Saturday, February 27, 2010

V-Brakes and Drop Bars

For the record: I exchanged brake pad inserts on Wolfgang, switching from the Tektro stock pads to Koolstop Dual Compound. So the original pads lasted about 4 months and maybe 1500 km (no record keeping yet back then, unfortunately). Given the adverse conditions of winter I guess that's a reasonable value.

The old pads on dirty, dirty Wolfgang

What remains of the pad...

New pads installed

While switching the pads, I also installed a new brake noodle with an integrated adjuster barrel.. This is a nifty way to deal with one downside of v-brakes on drop bars. With straight bars and the respective brake levers, you have an adjuster barrel integrated into the lever, allowing to compensate for the wear of the brake. With drop bar levers, on the other hand, you have to do this compensation by loosening and readjusting the brake wire. This is somewhat tricky/time-consuming, and, more importantly, it's not good for the longevity of the brake wire. The new noodle takes care of this issue and it was only 4 bucks.

© Rivendell Bicycles

One issue I'm still dealing with is brake squeal. The Koolstop instructions advise you to install the pads without toe-in because they're already curved themselves. My first attempt, however, lead to horrible brake squeal. I tried fixing it by adding toe-in but this didn't do anything. What did alleviate the problem was to increase the torque on the brake bosses (in combination with having the brake pads installed as advised by Koolstop). This doesn't entirely get rid of the squeal but it has definitely gotten better.

Odo Wolfgang: 3645 km (this is a late post; brake pads were actually installed at 3560 km)

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