Installing disc brakes on a bicycle instead of rim brakes

Varieties of rim brakes

Rim brakes are divided into several types:

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  • tick-borne;
  • cantilevers;
  • V-brake (vector mechanical);
  • hydraulically driven.

Caliper brakes. previously popular modifications, are now rare on the market. They are a classic model of rim brakes with attachment to the fork or stays of the bicycle frame. Design features and operating principle:

  • Consist of a handle, a drive cable, two movable bows and brake pads.
  • The handle is attached to the handlebars of the bicycle, a cable is pulled from it and fixed on the clamping side of the arches. The body itself is attached strictly above the wheel, pads are screwed to the lower mounts of the arcs.
  • Through the cable, the force is directly transmitted to the clamping part of the arcs, due to which they are compressed, and the pads are in contact with the rim.
  • Responsible for unclamping is an elastic metal insert or spring built between the levers.

The levers have a single axis of rotation and move towards each other like pliers pincers. Hence the name. tick-borne. Advantages. ease of installation, simple setup. Cons. weak braking force, low modulation, high abrasion of the pads, require frequent debugging. Fits on road racing bikes and optionally as a front rim brake on road models.

Cantilevers belong to the second type of disappearing brakes. The principle of their work is to extend the levers under the action of a taut leash. The principle of operation of the cantilever brake:

  • Through the main cable, the force is transmitted to the jumper.
  • The cable pulls the jumper up, the leash attached to it is pulled.
  • The leash connects both levers, which are rigidly attached to the frame.
  • Due to the convergence of the levers, the pads approach the rim.

The cantilevers are dirt resistant, will not bump the tire and are easy to install. Significant disadvantages include:

  • decrease in braking force as the leash is pulled;
  • you need to create a high effort to stop the bike completely;
  • difficulty of adjustment.

In justification of the latter, it should be noted that the position of the pads can be adjusted within wide limits.

V-brake is a common type of rim brake on high-speed bicycles. Compared to cantilevers, it has a higher precision and longer shoe longevity. They are also easy to remove and repair yourself.

The vectors are partially similar in design to cantilevers: the front brake levers are bolted to the fork, the rear brake levers are attached to the upper stays. The legs are connected to each other by a pulling cable. The drive cable is brought to one side, but due to the straight shape of the “tie” forces are equally transmitted to both levers.

Hydraulic bicycle rim brakes are a more advanced mechanical design. The drive system consists of a control cylinder, a hydraulic line and power cylinders. The forces from the handle are transmitted to the master cylinder, which, through the oil, acts on the power cylinders. Those, in turn, move the pads towards each other.

Advantages. high compression force and efficiency, excellent modulation. Disadvantages. deterioration of work with a blockage of the hydraulic line, complex repairs. Used a similar type of brakes for freeride and trial.

Rim-type brakes have low brake pad travel, which means they wear less during operation. A significant disadvantage of this approach is the inability to be used on wheels, even with minor rim curvatures. Sensitive brakes will rub against the wheel on the fly, causing reduced speed and increased pad wear.

How to install and adjust the V-brake yourself

  • Attach the levers to the bike frame.
  • Insert the drive cable into the brake lever.
  • Install the handle on the steering wheel, insert the cable into the grooves on the frame (if any).
  • Connect the cable with the levers and put the spring.

After installation, you will definitely need to adjust the brakes.

The accuracy of the mechanism depends largely on its settings. So, even an expensive system will not work well without proper adjustment, and conversely, a mid-range V-brake can outperform a disc brake in terms of efficiency. What needs to be done to adjust the brakes?

Adjust the cable tension. After adjusting, the brake should instantly respond to the squeeze of the handle and rebound when it is released. If the pads do not move away from the rims, this indicates insufficient tension. On the overtightened cable, the handle will be hard to press, and the sheath may burst.

The tension is adjusted with a bolt on the side of the levers. The setup looks like this:

  • Reset Springs.
  • Loosen the cable fixing bolt.
  • Adjust the tension so that in the fully clamped position, the distance from the handle to the handlebar corresponds to the thickness of the finger.

If damage is noticed on the cable sheath, it is recommended to immediately install a new set.

Clearance adjustment. The optimal distance is 2. 3 mm from the edge of the pad to the rim. Determination of brake pad wear: cannot be used when the diverter grooves are completely erased (the whole surface is flat).

How do I fit new pads? The location relative to the rim affects the size of the contact area of ​​the pads with it, the braking force and the life of the material. For brake pads with soft rubber surfaces, install them with the leading edge closer to the rim. Brake pads made of rigid material are placed strictly parallel to the surface of rotation of the wheel.

If your bike has cartridge pads, you only need to change the pads. Their position is set with a cotter pin; before removing the old surface, it is removed from the body. Similarly, in the reverse order, insert a new pad and fix it with a cotter pin.

Adjustment of the position and displacement of the shoe housings are carried out by means of a bolt and washers. For accurate fixation, you need to squeeze the brake and set the position of the pads strictly on the surface of the rim.

The last step will be to test the operation of the system in practice, that is, in real driving conditions. As a rule, the V-brake setting is obtained immediately. However, if braking is delayed or the handle does not fully return to its original position, the brakes must be readjusted.

How to adjust the brakes on your bike yourself?

The question of how to adjust the brakes on a bicycle is very rarely posed to the owners of modern bicycle bikes, since the quality of modern braking systems is so high that the settings installed at the factory during the production process do not go astray for years. However, in any case, the cyclist needs to know the intricacies of their settings and carry out preventive maintenance at least once a season. This will allow you to extend the life of your bike and protect you from possible accidents that may happen to you on the road.

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How to set up rim brakes on a bike

The braking system is one of the most important technical components of a bicycle. The safety of both the cyclist and other road users directly depends on its condition. Good brakes are essential in any situation, from riding in parks to tough cycling.

In the modern classical sense, a bicycle brake is a pressure mechanism that acts on the wheel rim. In fact, there are several types of brakes, however v-brake (rim) is the most common option on bicycles of various classes.

Adjusting the position of the pads

“Fasten” the brake by squeezing the levers and placing the cable guide (C) in the stop (D). Loosen the block fixing bolt (K) with a hexagon. We press the lever with the block to the rim and set the block so that it:

  • adhered to the rim with the entire surface
  • did not touch the tire
  • located parallel to the rim

In this position, the block must be fixed by tightening the bolt. When tightening the bolt, the block may move and must be corrected. It will be easier if you find an assistant who will grip and hold the brake lever while you tighten the bolt.

If your brakes squeal, try the following.

Before tightening the bolt, place a folded sheet of paper under the rear (in the direction of travel) of the shoe, then tighten the bolt. So the pads will be smoother to press against the rim when braking (first by the front, then by the rear) and will not “creak”.

We do similar operations with the second block.

Adjusting the rim brakes

You can learn how to set up rim brakes on a bicycle by carefully studying the instructions for their design. In addition, information on this topic can be found in abundance on cycling websites. Usually, the process of adjusting the rim brakes does not cause absolutely no problems even for a novice bike rider. The fact is that the main operation for servicing the brakes of such a system is to replace the brake pads, so all the subtleties here will consist in the correct operation of the mechanisms holding them.

It is worth noting that, in general, most modern bicycles use a V-Brake type of brake pad mount. It is characterized by the presence of separate levers in their design, made in the form of the letter V. They are connected by a cable held by a jacket. It is about the maintenance of this type of brake system that we will tell.

In order to carry out maintenance of the rim brake, you must:

  • Open the brake, and using force remove the cable jacket from the mount.
  • Unscrew the screw securing it to the frame.
  • Remove the brake mechanism.
  • To work with pads, unscrew the pads fixing screw.

At the same time, be careful not to forget the correct sequence for installing the washers. The fact is that they are mounted in pairs. concave and convex. The correctness of the adjustment of the entire brake system depends on how correctly they are installed.

Finished brake cartridges must match the brakes of the bike exactly

Since the most common operation is brake pad replacement, let’s take a look at it. To do this, you will need to perform all the operations listed above and pry on the old block to remove it. A new one is installed in the vacant place. When performing this work, you must be careful, since you will have to adjust the brake shoe in place.

Attention! In the event that you install ready-made brake cartridges, you will have to carefully ensure that such cartridges exactly fit these brakes.

In addition to replacing the brake pads, they are adjusted on the spot, and the level of the cable tension is also controlled. For this, the screw located on the brake lever is tightened to the desired state. As a result of this clockwise rotation, the brake pads move away from each other.

In addition, the tilt of the brake shoe is also adjusted by loosening the fixing screw. If you have recently purchased a bicycle and it is difficult for you to follow the procedures described on your own, then in order to learn how to adjust the brakes on a bicycle, you should watch a video on this topic.

If new pads are installed on the bike, then the main thing is to put on the spacers and washers in the correct sequence.

How to set up rim brakes

Vibrators do not lose popularity. Ease of maintenance, cheap consumables and unpretentious operation. an excellent option for those who use the bike primarily for moving, without extreme and overloading.

The principle of operation is simple. when pressed, the brake lever pulls the cable (G), which moves the brake levers (I), pressing the pads (J) attached to them against the wheel rim. When the handle is released, the levers return to their original position, installed on them by springs. In this article, we will analyze how to set up and adjust rim brakes:

Checking the condition of the brakes

First of all, we “unfasten” the brake, as shown in the photo.

Check how the cable (G) moves in the shirt (A) by pressing and releasing the brake lever and pulling the cable back with your finger. the movement should be free, without delay. If the cable pulls hard, it may be damaged, the shirt or cable guide (C), or dirt has accumulated inside the jacket or cable guide. They must be removed and cleaned or replaced.

Check the condition of the pads (J). They should show dirt drainage grooves (the block should not be smooth). Worn pads without grooves must be replaced. Check that the pads are complete with washers and that they are correctly installed.

Observe the order of the washers when installing new pads.

The brake levers (I) must swing freely in their seats and spring apart after being compressed. If the movement is difficult, the brake during operation may get stuck in the closed position and rub the pad on the rim. In this case, you can remove the levers from the seats, clean and lubricate the contact points and reinstall.

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When installing, make sure that the protruding pin on the arm fits into the hole in the frame, and that the hole on the left and right arm is the same.

Finishing touches

Cut the cable and install the cable blank. Insert the end of the cable into the brake so that it does not stick out.

With the help of these instructions you will be able to adjust most of the V-Brakes. If you have your own ways to configure this type of brakes, we will be happy to read about them in the comments below.

V-brake brakes

V-brakes are applied in the same way as cantilever brakes. The brake cable is routed from the side to the top of the brake arm. The brake lever compresses both parts of the brake with cartridge brake pads. This system of parallel pad pressing allows for efficient braking. In addition, the cartridge brake pads can be easily changed using a conventional hex wrench. At the moment, this type of brake is the most common. It is used on almost all types of bicycles. For instance:

Since V-brakes are the most common type of rim brakes, it is worth considering their advantages and disadvantages separately.

Mechanical disc brakes

Mechanical disc brakes are usually installed on mountain bikes (Forward Next 2.0 disc, Forward Agris Lady 27.5 2.0 disc, etc.) and touring bikes (Forward Yukon 2.0 disc), less often on city bikes (for example, Forward Tracer 2.0 disc ).

Installing the tension adjuster

Pull the lever firmly to check the cable clamping bolt and install it in the housing. Set the shoe clearance on the rim by feeling on the lever. Usually the front brake setting is duplicated for the same feel as the rear.

If the cable adjustment is too tight, the braking force will not be effective. Fitting too tight will result in a loss of braking force. Move the tension adjuster to the brake lever inward to loosen the cable.

If the cable adjustment is too loose, turn the tension adjuster out of the lever to remove the slack.

How to install brakes on a bike

Bicycle brakes

Brakes for a bicycle, like for any other vehicle, are an indispensable element necessary to control the bicycle and ensure safety. The following types are distinguished:

Drum brakes.
2. Rim brakes.
3. Disc brakes.

Which type of brakes should you choose? To answer this question, it is worth understanding the features of each type of brakes.

Installing the caliper

V-BRAKES attach to the same frame fittings as the cantilever brake. There should be a little grease on the outside of this surface so that they can run smoothly. The recommended treatment for the fastening bolt is with a medium consistency thread lock. Apply thread lock inside the threads of the fitting.

The brake calipers have a spring that fits into one of three possible frame / fork mountings. The top-most fitting provides a high spring tension. As a rule, choose the middle hole, also make sure that both sides are symmetrical and are in the same middle hole.

Mounting bolts are screwed to each side. Typical torque for mounting bolts is 8 Nm.

Installing the cable

The brake cable housing will stop inside the arc. The rod (arc) holds the jacket, and the cable passes through it to another bracket.

When the shirt is fully secured in the bow and the bow is secured and seated in the joint, pull the levers towards the rim. Use a fourth hand such as BT-2. Do not grip the tool forcefully, just tighten the entire system. Secure the cable in the clamping bolt.

V-brake squeak

There can be several reasons for squeaking during braking:

  • the material used for the production of pads: the squeak can be the stronger, the harder it is;
  • rim creaks. This means one of two things. the surface to which the pads are pressed is dirty, or the wear has become critical, requiring immediate replacement of the part;
  • the pads are not positioned correctly in relation to the rim, i.e. are (sometimes visible) skewed. They are correctly installed when parallel to the rim and adhere to it over the entire surface;
  • the condition of the pads, i.e. if they are damp. Therefore, in bad weather, the creak is stronger than in dry weather;
  • there is no lubricant for the brakes. In this case, there is a creak even in the removed wheel, which means the need to lubricate the cable and the brake mechanism. To do this, use the WD-40 tool.

How to get rid of squeaky brakes?

Disc brakes and their differences from rim brakes

They are fixed on the left side of the wheel hub close to the spokes. The effectiveness of braking is determined by the density of the pads against the disc. But, definitely, in comparison with rim brakes, the efficiency is higher, since they are made of high-quality abrasive material, which is incompatible with rim pads, leading to significant deformation of the rims during operation. The steel disc does not wear out during friction, so it can be used for many years.

How To Convert To Disc Brakes From V-Brakes On Mountain Bike

Their difference from rims is that the force from the brake lever is transmitted to the machine not by a cable, but by means of a hydraulic line, inside which there is a special fluid.

Thanks to this design, braking is performed more clearly, there is no overheating at long distances, constant tuning is not needed, although the need for it sometimes arises. Requires, for example, adjustment in the event of an abnormal sound.

Installing a disc brake instead of a v-brake

How disc brakes squeak depends on the condition of the pads?

There is a squeak of disc brakes on a bicycle when the pads are in an unsatisfactory condition.

installing, disc, brakes, bicycle

To prevent this, both rear and front brakes must be kept clean. And especially the rotor. It is important both its condition and the type of steel from which the rotor is made: the softer the material, the less squeak.

The strongest pressure is provided by metallized pads, which are more rigid. They grab “tightly” if you brake abruptly, emitting not a creak, but a squeak. Therefore, this brake is recommended for mountain tourism and cross-country travel.

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The structure of the pads made of natural material (“Organic”) resembles an abrasive, so the rotor wear out quickly, which is the main disadvantage. To avoid troubles on the road, the pads need to be changed often.

Synthetic pads, which “grip” worse, have less rotor wear and longer service life. Another common cause of brake squeak when braking is when pads are not parallel to the discs.

Bleeding the brakes

Anyone who has opened the hydraulic line at least once or shortened it knows how much air accumulates in it. It must be removed from the system, for which it is important to know how the brakes are pumped on a bicycle

To transmit the force required to press the pads against the rotor, mineral oil or an incompressible fluid is used in the hydraulic lines. Air, on the other hand, is distinguished by the fact that it is compressed, therefore, it should not be in the system. Otherwise, energy will be spent on compressing it, and not on pressing the pads.

This can be prevented in a ridiculously simple way. Fill the syringe halfway with brake fluid by connecting the caliper adapters and hose. Like a nurse, air is slowly squeezed out of the syringe by connecting it to the fitting (if the brake is Avid) or, first, to the drain valve (Hayes brake) by putting a 6 mm wrench, and start pumping. For Avid, you need to squeeze the syringe tube with the red clip provided in the kit, for Hayes. keep the valve closed.

The syringe plunger is slowly pulled back, creating a vacuum, tapping it lightly to degass the brake fluid, i.e. free from gases dissolved in it.

Next, they are engaged in the brake handle. The adapter provided by the manufacturer is connected to the syringe with the collected brake fluid and through the corresponding adapters to the drainage hole. For Magura / Shimano systems, it is done a little differently: they open access to the reservoir with brake fluid.

To let all the air out, the drain must be at the top, which sometimes requires turning the brake levers or the bike on the rack. Shimano and Magura fit parallel to the ground.

So that the piston does not come out of the caliper, it is necessary to insert a special tool that comes with the kit into the gap that exists between the pads, or cardboard, folding it several times.

A container or syringe attached to the caliper is squeezed very carefully by slightly opening the drain valve with a special tool. Squeeze until the fluid reaches the brake lever. To “expel” air, gently knock on the handle, caliper and brake hose. When the fluid goes without air bubbles, press the brake several times by closing the valve on the caliper.

The brake lever should move up to about half of the free travel. If so, you can close the brake drain on the handle. For Magura / Shimano, the reservoir is closed with a lid, the brake lever is set to the standard position. It remains to remove the brake fluid drips with alcohol.

The procedure for adjusting the hydraulic brakes

Before starting the adjustment, make sure that the hose is in good condition. Then, they begin to tune it: they check the position of the rotor, which should be parallel to the pads. To put it in this position, you need to loosen the bolts with which the machine is fixed to the frame, squeeze the brake all the way so that it takes its proper place, tighten the bolts without releasing the handle.

If the rotor is installed correctly, but the brake does not work well, check the gap between it and the pads, which should be the same and minimal everywhere, but not allowing the pads to cling to the rotor. If it is found that one of the pads is closer to the other, the distance is set manually, having previously loosened the caliper.

How do hydraulic disc brakes work??

They function in the same way as mechanical brakes. They consist of a brake lever. located on the handlebars, from which the force applied by the cyclist is transmitted through the brake line to the caliper. The pressure of the fluid on the pads, presses them against the rotor, which causes the wheel to stop.

Caliper check

Before starting maintenance, remove the wheels to remove dirt from the brake machines. For these purposes, you can use an ordinary toothbrush. After cleaning the caliper, you need to remove the pads.

A return spring, screw or cotter pin can be installed between the blocks, thanks to which the parts are held in place. When there is not enough space to remove the pads, this is done by gently pressing with a special tool (supplied). As a last resort, a wide screwdriver will do to spread the pistons all the way into the caliper.

Having freed the pads, they are removed one by one using pliers, they are inspected for a leak in the piston area. If it was not possible to completely dilute the pistons, they are pressed on with a 10-11 key, without touching the pin located in the center. In order not to “destroy” the pads forever, neither oil nor grease should get on them.

To check that the pistons extend normally inside the caliper and return back, it is necessary to press the brake lever several times. If they move in the same way, at this stage it is advisable to lubricate them, then, again dilute to the maximum with a key, pressing into the caliper.

If this is not observed, a repair kit or replacement of the caliper will be required. The bulkhead operation of this part is not easy and can be difficult for a beginner.