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Hydraulic Brake Help

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Old 03-21-07, 10:06 PM
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Terrapin Ben
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Hydraulic Brake Help

I recently installed some XT hydrualic brakes on my bike. They came prebled and instillation was a breeze. Unfortunately, there is a problem. Most of the time my rear wheel spings freely and without a problem. Other times there is a noticable friction on my rotor from the brake calipers. Because this problem comes and goes and makes me think there is a problem with the fluid in my hoses not releasing my calipers properly after i squeeze my lever. Any help, advice, or trouble shooting would be greatly appreciated. Much thanks and happy trails!
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Old 03-21-07, 10:34 PM
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have you ever squeezed the rear brake without the rotor between the pads? This can cause the pads in stick out farther than they should. If so, just put something plastic/non-abrasive between the pads and gently force them farther apart.

If not, I would try and re-bleed the brakes. You can find many write-ups on how to do this by searching.
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Old 03-21-07, 10:36 PM
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thanks man. I don't recall ever squeezing my brakes without the rotor between them, but i guess i can try to force them apart and see if it makes a difference. thanks for the input!
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Old 03-21-07, 10:49 PM
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welp, two knives and some brute force worked this time. It still worries me that this is a problem that comes and goes. Sometimes there is zero rub other times the wheel will only make one and a half revolutions when i spin it. Could there be a bubble in my hose? I feel like this is just a temporary fix and would appreciate everyones advice and input. thanks again.
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Old 03-22-07, 12:38 AM
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i've had that problem. after trying everything you can imagine, besides bleeding them, I found a way. Take the caliper off, which requires removing 2 small bolts. Remove the pads, which usually just requires removing a pin. then take a large flathead screwdriver and press the pistons back into their holes, as far as they will go. now reinstall the pads, reinstall the caliper, and start pumpin the brake handle till they are tight. if it isn;t centered, then loosen the caliper, give the wheel a spin, and grab the brake handle hard and hold on. then tighten the caliper bolts while still holding the level. this should work. it is basically rebuilding the brakes. and really only takes a few minutes.
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Old 03-22-07, 06:57 AM
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Mine does it like you are describing when I went from some stock pads to XTR metallic pads and it drives me nuts. I asked at my LBS and they said it is common depending on the rotor/pad materials. It is just noticable at times enough to question what is wrong.
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Old 03-22-07, 12:23 PM
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THanks for the advice scottluebke. I was considering doing that last night, but got too tired. It is the week before spring break and i have a 12 page literature critique due in ecology, a 8 page philisophical critique due in ethics, 4 maps due for GIS, and a lab due in ecology. I will be leaving for Moab at 5 in the morning on saturday. My brakes are brand new, and i am under heavy stress with my work load right now. The rubbing was not what i needed last night. thanks for the input folks. Trek1 it is good to hear i am not alone with this problem. In two days, all of this will be forgotten and if my brakes start acting up at least i know it some minor tinkering will be able to solve the problem. Happy trails everyone!
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Old 03-22-07, 01:09 PM
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XTs are touchy this way, IMO. Once I got them set there has been no rubbing all winter. But it took a few tries.
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Old 03-22-07, 05:12 PM
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Scottluebke2004
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I'm feeling you buddy. I'm in the UC Santa Barbara library right now taking a study break. I have one more final at 730 tonight for US Labor History, then I have a take home during by email on Saturday. But in the morning I am heading to Vegas to help my Dad move there and I am taking the Rocky Mountain to shred the desert. That will be my true release. That and the NCAA basketball tournament. Forget the brakes till the finals are in. On that note...back to studying.
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