How to tighten disc brakes on a speed bike

Device and principle of operation

The difference between the principles of operation of disc and mechanical brakes is insignificant. But, there are still differences in their device. Let’s consider step by step, starting with the mechanical type, which is arranged as follows:

  • Brake handle. It is fixed on the steering wheel, for the convenience of squeezing, with a clamp. It is designed to transfer force to the brake pads, bringing them into action.
  • Cable adjuster with lock nut. The first element serves as a regulating device for limiting the cable tension. The second is for fixing the regulator itself.
  • Brake lever adjuster designed to determine a comfortable distance to the handlebars.
  • Cable jacket. protecting it from dirt, mechanical damage.
  • To fix the cable, a clamp in the form of a bolt is used, with the possibility of adjustment
  • The mechanism that allows the cable to be set in motion, when pressed on it, is called a caliper. Its action is not possible without brake pads. rubber or metal fragments that ensure a tight clamping of the disc.
  • Directly disc (rotor). It locks onto the wheel hub.

Figures 1 and 2 show schematically all of the above details.

tighten, disc, brakes, speed

Figure: Bicycle brakes

Figure: appearance of the brake lever with main elements

How to set up disc brakes on a bicycle

Running a bike is one thing, but fixing it is another. Even skilled and experienced cyclists are faced with the problem of incorrect / defective disc brakes. You can deal with this phenomenon if you clearly know the principle of operation and the structure of the system. And you should start with these main points.

Diagnostics of the brake system

As with the human body, which functions as a whole, before fixing brake problems on a bicycle, diagnostics should be carried out to determine the extent of brake damage. After all, if the block is worn out, from which the impact on the disc becomes much worse, and there is no stopping effect (due), then only it needs to be replaced, and not the system as a whole. So, below are some of the diagnostic steps you need to take to identify the causes of your bike’s “ailment”:

  • Deformation of the rotor can be one of the reasons for the malfunctioning of the braking system. Therefore, removing it is a top priority. When you unscrew the clamps and remove the rotor, it must be placed on a flat surface, such as a mirror. Carefully inspect how tightly and evenly the rotor adheres to it, and if you notice irregularities, it means that they need to be corrected.
  • We dismantle the brake pads to carry out a visual inspection for damage. This action is as follows: find the extension on the caliper, and then turn the pads until they are removed. It is not difficult to visually determine the wear on their surface. So, the figure shows that the block on the right is already completely worn out and requires immediate replacement.
  • Figure: Determining Pad Wear
  • The next “candidates for close inspection” are cables and shirts. This item is suitable for those modes of transport where mechanics are used. It is necessary to check the cable for fiber breaks, deformations, and so on. As for the shirts, remember that their function is to protect the cable from negative factors (accumulation of dust, moisture). Therefore, cracks or breaks simply should not be present here. Both elements must be lubricated before installation / replacement.
  • For hydraulics, there is also a test exclusively inherent in this type of system. the condition of the hydraulic line for leaks. It is important to understand that if there are leaks in the hydraulics, the proper pressure may not be exerted on the pads, which automatically disables the system. Damage to the hydraulic lines is quite likely, which are revealed by visual inspection. over, it does not matter at all whether this damage is strong, or insignificant. It is also necessary to check the junction of the brake line, caliper and master cylinder. A rod extends from the brake lever to the piston. another potential place from which fluid can be vented in case of mechanical damage (on the cuffs). After dismantling the brake pads, it is necessary to check for leaks on the caliper itself.
  • The rotator, like the pads themselves, can get dirty while using the bike. Both oil and dust accumulate here, forming solid layers that interfere with the operation of the system. Adjusting the brakes without cleaning the rotor and pads from dirt is a mistake. Cleaning can be done with fine-grained sandpaper. But for this you need to dismantle both parts so that the cleaning is done as efficiently as possible.
  • The final is wheel adjustment. It should not be skewed to the side in any way. You can check this simply by placing the bike on a flat surface and performing a visual inspection. If the wheel is tilted to the side, it must be aligned (loosen the eccentric, then adjust the wheel).

A set of such activities is required. All this can be done quickly enough if you have all the necessary tools (screwdriver, wrenches). Next, we go directly to the processes of adjusting and installing the brakes.

Setting up mechanical disc brakes on a bicycle

In cases where one of the elements of the brake system fails, which makes it necessary to replace it, adjustments should be made. There are several sequential steps that will help you cope with this task efficiently and quickly:

  • We check all fixing elements (bolts). If one or more of them are not tightly screwed in, then they lose their functional purpose.
  • We unscrew (not completely, but only in order to loosen the fixation) the lock nut, after which we tighten the cable tension adjuster on the steering wheel. We bring the locknut to the previous position (fix). With the adjustment located on the caliper, we perform the same actions. Pull the cable by hand after loosening the lock. When the required tension is reached, screw the retainer back.
  • Dismantle the car.
  • As you know, one of the pads is motionless, and the other is vice versa. It is important to achieve an equal distance from the center of the caliper slot for proper rotor positioning. The fixed block is adjusted with a lock nut. By loosening it, you can move the position of the element as much as necessary. The movable block is adjusted by rotating the cable tension adjustment on the caliper. Having reached the desired position, we fix the non-static block.
  • We adjust the caliper. It must be aligned exactly in relation to the rotor.

That’s all you are done. It often happens that the rotor still rubs against the block when moving. This is not surprising, because it is not always possible to align the pads themselves exactly. Determine which one is not fixed correctly (just push the bike and see, this will be enough) and adjust the desired one as described in the instructions above. But sometimes the cause of friction is rotor deformation. To do this, it must be aligned. If the flaws are too serious, it is better to replace.

Adjusting hydraulic disc brakes

Hydraulic bike brakes are positioned as self-adjusting, requiring no intervention or adjustment. But you still need to set them up from time to time. For example, if you hear strange creaks or rustles during operation, or the factory settings are initially incorrectly set. The following few steps will help you quickly and efficiently set up your hydraulic disc brakes:

  • The bolts fixing the caliper on the adapter must be loosened.
  • Squeeze the brake lever and fix it in this position (if there is no assistant, use the materials at hand: electrical tape, fishing line, wire).
  • We carry out a visual inspection. As with a mechanical system, the rotor should be positioned clearly in the middle of the caliper slot, with pads equidistant from it. If the rotor is not positioned correctly, align it by pressing in the direction where the unevenness is noticed. This will contribute to an even distribution of liquid and fixation in the desired position of the pads and rotor.
  • At this point, the adjustment can be considered complete, and you just have to fix the mounting bolts and return the handle to its original position.
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As with mechanics, hydraulics also have a rotor that performs the same function. Sometimes it can give in to deformation. But this can be eliminated by determining the place of the bend and bending it in the opposite direction. Then the shuffling sounds when driving will stop.

The main differences between hydraulic and mechanical disc brakes

The main difference between the hydraulic and mechanical types is the principle of transferring the force exerted on the handle to activate them. So, if a cable serves as a conductor of the pressure force in mechanics, then in hydraulics it is a liquid. Both brake and mineral oil (depending on the manufacturer) can be used as a fluid. Both of them are good in their own way, and their effect differs from each other to a small extent. The photo shows a schematic representation of the device of the hydraulic type of disc brakes.

Photo: the main elements of the hydraulic system of disc brakes

It is possible to fix problems on a bicycle, even on your own, without proper experience and training. All you need to do is follow the instructions above. You should not rush through the setup, as this is a delicate process, and everything will work out for you!

Removing the brakes

  • We open the brakes by pulling the cable jacket out of the holder under force.
  • Unscrew the screw fastening to the frame.
  • Removing the brakes.
  • We unscrew the pads fixing screw, if work with pads is required.

It is very important not to lose the correct sequence of washers in the last step. They come in pairs. convex and concave. Further adjustment depends on their installation.

First steps in repair and adjustment business

As always, start simple first. In this case. from the repair of the simplest brake system. rim. V-breaks are not famous for their ingenuity. A device as simple as two or two. What is the structure of this mechanical brake system? There are levers that are mounted on the steering wheel. There are tubes (it is correct to call them “shirts”), inside which an iron cable fidgets. Two clips and pads. Everything is nothing more. That is why there are only three provisions for which it is worth adjusting the V-break.

Adjusting the position and inclination of the shoe

After loosening or completely unscrewing the pad fixing screws, they can be moved in any direction.

This adjustment should be done without removing the wheels in order to clearly position the shoe. So, how should the block stand:

  • The shoe should be at the level of the rim, not going beyond it by a millimeter.
  • When checking for clearance from either side, the block must be in both the braking position and in the open position parallel to the rim.
  • When scrolling the wheel, the block must be pressed exactly along the rotation vector. deviation from it will damage the brakes.

After installing the pads in accordance with these conditions, the screws are tightened, the brakes are checked.

Renewal and replacement of pads

The most common service is replacing or renewing a bicycle brake pad.

Updates are usually sufficient after long-term storage. The surface of the rim and pads is degreased, and, depending on the remaining thickness of the rubber, its top layer is removed, as it “dubs” and from frost during storage, as well as from heating during active braking.

Less often, replacing the shoe is done. After unscrewing the screw, the old shoe is pry off and removed, and a new one is installed in its place. Here, accuracy is required when choosing, since there is no single standard, and the groove for the screw may not fit, and the shoe itself on the site may not lie. Fortunately, any sizing problem is dealt with with a sharp knife. In the case of a cartridge shoe, undercutting probably won’t help, but such cases are quite rare.

Tension adjustment

The distance from the shoe to the rim is adjusted through the tension of the cable. There is a screw for this, which is located on the brake lever. When it rotates, the pads, respectively, approach (counterclockwise) and move away (clockwise) from each other and from the rim.

If the adjustment of the screw is not sufficient, you will need to shorten or lengthen the cable. This is done on the brakes themselves. Opposite the shirt, on the opposite element, the cable is clamped with a lock, which is unscrewed with a hexagon. To do this, unscrew the retainer bolt, tighten or loosen the cable, screw the retainer back. The excess length of the cable can be cut, although many leave it twisted in case of breaks, although practice shows that such “reserves” do not help anyone.

Adjusting the rim brakes

Note: it is important to observe three main rules:

  • the pads should be parallel to the rim;
  • the gap between the rim and the block should not be more or less than 1 mm;
  • the pads should be symmetrical with respect to each other.

How to achieve these guidelines when adjusting rim brakes on a bicycle:

  • You need to find a hex nut. it fixes the pads. To loosen it and set the brake pads in the desired position, you need to press the brake lever and watch how the shoe touches the rim. By releasing the brake lever, the shoe can be set to the desired position. it moves up, down and at an angle.
  • The distance between the block and the rim of the wheel should not be more than 1 mm, although in some models of bicycles there are also 2-3 mm. exact information about a specific vehicle can be obtained either from the instructions for it, or on the Internet for technical characteristics. It should be for Honor that the wheel should be braked even with the smallest pressure on the brake lever. That is, if the wheel stops only when the brake lever is fully pressed “all the way”, then this is incorrect.

After carrying out all the specified work, it is imperative to check the operation of the brake system. First, this is done at idle speed. lift the front wheel up, spin it up and press the handle sharply, then do the same with the rear wheel. The next step is to check the operation of the brake system “in action”. get on the bike and ride 3-5 meters, braking sharply. If the bike stops even when the brake lever is pressed slightly, then the system has been serviced correctly.

Varieties and models of bicycle brakes

Adjusting the brakes on a bicycle can vary. In each situation, it is worth looking at the type of braking system. Most often, cheap bicycles are equipped with mechanical rim brakes, or, as they are also called, V-brakes.

Mechanical disc brakes

Everything is on the rise. And as you might guess, disc brakes are second in the list of systems of this type. What kind of changes can you see here? All the same levers, the same metal cables. Only the brake itself has been changed. The disc is now bolted to the bicycle wheel. Nearby are two clamps with pads. Yes, the disc wheel is in direct contact with the clamps.

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This innovation increases grip. Now, if you hold down the lever, the wheel will not spin. This is why disc brakes are used on sport bikes. With it, the braking distance is halved. And this is what needs to be achieved. Adjusting disc brakes on a bicycle is different from the technique of adjusting rim brakes. So it can be tricky to drive V-breaks all your life and then switch to disc brakes. After all, you will have to learn to configure this system again.

How to pull

Proceed in the reverse order of loosening the cable and you will get the desired result.

Setting up disc brakes

As a rule, adjustment of disc brakes consists in periodically tightening the cable. But often you have to replace the pads, however, on disc brakes they wear out longer than on rim brakes. First you need to find out which specific disc brakes are installed on the bike. brake pad adjustments for hydraulic and mechanical systems will differ.

Experts recommend taking note of the following points:

  • If there are hydraulic disc brakes on the bike, then replacing the pads may not be necessary. they are able to do it on their own. But there is one caveat to Honor. if the hydraulic system is closed, then you will have to adjust the pads in manual mode. for this, special valves are provided.
  • If you have to adjust disc mechanical brakes, you will need to pull the cable according to the above instructions and check the location of the pads. the distance between them and the disc should be within 0.2-0.4 mm.
  • In order to adjust the pads with disc mechanical brakes, you need to use special bolts. by tightening them, you can see how the pad moves. You need to be especially careful when setting the distance between the pad and the disc. 0.3 mm is too small, it is easy to make a mistake.

After carrying out the work, be sure to check the operation of the brake system in action. ride your bike for a few meters and try to brake. If the cable was overtightened, or the pads are too close to the disc, then too sharp braking will occur. this is a “surprise” in which the cyclist begins to move forward, but without his vehicle. Therefore, during a test drive, you need to be extremely careful and careful, if necessary, the disc brake system is adjusted again taking into account previous errors.

Adjusting hydraulic disc brakes on a bicycle with your own hands

The hydraulics are called self-adjusting. Where this status came from is unclear. The centering of the pads relative to the disc can also get lost here. And the shuffling of the rotor itself is one of the first complaints from owners of even new bikes.

In general, setting up hydraulic disc brakes on a bicycle is easier than using cable brakes. But drawing a parallel between adjusting the brake mechanism and cleaning the chain, we can say that working with the brakes is still more difficult than washing the chain at home.

The main goal is the same: to center the caliper, check if the pads are equidistant from the disc, adjust the handle stroke, if its design allows it. It is necessary to carry out the adjustment step by step:

  • Loosen the bolts securing the caliper to the adapter.
  • Clamp the brake lever to the stop and fix it in this position using the available means (wire, electrical tape.).
  • Check the position of the rotor. It should be located exactly in the center of the caliper slot. If the disc is bent, then the pads are not equidistant from it. The required position of the friction linings and the rotor can be achieved by bending the disc in the direction opposite to the observed bending. Fluid will flow from one piston to another and the pads will align.
  • Tighten the caliper mounting bolts alternately. Use the 1/4 turn tightening technique found in the Mechanics Set-up Technique.
  • Adjust the position of the handle using the screw on its body.

Adjusting the rim brakes

Mountain bikes use a v-brake braking system. by its example, we will consider the principles of tuning, as it is also available on other bicycles with rim brakes. The difference can only consist in a different arrangement of bolts and screws that will need to be tightened / tightened.

How To. Adjust Mechanical Disc Brakes | Halfords UK

Note: it is important to observe three main rules:

  • the pads should be parallel to the rim;
  • the gap between the rim and the block should not be more or less than 1 mm;
  • the pads should be symmetrical with respect to each other.

How to achieve these guidelines when adjusting rim brakes on a bicycle:

  • You need to find a hex nut. it fixes the pads. To loosen it and set the brake pads in the desired position, you need to press the brake lever and watch how the shoe touches the rim. By releasing the brake lever, the shoe can be set to the desired position. it moves up, down and at an angle.
  • The distance between the block and the rim of the wheel should not be more than 1 mm, although in some models of bicycles there are also 2-3 mm. exact information about a specific vehicle can be obtained either from the instructions for it, or on the Internet for technical characteristics. It should be for Honor that the wheel should be braked even with the smallest pressure on the brake lever. That is, if the wheel stops only when the brake lever is fully pressed “all the way”, then this is incorrect.

After carrying out all the specified work, it is imperative to check the operation of the brake system. First, this is done at idle speed. lift the front wheel up, spin it up and press the handle sharply, then do the same with the rear wheel. The next step is to check the operation of the brake system “in action”. get on the bike and ride 3-5 meters, braking sharply. If the bike stops even when the brake lever is pressed slightly, then the system has been serviced correctly.

It is possible to fix problems on a bicycle, even on your own, without proper experience and training. All you need to do is follow the instructions above. You should not rush through the setup, as this is a delicate process, and everything will work out for you!

Disc Brake Hacks For Road Bikes | Road Bike Maintenance

Device and principle of operation

The difference between the principles of operation of disc and mechanical brakes is insignificant. But, there are still differences in their device. Let’s consider step by step, starting with the mechanical type, which is arranged as follows:

  • Brake handle. It is fixed on the steering wheel, for the convenience of squeezing, with a clamp. It is designed to transfer force to the brake pads, bringing them into action.
  • Cable adjuster with lock nut. The first element serves as a regulating device for limiting the cable tension. The second is for fixing the regulator itself.
  • Brake lever adjuster designed to determine a comfortable distance to the handlebars.
  • Cable jacket. protecting it from dirt, mechanical damage.
  • To fix the cable, a clamp in the form of a bolt is used, with the possibility of adjustment
  • The mechanism that allows the cable to be set in motion, when pressed on it, is called a caliper. Its action is not possible without brake pads. rubber or metal fragments that ensure a tight clamping of the disc.
  • Directly disc (rotor). It locks onto the wheel hub.

Figures 1 and 2 show schematically all of the above details.

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Figure: Bicycle brakes

Figure: appearance of the brake lever with main elements

Checking the readiness of the system for adjustment

  • The adapter to which the caliper is attached is well secured to the frame or fork (bolts are tight).
  • The already tested rotor is securely fixed with screws on the hub.
  • The wheel is mounted on the bike, the eccentric / nuts are tightened.
  • The lamb for adjusting the cable tension is unscrewed no more than 1.5 turns (located next to the handle or caliper).
  • The cable is fixed on the movable arm of the machine.

How to release the disc brake on a bicycle

It is enough to screw in the cable tension drum a certain number of revolutions. If its stroke is not enough, unscrew the nut securing the cable to the caliper and loosen its tension. Option “so-so”. unscrew the handle adjustment bolt.

Don’t forget about the fixed shoe. Moving away the movable friction pad with a cable, move the static one, so that symmetry with respect to the rotor is maintained.

Setting and adjusting brakes on a bicycle. disc and rim, mechanical and hydraulic.

Before moving on to the main question of how to adjust the brakes on a bicycle, we will single out several types of them: disc, hydraulic, rim. Thanks to the large assortment on the market, every cyclist will be able to choose exactly what they like best. Any of the options presented equally fulfill the tasks assigned to them, namely, knocking down high speed. The difference between them is only in the contact surface. If discs are bought for damping high speeds, then for other types they buy brakes that are in direct contact with the rim itself. These braking elements can be of different sizes, on which the contact area itself depends. As a rule, the larger it is, the better the wheel speed reduction is achieved.

The main features of disc brakes:

Adjust disc brakes as follows:

  • check whether the cable responsible for the operation of the disc brake is in place, because sometimes it may be out of place and this is the reason for a difficult ride;
  • see if the wheel is correctly placed in the frame itself;
  • tighten all the bolts securing the brake to the rear or front fork;
  • check the tightening of the screws on the wheel hub;
  • set up movable and static pads;
  • we loosen the bolts holding the brake machine with pads;
  • squeeze the brake handle (if you don’t have someone to help, then fix the handle on the handlebars with a rope);
  • after that, the pads should fit under the disc;
  • tighten the screws.

Adjusting and adjusting hydraulic brakes on a bicycle.

You can use a sheet of white paper to adjust the disc brakes. It requires you to put it behind the disc and this will make it possible to adjust the gap between the rubber main pad and the disc itself. As a tool, you can take 4 mm and 5 mm hexagons, a ruler, a Phillips screwdriver. We do all the initial steps, as shown in the example with mechanical disc brakes, and turn the screws until you feel that they no longer lend themselves to clamping. On all bicycles with this type of braking system, the discs are slightly bent and friction will be heard while riding. This can be avoided with an adjustable wrench, that is, they need to slightly bend the base of the disc in order to achieve absolute evenness. But after riding the bike for a long time, they deform again. We check the location of the adapter itself and tighten the bolts again. If the machine itself is slightly offset to the side, then it is necessary to loosen them and substitute a white sheet of paper. We estimate the gap between the pads and the disc and tighten the bolts back.

How to bleed hydraulic brakes on a bicycle. video.

  • pumping the disc brake system begins with untwisting the master cylinder, and after installing it in a horizontal position;
  • remove the cover from the cylinder itself (in most cases, screws with cross-shaped grooves are used for fastening);
  • we run the brake fluid on a mineral basis through the system;
  • make sure there are no air balls;
  • we install the device with liquid in the inlet nipple (exclude it from getting on the paint of the bicycle, as the composition may contain components that corrode it);

Adjusting mechanical disc brakes on a bicycle.

Disc brakes are becoming popular today, and the craze for them began about 4 years ago. The point is not at all about reliability, but about the fact that their presence on the bike gives the impression of a racing motorcycle or emphasizes the coolness of the owner of such a bike.

Adjusting and adjusting rim brakes v brake on a bicycle.

In the overwhelming majority of cases, v brake is installed on budget bicycles, walking and children’s bicycles. These are rim brakes with acceptable power and modulation. no wheel locks occur. Before starting work, you must provide yourself with the following tools: a 5 mm and 3 mm hexagon, a screwdriver, and pliers.

  • unfasten the brakes themselves;
  • the main requirement is to put the wheel in a level position;
  • return everything to its original position;
  • tighten the cable with a hexagon and pliers;
  • if the handle stroke is large, then it is required to tighten the cable even more and strengthen the brakes themselves;
  • check the speed of the wheel. the course must be free. It happens when thorns are heard, then in this case it is worth adjusting the spokes themselves;
  • if one brake surface v brake is closer to the rim than the other, take a screwdriver and release or tighten the forcing shoe screws.

Above, brief instructions were presented for those who like to consolidate their knowledge not only with the help of video, but also in text format. Bicycle brakes, types, settings. are present in this article. Each brake system is accompanied by an introductory instruction, especially complex types. the hydraulic version. For them, there are restrictions in the selection of fluid and if you do not follow the advice, then neglect and pouring anything in will lead to injury and nervous stress. If you do not want to visit a traumatologist, follow the rules. Any type of brake will wear out over time and must be replaced. Practice shows that disk modifications are less vulnerable, which can last a long time. If they are incorrectly adjusted, the clamping index between the front and rear brakes will be different. Some will say that the reason is in the length of the cable, since the front part is half the length of the back. If the cable is not completely closed, then try to lubricate it. The fact is that inside the rubber hose there is a steel tube, which is responsible for the smooth and free sliding of the cable. Over time, it rusts, and this leads to ruptures and unweaving, and in order to avoid such a nuance, it is advisable to apply a few drops of machine oil or grease to it.