D50
Lv 6
D50 asked in SportsCycling · 2 months ago

What should I do to get brakes to return?

I'm having trouble getting linear-pull brakes to return to disengaged position. When the noodle is released, the arms flip back easily. But when positioned for use, it is slow and tends to drag on the rim. Should I grease the cable where it runs through the [Teflon?] noodle? Replace the cables with smoother finished ones? Advice please.

5 Answers

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  • 1 month ago

    I've found it's common, especially on cheap bikes, for the pivot posts to rust and bind. Remove the brake arms from the posts, clean them up with emery cloth, grease, and reassemble. If this doesn't do it, check the cable, housing, and noodle to see where the cable is binding. Failing all of that, maybe you can set the spring tension on the arms.

  • pmt853
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    A little light silicon based lubrication might well do it, but getting replacement cables may be quicker, not much more expensinve and give a longer-lasting solution.

  • 2 months ago

    It's all to do with maintenance: Clean and lube the cables and noodle, Make sure the brake arm spring area isn't clogged up with mud, If necessary remove, clean and grease the brake arm pivots.Adjust the little screws that pretension the springs; and expect to do it again in a few weeks

    Be careful with spray lubricants, a little goes a long way, and so will you if you get it on the brake surfaces. Oily brakes just don't work!

  • ?
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Has the bike ever sat outside?  If the answer is yes, by all means replace the cables & cable housings - front & rear brakes.  Unless you have all the proper tools & skills, I'd let a bike shop mechanic do it.  It's not super-expensive.  

    In fact...even sitting somewhere damp (like a garage) can cause the cables to corrode & rust inside the housings where you can't see.  New cables & housings (both brake & shift) should be performed every few years - depending on weather conditions in your area.     

    In-depth article from Park Tool on how to replace cables & housings. https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/brake-ho...    

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  • 2 months ago

    A better thing to try is loosen the cable then try squeezing it.  If the cable returns easily then it isn't a cable and housing issue. Next try lubricating the pivot points where the brakes mount to the frame. I personally like using WD-40 lithium grease spray. Depending on the brakes you may also have a fine adjust screw located near the pivot points. 

    Source(s): Motorized bicycle owner and builder.
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