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Stiff front wheel

roverthehillroverthehill Posts: 155
edited March 2013 in MTB workshop & tech
Hi,
Bought a 2nd hand boardman team 2012 fs and it all seams sound except the front wheel is very stiff. I took out the pads and the pistons are fairly flush - one maybe out just a little. When I popped the pads back in, it was pretty tight to get the disc back in. Took it for a 60 min spin hoping it would loosen up but no better if not a little worse.

Any suggestions?

Posts

  • Loosen the bleed bolt on the brake caliper and let a little fluid trickle out until you can get the piston completely flush. I had the same problem after fitting new pads to my avid elixirs and letting a bit of fluid out sorted it.
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  • Chunkers1980Chunkers1980 Posts: 8,035
    I really would not do that. Push harder first.
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    This^^^^^^^^^^^.
    But is the wheel tight (bearings) or the brake binding?
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  • how would I check the wheel bearings? With no pads in, the wheel in completely free. When I insert the pads, there is only a small gap and it's a real squeaze to get the disc in. Consequently, the pads rub like heck to the disc and hence the stiff one (I think anyway). It only takes a slight touch to the brake lever to lock the wheel completely so letting a touch of fluid out sounds plausible and like I said, one of the pistons sits a couple of mm out. better to do this at the brake caliper or levers?
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    As chunkers said, push them back properly first.
    I don't do smileys.

    There is no secret ingredient - Kung Fu Panda

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  • cheers. what's the best tool - spanner?
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    I leave the pads in, use a big screwdriver and turn it like a key.
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  • tried the screwdriver and that seemed to help. Still very little clearance though and a lot of rub. Not just as bad but not great...
  • chez_m356chez_m356 Posts: 1,893
    tried the screwdriver and that seemed to help. Still very little clearance though and a lot of rub. Not just as bad but not great...
      so a boardman team fs, assuming they are elixir 3's, have you realigned the calliper ?
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gt3XRYiFsqg
      Specialized Hardrock Sport Disc 10- CANYON Nerve AM 6 2011
    • yeah, that's the technique I have been using thanks. I let out a tiny bit of brake fluid and tried to reset the pistons. One piston seems a little stiffer than the other - is that typical? I let it out a few mm and lubed it with brake fluid so I think it's a bit better. Still doesn't go back quite flush though and still get bad rubbing when I pop the disc back in and reallign caliper. Even if i have the calipier loose and pistons back as far as i can get them, the disc won't run free completely.
      The wheel is more free so rideable, maybe just take it out a few times to wear the discs a bit? Alternatively it looks like removing a touch more fluid and trying harder to reset that piston?
    • craig tcraig t Posts: 21
      I'd say you've got a siezed piston. Get a new set of brake pads and use the old ones to push the pistons all the back in, use a bigger screwdriver if you need then pull lever to bring pistons back out and repeat a few times,use a bit of oil or similar to lube the sides of the pistons.I'd take the brake off the bike and use a vice to hold the caliper and have the lever higher than the caliper when pulling it. Both pistons should have the same amount of movement. Hth
    • bennett_346bennett_346 Posts: 5,029
      Every time i change the pads on my elixirs i have this issue. For the last 2 years at least. Still haven't come up with a solution other than manhandling.

      Oh by the way if the pistons are seized you'll not free them for any length of time. It's a chronic design flaw, they just keep seizing between pad changes.
    • Just want to say thanks to everyone above for their help. Think i tried a bit of everything, but I think lubing the piston with break fluid and use a bit of brute force to get it back in did the trick. Front wheel free as a bird and rides a beaut. About 4 hours of frustration to fix it but worth it. Thanks again guys.
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