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Ditching nutted brakes - Drill the frame?

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Ditching nutted brakes - Drill the frame?

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Old 07-01-06, 04:52 AM
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dannyg1 
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Ditching nutted brakes - Drill the frame?

Just bought a frame that I'm in love with - an '89 Merz. Went to mount my Delta brakes to it and realized that this one was built old school - for nutted brakes. Should I, can I, would I drill the most beautiful frame I've ever seen, much less owned? Any other options I'm missing? Sheldon, stop me.....


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Old 07-01-06, 05:07 AM
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Fred Smedley
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Originally Posted by dannyg1
Just bought a frame that I'm in love with - an '89 Merz. Went to mount my Delta brakes to it and realized that this one was built old school - for nutted brakes. Should I, can I, would I drill the most beautiful frame I've ever seen, much less owned? Any other options I'm missing? Sheldon, stop me.....




DG1
Sheldons site shows a drop down bolt that has a allen bolt on one end. You will have to search to find as he says they are not available anymore.
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Old 07-01-06, 08:16 AM
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repechage
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I would not do it, but if you must...
Move the front brake to the rear, swap the pad direction at the same time. Don't drill the rear bridge, the structural assembly of what it takes to mount an allen key nut at the rear is very different. It might be necessary to shorten the mounting bolt a bit, test.

Drilling the fork is generally less of a problem. So the result of all this is you need a front mounting bolt for the what was the rear brake, in addition to the Allen nuts required. Obtain them first and measure befor you dril. To get a clean hole I would mont the fork on a Bridgeport Mill or good quality drill press. Most allen key forks have a counterbored hole at the aft end.
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Old 07-01-06, 09:27 AM
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Grand Bois
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I read somewhere that someone managed to solve the problem by fabricating an adapter that allowed the nut to be mounted inside the steerer and was tightened from below.
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Old 07-01-06, 04:06 PM
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dannyg1 
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Thanks Fred. I went to the Harris cyclery site and dug around for that and it is(I mean was) a standard drop bolt to mount short reach brakes on a long reach frame. Mine takes short reach but the width of the mount holes won't accomodate recessed mounting nuts.
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Old 07-01-06, 04:08 PM
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If you ever remember where that link is, I'd appreciate the help. Can you think of any search terms I might try?
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Old 07-01-06, 04:13 PM
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Thanks for the informative reply. In looking over the Campgnolo Deltas, I've noticed that the mounting bolt is in a carved channel and has free up-and-down movement. I assume this is to allow some leeway for bikes that require a longer reach (mine doesn't seem to need a long reach set). I'm considering taking the assembly apart and having a titanium bolt fashioned to fit (for the rear). I'll probably have the fork drilled or faced (like you might do to seat a faucet washer). Is there a tool for that?

Thanks
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Old 07-01-06, 08:15 PM
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Sheldon Brown
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Originally Posted by dannyg1
Just bought a frame that I'm in love with - an '89 Merz. Went to mount my Delta brakes to it and realized that this one was built old school - for nutted brakes. Should I, can I, would I drill the most beautiful frame I've ever seen, much less owned? Any other options I'm missing? Sheldon, stop me.....
Yep. http://sheldonbrown.com/recessed

Sheldon "Don't Need To Drill" Brown
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Old 07-02-06, 02:43 AM
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Hey thanks Sheldon. Always a nice surprise when you answer an obscure question. Do you really trust a front brake mounted to only one tubing surface? I would've thought that a no-no.

Danny 'comfort from a clean front drillin' G1
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Old 07-02-06, 10:22 AM
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Fabricating a bolt will work, my only comment would be that ti, (depending on the alloy) does not make a great high torque fastener material. Way back the Teledyne ti bolts made in the 70's had a nasty habit of breaking loose their bolt heads upon torquing down. The recommendation was to install and torque the cranks with a steel bolt, then replace with the ti one after the cranks were "home".

I don't know the dimension avail. but I would increase the bolt head depth if possible and or make it from stainless 304 or better.

The hidden nut approach that Sheldon suggests should work, but I don't like the idea of putting a highly leveraged bolt with such a short purchase behind it, but I am conservative.
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Old 07-02-06, 12:10 PM
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dannyg1 
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>>ti, (depending on the alloy) does not make a great high torque fastener material.<<

Thanks for possibly averting disaster. Is the 6/4 variant good enough? I got the idea that ti was ok because titanium V-brake mounting studs are so common.

On a side note, did you know that the Zero Gravity brake employs a _hollow_ aluminum tube as its mounting bolt?

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Old 07-02-06, 05:33 PM
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V brake configurations are very different from a single bolt mount caliper. Remember V brakes hae two pivots sharing the load and probably less leverage put upon them by design. Regarding the alloy pivots on Zero G brakes, I have not taken one apart, alloy, heat treatment and diameter can all assist. With a machined fillet at the root of the bolt to head intersection much is possible.

For the added work of machining ti alloy to the weight savings provided...lots of work for very few grams, heck its even hidden, so not much bling either.
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Old 07-02-06, 06:05 PM
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Must.... eat.... Words.... Just came back from local bike haunt. Zero Gravity brakes have a solid titanium mounting bolt. I just read on one of these forums that it was hollow aluminun and was shocked enough to talk about it. Now I feel like a total moron for repeating it.
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Old 07-03-06, 12:21 AM
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Can the mounting bolts be removed? If they can, just get some same thread allen bolts from the hardware store and carefully grind the heads down and grind two paralell sides. The bolts aren't visible, so the "hack job" won't show. And remember to save the original bolts for future use.
 
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Old 07-04-06, 07:33 PM
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dannyg1 
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Thanks Sheldon! I decided to drill the fork and switch the calipers rear to front as your site suggests. As always you are the resource!

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