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Canti Brake Low Power and Big Squeal

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Canti Brake Low Power and Big Squeal

Old 04-19-12, 07:02 PM
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Canti Brake Low Power and Big Squeal

I've got a 2010 Cannondale T1 with Tektro 992A Oryx cantilever brakes ( first pic). The brakes were never all that good and the fronts suffered from more than a little squeal. They were properly toed. I decided that new pads and some upgrades would help the situation. That has not turned out to be the case. The first thing I discovered was that the 70 mm pads (2nd pic) that came with the brakes were not the specified 55mm units that should come with the brakes. In any event, I was able to get a new set of pads (70mm) for the fronts (3rd pic) and that improved the overall braking performance to OK. I didn't replace the rears but was able to to increase their mechanical advantage by by swapping around the small and large washers on the brake pad carriers. Short of replacing the canti's with V brakes, I believe that that will be as good as it gets.

My big problem is with the left front pad. The old pad squealed a bit but the new pad squeals continuously. It squeals when toed in, out or flat. And it is fire engine loud. All the other pads are quiet. I've thought about swapping the front arm with its mate in the rear to see if the problem goes away or is transferred. I may buy a set of 55mm pads to see if that cures the problem. Any thoughts?

I need to determine where or what is causing the squeal if possible before buying a different type of canti or going with a set of V brakes. I just bought a set Tektro road levers to go with my new drive train set-up and would be loath to pony up the cash for a set of V brake levers. Thanks Al

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Old 04-19-12, 07:29 PM
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Do a forum search on "brake shudder".

Then buy and install CAH60
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Old 04-19-12, 07:49 PM
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sounds about normal. cantis suck, yea i know how to set them up. the squeal is from the pad grabbing and letting go. try different pads from other makers. some setups just make more noise than others. toe in is a stop gap, when the pad wears and flattens out on the trouble maker brakes the noise comes back. make sure the rims are clean. yes get the fork mounted cable hanger. drop the straddle wire height for more power
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Old 04-19-12, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by IthaDan
Do a forum search on "brake shudder".

Then buy and install CAH60
I prefer this type, myself: https://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...jsp?spid=47409 Install some Kool Stop Salmon pads. With the fork mounted hanger they won't need to be toed-in.

Lower your straddle cable too, as far as you can. This cable carrier will help, also: https://problemsolversbike.com/produc...cable_carrier/
There is no problem with cantis: properly set up, your brakes will put you over the handlebars with two fingers (maybe one).
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Old 04-19-12, 08:51 PM
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One of the main culprites for squealing brakes are glazed brake surfaces. After running the hard brake pads that normally come as OEM, the brake surface has become polished so there is little for the brakes to bite into. Take some 320 grit emery cloth and rough up the brake surface. than make sure you follow the points at this site. https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-...-brake-service Pay special attention to the Vertical Face Alignment; adjust the pads the two brake post so from the front they look like a single rod running through the wheel and parallel to the ground.

edit: I ran cantis for the first 15 years of my riding. I had LBS folks adjust the brakes, I had racing wrenchs adjust my brkaes and I adjusted my brakes trying to use all the tricks described by Sheldon Brown. In the long run I found them inferior to V brakes, which is a constant complaint from Cyclocross riders. Don't get me wrong they are good brakes, just don't expect one finger over the handlebar performance; it's not going to happen.

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Old 04-20-12, 05:33 AM
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based on your photo, the straddle wire is set way too high
thats the main reason the brakes are weak
set it as low as possible, an angle closer to horizontal means higher mechanical advantage, move the fender if you need to

also, install a brake booster
that will reduce flex in the cantilever posts giving better braking power and might help with the noise a little
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Old 04-20-12, 09:39 AM
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See sticky in Cyclocross thread .. Toe in properly done
fork crown mounted housing stops reduce the length of cable in tension

Or, Buy some V brakes and levers
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Old 04-20-12, 03:14 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob
See sticky in Cyclocross thread .. Toe in properly done
fork crown mounted housing stops reduce the length of cable in tension

Or, Buy some V brakes and levers
Well folks I thought I would give an update on the brake issue and say thank you for the links and suggestions. I've decided not to spend anymore time or money on the canti's. Why Cannondale decided to put the darned things on their touring bike is beyond me. It must be a money thing. I've put an order in for a set of Tektro RL 520 brake levers and a set of Deore V brakes. They should work with my fenders and provide all the power needed when pulling my trailer. The parts should be in at the LBS by next Tuesday.

If things keep going the way they are, I should have enough spare parts to build another bike by the end of the summer. AL
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Old 05-08-12, 05:34 PM
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Final Update

I thought that I would give a final update on my brake problems. I ordered a set of Deore V brakes and a set of Tektro 520 brake levers. The brakes showed up within a week but the levers decided to show up today. It has been quite the wait. I put the bike back together with the new components this afternoon with absolutely no problems.

The brakes are a great upgrade from the original canti's and the horrible squeal is gone without having to do the toe-in thing. I may invest in a set of aftermarket pads at some point but am more than pleased with the present set-up.

Here are a few pics of the new set-up. Thanks again for the advice. Al

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New Brakes 001.jpg (39.6 KB, 18 views)
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New Brakes 004.jpg (43.4 KB, 16 views)
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