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#1
Hello,

I am currently building a touring bike from a mid/ late 90's steel mountain bike frame (see avatar). Everything has been going pretty well, apart from a problem I ran into last night with incompatible v-brakes.

I purchased 2 sets of Shimano XT V brakes- the front ones went on fine, but I found that when I tried to install the rear brakes the small holes into which you insert the little pin in order to change tension are actually on the OUTSIDE of the pivot point (see picture attached.)

As far as I know- and as far as anyone from Chain Reaction Cycles knows, there are no v-brakes available that have their pins on the outside. The original brakes on this bike were cantilever and I still have them, which is a possibility to use I guess, but I was hoping to use XT v's.

Does anyone have any suggestions as far as the availability of brakes that will fit the frame? I am tempted to rig something up with a washer and a few holes, which will work, but aesthetically I'm trying to keep it stock. She's so close to being finished and this is a bit of a hurdle.


Thanks if you can help- I appreciate it.
Kind Regards
Ben
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#2
Hello Ben,
Welcome to the forum

As far as the conversion the only thing I have found is this which I do hope puts a light on what you would like to do. http://www.sheldonbrown.com/cantilever-geometry.html

By the way nice bike! Seat looks really cool.
Good maintenance to your Bike, can make it like the wheels are, true and smooth!
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#3
Have you tried to put the back one on the front and the front one on the back? They may have sent you a wrong set it does happen. What came on your bike when you got it? And why do you want V brakes. I like cantilever brakes the best for touring. Nice bike anyway love the color on it.
My dad always told me a Sledge a matic can fix any thing.
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#4
Thanks Bill,

I might try giving the old cantilevers a going-over with the steel wool and see how well they come up- I think mechanically they're still fine, otherwise I may just grab a new set of cantilevers.

My next question then would be- (1)'Are all cantilever brakes set up to have the tension pin on the outside like that? Is that how they work?'

I must admit I've never used them, and if the old ones end up being no good I might try to get some black ones to match the xt's on the front. Then- (2) 'Is it just a matter of using the same gear cables as I have already purchased and just cutting a short section of cable for the second side of the brake? Hard to explain, but most of them end up looking like a 'y' shape- one is the long piece and the other is a shorter one'.

Thanks for the comments, yes she's going to be nice when finished- it's been a lot of planning and purchasing to get this far. Going to put some Surly Nice Racks on it soon ; )

Cheers
Ben


Welcome to the forum

As far as the conversion the only thing I have found is this which I do hope puts a light on what you would like to do. http://www.sheldonbrown.com/cantilever-geometry.html

By the way nice bike! Seat looks really cool.
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#5
On your first question the answer is no. DiaCompe had a different approach. In stead of me requoting sheldon's article this will answer what you need to know.

As far as cables Dave, Joe, Cycler, or Alex said something about their being different cable types. I will look into that and see if I can find one for you. Until then here is a little more reading for ya lol.

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/canti-trad.html
Good maintenance to your Bike, can make it like the wheels are, true and smooth!
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#6
Don't use shifter cables for brakes! It is thinner and not made to withstand the force you can apply when braking! Also: Don't use shifter cable housing for brake cables, it will burst open at the most inconvenient time, e.g. when you are braking hard to not be run over by a truck.
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#7
I believe some V-brakes have their own backing plate that holds the spring and do not use the holes at all. But I can't give you any specifics, just think I've seen them that way.

If you do use cantilevers, please note the following. The brake levers must suit the kind of brake at the wheel. Levers for V-brake and levers for cantis are not the same. However, there are levers you can buy that are made to work with both, there is a small piece in the lever you set to match the brake type you have. If you mix V-brakes and cantis you would either need levers like this so you can set each lever correctly, mix two different levers, or get an adapter that goes on the cable to correct for one of the mismatched levers-brakes.

Not all cantis are made to work with the holes on the outside like that. Check before you buy. Or give you old ones a quick sand and black spray paint job to get the color you want. There's probably nothing wrong with them that new pads won't fix.
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