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Cantis to V-brakes

carlstonecarlstone Posts: 602
edited January 2008 in MTB workshop & tech
Just posted this in road section, but realised it would be better in MTB, doh!

In a fit of Chrimble alcohol fueled ebaying, I bought myself a set of used xt v-brakes to replace my old xt cantis on my 16+ year old MTB/commuter. In the cold light of day and after receiving the brakes I now realise I also need a new cable set, new blocks and some other bits and pieces to fit them (about another £20 worth). I am not averse to a bit of tinkering (having just replaced my freehub and wheel bearings) so was wondering how easy it will be to do this job?

From looking at the Park site and Shimano diagrams it looks like my brake bosses need to have 3 holes in them to take the spring and pin from the V-brakes. Is my bike likely to have these or will I have to do some judicious drilling?

I bought the brakes to give me extra braking in the wet and access to better brake blocks that are easier to fit (as they are cartridge type and canti cartridge brakes are a sod to get hold of). Should I give it a go or put them back on ebay and carry on swearing and having a tantrum when replacing my canti blocks every 3 months .




  • SplasherSplasher Posts: 1,528
    Your frame may have one hole or three for the return springs, but it should have them otherwise your cantis wouldn't return. It should be an easy job but should's a dangerous word. :wink:
    "Internet Forums - an amazing world where outright falsehoods become cyber-facts with a few witty key taps and a carefully placed emoticon."
  • dave_sdave_s Posts: 4,362
    You don't need the extra holes, one on each side is enough but you'll probably have 3 anyway.

    Just fit the brakes and adjust spring tension a bit by hand and the rest with the tensioning screws and as normal with cantis, use cable adjustment to get reasonably close to the rim.

    You also might get away with your current cable outers but make sure your brake levers are V-brake compatible.

    Don't forget to toe-in the brake blocks to avoid squealing and you're quids in.

    Kool Stops are decent after market V-brakes and they do last a reasonable length of time once you've worn the Shimano ones out.
    Dave S
  • carlstonecarlstone Posts: 602
    Thanks for the replies. Good point about the cable outers. Is there any tips for cleaning cable outers before I put the new inners in as they are as old as the bike?

  • I always just put standard chain oil in mine, seems to work fine!! As long as the cable can move freely through without obstruction then you're on to a winner. If there are any splits in them or similar, you may have to replace them. A rusty inner cable is next to useless
  • Mr_OrangeMr_Orange Posts: 198
    A good squirt of TF2 (GT85) down the outer lubes it up nicely.
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