Cantilever brakes

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Cantilever brakes

Postby ozebikes » Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:05 pm

Hey guys, have recently built up a nice flat bar bike that I am really enjoying, the only weak link right now is the brakes. They are tektro Oryx cantilever, nothing flash, I have swapped out the pads to Baradine which are not bad, but I get juddering on the front, the play in the brake arms cannot be removed, and squeal has started to set in after a few hundred k's on the front. I am looking for some expert opinions on setting up the pad angles etc, and advice on other brakes.

Reading reviews there doesnt seem to be anything that really stands out, the Shimano CX70 brake set seems to be about the best quality available, these are ultegra level with replaceable shoes.

My levers are Shimano BL R550, flat bar specific Tiagra level, nice lever with all the adjustment I need. Can I use a short arm V brake with these? Or limited to the cantilever due to cable pull geometry? I have tried searching for shimano information on whats compatible with what but havent been able to find out much about this stuff. Coming from MTB's with 180mm elixer hydraulics and being a heavy rider I am being taken back to school days and U brakes with these tektros! :)
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by BNA » Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:19 pm

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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby RonK » Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:19 pm

Canti's are not worth the trouble. Replace them with v brakes and compatible levers, they are cheap enough.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby ldrcycles » Sun Jul 14, 2013 5:47 pm

ozebikes wrote: I am looking for some expert opinions on setting up the pad angles etc, and advice on other brakes.


Then this is what you're after http://sheldonbrown.com/canti-trad.html .

I agree with ron though, while I like the look of canti brakes and will probably be using them on a project I have in the pipeline, v brakes are so much easier to set up.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby familyguy » Sun Jul 14, 2013 6:03 pm

If you like your canti's and don't want to go V, try a brake booster to fix squeal. Cured squeal issues I had. Well set up canti's will stop anything.

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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby Duck! » Sun Jul 14, 2013 6:07 pm

Alternativewly, try a decent, stiff-armed canti brake (I know, decent canti is almost an oxymoron), such as the Avid Shorty or Shimano CX50/CX70. Greater stiffness will reduce vibration & resulting noise.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby RonK » Sun Jul 14, 2013 7:37 pm

You would be throwing good money after bad replacing one canti with another.

I have the Avid Shorty Ultimate on one of my touring bikes, and I can assure you that they are rubbish compared to the Avid Single Digit SL on my other tourer. In fact the canti's are dangerously inadequate when it comes to stopping a loaded tourer on steep descents.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby il padrone » Sun Jul 14, 2013 7:46 pm

RonK wrote:Canti's are not worth the trouble. Replace them with v brakes and compatible levers, they are cheap enough.


+1

If you have a flat-bar bike I really connot see any disadvantage in upgrading to V-brakes. You just need to make sure you get the full set of brakes and levers. Cantilever brake levers do not work with V-brakes - not enough cable pulled so you'll be bottoming out your levers.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby cyclotaur » Sun Jul 14, 2013 7:48 pm

RonK wrote:You would be throwing good money after bad replacing one canti with another.

I have the Avid Shorty Ultimate on one of my touring bikes, and I can assure you that they are rubbish compared to the Avid Single Digit SL on my other tourer. In fact the canti's are dangerously inadequate when it comes to stopping a loaded tourer on steep descents.

OTOH I have ASUs on my CX bike and they are fine for me and my riding style, which has included everything from Beach Rd speed fests to light-loaded touring in the mountains. Depends on what you are doing and how you ride. I have mine set pretty slack which some others don't like ... but it suits me fine.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby ozebikes » Sun Jul 14, 2013 8:34 pm

Thanks guys, I started with caliper brakes on my Reynolds racer back in the 80's, went to V brakes with my hybrid custom built MTB after that, upgrading to XTR V brakes with the servo wave levers, they were some impressive rim brakes. I am not too worried about the cantilever, I know they can be set up to stop, fact is they work pretty well right now, just some niggling things like the stiffness, quality of construction around the pivot area mainly, and the juddering.

I looked at the CX series and the CX70 are available at reasonable price from OS, the Ultegra flat bar levers that are recommended for the CX are available here and not so expensive either. I dont want to stick a high end V brake on there and then end up worrying about locking the front wheel. Am I being paranoid? Been injured quite badly in the past going over the front, offroad which is why I no longer ride trails.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby RonK » Sun Jul 14, 2013 8:57 pm

ozebikes wrote:I dont want to stick a high end V brake on there and then end up worrying about locking the front wheel. Am I being paranoid? Been injured quite badly in the past going over the front, offroad which is why I no longer ride trails.

Yes, you are being paranoid. And the Avid levers have a speed dial, so the modulation is easily adjusted.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby Duck! » Sun Jul 14, 2013 9:27 pm

ozebikes wrote:I dont want to stick a high end V brake on there and then end up worrying about locking the front wheel. Am I being paranoid? Been injured quite badly in the past going over the front, offroad which is why I no longer ride trails.

Actually it would be the opposite problem. V-brakes require a longer cable pull than cantilevers; unless you set the pads super close to the rim, with virtually no tolerance for even small buckles, you'd find yourself pulling the lever to the bar before much happened.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.
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Re: Cantilever brakes

Postby ozebikes » Sun Jul 14, 2013 10:49 pm

Bit more research on current stuff available has me looking at the BL-R780 Levers, they can be set for any type of brake, V or canti/caliper style. So makes sense to have these rather than buying V brake only levers as I can then go either way on the brakes and these levers are recommended for the CX70 brakes.
A local shop has Deore LX V brake sets at a good price, I am guessing I would be better off trying these and see how I go?

Oh and duck, was not thinking about using V brakes with existing levers, I understand the lever geometry required, if I go V brakes it will be a set that matches, hence the paranoia is still valid LOL :mrgreen:
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