o recessed mounting. Help!
As Andrew notes, Tektro makes dual-pivot calipers for nutted mounting. There are more affordable models that the one Andrew identified, e.g. https://www.biketoolsetc.com/index.c...em_id=TK-800AF. And if those aren't to your liking, you can get the Allen-head mounting nuts for recessed calipers in a variety of lengths to provide the functional equivalent of traditional nutted mounting.

Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
Is this forged or cast?

Looks to be a forged caliper. Can you identify the brand and/or model?
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Old 10-11-18, 03:32 AM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I cannot find good replacement brake calipers w/o recessed mounting. Help!
There are after-market longer bolts sold to the Tektro and Shimano pattern to allow modern brakes to be fitted to old frames.
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