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how do I Stop Bike Rim Brake Squeal???

Old 04-29-16, 08:15 PM
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how do I Stop Bike Rim Brake Squeal???

How do I Stop Bike Rim Brake Squeal???
and i have googled Brake Squeal

I do get Brake Squeal
My Front Rim Velocity Cliffhanger 26in 36hole
my front Brake Shoe: Koolstop Mtn salmon

I don't get Brake Squeal on
My Rear Rim Sun Ringle Rhyno lite XL 26in 36hole
My rear Brake Shoe: Koolstop V-Type holder with
dual compound black/salmon

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Old 04-29-16, 08:19 PM
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Adjust the pads. Toe them in so the leading edge of the pad touches the rim first. Not much of an angle, very slight.

And clean the pads before reinstalling.
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Old 04-29-16, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr
Adjust the pads. Toe them in so the leading edge of the pad touches the rim first. Not much of an angle, very slight.

And clean the pads before reinstalling.
+1

Place a rubber band around the rear portion of your brake pad; it will hang loosely with only one thickness between the pad and the rim. Adjust the pads to the rim, and tighten. This will give you about the right amount of toe-in. Wipe your rims with denatured alcohol, and clean your brake pads with sandpaper or a flat file. If that does not stop your squeal, it will at least help you to stop better.
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Old 04-29-16, 08:53 PM
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Talking about cantilever brakes, I assume? I never got mine to stop squealing.
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Old 04-29-16, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
+1

Place a rubber band around the rear portion of your brake pad; it will hang loosely with only one thickness between the pad and the rim. Adjust the pads to the rim, and tighten. This will give you about the right amount of toe-in. Wipe your rims with denatured alcohol, and clean your brake pads with sandpaper or a flat file. If that does not stop your squeal, it will at least help you to stop better.
+2 Also a really great idea with the rubber band. I might have to try that sometime. I can generally get it pretty well without but having a little extra guide when I am tired or just not feeling up to it could be hand.

If you are squealing because of a long down hill and being really grabby on the brakes maybe try using your front brake more and also just use less brake. Build up your confidence and you will be much better. Also having a good set of brakes you trust is good. I was recently riding my vintage road machine with old school single pivot brakes (new pads though) on our shops weekly hill ride and there were some sketchy downhills that I was grabbing my brakes for dear life because on potholed city streets on skinny tires and untrue wheels with only single pivot brakes to stop you it is scary. The wheels aren't true because they are so high tensioned they are as good as they can get at this point so I am just going to build up a new wheel set with the old 7400 hubs and new spokes and rims.
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Old 04-29-16, 10:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2
Talking about cantilever brakes, I assume? I never got mine to stop squealing.

Avid Single Digit 7 V-Brakes
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Old 04-29-16, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Biketouringhobo
Avid Single Digit 7 V-Brakes
The steps outlined above will work on your brakes. My wife runs the same brakes on her bike.
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Old 04-30-16, 05:56 AM
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We use the Salmon Koolstop pads on our V-brake LHT's. When we rode cross country 2 Summers ago we had a LOT of squealing. I kept adjusting with toe in until I finally looked at some You Tube videos. Had to use a penny as a shim for thickness to get it to stop. Works great! Now I have a penny in my tool kit!
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Old 04-30-16, 06:15 AM
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Every once in a while there's a brake/rim/weather combination that will just squeal. I have one now. I know how to toe in and adjust, and I've changed shoes twice, but I just cannot get it to be quiet if the temperature is below 70F. In the afternoon or in the summer or after lots of braking, it's quiet. If I use a different wheel, it's quiet. I like the wheel so I live with it.
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Old 04-30-16, 06:53 AM
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Good advice so far -- toe in and alcohol to clean both surfaces.

At least they don't make noise when not hitting them, like my old avid bb5 discs did.
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Old 04-30-16, 07:29 AM
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+1 on the penny and cleaning the rims with alcohol. Also I prefer Koolstop black, Avid, Aztec, or some other pad over the much touted salmon pads. The salmon are more grabby and prone to squealing. They are better in the wet, but I find black pads adequate.
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Old 04-30-16, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr
Toe them in so the leading edge of the pad touches the rim first.
+1 This is the key! The techniques outlined by others are just different ways to achieve this. Watch this.
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Old 04-30-16, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1
+1 on the penny and cleaning the rims with alcohol. Also I prefer Koolstop black, Avid, Aztec, or some other pad over the much touted salmon pads. The salmon are more grabby and prone to squealing. They are better in the wet, but I find black pads adequate.
I tend to agree with you on the salmon pads. Those have always been more prone to squeal than other pads. Maybe if I lived in some rainier place like Seattle or Portland I'd use them, but I don't. I'm using Koolstop black now, and they work just fine and don't squeal at all.

Assuming the brakes have been correctly set up and toed in, sanding the rims lightly usually will fix or at least greatly reduce squeal. Cleaning the rims can be counterproductive.
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Old 04-30-16, 08:16 AM
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I generally havent had problems with squealing, but I have noticed that at times, when it is very humid out, it happens (not wet, just humid)

This does appear to occur more when I have first set up pads, and over time it goes away, I assume its because the pads wear down a certain amount and the pad surface changes. I kind of equate this to the pads "bedding" in to the rim, although I could be wrong on this-but it does seem that the problem goes away after a while when it has happened so isn't a problem really.

personally, on my canti bike, the salmon coloured pads have been fine for being quiet and effective stoppers. My first front pair lasted four seasons, pretty good for supposedly soft pads (I don't live in the mountains however and keep the bike clean, so this is a big factor)
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Old 04-30-16, 08:23 AM
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Read all the other posts on how to do it .. there's dozens .. go to the archived posts !
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Old 04-30-16, 09:48 AM
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Sturmey Archer DRUM brake.
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Old 04-30-16, 10:06 AM
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Sometimes you have to live with a little squeal. My front canti is Paul's low profile, the pad is Kool stop salman low profile, and the rim is Velocity Dyad. I have done everything, even using a nickel as a shim to get the toe in angle fairly wide. Problem then becomes you lose braking power. I even used a fork crown cable hanger to shorten the length of the cable. Nothing eliminated squeal completely. Recently, I tried a shorter pad and that seems to have helped quite a bit. However, when I brake really hard, it still squeals. The moral of the story is, make peace with the squeal and embrace it. The good news is, it means your brakes are working!!!
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Old 04-30-16, 10:08 AM
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Sturmey Archer DRUM brake.
yes ! +1, no squeal since 1985, (when I bought them) UK name was 'Elite',

the company has been sold to TW in the mean time..


My Magura HS 33 Hydraulic Rim Brakes have Never squealed Either ..

Mafac from the mid 70s, and Modolo cyclocross cantilevers .

I Fix squeals .. my self ..

Pay a Shop if you are not a mechanic.

Last edited by fietsbob; 04-30-16 at 01:15 PM.
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Old 04-30-16, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1
+1 on the penny and cleaning the rims with alcohol. Also I prefer Koolstop black, Avid, Aztec, or some other pad over the much touted salmon pads. The salmon are more grabby and prone to squealing. They are better in the wet, but I find black pads adequate.

Maybe i can try Kool Stop Dual compound black/salmon on my Front Brake to see if Brake Squeal Stops and i do clean my Rim's and Pad's with BD Alcohol Swabs/Pads and i always have a box of Alcohal pads
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Old 04-30-16, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by robert schlatte
Sometimes you have to live with a little squeal. My front canti is Paul's low profile, the pad is Kool stop salman low profile, and the rim is Velocity Dyad. I have done everything, even using a nickel as a shim to get the toe in angle fairly wide. Problem then becomes you lose braking power. I even used a fork crown cable hanger to shorten the length of the cable. Nothing eliminated squeal completely. Recently, I tried a shorter pad and that seems to have helped quite a bit. However, when I brake really hard, it still squeals. The moral of the story is, make peace with the squeal and embrace it. The good news is, it means your brakes are working!!!
That is strange. I also run Paul canti's, but I run the Retro on the front and touring on the back, with Dyad rims, and Kool Stop Thinline salmon pads. I don't get any squeal, but it may be the nature of the Retro.

I also put a pair of Paul's canti's on another bike that used to squeal badly with the stock brakes. The set up is the same as above, but with Mavic rims. They no longer squeal; but I have not had a chance to ride it in all types of weather and conditions.

Do you get any squeal from your back wheel?

I can empathise with squealing brakes. The bike I raced had Mafac brakes, which squealed horribly. Every time I applied brake pressure everyone knew it.

Last edited by Doug64; 04-30-16 at 06:21 PM.
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Old 04-30-16, 01:22 PM
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Most every winter I pull my wheels for re-truing and maintenance, and afterwards, I generally clean my rims and KS salmon pads with a degreaser like Simple Green. The first time out on the road, my brakes will generally squeal like a pig, be a little grabby almost to the point of fork shudder but after a couple rides, they wear in with dirt and become more quiet.
Bottom line, cleaning rims and pads will not always make more them more quiet but it can sometimes.
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Old 04-30-16, 01:24 PM
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One thing that helped Me . not worrying what a frame weighs.

as you force the brake against the Rim you spread the posts out.

its like a wound up spring then and harmonic vibrations from the friction, are set up
between the frame the bow string like Brake cable
and such ..

Used substantial Tube wall forks and rear stays, And that did not happen, on my Cargo-tour-tandem frame materials bike.
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Old 04-30-16, 04:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
That is strange. I also run Paul canti's, but I run the Retro on the front and touring on the back, with Dyad rims, and Kool Stop Thinline salmon pads. I don't get any squeal, but it may be the nature of the Retro.

Do you get any squeal from your back wheel?

I can empathise with squealing brakes. The bike I raced had Mafac brakes, which squealed horribly. Every time I applied brake pressure everyone knew it.
I also put a pair of Paul's canti's on another bike that used to squeal badly with the stock brakes. The set up is the same as above, but with Mavic rims. They no longer squeal; but I have not had a chance to ride it in all types of weather and conditions.

The Paul's touring brake on the front replaced Tektro canti brake that squealed badly as well. In fact, I thought the Paul's would eliminate the squeal, but no such luck. The back Tektro has never squealed, only the front. Anyway, it is not so bad anymore and other than a little squeal, i like the bike's set up and everything is good.
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Old 04-30-16, 05:52 PM
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Just took care of some salmon Kool Stops this morning that were squealing with a light scuffing with some sandpaper. Quieted them nicely.
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Old 04-30-16, 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk
Just took care of some salmon Kool Stops this morning that were squealing with a light scuffing with some sandpaper. Quieted them nicely.
I forgot to mention that I use sandpaper on my pads if they look like they have a shiny look to them and or to clean them up if the surface has a lot of embedded dark stains. I hardly ever do it but it seems to help with getting a bit better braking power back.
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