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Cantilever Brake Installation and Adjustment

by Levi Bloom

Cantilever brakes are common on older mountain bikes (early 1990s) and modern-day cyclocross bikes. Here is how to install and adjust them:

1. Install brake arms.

Attach the brake arms to the mounting posts on the frame or fork legs using a 5mm Allen wrench.

Place the end of the spring in the center of the three small holes.

2. Attach cable.

Pull cable to anchor bolt. Notice the yoke and straddle cable.

Hold brake pads against rim, pull cable, then tighten anchor bolt.

3. Adjust brake pads.

Brake pads should be flush with rim.

Make sure the brake pads do not hang over the rim or hit the tire when they are applied.

4. Adjustment.

Final tuning adjustments can be made by changing the position of the yoke and/or straddle cable, or by using a small centering screw (spring adjuster).

 

The tools for this repair can be purchased at:

Performance Bike, REI, or eBay.

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