Neat Road Brake Caliper Installation Tip

I thought I would present a little tech trick in our shop (and probably others) that keeps a road brake caliper from rotating on its anchor bolt when bumped slightly or installing wheels.  One of our guys told everyone about it last year and since then, we have had great success with it.

It is quite simple and makes great sense. Usually there is a small serrated washer or smooth alloy washer placed on the anchor bolt between the caliper and the frame for both correct positioning and the use of a ‘softer’ metal to grip the caliper to the anchor nut from the frame.  See below.

Washer is placed over the anchor bolt hereBefore you place this washer onto the anchor bolt, apply a small amount of grip assembly paste to the surface at the base of the anchor bolt, as shown below.Applying the grip assembly paste with an acid brush

A little more than necessary, for visual purposes.

Then, install the alloy washer and apply a little more grip assembly paste to the side of the washer facing the frame or fork, shown below.

Installing the alloy washer Rear brake with grip assembly paste applied

That will give the brake much more staying power without any ill side effects.  The paste also helps protect carbon frame surface mounting points.  No more will that little bump while moving or transporting your bike knock the caliper out of alignment, which will help performance longevity after tuning and avoid uneven brake pad wear.  Hope this helps your shop or your own bikes as well as it has ours.

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One article I am currently working on deserves a little preview while assembling all of the material.  It’s based on reducing weight on your bike for the least and most practical cost.  For instance, we carry Specialized tubes in our shop of both the regular and lightweight turbo pre-talc’d styles.  I knew that the rubber quality is slightly higher in the turbo tubes and that they weighed somewhere below the regular ones.  So I weighed them to see exactly what the weight savings was.  A regular tube weighs out at about 100g.  The lightweight tube costs about two dollars more, yet comes in at only about 70g.  So, for four dollars, you can save 60g on your bike.  This alone doesn’t do much (though the ride quality will improve slightly), but a few tricks like this will add up to a considerable savings.  I know of a lot of much more expensive proportions of dollars/weight savings that might make sense when you have exhausted some of these more ‘stealth’ weight saving options.  More tips like this to come in the article.

– SNC

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