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Modern Center-pull Cantilevers on a vintage Schwinn Passage

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Modern Center-pull Cantilevers on a vintage Schwinn Passage

Old 05-13-14, 09:27 AM
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holycalamity
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Modern Center-pull Cantilevers on a vintage Schwinn Passage

Hey all,

First post. I'm currently building up an 86 Schwinn Passage and have run into a little setback with the original Dia Compe center-pull cantilever brakes. I was replacing the original pads when one of the concave washers on the brake arm split in half under pressure. Because of this, i'm questioning the durability of these 28yo brakes and am considering replacing with Avid Shorty 4 Canti's. I'm a moderately experienced home mechanic but am not familiar with canti compatibility on vintage frames. As you all probably know, this bike has brazed on brake bosses that accept a large external spring to go directly onto the boss before the brake arm and leveraged into one single hole on the side of the boss. With the newer brakes, the spring is internal and has a notch for leverage that's designed for mtb bosses with the option of three holes to choose from. Are these modern brakes compatible on vintage frames like this? I assume if they were that I would just insert the notch on the modern brakes into the one hole that is available on this boss? Also, do all brake bosses designed for cantilever brakes have the same cylindrical housing diameter?

Thanks!

Here's a pic of the bike I've built up. Have overhauled the bottom bracket, stem, and replaced the chain, tires/tube and switched to north road handlebars and mtb levers. Added cascadian fenders, mks touring pedals and zefal cages/straps, and brooks b-17 standard imperial. Is riding like a dream but some of the hardware that installs with these vintage components seem to be made of butter.

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Last edited by holycalamity; 05-13-14 at 10:03 AM. Reason: Grammar
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Old 05-13-14, 10:41 AM
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FBinNY
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Over the years, boss dimensions haven't changed, so the boss itself is OK. However, there have been various designs for the spring anchor, so that's where any issues will arise.

You have options here. You could drill a spring anchor hole at the bottom of the boss if necessary, to fit whatever brake you buy. Or you can select a brake with an internal cam for the spring anchor. These may be at the front or rear and are adjustable to any tension, and held in place when the mounting bolt is tightened. I actually prefer this design because it offers the greatest user control over spring tension and balance.
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Old 05-13-14, 10:49 AM
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Pricier as they are made in California rather than Avid in Taiwan, but Paul components does not use a frame mounted spring hole on the post .


He makes the springs within the brake , and by winding up the spring with an open end wrench and tightening the Allen head mounting screw

the return springs are individually adjustable (and sealed inside O rings) It is of the type Francis is referring to..

do all brake bosses designed for cantilever brakes have the same cylindrical housing diameter?

Pretty much, but some variation .. Paul Resolves the discrepancies by supplying a stainless sleeve in the brake design , to control that variation, for his brakes..

Last edited by fietsbob; 05-13-14 at 10:53 AM.
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Old 05-13-14, 10:51 AM
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Thanks for the reply FBinNY!

Per cost, I'm looking at the Avid Shorty 4 Canti's - https://www.sram.com/sram/road/products/avid-shorty-4

There is currently a spring anchor hole on the boss which is used by a large independent spring for the Dia Compe brakes that are currently installed. Do you think this single hole will be compatible with standard center-pull canti's like the shorty 4? I know that I won't have as much user control over spring with only one hole selection, but as long as it's compatible I think that's all I'm looking for currently so I can just get on this damn thing and ride it again.

Thanks!
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Old 05-13-14, 10:54 AM
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fietsbob
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If the hole .. it's on the inner side it should be OK..
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Old 05-13-14, 10:58 AM
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holycalamity
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Pricier as they are made in California rather than Avid in Taiwan, but Paul components does not use a frame mounted spring hole on the post .


He makes the springs within the brake , and by winding up the spring with an open end wrench and tightening the Allen head mounting screw

the return springs are individually adjustable (and sealed inside O rings) It is of the type Francis is referring to..




Pretty much, but some variation .. Paul Resolves the discrepancies by supplying a stainless sleeve in the brake design , to control that variation, for his brakes..
Just looked those up, they seem great for my needs! They are a bit pricier so I think I might install the touring canti's by paul closer to my first touring adventure and use these avid canti's (if they end up being compatible) for now just so I can start riding again. Great to know that there are canti's that are internally sprung!

Thanks for the reply!
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Old 05-13-14, 10:58 AM
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holycalamity
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
If the hole .. it's on the inner side it should be OK..
It sure is. This seems hopeful, thanks!
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Old 05-16-14, 04:14 PM
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Please update us if you land on anything. I have the same frame and would like to upgrade the brakes as well. Thanks.
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